Barmouth, Harlech and the Lleyn peninsula

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Look, here’s the train approaching Barmouth, on the coast of Wales. The line runs through some wonderful scenery and has made us think about a rail trip next time. Lots of small steam railways running inland from this line, too, though mostly closed until Easter. Up the road a little way is Harlech with its very imposing and well worth visiting castle and then there’s the Lleyn peninsula to explore. On the way, there’s the curious Portmeirion and Clough Williams-Ellis’s equally interesting Brondanw garden – which alone made a trip to this area well worth it.

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Hull’s Fascinating Museums

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You often don’t appreciate what’s on your doorstep – and the museums in Hull are a case in point.  The Wilberforce Museum, the Streetlife Museum and the East Riding and Hull Museum are all within a very short distance of each other – and all well worth visiting. The last in the list has, among many other well-presented and curious exhibits, some stunning Roman mosaics. The picture above is just one small sample.  Below is something completely different: one of the carriage scenes from the Streetlife Museum. This section of the building even smells horsey! museum 4

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March 17, 2014 · 2:41 pm

December celebrations

_Berny & Steve's 40th 17First of all, Berny and Steve’s 40th Wedding Anniversary. You can see it was an occasion for joy -and for many cakes. (To get an idea of the cakes you’ll have to go to Shuttercal  or Blipfoto.)  Of course, December is a time of visiting for - or to be visited.  So, off to Staines (on-Thames) for the first leg…_Mandy's

Then to Clent, to catch up with the cats – and hats:_Kate Dunc Joe and Zoe c

And back to Barrow for Christmas. Nice to go visiting – but always good to be home.

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Old Lincoln

IMG_4276 Faces near the entrance to the Choir at Lincoln Cathedral. Not saints – though maybe sinners, who knows? – these characters still look bright and mischievous after all the years that have passed since they were carved. They hint of the ‘other lives’ unremarked in history books or the cathedral rolls of honour.  Meanwhile the low sun plays with lovely patterns on the north wall…

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Nova Scotia

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Back again in wonderful Nova Scotia. The scenery inland can be repetitive: rocks + trees! But the coast and rivers are beautiful. This is taken near Bridgewater, not far from the World Heritage site of Lunenburg with its famous Bluenose sailing ship and colourful 18th century clapboard buildings. Most of our time we spent over in Digby with friends, enjoying great hospitality, beach sculpture and, of course, views.

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Gunby Hall and Tattershall

Gunby Hall gardens

Gunby Hall is a little treasure (almost) hidden in south Lincolnshire, some way from most of the tourist trails. The house, now with many more rooms open, is well worth a visit. It isn’t so daunting as some of those magnificent mansions where you wonder if you want to see yet another portrait or four poster; there’s a real domesticity to it. But the icing on the cake is the garden, which is lovely and had a wonderful flush of colour in August when some gardens are fading. There are lots of ‘rooms’ as well as open spaces and we particularly liked the mix of flowers and vegetables.

Nearby is Tattershall Castle, an imposing pile and in remarkably good nick, considering it was left to fall into disrepair for many years. The interior is bare  but interesting and the views from the roof and turrets are magnificent. You can see a long way in south Lincolnshire!

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All the way to Slovenia

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Here is a close up of Sylv’s finger – oh, and a butterfly that seemed to like her perspiration. Taken at the wonderful Kamnik Arboretum in Slovenia, one of the best botanical gardens we’ve visited. We liked the mix of Tyrolean, Balkan and Mediterranean in architecture, scenery, food and drink – and admired the vegetable gardens everywhere: out in the countryside, in suburban gardens and even on our campsite. And on the way, of course, the stunning scenery…

mountains 1Austria is not only the place for mountains, lakes and wayside churches but has some mind-numbing tunnels…

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