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Published: October 17th 2018
You may tire of my superlatives when I describe the sights here, but let me tell you: I don’t tire of seeing them!
Wales is truly wondrous; they must have invented green. Yes, I know, there’s Ireland ahead (I go Saturday), so emerald is the color of October for me this year...
One problem in showing you all this is that, as I drive through all this gorgeous scenery, there’s a dearth of places for me to pull over to photograph them. Along the highways, there are “lay-bys” (pulloffs), but each one is heavily thicketed, blocking the view. And out in the country, there is virtually no hope, as locals ride my bumper if I dare to slow for a driveway or turnoff.
So, I’m cheating, sort of - I’ve found some good photos online of countryside and coastline that I actually DID see but couldn’t photograph, and have mixed them in with my own snaps. (In the interest of accuracy and truth - apparently in short supply these days - I have labeled them as ”borrowed.“ So if you don’t want to see second-hand beauty, close your eyes and keep swiping...)
I’ve stayed three days with
ATC hosts in Swansea, on the southern coast. Their snug house is wedged into a impossibly small lane (two-way, of course) in an historic district called The Mumbles. (The appellation has some to do with the hilly topography and women’s breasts - I can’t seem to get a straight answer.) Swansea Bay is on the “infamous“ Bristol Channel, with a tidal flow second only to the Bay of Fundy for its speed. I have a marvelous view of Oystermouth Castle (1100s) from my room, and am two blocks from the waterfront with its long esplanade and many restaurants....?
Tuesday I drove to the westernmost tip of Wales to see the kingdom’s smallest city, St. David’s. One must have a cathedral to be a city, and this one’s a doozy. First of all, it’s in a hollow behind the little town, so it appears to rise up as you walk down (and down and down) the hill from the main square. Then, its floor is sloped, so you walk uphill to the altar. And the walls tilt outward as they go up - rather unsettling, but effective. The whole bundle - catherdral, bishop’s palace, and town/city - is chocolate box
This is a two way street
Once I creep past the parked car, I park in a slot to the left.
charming, and worth the harrowing drive.
But my main goal was to reach Tenby, a stunning walled city on the Pembrokeshire coast. Oh, my! I had a lovely, restorative afternoon strolling the Espalanade, overlooking the bay and St, Catherine‘s Island fortress, wandering the shops in the back lanes, watching the sailsurfers, and enjoying a beer from a waterfront bar.
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