Wednesday, 6 December 2023

Cumbria Travel Guide: Explore England's Lake District Beauty

Cumbria is an absolute gem nestled in the picturesque landscapes of England. From stunning lakes to majestic mountains, this region has so much to offer for any traveller seeking natural beauty, outdoor adventures, and a taste of English history and culture.


Cumbria Way | Lake District Walking Holidays | Celtic Trails (


Embrace Nature's Majesty

Lake District National Park: Cumbria is home to the Lake District, UNESCO World Heritage Site renowned for its breath-taking beauty. Explore the tranquil lakes like Windermere, Ullswater, and Derwentwater, each with its own unique charm and activities, from boat trips to lakeside walks.

Scafell Pike: For the adventurers, the highest peak in England, Scafell Pike, offers a challenge and rewards climbers with awe-inspiring panoramic views once they reach the summit.

Enchanting Trails: The region boasts a network of walking trails catering to all levels of hikers. Whether you're looking for a leisurely stroll or a challenging hike, the Lake District's trails offer stunning vistas at every turn.


10 Best Hikes and Trails in Lake District National Park | AllTrails


Rich History and Culture

Historic Sites: Cumbria is steeped in history, with ancient castles like Carlisle Castle and historic houses such as Lowther Castle, each with its own story to tell. Explore the remnants of the Roman era at Hadrian's Wall, a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Charming Towns and Villages: Quaint towns like Keswick, Ambleside, and Grasmere offer a delightful blend of culture, history, and local charm. Explore traditional pubs, independent shops, and local markets to get a taste of Cumbrian life.


Culinary Delights

Local Cuisine: Indulge in Cumbria's culinary delights, from traditional Cumberland sausages to sticky toffee pudding. Don't miss out on sampling local produce and dishes in cosy pubs and restaurants across the region.


The Black Bull Hotel, Kirkby Stephen, United Kingdom - Bedandbreakfastsguide (


Events and Festivals

Cultural Celebrations: Cumbria hosts various events and festivals throughout the year, celebrating everything from literature and music to food and outdoor activities. Join in the festivities and immerse yourself in the local culture.


What's On in the Lake District and Cumbria 2023 | Visit Lake District Cumbria


Final Thoughts

Cumbria is a destination that caters to every kind of traveller. Whether you seek adventure, relaxation, cultural immersion, or simply wish to immerse yourself in stunning natural landscapes, this region has it all. The warmth of its people, the richness of its history, and the sheer beauty of its landscapes make Cumbria an experience you won’t forget.

Plan your visit to Cumbria and get ready to create unforgettable memories in one of England's most captivating regions.


Lake District B&B and Hotels Cumbria | Bed and Breakfasts Guide

The Leathes Head Hotel, Keswick, United Kingdom - Bedandbreakfastsguide (

Powe House, Keswick, United Kingdom - Bedandbreakfastsguide (

Augill Castle, Kirkby Stephen, United Kingdom - Bedandbreakfastsguide (




Posted by Adam Groves on Wednesday, 6 December 2023 07:02

Monday, 13 November 2023

Top 10 Christmas Markets You Can't Miss in the UK 2023

Welcome to the enchanting world of festive wonder as we embark on a journey through the United Kingdom's top 10 Christmas markets. 'Tis the season of joy, and what better way to immerse yourself in the holiday spirit than by exploring these magical markets that transform city centres into winter wonderlands. From the bustling streets of London to the historic charm of Edinburgh, each market offers a unique blend of local crafts, delectable treats, and a vibrant atmosphere that captures the essence of the season. Join us as we discover the sights, sounds, and flavours that make these Christmas markets the epitome of yuletide magic. Whether you're seeking the perfect gift, indulging in seasonal delights, or simply basking in the festive ambiance, these markets promise an unforgettable holiday experience. Let the journey through the UK's most amazing Christmas markets begin!

Edinburgh - Scotland

From 17th November 2023 to 6th January 2024

Edinburgh's Christmas, situated in the heart of the city, offers the ultimate winter experience for families. Running from November 17, 2023, to January 6, 2024, this seven-week extravaganza transforms the city centre with traditional Christmas Markets, exciting fair rides, live outdoor events, delicious food, and more. From festive delights to spectacular entertainment, there's something for everyone. Visit their Christmas Markets page for venue details and explore the festive season's live events. We look forward to welcoming you this year!

