It’s been a long time since we’ve been on a day out. A year in fact. We’ve got nothing booked up for summer apart from tennis. A lot of tennis. Camps, private lessons and tournaments. So it’ll be grabbing some time outdoors in places relatively close to home when we get the chance. The latest place I managed to visit was an hour or so enjoying walking around Abingdon and Abbey Gardens.

I used to go dancing in the Guild Hall before it closed a long time ago, and before that played in an orchestra in the town. But I’d never really walked around and explored. But N’s county tennis training is just outside the town centre. So while he’s there I’ve gone for a walk into the town – mostly just to pick up a top up food shop. But the last week I decided to go further into the town and see what was around.

Exploring Abingdon's abbey gardens.

To my surprise, Abingdon’s got a lovely pedestrianised square that looks very continental. With blue skies and the sun beating down, all the cafe seating outside the old buildings, it was a lovely place to wander.

The County Hall Museum building stands proud in town square, but I didn’t have time to visit. Maybe when I have more time I’ll return for a tour.  Instead I spotted signs to the medieval Abbey Gardens and decided to head there.

abingdon county hall museum

Only a short walk around the streets, Abbey Gardens are a beautiful area of calm you can sit and enjoy, or walk around. Not to be confused with Abbey Meadow which you can easily walk to from the gardens. The meadow is along by the river and houses the outdoor pool. Abbey Gardens is a little behind St Nicholas’ Church and the Abbey Gatehouse.

abbey gatehouse

It’s an easily accessible garden with lovely ruins of Trendell;s Folly and other archways to explore.  The circular formal floral gardens were blooming beautifully in the sun, and there are more hidden walkways to enjoy the shade and look out for different flowers.

long view of abbey gardens
selfie under stone arch in abbey gardens
raindrops on red tree leaves with sun shining on

All ages were enjoying the gardens when I was there, from elderly couples, to families with young children. Teenagers hanging out, and singles just sitting and enjoying some quiet time.

It was busy with people enjoying the green space in the sun, but it didn’t feel too busy to enjoy some space. I can imagine in the height of summer it gets really busy, especially with the meadow space a short walk away.

garden view through 4 stone pillers
wide angle view down path through formal flower gardens
circular flower beds
selfie overlooking abbey gardens
close up of tall flowers in flower beds

Abbey Gardens was a chance for me to enjoy being outside, take lots of photos and see somewhere new. Now I’ve found there, next time I’m in the town I want to explore further down by the river.

footpath trough the trees
fluffy pink peony in bloom
Trendell's folly
trendell's folly ruins
arches of trendell's folly ruins

Getting the chance to walk and explore makes a spare 1 ½ hours of waiting around for the end of tennis more worthwhile.

Abbey Gardens is easy to find – it’s just behind Waitrose, by the council offices and Guildhall, with a couple of car parks nearby.

Where have you been exploring recently?

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