Avebury Manor is a National Trust property in Wiltshire, right next to Avebury Stone Circle (the subject of my next post). Built in the 1550s the BBC used it in a TV project where they redecorated and refurnished the rooms so that each one reflects a different time period, from the Tudors to the 1930s.
I don’t really think that Stonehenge requires much of an introduction and I have written about my first visit to the site here. This time I made the return because my brother had never been and wanted to go and we happened to be holidaying fairly nearby.
Longleat began life as the site of an Augustinian Priory and was purchased by the Duke of Somerset John Thynne in 1541. It has undergone many changes since then and has also served as a relief hospital during the First World War and during the Second was also the site of an American Hospital and an RAF depot. It was opened to the public in 1949. Its name derives from the long “lete” – man-made ditch to channel water – which used to supply the original priory.
During my visit to Longleat Safari Park as well as the normal animal species you would expect to find, there was also a display of animatronic dinosaurs as part of the Park’s Dinosaurs Alive exhibition. We were a week too early to actually get to see the exhibition but I thought the dinosaurs were excellent and deserving of a post of their own.
The Jungle Kingdom section of Longleat Safari Park is the area you travel around on foot and has a whole range of animal species – more than a few I’d never met before. One of the my favourites of these new creatures has to be the binturong, which we first encountered curled up asleep but which became more active and alert once we were on our way out of the park. One of only two carnivores with a tail capable of grasping, they are slow-moving animals that live in forests and are on the vulnerable animals list.
On my birthday in May (yes, I’m that behind again!) I’d decided that I’d like to make a return trip to Longleat Safari Park in Wiltshire. It had been at least a decade since I was there last and in that time the Park has undergone a lot of improvements, including the acquisition of some cheetahs, which are one of my favourite animals.