Edinburgh Christmas (


Where to stay: 

Manchester, England

From 11th November to 22nd December 2023

This year, Manchester celebrates the 25th anniversary of its first Christmas market in 1998, solidifying its status as the UK's Christmas capital. Over the past quarter-century, the markets have consistently drawn Mancunians and visitors by the thousands to enjoy festive treats. With 225 stalls across nine city centre locations, including the iconic ski chalet market stalls in Piccadilly Gardens (transformed into the Winter Gardens), Market Street, Cathedral Gardens, Exchange Street, New Cathedral Street, St Ann's Square, Exchange Square, The Corn Exchange, and King Street, this year's Christmas markets promise an enchanting experience. The much-anticipated Manchester Christmas Parade, returning on December 3, is set to be even bigger and better than last year's unforgettable inaugural event, attracting families to the city centre streets.

Manchester Christmas Markets - Manchester - Visit Manchester


Where to stay: 


Chester, England

 From 17th November to 21st December 2023

Chester Christmas Market returns for a magical festive experience in the heart of the city. With 70 traders surrounding the town hall, the new arcade, and the forum near the iconic sparkling tree, this handmade and historical market offers a unique shopping experience. Discover locally made crafts, jewellery, accessories, and stocking fillers, ensuring you find the perfect presents. Chester has your Christmas all wrapped up!

Chester Christmas Market - Visit Cheshire


Where to stay:


Birmingham, England

From 2nd November to 24th December 2023

Birmingham's Frankfurt Christmas Market, a beloved annual event, lights up the city each winter and is a favourite among residents and visitors alike. Nestled on Victoria Square and along New Street, this market, the largest authentic German Christmas market outside of Germany or Austria, boasts a diverse array of traditional goods and gifts, along with tempting food and drink options. From pretzels and schnitzels to bratwursts and roasted almonds, the culinary delights are complemented by gluhwein, weissbier, or rich hot chocolate. The festive ambiance is perfect for gatherings with family and friends, enhanced by a lively music program on Victoria Square. Explore the stalls for handcrafted wooden decorations, delicate glass baubles, crystal lamps, Sounds of Nature, hand-crafted leatherwork, toys, jewellery, and more—a one-stop-shop for delightful presents!

Birmingham Frankfurt Christmas Market - Visit Birmingham


Where to stay: 


York, England

From 16th November to 22rd December 2023

Experience the enchantment of a winter wonderland in York from November 16th to December 22nd. With over 75 alpine chalets lining Parliament Street and St Sampson's Square, the festive atmosphere comes alive with twinkling lights and cheerful carols. Explore these charming chalets to discover locally crafted treasures and artisan gifts, all brought to you by talented local traders.

York Christmas Market 2023 | Visit York


Where to stay:


Bath, England

From 23rd November to 10th December 2023

Bath Christmas Market is back in the historic city from November 23rd to December 10th, creating a winter wonderland in the picturesque Bath City Centre. This free event features charming chalets among iconic monuments, offering a festive atmosphere with mulled wine at every corner. Embrace the holiday spirit and create lasting memories in the heart of Bath.

Bath Christmas Market


Where to stay:


Nottingham, England

From 18th November to 31st December 2023 

Winter Wonderland is back in Nottingham, bringing extended Christmas magic! The city's premier Christmas attraction features the Ice Rink, Sky Skate ice path, and popular spots like the Ice Bar, Sur La Piste, and Altitude ski bars. Running from November to New Year's Eve, it's open for an extra week this year. Whether skating above Old Market Square, enjoying a festive drink at the skate-up bars, or opting for the ground-level ice rink, there's something for everyone. For a unique experience, check out the themed Ice Bar at a chilling -10 degrees—don provided gloves and coats for warmth. Don't miss out on this unforgettable experience; book early to secure your spot!

Nottingham Winter Wonderland 2023


Where to stay:


London, Covent Garden, England

From 7th November 2023 to 1st January 2024

Experience the magic of Christmas in Covent Garden as its cobbled streets and Piazza come alive with giant festive installations, a Santa sleigh, and a Christmas Sandwich Festival. From the Market Building to Seven Dials, the atmosphere is filled with the warmth of mulled wine and holiday stalls.

Christmas in Covent Garden | Covent Garden


Where to stay:


Newcastle, England

From 18th November to 23rd December 2023

Newcastle's Christmas Market, a festive city tradition, is back from November 18th to December 23rd! Spread around Grey's Monument, Grainger Street, and this year, Old Eldon Square too, the lively market features local independent traders, offering a perfect opportunity to find unique Christmas gifts, savour delicious hot chocolate, or simply immerse yourself in the festive ambiance.

Markets - Newcastle's Christmas (


Where to stay:


Rochester, England

From 25th November to 10th December 2023

In the stunning Rochester Castle gardens, the Christmas markets span three weekends, offering an ideal setting to find that perfect gift or stocking filler among numerous craft and trade stalls. Enjoy hot and cold beverages, mulled wine, roasted chestnuts, and more from the available food and drink stalls.

