Chester – Blue Plaque Heaven :)

Finding ourselves with a few extra days away and unable to book into the same site on The Wirral we found an amazing site in Caerwys, North Wales (White Gates – click for my review).  What an amazing find!  Not just the site itself either – the town is full of history too (and we also liked The Royal Oak – just saying…)

It’s also not too far from Chester – probably 30-40 mins drive.  We did drive into the town centre initially but gave up on finding that it would cost £7.80 to park for 3 hours.  So we headed back out to one of the Park and Rides (as we had been advised before we even left home…) and made our way in from there (on the bus of course).

Our first view on getting off the bus was the city walls crossing the street with an ornate clock atop the bridge.  Very impressive 🙂

Chester August 2018 (12)
Chester City Walls

We also noticed a number of stalls lining the streets as we walked towards the centre.  We had chosen Chester Pride day to visit!  Continue reading “Chester – Blue Plaque Heaven :)”

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UK Campsite Reviews

A brief review of all campsites that we have stayed on in the UK (please bear with me, this is a work in progress! I’m starting with the most recent and working backwards. Eventually I will cover all campsites that we have stayed on over the years 🙂 )
We often use Camping & Caravanning Club certificated sites and occasionally Caravan Club. We also use PitchUp and UKCampsites online to help us find where to stay, if we’re struggling.
Unless we’re trying to cover school holidays (which we’ve now decided we probably don’t need to worry about) we choose our next site a couple of days before moving on!
Just click on the link to see my review for the campsites that we’ve stayed on:-

East Sussex & Kent:

The Cock Inn, Peasmarsh, East Sussex                                –   Near Rye (about 10 miles from Hastings)

Eagles Garth, Beckley, East Sussex                                       –    (1-2 miles down the road from The Cock Inn)

Bearstead Caravan Club Site                                                 –    Near Maidstone (handy for Leeds Castle)

Hampton Bay Park, Herne Bay, North Kent                      –    Herne Bay – handy for Whitstable

Kelseys Camping, Sidcup, Kent                                             –    Sidcup  – we used it for visiting Chatham and Rochester.  Also very handy for visiting London 🙂

East Anglia

D’Arcy Equestrian, Tolleshunt D’Arcy, Maldon, Essex    –     Maldon – handy for visiting Mersea Island, Tiptree and even Colchester

Fishers Field, Theberton, Suffolk                                        –     Nr Aldeburgh.  Handy for visiting Thorpeness, Orford, Framlingham.  Even Southwold!

Lower Wood Farm, Mautby, Norfolk                                –    Caister on Sea.  Handy for Great Yarmouth and for visiting Norwich and the Norfolk Broads

Woodlands Caravan Park, Sheringham (North Norfolk)  –  Sheringham.  Handy for Cromer, Holkham, Wells next the Sea

Highfield Farm Touring, Comberton, Cambridge              –  Cambridge.  Also handy for visiting Ely

King’s Forest Caravan Park, West Stow, Nr. Bury St Edmonds – Bury St Edmonds.  Also handy for Newmarket, Thetford, Lakenheath and Lavenham

Northants, Rutland & Lincolnshire

British Grand Prix, Whittlebury Park, Silverstone            –  Whittlebury.  Handy for the British Grand Prix!!

Top Farm, Ryhal, Stamford for Rutland Water                 –  Stamford.  Handy for Rutland Water and Burghly House

Fulbeck Waters, Fulbeck, Lincs                                            – Fulbeck.  Handy for Lincoln, Grantham & Newark

Canal Farm, Austen Fen nr Louth, Lincs                            –  Louth.  Handy for Cleethorpes, Mablethorpe (and numerous other amazing sandy beaches)

Yorkshire & Northumberland (& 2 random sites in Cornwall)

Wold Farm, Flamborough Head – right on the cliffs 🙂    –   Flamborough.  Handy for Bridlington, Filey & perhaps Pickering for the North Yorks Railway

Trewiston Farm, Rock, Cornwall                                         – Rock.  Handy for Padstow, Daymer Bay, Port Isaac, Tintagel (I could go on…. – North Cornwall basically!)

Tregline Farm, nr Polzeath, Cornwall                                – A couple of miles from Trewiston (if that) so handy for the same places

Teversal Camping & Caravanning, nr Sheffield              –  Teversal.  Handy for the Peak District, Sheffield, Chesterfield and Bolsover Castle

Grantchester Caravan and Camping                                – Nr York.  Also handy for Harrogate and Knaresborough (Old Mother Shipton’s Cave)

Streets Head Caravan Site, nr Aysgarth                          – Aysgarth.  Also handy for West Burton, Hawes, Leyburn, Richmond and the Yorkshire Dales in general 🙂

Fletchers Farm, Great Ayton, North Yorkshire             – Great Ayton.  Handy for the North York Moors in general (so much to do and see 🙂 )

Wellhouse Farm, Stocksfield nr Hexham and Corbridge – nr Corbridge.  Handy for Hexham and Hadrian’s wall attractions

Potland Farm, nr Morpeth                                                – Ashington nr Morpeth. This is where we stayed when we visited Cragside.

Brock Mill Farm, nr Lindisfarne                                  – Beal on the road to Holy Island (Lindisfarne).  Also handy for Berwick on Tweed.

Scotland

Dunbar Camping and Caravanning                             – Dunbar.  Also handy for Edinburgh.

