Our Trip To Stourhead

Traveling can be a lot of fun but sometimes the go-go schedule can be taxing. To counter that, we like to build in periods of slack time where we don’t have to be anywhere in particular, thus having the leisure time to explore as little or as much as we want. Today was one of those times where we took things a bit easy…. 😄

Today was a rather leisurely day for us and we decided to visit Stourhead. Located close to Warminster in Wiltshire (think directly south of Bath, it’s essentially located at the source of the Stour River. The estate covers some 2,650 acres and has existed for over 700 years in one state or another. Deeded to the National Trust in 1946 by Sir Henry Hugh Arthur Hoare, 6th Baronet, the estate had belonged to the Hoare family since 1717 and during that time, the house was one of the first grand Palladian-style villas to be built in England and today remains one of the foremost examples of this style in Britain. Here’s a few views of the house itself:

The house was interesting but it was really the gardens that caught our eye…

The gardens surround a large lake complete with a Classical Era-inspired Pantheon et al. There’s a lot of trails for hiking and judging from the number of hikers and dog walkers we encountered, it’s quite a popular place.

Note the tiny Temple of Apollo set in the side of the hill, surrounded by foliage. Here’s a better view, courtesy of Wikipedia:

And here’s a better one with the Pantheon, also courtesy of Wikipedia:

The pictures really don’t do justice to the location- it’s one of those sort of places that needs to be experienced first-hand and at a leisurely pace. We’ll definitely be back!

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