Rochester Christmas Market 2023 | Visit Medway - Visit Medway


Where to stay:


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Posted by Adam Groves on Monday, 13 November 2023 07:58

Saturday, 11 November 2023

Discovering Delight: A Journey Through Somerset's Charms

Nestled in the heart of England, Somerset stands as a testament to the country's rich history and natural beauty. Beyond its picturesque landscapes and charming villages, Somerset offers a unique blend of experiences that cater to diverse interests. In this blog, we'll delve into the allure of Somerset, highlighting a few gems that make it a must-visit destination.


1. Wookey Hole Caves:

For those with a taste for adventure and a fascination with the underground world, Wookey Hole Caves is a must-see attraction. These ancient limestone caverns, carved by the River Axe, offer a mesmerising journey into the depths of the Earth. Marvel at the stunning rock formations, underground rivers, and awe-inspiring chambers that tell a story millions of years in the making. The guided tours ensure a captivating experience, blending education with the thrill of exploration.

Book your visit today with the upcoming Winter Wonderland in December it a perfect time to go :

2. Noah's Ark Zoo:

Animal lovers, rejoice! Noah's Ark Zoo in Somerset provides a unique opportunity to connect with a diverse array of wildlife in a conservation-focused setting. The zoo is committed to the welfare of its inhabitants and aims to educate visitors about the importance of biodiversity. From majestic big cats to adorable meerkats, every corner of Noah's Ark Zoo is a testament to the beauty and diversity of the animal kingdom. Engage in interactive experiences, and leave with a newfound appreciation for our fellow inhabitants on this planet.


3. Haynes Motor Museum:

For enthusiasts of automotive history and design, the Haynes Motor Museum stands as a testament to the evolution of the automobile. Home to an impressive collection of vintage and classic cars, the museum offers a journey through time, showcasing the ingenuity and craftsmanship that has defined the automotive industry. Whether you're a car aficionado or simply appreciate the beauty of these mechanical marvels, the Haynes Motor Museum promises an engaging and educational experience.

4. Glastonbury Tor:

No visit to Somerset would be complete without ascending Glastonbury Tor. Rising dramatically from the surrounding landscape, this iconic hill is steeped in history and mythology. As you make your way to the summit, you'll be rewarded with breathtaking panoramic views of the countryside, providing a moment of tranquility and reflection. Glastonbury Tor is not only a physical landmark but a spiritual one, with ties to Arthurian legend and ancient beliefs. It's a place where the past and present converge in a harmonious dance.

Glastonbury Tor | Somerset | National Trust



Somerset, with its golden landscapes, subterranean wonders, animal sanctuaries, automotive treasures, and spiritual heights, offers a diverse and enchanting experience for every traveller. Whether you seek adventure, cultural enrichment, or a simple connection with nature, Somerset beckons with open arms, promising memories that will linger long after your visit. Come discover the magic that makes Somerset a destination like no other.


Somerset Bed and Breakfast, Guest Houses & Hotels UK | Bed and Breakfasts Guide 

Corner House, Ilminster, United Kingdom - Bedandbreakfastsguide ( Hotels in Somerset. Book your hotel now! (

Alebar Farm Glamping and Campsite, Wellington – Updated 2023 Prices (


Posted by Adam Groves on Saturday, 11 November 2023 01:38

Tuesday, 7 November 2023

Why Somerset is the best location for millennials

Nestled in the heart of the picturesque South West of England, Somerset is a destination waiting to be explored. While this charming county is often associated with rolling countryside and quaint villages, it has a lot more to offer than meets the eye. In this blog post, we'll delve into the top reasons why Somerset is an ideal destination for millennials aged 25-35 and why you should consider it for your next getaway.

Somerset Bed and Breakfast, Guest Houses & Hotels UK | Bed and Breakfasts Guide


Natural Beauty and Scenic Landscapes

Somerset's landscapes are nothing short of breathtaking. With its stunning rolling hills, serene meadows, and peaceful river valleys, the county offers a unique opportunity to escape the hustle and bustle of city life. Whether you're into hiking, cycling, or just relaxing in the great outdoors, Somerset's natural beauty has something for every nature enthusiast.


Historic Charm and Iconic Landmarks

For history buffs and culture seekers, Somerset is a goldmine of historic treasures. The county is home to some of England's most iconic landmarks, such as the mystical Glastonbury Tor, the awe-inspiring Wells Cathedral, and the medieval Montacute House. Exploring these sites is like stepping back in time and immersing yourself in the rich history of the region.


