gothic temple at Stowe

Autumn colours in a walk at National Trust’s Stowe Gardens

We’ve been striding through the National Trust handbook to all the local places near us, and last week returned to Stowe Gardens.  The last time we went was in early 2014, so a lot longer ago than I realised.

This time I thought N might have wanted to do the halloween trail but of course not…instead we just followed round some of the other children to see the pumpkins that they were spotting as part of the trail.

checking the walking map of Stowe

It was a beautiful autumn day.  Warm enough to go out without coats although N wanted to take his.  We opted for the lazy version and caught the buggy down the 15 minute walk to the gardens.  N moans enough about walking round as it is, so adding the 15 minutes on either end wasn’t really going to be a good idea.

NT Stowe over the lake

There was a slight early morning haze to the day, but it was wonderful seeing the lake and the trees.  The reflections of the leaves were stunning.

gothic temple at Stowe
NT Stowe gardens

We spotted several of the pumpkins as we walked round

Stowe's headless rider pumpkin
pumpkin at Stowe

We enjoyed walking over the bridges as usual

running over the wooden bridge at Stowe

And he found a leafy branch to waft around.

waving his tree branch
walkway of light
walking in autumn leaves

N’s not keen on walking but as long as there’s plenty for him to see and do on the walk, plenty to look at to keep his interest he’s fine.  Although if I’d taken snacks with me, that would have been better to avoid his moans about wanting lunch.

temple at Stowe
crumbling temple roof at Stowe
reflections in the lake at stowe

Stowe Gardens was quite busy like all these other places are when it’s autumn time and half term.  But we were still able to get in a lovely walk without too many people getting in the way…except when N was on his mission to get back to pick up the buggy that was waiting!  There was no stopping him.

We decided to have some lunch at the café too.  Needless to say it was packed out with  a long queue.  I do think we hit it at the right time though.  N had to have his favourite lunchbox, while I had to wait 20 minutes after my order for a sandwich.

It was warm enough to sit outside to eat if in the sun, which was a lovely end to our visit.  We’ve still got more to see at Stowe, the other temples, and up to the house – hopefully timing it on a day it’s open, so I’m sure we’ll be back.  If anything I get to tell N more about the stories of the sports matches we came and played at Stowe School when I was at 6th form!

What’s your local national trust place?  Did you go out on any Halloween trails, or to see the autumn leaves?

Try these other nearby options for days out:

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  1. What an absolutely gorgeous day out together and beautiful location. Thank you ever so much for linking up to Share With Me. I hope to see you again tomorrow for another great round! #sharewithme

  2. What a beautiful place to visit.As I don’t drive, we’re limited to where we go as many NT places are out in the sticks. Halloween was low key this year as we were travelling back from staying at Coombe Mill.

  3. It looks so beautiful, your photos are wonderful. You know I love the trees, and the shots across the lake are gorgeous. Sounds like you had a lovely day, and what a bonus for it to be warm enough to sit outside x

  4. It looks very beautiful there, that photo with the reflections in the lake is so stunning and autumnal, pumpkin trail was a good idea. we did a witches one but pumpkins is a great idea too, it does help to have something for children to look out for on a walk and distract them from thoughts of lunch. I can see why this is a favourite National Trust property of yours, the grounds look so lovely. Thank you for sharing it all on Country Kids.

  5. Such beautiful grounds! I love forests as backdrops in the autumn. They’re so scenic and make for excellent photos x

  6. Ahhh these are gorgeous photos! And some of those pumpkins are absolutely amazing!! My little guy would have loved spotting those, he’s obsessed with pumpkins!
    I wish I enjoyed walks more, I really do. They always look so much fun and I love seeing the photos people get out there in nature, but I`m so un-outdoorsy. I always get so cold so quickly, and that just makes me really irritable! xx

    1. Ha ha, I hate walking round the farm at home, but on days out round trails or places with houses I’m fine. It’s just fields and hills I find boring

  7. If I’m honest, apart from the walk we do every weekend around town for an hour I haven’t taken the kids to any trail, park or any of sort lately or the last few weeks. I’m really bad when it comes to that and I really need to get out more.

  8. This looks absolutely gorgeous – I’ve been making the most of my National Trust pass this year too, and autumn is such a perfect time to explore when there’s woodland as well. Your photos are just amazing, looks such a lovely day.

  9. That looks like a beautiful place to wander about.z loves darting about in a place like that and playing hide and seek. It’s really scary as I think he’s going to touch something! Our closest is Lyme Park…Me Darcys house 🙂

  10. This looks like a beautiful place and a lovely walk! I also love this time of year, especially when the weather is mild enough to sit outside and eat. We had a lovely Autumnal walk in half term, too 🙂 Our local NT place is a few miles away from where I live and I’d need a car to get there but it’s something Im planning for the spring time!

    1. We’re lucky because there’s a few places within the hour from us, although my membership will shoot up next year when I need to start paying for N too.

    1. The bridge is great. Although we were looking for the shell bridge, and the only one that matched the map didn’t have shells, so not sure if we were right on that one!

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