I thought I’d post a second set of picture for today in addition to those I posted from downtown Richmond. After we walked around a little downtown, we drove out to Maymont. From Wikipedia:
Maymont is a 100 acre Victorian estate and public park in Richmond, Virginia. It contains Maymont Mansion, now a historic house museum, an arboretum, formal gardens, a carriage collection, native wildlife exhibits, a nature center, and Children’s Farm.
In 1893, Major James H. Dooley, a wealthy Richmond lawyer and philanthropist, and his wife, Sallie, completed their elaborate Gilded Age estate on a site high above the James River. According to their wishes, after their deaths Maymont was left to the people of Richmond. Over the next 75 years, additional attractions were added.
The first picture here is the mansion, up on the bluff overlooking the James River (as mentioned in Wikipedia). It really is beautifully situated and it’s a remarkably nice park. Many of the attractions are closed on Mondays, so we were not able to go into the mansion, for instance, but the grounds are open daily and that was enough for us.
We started by walking down past most of the animal exhibits to the Japanese garden. While this can’t be the best time of year to see the garden, we really enjoyed it and would recommend it highly. The only thing to keep in mind is that if you visit in the summer, when it is quite hot, getting from the Japanese garden back to the parking area is going to be a lot more tiring. There is a tram that runs, which would take care of that, but again, not on Mondays.
The other three pictures are of birds (obviously). The first two are in aviaries, the third was a wild mallard on one of the ponds in the Japanese garden. I also enjoyed the collection of trees on the property, including quite a few very large Lebanon cedars (Cedrus libani) and some pretty impressive bald cypress (Taxodium distichum). My favorite two tress, however, were a golden Hinoki cypress (Chamaecyparis obtusa ‘Tetragona Aurea’) and a very large incense cedar (Calocedrus decurrens). I have three of the later planted along the fence in my back yard and it was nice to see such a big version of what they can become.