Vibrant Festivals and Events

Somerset knows how to throw a good party, and millennials will find plenty of lively events to enjoy throughout the year. The Glastonbury Festival, one of the world's most famous music festivals, takes place in Somerset and offers a unique experience that combines music, art, and a strong sense of community. Additionally, Somerset hosts a variety of food festivals, arts events, and local markets that showcase the best of the region's culture.


Visit Somerset | Events & Festivals | Music, Nightlife, Historic, Food & Drink, Shopping - Visit Somerset


Blog about Glastonbury Festival

Glastonbury Tickets 2024: Tips, Tricks, and Availability - What is best Bed and Breakfasts vs. Camping: Pros and Cons | Bed and Breakfasts Guide


Quirky Accommodations

Somerset boasts an array of unique and quirky accommodations, ranging from traditional thatched cottages to glamping in yurts and beautiful sea view rooms. These distinctive options add an extra layer of charm and authenticity to your Somerset experience.



Somerset is a hidden gem that offers millennials aged 25-35 a unique blend of natural beauty, history, culture, and adventure. Whether you're seeking a relaxing escape from the urban grind or an action-packed getaway, Somerset has something for everyone. With its vibrant festivals, delicious farm-to-table cuisine, and an abundance of outdoor activities, this county is poised to become your next favourite travel destination. Don't miss out on the charm and beauty that Somerset has to offer - start planning your visit today!


The Swan Hotel, Wells, Somerset, Wells – Updated 2023 Prices (


Beryl Country House, Wells – Updated 2023 Prices (


Tilbury Shepherd Huts with Hot Tubs Plus Holiday Cottages, West Bagborough – Updated 2023 Prices (


Luxury Orchard Yurt, Chapel Allerton – Updated 2023 Prices (


Bossington Hall, Minehead, United Kingdom - Bedandbreakfastsguide (


Tarr Farm Inn, Dulverton, United Kingdom - Bedandbreakfastsguide (


Liongate House, Ilchester, United Kingdom - Bedandbreakfastsguide (


The Vobster Inn, Radstock, United Kingdom - Bedandbreakfastsguide (



Posted by Adam Groves on Tuesday, 7 November 2023 04:58

Friday, 27 October 2023

Glastonbury Tickets 2024: Tips, Tricks, and Availability - What is best Bed and Breakfasts vs. Camping: Pros and Cons

The iconic Glastonbury Festival is a celebrated event that brings music lovers from all corners of the globe to the picturesque Somerset countryside on the 26th-30th June 2024. With its rich history, legendary performances, and a unique blend of art, music, and culture, Glastonbury is undoubtedly a festival that tops many bucket lists. This is your sign to go this year In this blog post, we will explore the questions on every festival-goer's mind "How hard is it to get Glastonbury tickets?" And, we'll discuss why choosing a bed and breakfast over camping is the way to go for Glastonbury 2024.


How Hard Is It to Get Glastonbury Tickets?

Securing tickets to Glastonbury can be quite the challenge. With a limited number of tickets available and high demand, they tend to sell out in a matter of minutes. However, with a bit of patience and strategy, it's not impossible to get your hands on these coveted passes. Here are some tips to increase your chances:


a. Register in Advance: To be eligible to purchase Glastonbury tickets, you need to register on the official Glastonbury website before the registration deadline.



Glastonbury - Festival Registration (


b. Be Ready for Ticket Sales: Once you're registered, keep an eye out for ticket sale announcements. Have your payment details, address, and registration information ready.



c. Team Up: Many successful ticket hunters form "ticket groups" where one person purchases tickets for the entire group. This can increase your chances if one member manages to get through the ticketing process.


d. Be Persistent: Tickets are in high demand, and it's common to face website crashes and queues. Stay patient and keep trying if you encounter difficulties.


Why Choose a Bed and Breakfast Over Camping?

When you've secured your Glastonbury tickets, the next decision is where to stay during the festival. While camping might seem like the traditional choice, there are compelling reasons to consider a bed and breakfast instead:


a. Comfort and Convenience: Bed and breakfast accommodations offer comfortable beds, private bathrooms, and often a hearty breakfast to fuel your festival days. This is a stark contrast to camping, which can mean uncomfortable sleep and shared facilities.


b. Weather Protection: The British weather can be unpredictable. Staying in a B&B means you won't have to worry about soggy tents and muddy grounds if the heavens open.


c. Cleanliness and Hygiene: With a bed and breakfast, you can count on clean facilities, regular housekeeping, and the comfort of a warm shower after a long day of festival fun.


d. Relaxation and Privacy: After a day of dancing and revelry, returning to a peaceful and private space can be invaluable. Bed and breakfasts provide a haven of relaxation.


