Falmouth

I recently went on a trip to Falmouth (Cornwall), Tobermory (Isle of Mull, Scotland), Stornoway (Isle of Lewis, Scotland), Torshavn (Faroe Islands), Akureyri (Iceland), Isafjordur (Iceland), Reykjavik (Iceland), and finally Dublin (Ireland). It was a fabulous and fun trip interspersed with funny and exciting events which I plan to share here (rather than just boring facts about the places) through a series of blog posts. So here goes…

Falmouth

The beautiful Cornish coastline welcomed us as we cruised towards the River Fal. I had forgotten what a beautiful, lovely area Cornwall is. Falmouth is the gateway to the River Fal and is known for art galleries and maritime heritage. The area also has some fantastic beaches, shops, pubs, restaurants and known for natural beauty and ideal for walks and family activities. As well as all of the above, it has the world’s largest natural deep-water harbour and is the country’s first and last port.

We spent a wonderful day exploring the harbour, independent galleries, shops and of course, pubs. Of course, we spotted a world famous pasty shop and had to have one. It was delicious!

View of Falmouth (the arty pic. lol)

BEERWOLF BOOKS

This pub had been recommended to us and I can see why. It is a pub with a book shop inside, which is my idea of bliss. People were reading, playing chess, and drinking some amazing beer and perusing the books.

After visiting the above, we had a quick look around the local art gallery, some more interesting shops and galleries and then into another cool pub with copious amounts of beer. By this time I was feeling jaded so settled for a coffee. We gleefully spotted an empty table outside and plonked ourselves down. It was then, I spotted a tiny canvas bag by our table. I was just starting to have thoughts about it being a bomb, when a bloke appeared grumbling under his breath and so we quickly made noises about how we didn’t realise it was his table. We truly didn’t. He then gave us permission to sit there anyway. Jolly nice of him. Looking back, I think he left his bag there to reserve the table and then went and got a drink because he wasn’t in the bar when we were getting our drinks. Flipping hipsters.

I turned away to watch the even happier people in the cool cafe opposite only to see two aging hippies proudly showing off their hairy armpits. Oh joy.

We finished our drinks and walked back through the town towards the beaches and took some great photos of the pretty coastline. An enjoyable start to the holiday and here is a picturesque view of Falmouth during the evening back on the ship. The next stop was Tobermory, Isle of Mull, Scotland.

Falmouth

Thanks for reading the #mishmashblog and don’t forget to follow!

 

Notorious – Bluebells, climbing, photography and a pub that refused to open its front door…

Wondering what to write for my next blog and saw today’s word prompt. Bluebells are notorious during May, in England. They grow in Spring, around now, and remind me of my childhood. My sister and I used to go out into the woods at the bottom of our garden and pick them. You are not allowed to do that now due to environmental stipulations and quite right too.

 

A wild, beautiful blue carpet of bluebells brings a diverse splendour to our woodlands and made a recent family walk quite uplifting. I was invited for a four mile walk and found the loveliness of the scenery quite unexpected and invigorating.  The ancient woodlands were swathed in blue and wonderful to experience. My daughter, tried out her new camera and I used my exceedingly good phone camera. We had a wonderful time admiring the scenery, playing about with photography and of course, climbing over gates and stiles plus a good natter.

The walk surrounding Groombridge, Kent was delightful and staggeringly magnificent. Groombridge Place is a great family place to visit if you enjoy wandering around gardens admiring the cultivated plants. They have a grand selection of different gardens and a forest. My favourite garden area is The Secret Garden because it reminds me of my favourite book from childhood, The Secret Garden, by Frances Hodgson Burnett first published as a book in 1911. A great piece of children’s literature. Another memory. Funny how these small life experiences take you back!

The forest has an incredible area for youngsters which includes two tree houses linked together with rope bridges and a central viewing tower. Also many levels with decking and platforms sheltered under sail roofs. All inspired by the TV series Crusoe with some original props.

 

We all enjoyed the walk and decided to go walking more often. I have a birthday coming up and decided a new camera may be prudent. I’ve always fancied pursuing photography as a hobby and feel the time is right. The clearer photography will be good for my blog, any future outings and this year’s travel plans. It may even encourage more walks, etc. and improve my health and fitness. We live in hope. 😉

After climbing a flipping long hill at the end of the walk (and it was very flipping long), we popped into the local pub to imbibe in some refreshment. Unfortunately, we had started the walk early and arrived, gasping, half an hour before the place opened. We  sat in the pub garden and chatted rather than move on and waste time finding another suitable, local establishment. Who else has done that? Can’t have a table for half an hour or so, gone away to locate somewhere else because you are desperate for something to eat, only to realise that you might as well  have waited and been patient because other places are booked up and ridiculously busy!

