Category: Days Out (Page 2 of 7)

Holiday Day Four – Castle Drogo

Day four of our holiday involved a drive partially home for the next stage of our holiday in Coventry. We didn’t want to lose an entire day to travelling, so we decided to pick a National Trust property on our way and stop off for a look around. We picked Castle Drogo in Devon completely at random, and it was quite an interesting choice to make.

Castle Drogo was the last castle to be built in the UK and it was built will full electricity. But despite only being finished less than 100 years ago, the roof has never been watertight and there is a lot of water damage.

We didn’t know this until we got there, and neither did we know that they are currently in the process of a multi-million pound restoration of the castle, which involves taking it to pieces and rebuilding it again. Most of the castle is covered in a big plastic sheeting covered scaffolding structure to keep the weather out, so you couldn’t see what it was supposed to look like.

One condition of the funding that they received for the restoration was that the castle had to remain open throughout. None of the regular exhibits are on show as the castle is in such disarray, so each room in the house which remains open contains a different theme, for example the ‘Room of Time Passing’, which was storing every clock from the house.

It was fascinating to see how the restoration is completed, and I’d love to go back there once it’s finished to see the castle in it’s true glory!

After we’d walked around the castle and the gardens, we stopped for a quick Devon cream tea, during which we were joined by a very friendly little bird who just wanted a few crumbs!

Cornwall Day Three – Lands End & St Michael’s Mount

No trip to Cornwall would be complete without a trip to Lands End, so we decided to venture down there on day three of our holiday. We arrived quite early, but it was already packed with visitors! There were quite a few shops to go in, then we ventured out to the actual end of the land, with spectacular views!

Surprisingly, after having no phone signal in pretty much the rest of Cornwall, we actually got a really good signal out there, go figure!

We were initially undecided about whether to pay to get our photo taken with the famous sign post, but eventually we realised that we’d paid so much to get there that another tenner wasn’t going to hurt, and it would be a nice memento of a lovely day!

After eating a proper traditional Cornish pasty, we left Lands End to go to St Michael’s mount, but after seeing the boats that were going out to the island, and then reading that the path up to the top was steep with no hand rails – with no proper shoes with us, we decided to just sunbathe on the beach instead. Unfortunately, we didn’t put sun cream on, so we both ended up quite sunburned since it was such a lovely sunny day!

But Cameron had fun digging a big hole, and I had fun walking around in the cool water, so it was a perfect end to a great day!

Cornwall Day Two – Holywell Bay

On the second day of our holiday we decided to go for a drive and find one of the National Trust car parks on the coast which are free to park in for National Trust members like us. We picked Holywell Bay randomly from the map and boy did we make a good choice.

The car park was a (slow) ten minute walk /stroll from the beach, although you do have to take your shoes and socks off to cross a stream that flows into the river. Not that I wanted to put them back on after because the sand was so soft and golden white. And the sea, I’ve never seen anything like it! I’m used to the slightly murky looking seas of Scarborough and Bridlington, but this sea was so crystal clear and blue it was almost Caribbean!

We sat on the beach for quite a long time before taking a slow stroll down to the sea and then back round up the stream back to the car. Unfortunately, Cameron couldn’t get his jeans to roll up over his calf muscles, so as you can see he got his jeans quite wet!

As it was Sunday, everything was closing quite early, but we stopped off at the Cornwall Gold shop for a look around at some very nice (and expensive) jewellery and then a scrumptious cream tea!

Cornwall Day One – Fowey

The first day of our holiday was mostly spent driving from Bristol to Cornwall after staying the night with my uncle the night before. But after we’d unpacked at the hotel, we decided to go for a drive and check out some of the Cornish countryside. After getting stuck behind an old VW campervan on a single track road for what seemed like ages, we ended up taking a ferry boat across a river to Fowey (pronounced Foy as in Boy), a picturesque little town with a lot of boats on the crystal blue water and a lovely little church where someone was getting married.

In the evening, we drove across the bridge to Plymouth to the cinema to see Maleficent, and had the chance to drive across it in sunshine and darkness. Surprisingly, Cameron loved the film, even though it was a Disney film! It definitely wasn’t aimed at young children though, it was a bit dark and scary!

Bowling and a Trip to the Tetley

We had the day off work today after staying out later for the gig last night, so we decided to make the most of it!