Glastonbury Bed and Breakfast, Guest Houses & Hotels, Somerset UK | Bed and Breakfasts Guide


e. A Local Experience: Staying in a B&B allows you to experience the local culture and interact with friendly hosts who may provide local insights and recommendations. Visit the city of bath only 1 hour drive from Somerset 


Experience the Enchanting Charms of Bath | Bed and Breakfasts Guide


The Beauty of Bath | Bed and Breakfasts Guide


Glastonbury 2024 is sure to be an unforgettable experience for all attendees. While the path to securing tickets may be challenging, the rewards are well worth it. And when it comes to accommodations, choosing a bed and breakfast over camping can elevate your festival experience to new heights. After all, Glastonbury is about celebrating music, art, and culture, and a cosy, comfortable stay at a B&B can only enhance that experience. So, make your plans, stay informed, and get ready for a truly magical Glastonbury in 2024! Hotels in Glastonbury. Book your hotel now! ( Hotels in Somerset. Book your hotel now! (

210+ Glastonbury Festival Stock Photos, Pictures & Royalty-Free Images -  iStock | Music festival, Glastonbury, Glastonbury festival pyramid stage

Posted by Adam Groves on Friday, 27 October 2023 11:22

Tuesday, 18 July 2023

Experience the Enchanting Charms of Bath

Experience the Enchanting Charms of Bath: A Must-Visit Destination for an Unforgettable Stay

 Bath, Somerset - Wikipedia

Welcome to Bath, an enchanting city nestled in the heart of the English countryside. Steeped in history, adorned with stunning Georgian architecture, and renowned for its Roman baths, Bath offers a unique and captivating experience for visitors. In this blog post, we'll explore the many reasons why you should choose Bath as your next travel destination and indulge in a memorable stay that will leave you yearning for more.


Bath's historical significance is undeniable. As a UNESCO World Heritage site, the city boasts Roman roots that date back 2,000 years. The Roman Baths, with their natural hot springs, offer a glimpse into ancient bathing rituals and are a must-visit attraction. Immerse yourself in the warm, mineral-rich waters and let the history of the city come alive.


Bath's architectural heritage is a sight to behold. The city is famous for its Georgian architecture, characterised by honey-coloured limestone buildings and grand crescents. The iconic Royal Crescent, the majestic Bath Abbey, and the elegant Pulteney Bridge are just a few examples of the architectural marvels that grace the city. Take a leisurely stroll through the streets, marvel at the stunning facades, and transport yourself to a bygone era.


Bath is a cultural hub, offering a vibrant arts scene and a wealth of cultural attractions. The city is home to the esteemed Theatre Royal, where you can catch world-class performances. The Holburne Museum and the Victoria Art Gallery house remarkable collections of art and artefacts. Bath also hosts several festivals throughout the year, including the Bath Literature Festival and the Bath International Music Festival, which celebrate the city's creative spirit.


Literary enthusiasts will delight in Bath's connections to the renowned author, Jane Austen. Austen lived in Bath for a significant portion of her life, and the city served as a backdrop for two of her novels, "Persuasion" and "Northanger Abbey." Explore the Jane Austen Centre, step into the Regency era, and gain insight into the life and works of this literary icon.


Beyond its historical and architectural allure, Bath is surrounded by stunning natural beauty. The picturesque countryside, rolling hills, and nearby Cotswold villages offer endless opportunities for exploration. Take a scenic walk along the Bath Skyline, visit the beautiful Prior Park Landscape Garden, or venture further afield to explore the enchanting wonders of the Cotswolds.


Bath is a city that effortlessly combines history, culture, and natural beauty to create an unforgettable experience for visitors. Whether you're seeking a relaxing getaway, a journey into the past, or a dose of artistic inspiration, Bath has it all. From its Roman baths to its Georgian splendour, from literary connections to captivating festivals, this city promises to leave an indelible mark on your heart. So, pack your bags, prepare to be mesmerised, and embark on a remarkable journey to Bath, where history, beauty, and charm converge to offer a truly memorable stay.


find your B&B today : Bath Bed and Breakfast, Guest Houses & Hotels, Somerset UK | Bed and Breakfasts Guide Hotels in Bath. Book your hotel now! (


Posted by Adam Groves on Tuesday, 18 July 2023 01:11

Thursday, 13 April 2017

Happy Easter

Happy Easter!


But do you know what Easter is, and the history of Easter?


Castle Bromwich ChurchCastle Bromwich Church 

Easter, which celebrates Jesus Christ's resurrection from the dead, is Christianity's most important holiday. It has been called a moveable feast because it doesn't fall on a set date every year, as most holidays do. Instead, Christian churches in the West celebrate Easter on the first Sunday following the full moon after the vernal equinox on March 21.


