Devon (Ilfracombe)

Type : Provincial, Countryside, Coastal
Best Date : May – Sep
Expense : Cheap
Things to do: Fishing, Relaxing, Dining, Golf, Walking, ect
Points of Interest: Verity Statue, Hele Bay, Ilfracombe Aquarium, Ilfracombe Harbour, Hillsborough Hill, Ilfracombe Museum, Chapel of St Nicholas, Rapparee Cove ect

Brief

Ilfracombe is a small  coastal,cliff and harbour town north of Devon, south west of England, where the famous Hillsborough hill is situated and Hele bay.

The Place

Ilfracombe is a beautiful relaxing coastal town that I have visited various times. It only has few points of interests but its outstanding scenery and friendly atmosphere is a major reason to visit.

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Firstly one of Ilfracombe’s main asset is “Capstone Hill” which features centre point of Ilfracombe’s Seaview. Above the huge rock about a three to five minute walk stands a nicely placed British flag and looking back will give you a one of a kind panoramic view of the village. Anyone can walk up this hill but be aware of heights and the steep and sometimes slippery walkways.

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One for the kids is “Ilfracombe Aquarium” which is a small award winning exhibit which is located in an “Old Lifeboat House” along Ilfracombe’s harbour. The exhibit showcases around 75 different species of sea life found around the area. After the exhibit the aquarium’s café is also a popular place for tourists and locals to relax and chill through the day.

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“Ilfracombe Museum” and the “Landmark Theatre” are also popular for tourists and locals a like. Landmark theatre which hosts various events and meetings can fit around 500 seats. Its architecture is unusual consisting of what looks like two overturned buckets which is quiet popular with tourists. “Landmark theatre” replaced the “Pavilion Theatre” a Victorian building destroyed by fire in the 1980. The “Ilfracombe museum” which is located just five minutes left of the theatre is another attraction in Ilfracombe. Housing many collections from Ilfracombe’s rich history from archaeology, art and photography this place is definitely a must for every visitor.

Ilfracombe’s newest statue “Verity” is proving to be a highlight attraction for Devon, attracting plenty of customers since its completion. The 20m tall statue built using  bronze and stainless steel is a master piece by world renowned sculptor “Damien Hirst”. The statue which is a pregnant lady holding a sword proudly whilst standing on a pile of books. Half of the lady is normal whilst the other half is of her inside organs including the unborn baby. I am not too sure of the story of this statue or what is its meaning but the statue is a sight to see.

Minutes away from the statue is the “Chapel of St Nicholas” which dates back to the early 1300s. Through the years the chapel has been used as a lighthouse, laundry, reading room and a place of worship. The chapel is free but donations are also welcomed.

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Other than these points of interests the town is just a marvellous place to be in.

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Reference:

http://ilfracombeaquarium.co.uk/
https://www.parkwoodtheatres.co.uk/Landmark/Venue-Hire

Photos:

http://ilfracombeaquarium.co.uk/
https://www.geograph.org.uk/photo/5121443
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Devon (Lynton & Lynmouth)

Type : Countryside, Village, Coastal
Best Date : May- Sep
Expense : Fair
Things to do : Hike, Dine, Relax
Points of Interest: Lynton cliff railway, Valley of rocks, GlenLyn Gorge, East Lyn River, Lynmouth Bay ect

Brief

Lynton and Lynmouth are two villages north of Devon in the south west of England. Lynton is situated above the cliff and Lynmouth situated below next to the coast. They are connected by a few roads but more famously a water operated cliff railway. Lynmouth is also known for the disastrous floods which happened in 1950 which killed 34 people and devastated the village for the years after.

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The Place

Lynton and Lynmouth are both popular destinations in Devon throughout the summer. I have visited this area once when I was small but recently returned (as I was already around Devon) to see it all again.

