Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Tatton Park Gardens and Playground, UK

Tatton Park is an extensive estate near Manchester in England. The gardens are quite large and in the summer of 2013 they hosted a Beatrix Potter trail, which the children enjoyed following. At least for part of the trail.

The children ready for an adventure!

We started our tour of the garden in the Walled Kitchen Garden, which features a lot of apple trees. Several of the trees are strung out along fences, perhaps to make harvesting either. Also strung along a fence is Mrs. Tiggy-winkle's washing, including the stockings of Sally Henny-Penny.



Later in the garden, we discovered Peter Rabbit several times and in multiple places. We found him everywhere except for by the scarecrow.

Peter popping out by the veg

L, behind you!

Lonely scarecrow

We explored some more of the veg in the garden, especially looking for an exit to see more of the walking part of the gardens. We soon discovered the exit.

More of the garden

Finally an exit!

We soon came on the Tower Garden, with a small folly. Inside the folly, Tommy Brock the badger was taking a nap.

Tower Garden tower

Sleeping badger, not sleeping beauty

The tower garden doesn't have any practical fruits, vegetables, or herbs. It seems like a spot just for hanging out and enjoying nature. There's even a shelter in case of inclement weather!

What's this for?

Our final stop on the Potter Trail (we skipped several bits) was the Maze. In the center of the maze is Peter Rabbit's burrow. We tried to find our way through the maze but couldn't find Peter. We started to worry that we wouldn't make it back out.

Everything looks the same!

We did find our way out and then made a bee-line for the stables, where toilets and snacks were available.

Stables that look more like a hotel to me

Tea shop builiding

One unusual feature of the stable yard was a carousel. The kids begged for a ride. It was expensive (£2 which is $3 per rider) but we let them ride since we were on vacation. It was a nice, long ride, so we almost got our money's worth.

The carousel

Two happy riders!

At one point I started chasing them around the carousel but I couldn't keep up, mostly because of the other pedestrians around the ride. Dodging around them took too much effort.

Of course, the most important part of Tatton Park for J and L was the adventure playground, which featured plenty of classics and some new items. J's favorite was the zip line. We managed to get him off it after four rides. The queue was pretty long so we were glad to do some other things.

Approaching the playground

Swinging inward and not colliding!

Wobbly bridges are always popular

L the climber

L has good balance and a smile!

Someday we may go back and see the buildings and such, but we had a fun time on this visit and would recommend Tatton Park.

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