Therefore, Easter is observed anywhere between March 22 and April 25 every year. Orthodox Christians use the Julian calendar to calculate when Easter will occur and typically celebrate the holiday a week or two after the Western churches, which follow the Gregorian calendar.


The exact origins of this religious feast day's name are unknown. Some sources claim the word Easter is derived from Eostre, a Teutonic goddess of spring and fertility. Other accounts trace Easter to the Latin term hebdomada alba, or white week, an ancient reference to Easter week and the white clothing donned by people who were baptized during that time. Through a translation error, the term later appeared as esostarum in Old High German, which eventually became Easter in English. In Spanish, Easter is known as Pascua; in French, Paques. These words are derived from the Greek and Latin Pascha or Pasch, for Passover. Jesus' crucifixion and resurrection occurred after he went to Jerusalem to celebrate Passover (or Pesach in Hebrew), the Jewish festival commemorating the ancient Israelites' exodus from slavery in Egypt. Pascha eventually came to mean Easter.


Easter is really an entire season of the Christian church year, as opposed to a single-day observance. Lent, the 40-day period leading up to Easter Sunday, is a time of reflection and penance and represents the 40 days that Jesus spent alone in the wilderness before starting his ministry, a time in which Christians believe he survived various temptations by the devil. The day before Lent, known as Fat Tuesday, is a last hurrah of food and fun before the fasting begins. The week preceding Easter is called Holy Week and includes Maundy Thursday, which commemorates Jesus' last supper with his disciples; Good Friday, which honors the day of his crucifixion; and Holy Saturday, which focuses on the transition between the crucifixion and resurrection. The 50-day period following Easter Sunday is called Eastertide and includes a celebration of Jesus' ascension into heaven.


In addition to Easter's religious significance, it also has a commercial side, as evidenced by the mounds of jelly beans and marshmallow chicks that appear in stores each spring. As with Christmas, over the centuries various folk customs and pagan traditions, including Easter eggs, bunnies, baskets and candy, have become a standard part of this holy holiday.


Spring Lamb 

Easter Eggs

Posted by David Martin on Thursday, 13 April 2017 04:08

Wednesday, 1 March 2017

Happy St Davids Day

Happy St Davids Day


March 1st is Saint Davids day(Welsh: Dydd Gwyl Dewi Sant) and is the feast day of Saint David, the patron saint of Wales. The date of March 1st was chosen in remembrance of the death of Saint David on that day in 589, and has been celebrated by followers since then. The date was declared a national day of celebration within Wales in the 18th century.

 Daffodils St Davids Day, Wales B&Bs

To celebrate this day, people wear a symbol of either a leek, or daffodil. The leek is patriotic, arising from an occasion when a troop of Welsh were able to distinguish each other from a troop of English enemy dressed in similar fashion by wearing leeks. An alternative emblem developed in recent years is the daffodil, used and preferred over the leek by the British Government as it lacks the overtones of patriotic defiance associated with the leek


Dewi Sant - St. David was born towards the end of the fifth century, less than a hundred years after the last Roman legions had marched out of Wales. He was a scion of the royal house of Ceredigion, his mother was Non, daughter of Cynyr of Caio, remembered by numerous churches and holy wells in Wales, Cornwall and Brittany. Educated at Henfynyw (Old Menevia) in Ceredigion, where he 'learned the alphabet, the psalms, the lessons for the whole year, the Masses and the Synaxis', he founded a Celtic monastic community at Glyn Rhosin (The Vale of Roses) on the western headland of Sir Benfro, at the spot where St. David's Cathedral stands today. The spot may well have been the site of a very early religious community, for it is also associated with St. Patrick, the patron saint of Ireland, who may have been born in Wales and is said to have spent time at Glyn Rhosyn before embarking again (this time voluntarily) for Ireland from Porth Mawr nearby.


David's fame as a teacher and ascetic spread throughout the Celtic world. He earned the curious nickname Dewi Ddyfrwr - David the Waterman - no doubt reflecting the harsh bread-and-water regime of Celtic monks. Many traditions and legends are associated with him. When he rose to address to a great crowd at a synod at Llanddewi Brefi in Ceredigion, the ground rose under his feet forming a little hill so that all could hear him speak. Again, a golden-beaked dove is said to have landed on his shoulder as a symbol of his holiness.


His foundation at Glyn Rhosin became one of the most important shrines of the Christian world, and the most important centre in Wales. Roads and tracks from all over the nation led to it and in the Middle Ages two pilgrimages to Menevia was equal to one to Rome (Dos i Rufain unwaith, ac i Fynyw ddwywaith - Go to Rome once, and come to Monmouth twice). Over fifty churches and innumerable holy wells were dedicated to him in Wales alone.


