Road Trip Day #11, Rievaulx and Richmond.

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Our plan for today is to drive from Lastingham to Richmond which is only two hours away.  We drive  through a scenic countryside of varying shades of green fields, amazing stone cottages and farms passing through cute little villages where we sometimes stop and explore.

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Leaving Lastingham, all the sheep were lying down for a change, they are usually grazing.
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Sharp eyed Sandy spotted this ?female pheasant along the road.
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We then encounter this mammoth vehicle on these narrow country roads.
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Our first stop was Helmsley where a shop owner told us about Rievaulx Abbey just about a mile down the road.

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The parish church in Helmsley, of course we ran in for a look.
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Rievaulx Abbey. we knew nothing about this place and it was not on our agenda but it was an idyllic brief stop.

Rievaulx Abbey was the first Cistercian Abbey in northern England founded in 1132. It was one of the great abbeys in England until it was seized by Henry VIII in 1538 during the dissolution of the monasteries.  A highly recommended tour if you happen to be in the area.  IMG_1136IMG_0287IMG_0295IMG_1151IMG_1140IMG_0289IMG_0291

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Back on the road again.
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A typical two lane road.

We arrived in Richmond and deposited our luggage in the lovely Fleece Hotel which Sandy found online, researched and booked just last night.  It is very close to the sites we planned to see.  Our first stop was to the remains of Richmond Castle.  This castle is breathtakingly situated on a rocky promontory above the river Swale.  It was originally called Rich Mount meaning the strong hill.  It is the best preserved early Norman castle in England dating back to 1071.  We climbed to the top of the keep and enjoyed magnificent views of the town and surrounding dales.  According to legend King Arthur and his knights slept in the cave under the castle.  The castle is now a National Heritage site.  We became members of The National Heritage when we visited Stonehenge and as a result we have enjoyed free access to most of the sites we are touring during our countryside road trip.

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The entrance to Richmond Castle.

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View of the Yorkshire Dales from the castle.
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Romeo
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and Juliet.

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The river Swale from the castle.
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Jim has had enough.

After the castle we visited St. Mary’s, the parish church, then enjoyed a dinner at a Bangladeshi restaurant.

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Wandering the streets of Richmond.
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The parish church.
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Tree stump carving.
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The Fleece Hotel from the park across the street.
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Stairway in The Fleece Hotel.
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Always an appropriate caption for us.

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