Thirlestane Castle, Lauder                                            – Handy for Jedburgh, Selkirk and Kelso (Floors Castle)

Lake District

Hill of Oaks, Bowness-on-Windermere                     – Bowness on Windermere.  The Lake District 🙂

Blackpool

Bluebell Cottage, Knott End, nr Blackpool               – Knott End.  Handy for Blackpool & Fleetwood

Return to the Dales with a trip to Malham

That’s me.  Sitting on the very edge of the Malham pavement looking back down the valley towards the village….

No it’s not!  Well it is me (of course), but I’m not actually sitting on the very edge.  I’m not that brave (or stupid..)

If you’ve not heard of it the Malham Pavement is made up of a series of ‘Clints’ (blocks of limestone) and ‘Grykes’ (the gaps in between the blocks) and covers a large area at the top of the cliff at Malham Cove.  Interestingly, both the Cove and the pavement are featured in Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows (only interesting, granted, if you are into Harry Potter.  If you are look for my post on Goathland, whose train station doubles as Hogwarts).

Malham itself sits in the south-west of the beautiful Yorkshire Dales.  At the end of our trip around the UK we already knew that we would return to this area, but in the end chose to do so as a daytrip from the perfect little campsite that we had found in Knott End, just north of Blackpool (Bluebell Cottage – click for more details).  It is about 50 miles away but the roads are good and it doesn’t actually take too long to drive it.  We visited The Ribblehead Viaduct on our way home as well.

So, first stop Malham  itself, a pretty little village popular with walkers and tourists, Continue reading “Return to the Dales with a trip to Malham”

What we learnt about the UK in 2017 – Part 1

We spent less time travelling around the UK than originally expected, and didn’t get anywhere near as far around the country as we thought we would.

We set off at the beginning of April and the weather finally beat us at the end of October.  We arrived home on 23rd October, a few weeks before we were hoping.

Instead of making our way around the whole of the UK and spending a couple of months in Scotland, we explored the east coast fully, and just made it into Scotland (the furthest north we got was Dunbar, just east of Edinburgh) before we started making our way home via the Lake District and Blackpool.  In this time we also had a week in Ibiza for a family wedding (and what a wonderful week it was too!),  and a couple of weeks, in total, staying near home to catch up with family and friends.  Meaning that our actual time on the road in the UK was 25 weeks (including a diversion to Cornwall).

Obviously we already knew rather more about the UK than about France, Spain or Portugal, but we did learn new things on our way around the country 🙂

So here goes! Continue reading “What we learnt about the UK in 2017 – Part 1”

Scottish Borders – Lauder and Jedburgh

On leaving Dunbar it was just a short hop south to Lauder to stay at the Thirlestane Castle Caravan Site (click here for my review).

We still stopped on the way for a spot of lunch and to watch the cows in the fields though!  (Notice how we were still in our shorts. In October.  In Scotland!!)

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On our way to Lauder

The reason we had chosen this site was that it was in the grounds of Thirlestane Castle – which had closed for the season just a day or 2 before we arrived…..

Still, it was a nice walk along the road down towards the castle and then back up the steep road to head into the small town.  Here we wandered along the High Street, taking in the numerous ‘Wynds’, the old church (which has a watchhouse in the grounds to protect against bodysnatchers) , the town hall and pubs.

We visited the unusual church – unusual in that Continue reading “Scottish Borders – Lauder and Jedburgh”

Delightful Dunbar

What a wonderful surprise Dunbar was!  About 40 miles east of Edinburgh itself (so easily within reach from our campsite) we opted to stay on the Camping & Caravan Club site on the outskirts of Dunbar.

It didn’t take us very long to get there from Holy Island being just a short hop up the A1 and over the border – it probably only took us about an hour and a half.

The site itself was one of those where as you drive onto your pitch you have your breath taken away by the view before you.  See our review for pictures.

The 1st afternoon was spent stocking up in the nearby Asda and just relaxing.  We opted for a Chinese takeaway in the evening, landing up in Kings Palace on the High Street. where the service was excellent and the food was good.  (Bit bemused by the fellow customer who appeared not to really want to talk to us, but then kept piping up with ‘helpful’ advice – such as the best time to visit to avoid the midges would be July & August…..)

The next day we pulled on our walking boots and headed off towards Barns Ness lighthouse that we could see from the campsite.  This proved to be a longer walk than we were expecting!  Continue reading “Delightful Dunbar”

A daytrip across the border – to St Abbs via Eyemouth

Our final day before heading into Scotland proper was spent heading into Scotland for a daytrip..!

It was a lovely sunny day and the views were spectacular as we hugged the coast and crossed the border, passing the last (first..) pub in England on the way.  A short while along the A1 after the border we took a right hand turn onto a minor road and found ourselves turning right again and heading down into the small settlement that is Burnmouth – the 1st village in Scotland.

At the bottom of the steep hill down to the harbour there are in fact 3 separate settlements clustered together – Partanhall (now mainly holiday lets fronting directly onto the water (with only a narrow road between them and the elements), Burnmouth itself with it’s harbour and a number of dwellings (some of which feature a fishing store on the lower floor – with a front door seemingly too big for a normal door, but too small for a garage) and finally Cowdrait at the southern end with a handful of cottages.  The 3 parts together make up a tiny village, but Burnmouth does extend back up the steep cliff road to encompass a church and old schoolhouse as well.

The harbour is very pretty with swans enjoying the sunshine and the view out to sea was lovely.

Of course the sea can change and Burnmouth has seen it’s share of tragedy.  Continue reading “A daytrip across the border – to St Abbs via Eyemouth”