The religious centre of St David's thus became a focus for the religious aspirations of the Welsh nation and as Gerallt Cymro (Giraldus Cambrensis) relates: The Bishopric of St Davids became ... a symbol of the independence of Wales ... and that is why David himself was exalted into a Patron Saint of Wales.


The date of Dewi Sant's death is recorded as March 1st, but the year is uncertain - possibly 588. As his tearful monks prepared for his death St David uttered these words: 'Brothers be ye constant. The yoke which with single mind ye have taken, bear ye to the end; and whatsoever ye have seen with me and heard, keep and fulfil' and as he died 'Lords, brothers and sisters, be cheerful, keep the faith, and do those little things which ye have seen me do and heard me say.'


Public celebrations of St. David's Day are becoming more commonplace. In many towns an annual parade through the centre of town is now held (see above). Concerts are held in pubs, clubs, and other venues.


Many Welsh people wear one or both of the national emblems of Wales on their lapel to celebrate St. David: the daffodil (a generic Welsh symbol which is in season during March) or the leek (Saint David's personal symbol) on this day. The association between leeks and daffodils is strengthened by the fact that they have similar names in Welsh, Cennin (leek) and Cenhinen Pedr (daffodil, literally "St Peter's leek").

Happy St Davids Day snowdrops

Posted by David Martin on Wednesday, 1 March 2017 10:07

Monday, 20 February 2017

Hiking Holidays in Sussex

Hiking in Sussex – a walkers paradise

Hiking holidays in Sussex


image courtesy of (artist name Credit:AmyLaughinghouse ) 


The county of Sussex offers visitors a famous snapshot of the course of British history. This region, however, is less well known as a hikers paradise.


So where do you start?


Hastings and the surrounding area


Hastings may not be the first place you think of when you dust off your walking boots and hiker's backpack. But think again. Hastings and its environs boast some of the most fascinating and enjoyable walking territory in Britain. 

Steeped in history, this is the land of Saxon invasion, a land littered with the remains of Roman fortifications, as well as the exposed coastline where William the Conqueror landed at Anderida, ready to do battle in 1066.


The Saxon Shore Way


Follow just a small section of the 260 km pathway known as the Saxon Shore Way, which in its entirety extends from Hastings along the coastline to Gravesend. But be warned, even the 17 km hike, described here, is not for the seriously unfit. Of course, if you prefer to take a more relaxed approach, you might be better off spreading this walk over two days.

The starting point is Hastings Country Park, at the East Hill funicular above Hastings. Take the footpath along the cliff tops for approximately 5 km. Then descend through wooded glades to a village called Cliff End.  From here, the path takes you across Pett Level towards the historic town of Winchelsea.

Signage along the Shore Way can be a bit "hit and miss", but as long as you keep your eyes peeled for the red circle signs with the horned helmet logo, you're unlikely to get hopelessly lost. Even if you do take the occasional detour, you won't regret it; there are many picnic spots in peaceful settings and numerous glorious vantage points, along the way, inviting you to pause and take in the magnificent scenery.

Or how about following the same path as the Normans, in 1066, from Pevensey, where the warriors first went ashore? Take the route along the Pevensey Levels and onward through woodland and undulating countryside. As with the Saxon Shore Way hike, this even longer 30 km trek is best split into two days, unless you happen to be in peak condition and prepared to get up at the crack of dawn in order to cram it all into one day! But why bother, when there's so much to see and do, en route?

This walk starts at Pevensey and takes you across the Pevensey Levels, where if you're lucky, you'll glimpse herons gliding above the Levels. The path continues through wooded glades and on towards Battle, with imposing views of Battle Abbey.

Pause along the way to take in the splendours of the reconstructed Elizabethan castle, at Herstmonceux (on the first part of the walk); and, on the second leg, to soak up the ambience of the many charming hamlets, as well as the fascinating natural habitat. The entire route, however, offers such a delightful mix of history and natural beauty, that it's not surprising that this particular walk is becoming increasingly popular with walkers from far and wide. This route has something to offer everyone, regardless of interests (and levels of fitness!).



If you're looking for another agreeable place to go walking in Sussex, the Chichester area has much to offer.

A rewarding walk, which is not too arduous, is the 9 km path that takes you from Chichester Harbour and Fishbourne Roman Palace, with its marvellous Roman mosaics, across marshland and meadows towards the picturesque village of Bosham.

