According to English Heritage,
"Fountains Abbey has been described as the 'crown and glory of all that
monasticism has left us in England'. There are 800 years of history to be
explored in the 320-hectare (790-acre) estate, a World Heritage Site combining
architecture and landscape of outstanding historical and aesthetic importance.
The ruins of the Cistercian abbey, which was founded in 1132, are the largest
such remains in Europe: they provide a dramatic focal point for the landscape
garden, which was laid out during the first half of the 18th century by William
and John Aislabie."