Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Leeds Castle

I'd been wanting to visit Leeds Castle for the past few years and was nearly foiled by the weather this trip, but after many rained out plans, we finally woke to fair skies and a pleasant forecast, so off we went. It was absolutely beautiful and a full fun day for both Kellan and myself. There was not only the beautiful castle and grounds to enjoy, but a train ride, a (rather difficult!) maze, an absolutely out of this world castle-themed playground, a bird show, a (scary, according to Kel) grotto, gardens, and lots of interactive activities for the kids. Here are some photos from the day.

Kel and I on the train. No wonder the girl who took the photos was laughing!

How cute are these baby geese?

The castle was in a most gorgeous setting, moat and everything.

Here is Kel leading the way through the maze. Luckily, there is a man standing on the the stone mound in the middle (the goal) who helps to guide you when completely lost. This may have happened to us once or twice. It was good exercise hiking around in circles, anyway!

We made it! Kel standing on the stone "mountain" at the middle of the maze. You exited the maze from this point through the underground grotto.

It was so hot by this point of day (what a difference from the rest of the week!) that I was nearly melting and regret not getting many photos of the amazing playground. I was hunting for shade in which to hide. Took a few shots of Kel on his favourite bit of equipment, a zip line seat. It was really fun. I may or may not have taken a few rides on it myself.

Later, we attended a wonderful bird show. At this point, the children were asked to come forward and to sit in a little group while they learned about the beautiful owl.

At the end of the talk, the owl flew right over the tops of their heads! Some smiled. Some took photos. Some (ahem) cringed in fear. Poor spatial awareness means that you don't welcome things flying straight at you.

Beautiful falcon.

It got hot. Ice cream was necessary. Kel, a hot day, and a large ice cream cone are not a great mix.

Later in the day, Kel got to be wildlife warden to the waterfowl. He did all of the afternoon feeding and especially enjoyed the lovely black swans.

Few final shots of the castle at the end of the day as we waited for the train to take us back to the parking lot.

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