Chichester Cathedral bed and breakfast

(Chichester Cathedral pictured above)


The walk starts at Fishbourne, the site of Fishbourne Palace and the remains one of the most impressive Roman villas in Britain. Then follow the path along the peninsula, through marshland and on towards the Saxon settlement of Bosham, with its attractive seventeenth and eighteenth century cottages. The scenery along this route may be less dramatic than the previous two walks, but the peaceful atmosphere is unrivalled. 

Whichever route you follow, you're guaranteed to breathe in some history along with the invigorating fresh air. Above all, you'll feel incredibly smug that you've taken the time to explore these havens of British tranquillity and scenes of historic significance.

Posted by David Martin on Monday, 20 February 2017 01:18

Tuesday, 7 February 2017

Visiting York

York - The Capital of the North 

For a snapshot of English history, head straight for the city of York.

York Minster bed and breakfasts

The famous words of King George VI, who stated that 'the history of York is the history of England', still hold true today. Ask any of the city's modern day inhabitants and they will proudly tell you that if you 'walk a hundred yards in York and you don't look where you're going . you could miss a thousand years'. 

York was originally constructed as a fortress by the Romans, in 71 AD, and named Eboracum. This stronghold later became a city and was renamed Jorvik or Yorwik by the Vikings. But it was not until the Normans made their mark upon the city that York became one of Europe's most important centres of commerce, government, religion and communication. By the eighteenth century, the city of York was also recognised as a stylish resort, frequented by the well-heeled and genteel.

York, however, is not all about history. It is also one of the most exciting, forward looking cities in Britain. Of courses it oozes historic interest, wherever you happen to be in the city, from its famous landmarks to the myriad mediaeval streets (many named after ancient trades), with half-timbered overhanging houses and well-preserved Georgian architecture. Reminders of the past are everywhere.  But this is history with a twist; this is not the yawn-inducing type of history so coveted by culture vultures. York, like no other city in Britain, has somehow managed to make history come alive with a fascinating blend of old and new that attracts visitors in their droves from around the world. Even shopaholics cannot escape the grim realities of York's notorious past, for that bastion of British lifestyle, Marks & Spencer, now stands on the spot where public executions once took place!  

If you only have time for a whistle-top tour of York, make sure that you visit York Minster, first. The largest gothic cathedral in Northern Europe, York Minster is also the largest mediaeval edifice in Britain. It took over 250 years to build and was finally completed in 1475. Stained glass enthusiasts will have a feast day, as the Minster has the largest area of mediaeval stained glass, in the world. A visit to the Central Tower is a must, if only to get your bearings. This is not an easy climb, but the panoramic views of the city, from the top, make it well worth the effort. 

Other must-see-and-dos in York:


Jorvik Viking Centre (Coppergate): Step back in history, to a reconstruction of life in Viking times. Experience the unforgettable sights, sounds (and smells!) of a typical alley way in York, under Viking rule. The reconstruction is based on archaeological findings unearthed at Coppergate, the current site of the Jorvik Viking Centre.


National Railway Museum (Leeman Road): The largest collection of railway exhibits in the world, the National Railway Museum covers everything from Stephenson's famous 'Rocket' to modern day Eurostar. 

National Railway Museum York 

York Castle Museum (The Eye of York): Housed within the city's former prison (graffiti still extant!), York Castle Museum is one of the best museums depicting everyday life in Britain, throughout the ages. 

York Castle Museum 

York City Walls: Although fragments of the original Roman walls and ramparts still exist, the three-mile length of carefully preserved walls date back to mediaeval times. The walls encompass the city, with access via the famous 'Bars' or gateways.

York City Walls 

Clifford's Tower (Tower Street): Originally a wooden structure erected by William the Conqueror, Clifford's Tower was rebuilt during the reign of Henry III, in the thirteenth century, as a keep for York Castle. The original wooden tower was destroyed in 1190 when Jews who sought refuge in the city were burnt alive in a mass suicide pact, having refused to be baptised.

Cliffords Tower York 

York Dungeon (Clifford Street): Not for the faint-hearted, York Dungeon recaptures the grim realities of torture and punishment, including drowning, boiling, branding, and beheading, in centuries gone by - scarily realistic!


YorkRacecourse: York Racecourse is the third largest in the country and attracts 100’s of visitors year on year to their events.


The  Shambles - Visit one of the oldest shopping streets in Europe. 

Visit the Shambles Shopping in York


Finally, if sightseeing just seems like too much effort, why not hit the many specialist shops or relax in the attractive cafés, tea rooms, pubs and restaurants which York boasts in abundance. Tempting?


Find your York Bed and Breakfast or hotel and start exploring this wonderful area.



Posted by David Martin on Tuesday, 7 February 2017 03:57