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Firstly one of the main reasons to visit Lynton or Lynmouth is the ‘Cliff Railway’ which is the highest and steepest water powered railway in the world. Opened in 1890 this is now a grade 2 listed heritage railway which is the only one in Britain and one in three around the world.  This clever piece of engineering connects both towns of Lynton and Lynmouth together, giving spectacular panoramic views. This quick 2 minute ride has a fee (always changes) of either a single or return and a daily or daily fee which I believe is for local workers. The carriage is well looked after and polished. There is a place to stand at the backend or front of the carriage whilst the middle is for sitting. The vehicle is not too quick and is not hair-raising to ride. However people afraid of heights might want to stay inside the carriage as it might be a little scary. The view though is spectacular.

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Other than the “Cliff Railway” there is no other major attractions, its natural beauty, history and country architecture make a beautiful day out. The picturesque “Lynmouth Bay” is a sight to see and worthy of a visit for a nice relaxing day. The “Valley of Rocks” which is a dry valley that runs along the coast of north Devon is brilliant for hikers and adventurers but you may encounter steep and dangerous routes.

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“Glenn Lynn Gorge” is another place which also offers adventurous walks. Brilliant exhibition about the disaster the river has caused in the year 1952 and the 1899 launch of the lifeboat Louisa. Now the rapids are used to create hydroelectric power for the village.

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Lastly there is a small museum in the centre of Lynmouth village which exhibits the disaster of 1952, an interesting little room complete with articles and videos, the exhibit is free.

Overall a day trip or a nights stay to these two villages is enough. History and natural beauty here is brilliant. A family and pet friendly location for travellers looking for a chilled relaxing time.

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Reference:

https://www.cliffrailwaylynton.co.uk/

Cotswold (Bibury, Gloucestershire)

Type : Countryside, National Park
Best Date : Jun-Aug
Expense : Fair
Things to do : Fishing, Sightseeing, Afternoon Tea ect
Points of Interest: Bibury Trout farm, St Mary’s church, Arlington Row ect
The Good: Peaceful and beautiful British countryside
The Bad:
Very small, no ATM, limited shops and restaurants

Brief

The Cotswold is a 800 square miles area in the English countryside which centres between 5 counties (Gloucestershire, Oxfordshire, Wiltshire, Worcestershire and Warwickshire). Cotswold is a large place and would take several days to visit every beautiful areas. Here I will talk about the small village of Bibury in Gloucestershire.

Bibury is a typical Cotswold village known to be one of the worlds most picturesque villages. Bibury which runs along the river Coln only has a few attractions but its peaceful scenic charm would make you want to stay for a whole day.

The Place

Bibury is a very small village within the Cotswold area in Gloucestershire. I visited this place in a nice summers for the purpose of fishing and having a picnic, in their trout farm in a nice summers day. However little did I know I visited one of the most special area in the Cotswold.

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The first place of interest in the village and maybe the central tourist spot is the ‘Bibury Trout Farm’ which is popular with families and children. The farm is a great place for a picnic and you are able to barbeque by the ponds. There is an entrance fee and you may have to pay for a table or a tent if you are planning to barbeque depending on availability. Nonetheless within their complex there is a beautiful café if a picnic is not your thing. To do some fishing there is a beginners pond and a more skilled one, the equipment is free and you may catch however many you want but you will pay for the fish depending on its weight.

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Another place to see in Bibury is ‘Arlington Row’ which is a 10 minute walk from the farm. It is beautiful collection of traditional British cottages a great area to roam and take photos.

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The ‘River Coln’ runs right in the centre of this village, it creates a beautiful environment and views of the landscapes. Again another place to unwind and take photographs.

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A traditional ‘St Mary’s church’ is also in the area, it is a operational church of England diocese.

Other than that Bibury as a whole is a reason to visit, the landscapes, traditional stone buildings and surroundings is just a pleasure in a warm summers day. There are various different wildlife that are seen here, some more welcome than others. Furthermore depending on the season flowers and plants also vary making the village an incredible sight to see.

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Conclusion

Bibury was small and you could walk from one end to the other. There was not plenty to do but fish trout, picnic, have a walk or go for an afternoon tea. However the surroundings cottages, river and greenery is why Bibury is a definite place to stay or visit whilst in the Cotswold.

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Reference:

https://www.cotswolds.com/
http://www.bibury.com/