First up was bowling at Hollywood Bowl in Kirkstall. Neither of us had been bowling for ages so it was lots of fun! Cameron tried to tell me he was rubbish at bowling, but he came back from setting the lane up, and he hadn’t put the gutter rails up for himself! Considering pretty much all of my balls would end up in the gutter if I didn’t have the rails up, he was definitely better than me! I managed to win the first game with a strike in the 10th frame, but I think that was definitely more luck than skill! Cameron then won the second game, leaving us at a happy tie for the day!

After we’d finished bowling and drinking our slush puppies like excitable children, we headed to the arcade where we played a racing game (which Cameron won), and air hockey (which Cameron also won due to his violent playing style!).

We then headed to The Tetley in Leeds, a restaurant and art gallery sited on the old Tetley’s brewery site. The food was as I expected, absolutely delicious. We both had fish and chips followed by Sticky Toffee Pudding, and we were full to bursting after we’d finished. Since I wasn’t driving, I washed it down with a pint of Tetley’s Gold, which was the nicest beer I’ve had in a long time.

We then went for a walk around the art gallery. I’m not really an art gallery type person, I prefer a nice painting to some of the things that you see in art galleries, although there was some nice stuff currently on display, including one piece which was getting ready for it’s grand opening later in the day. The building itself was beautifully renovated, keeping the style of the old Brewery but looking modern, open and welcoming. I’ll definitely be heading back there again, if only for some more of that divine pudding!

Fun with Maestro at Golden Acre Park

The weather was so lovely when we got up this morning that we decided to take Maestro for a walk around Golden Acre Park. Unfortunately, a lot of people had the same idea, so it was extremely busy! The sun was rather deceptive as the place was still extremely muddy from all the rain recently, and as I was walking over the grass towards the lake, I ended up on my knees in the mud. I wish I could say that I had been pulled over by Maestro, but Cameron was holding him, I just wasn’t paying attention!

After we got home from the park, Maestro was still full of beans, so we tired him out in the garden playing fetch and making him run around like a loon!

Nostell Priory

Since we just renewed our National Trust memberships, and it’s been a while since we went for a walk anywhere, we decided to stay close and go to Nostell Priory. We took a picnic with us which we ate in the car before our walk (still slightly too cold for eating outside!), then went for a walk around the lake at Nostell Priory. There’s a few different walking routes around the grounds, so we’ll probably go back and explore some more later in the year! By the time we’d finished, we were just ready for a nice cup of tea and a big slab of cake, rounding off a pretty awesome day!

While we were there, we picked up a big map of England with all the National Trust places marked on it, so we’re going to try and get to as many as possible this year! Not quite as grand as exploring the world, but much cheaper and still extremely fun!

Eric Church and The Cadillac Three at The Ritz, Manchester

For Christmas, Cameron bought me tickets to see Eric Church at the Ritz in Manchester. Since it had been a while since we went away anywhere, we decided to get a hotel in the centre of Manchester and have the weekend away. Living in England, there’s not much opportunity to see country music played live, so I was incredibly excited to see one of my favourites, Eric Church, live for the first time!

I didn’t expect it to be too busy, but when we got to the venue 45 minutes before doors opened, the queue was already snaking around the corner. And by the time that The Cadillac Three came on stage, the venue was absolutely packed with hardly any room to even move to the bar. The variety of people in attendance was quite surprising too, people of all ages and who looked from all different social backgrounds coming together for a good time.

I’d never heard of The Cadillac Three before, but they were awesome. They definitely amped the crowd up and I came away from the venue and immediately started looking for their music online.

Which brings us to the main act. What can I say. Simply terrific. I would probably say that he was better live than on his CDs, simply due to the way that he interacted with the crowd and had us all joining in. I think he was quite surprised that people sang along to every single one of his songs, even the new album which has only just come out.

I have to say, it was one of the best gigs I’ve been to. Superb. If you’ve not heard either Eric Church or The Cadillac Three, you should definitely check them out.

Brimham Rocks: 5th January 2014

As I mentioned in my post yesterday, we went for a rather cold walk around Brimham Rocks, a National Trust property in North Yorkshire, near Ripon. Cameron had never been there before, but I went many many times when I was younger. It was a fab afternoon scrambling up and down the smaller rocks, although it was too wet and I was too scared of falling to get very high!

November on Instagram

Pictures from November on my Instagram. Follow me here – @louiser89

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