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Published: July 21st 2018
St David's from the car park approach
We set off from Laugharne after a great breakfast at Brown’s. I had Eggs Benedict while Fletcher had smoked salmon scrambled eggs. Yummy. We said farewell to Jude and Milly and then Fletcher discovered he had left a wallet containing American dollars and other denominations of cash back in our hotel room in Swansea. So, it was on the road and a rapid commute to there. Fortunately, when we got back to The Grand Hotel, someone had found it and it was in their safe, Phew!!!
We then set off to drive to St David’s. We had seen this on one of the Antiques Roadtrips programs and it looked fascinating. The road took us through Haverfordwest and on to the westernmost part of Wales. The scenery along the coast was striking and the drive was relatively easy. We arrived in St David’s and after a bit of driving around, parked in the cathedral car park for a couple of hours. We wked up the hill and into the grounds of the cathedral. This is a stunning building, huge and sited down in a valley so that from the top only the steeple can be seen. It dates from the 12th
Plaque explaining the place
century and was supposedly founded by St David himself, the patron saint of Wales. Inside is just as impressive with wonderful wooden ceilings and many knights and bishops lying in stone effigies around the walls. St David’s shrine is particularly beautiful, with paintings of St Patrick, St David and St Andrew in relief against a gold background. After a good look around the cathedral and a couple of purchases from the cathedral shop we walked up the hill into the town. The views back to the church were stunning and we stopped to admire the whole scene with the ruins of the Bishop’s Palace in the background.
It was time for lunch, so we went to The Bishop’s pub in the town centre and had a good meal, with Fletcher enjoying his fish and chips and my lasagne really hitting the spot. We then walked to the car and headed back the way we had come. Along the way we stopped at a couple of the very attractive seaside towns. The first, Solva, had a deep estuary and we explored the little shops there and spent some money. At Newgale, we walked across the road to a beautiful beach,
The main section of the cathedral
protected by a shingle wall, which is obviously a popular surfing spot. A great place for beach lovers.
Our destination was Pembroke. Apart from the obvious links to Pembroke School in Adelaide, we had been told it was an interesting town.I had booked accommodation on Booking.Com at the Middlegate Hotel. As we drove in I saw a sign which pointed to the parking area, but we missed it first time round. On our second pass we drove along a small road and parked behind the hotel. However, we could not find anybody there and the back rooms looked abandoned and deserted. We drove back into the main street and I went to the front door and rang a bell. I then rang a number which was on a handwritten note on the door. A sleepy voice answered and said he would be down in a minute. When he emerged, he opened the door and waved us in and then we got his whole life story, and the fact that on the website it says to book in between 12-3pm! Once we found our room we returned to the bar for a drink. He runs this place as a one
The three saints near the shrine
man band and we heard endlessly how he gets hardly any sleep etc etc etc. We finally escaped and went for a walk along the main street. We went down to the Mill Pond which was a pretty stretch of water with many swans and ducks. This was once the moat of the nearby Pembroke Castle. And in the evening light it was a most attractive place.
We returned to the main street and to a small, pretty hotel, The Coach House, The menu here looked far better than our “friend’s”, so we decided to stay for dinner. This was a good choice and we had our first 3 course meal for the trip, ending with a blueberry Crème Brulee which was OK, but the custard lacked warmth. Back to our lodgings and we bought a bottle of wine from the bar and went back to the room to watch TV and relax. The end of a full- on day.
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