 

We sat and waited and waited. Went to the front door. Other waiting people disappeared and reappeared in the pub, happily supping their pints. The front door was still locked. Just deciding to move and find the mysterious portal that actually got you into the pub, and DA DAAAAaaa, a man appeared sheepishly admitting they had forgot to open the door. Never been so pleased to order a pint, I can tell you.

 

I was treated to a yummy pub lunch which consisted of a duck and hoisin sauce wrap.  This gave me an idea for future lunches without bread. Devoured in no time and I had earned it after climbing that steep, long hill, I can tell you.

 

Hope you are having a fabulous day and do feel free to comment about your favourite activities. Oh, and any information on photography is very welcome. 

Any follows are gratefully received, as well.

Bye for now,

Andy x

 

Twitter: @mishmashmedia_

Hastings, tea, orange polenta cake plus photos…

Tall Black Huts - Fishing Area

Tall Black Huts –
Fishing Area

I felt like doing something different and decided on an afternoon visit to Hastings. Blow the cobwebs away, as they say, and it did too. Also, used the afternoon to practice my photography so this post will have lots of pics!

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We parked the car, which was strangely odd, because the car park was almost empty. Usually frequent Hastings in the summer, so not used to parking without hassle. One advantage of visiting on a cold day in February. Having fed the car park machine we wandered around the tall black Net Huts fishing area, which are curious and reminds you of old seafaring days.

The Jenny Lind Inn

The Jenny Lind Inn

Onwards towards the Old Town. We had a quick drink in a pub called The Jenny Lind Inn with its friendly bar and Old Peculiar Lounge. May visit again as a nice chap at the bar told us they have a good selection of music nights.

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Afterwards we had a look around the quaint streets of the Old Town with antique emporiums, shops, pubs and eateries. We really enjoyed the atmosphere even if it was a little chilly. It is fascinating to explore the narrow streets “twitters” and look at all the art and upmarket homeware shops. Fabulous place even on a cold day in winter.

Hastings Old Town

Hastings Old Town

Hastings Old Town

Hastings Old Town

Later we bravely went on a breezy walk along the cold sea front towards the newly restored pier and stopped for a cup of tea and orange polenta cake. Quite delicious. Of course, then had to go onto the pier and take more photos. But only took a few because I didn’t want to take my gloves off for long. Freezing and becoming gloomy.

Hastings

Hastings

Hills behind Hastings

Hills behind Hastings

Great place to go and explore. The Old Town is super to look around as it is picturesque and full of character. Good to take in some sea air too. Quite uplifting.

The Crown Pub

The Crown Pub

A quick walk back to the car after a drink in the recommended pub The Crown. Very trendy pub with lots of surreal art and children’s clothes on the walls.

Thanks for reading and I hope you enjoyed the photos.

View from Hastings Pier

View from Hastings Pier

Broadstairs…

The summer is drawing to a close and it is always a good idea to squeeze a few mini breaks in as you can while the glorious weather remains.  Sometimes it is a worthy notion to explore a place you haven’t visited for a while and so Broadstairs became the obvious choice.

The drive through Kent takes about an hour and a half, especially if you attempt the journey during August.  But it is worth it.  Parking is ok for a start and then the day improves as soon as the first glimpse of the beach is spotted.  Broadstairs has seven sandy beaches and bays and the views are spectacular.

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Viking beach has everything for everybody, including beach huts, deck chairs, windbreaks, rides for children, cafes, a harbour and an impressive cliff top promenade that encompasses a band stand, café and park area.  As you saunter along the promenade you will come across cafes, pubs, art shows, gift shops and of course, Dicken’s House Museum.  This was the home of Mary Pearson Strong, who inspired the character Betsey Trotwood in Dickens’ novel, David Copperfield, one of my all-time favourite novels.

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The quaint buildings are a wonderful sight to behold and to be honest, I had forgotten how charming Broadstairs is with the distinctive architecture, independent shops, restaurants, pubs and nostalgic magnetism.

Also, the community spirit seems very much alive.  It has a great music scene (folk festival during a week in August), food and Dickens events during the year.

I really enjoyed a walk along the promenade looking at the enticing surroundings, then visiting the town and lunch in a café with a wishing well in it!  The food was yummy too.  After lunch wandered down to the beach and enjoyed the sun.

So what are the advantages of a day out in Broadstairs?

  • 7 sandy and safe beaches
  • Array of eateries
  • History (Dickens’ Museum etc.)
  • Quirky town (gift shops/pubs/restaurants)
  • Community (Friendly and has many events and festivals)

Really enjoyed the day out and feel Broadstairs is a celebration of a great day out enjoying some sea air.  No wonder it is known as the jewel in the Thanet crown.