On Saturday, we headed out from our little base for the weekend (a cottage in the middle of the woods, near Badminton), to explore Westonbirt Aboretum. I have to admit, I'd never been to an arboretum before and wasn't really sure what to expect. Well, obviously a lot of trees. Managed by The Forestry Commission, there are over fifteen thousand species of trees across 600 acres of land. Yes, we queued for a while to park and to buy our tickets to get in, but we did get there at prime Saturday lunchtime (along with everyone else, it seemed!)..
Despite the queues and crowds, it wasn't long before we'd explored our way past the rather awesome treetop walkway (I really liked the crow's nest style platform which gave great views over the forest) and into the woods themselves. Once we got there, we were pleased to see that there were plenty of signs about encouraging you to explore away. Which we did. For me, I took the invitation to explore to include tree-climbing, which I did in as many trees as I could. We spent the rest of the afternoon exploring the beautiful changing colours of the forest, as well as being hugely underwhelmed by the 2000 year old tree (stumps). That said, I'd definitely recommend it as a place to visit, should you be in the area.