Posts Tagged With: Photos

Cold Spring Tavern

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Standing in front of Cold Spring Tavern, it’s easy to imagine the dust flying as a team of horses pull a creaky stagecoach ‘round the bend.
Back in 1865 the California tavern was established as a stop for the stagecoach providing mail delivery and passenger service along the route between Santa Barbara and Santa Ynez.  It was here, on what is now called Stagecoach Road, that tired horses were changed out and weary travelers enjoyed a meal and a break from what must have been a long and dusty, bumpy ride.

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Although the stagecoach ceased operation back in 1901, Cold Spring Tavern remains a popular spot where locals and tourists from all walks of life are welcomed and offered a hearty meal, a cold drink and a glimpse into the Old West.

Categories: California | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 5 Comments

Discover Pismo Preserve

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Rising above Pismo Beach on California’s Central Coast, Pismo Preserve offers 880 acres of unspoiled beauty.  Opened to the public just last week, we were excited to be among the first to explore the 11 miles of hiking trails that weave up and down the hillside.

 

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We chose the Discovery Trail, a 5.2 mile path that led us up the grassy slopes and through groves of twisted oaks.  The views were stunning…we couldn’t have asked for a more perfect day.

We traveled the perimeter of the preserve, eventually arriving at Lover’s Point, 780 feet above the Pacific Ocean.  As luck would have it, there was a bench and it was lunchtime.

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The trail system is open to the public daily from 6 a.m. to 7 p.m. with hours extended to 9:30 p.m. from March through October.  Best of all, it’s free!  Parking is competitive…the lot is on the small side, but you might get lucky.  We had to park about a quarter mile away and walk in.  There are restrooms and drinking water available at the parking lot.

Pismo Preserve is located at 80 Mattie Road, just off Highway 101 in Pismo Beach, California.

Categories: California | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , | 8 Comments

Wishing You Happy Travels in 2020

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Photo credit: Ian Spencer

“He who would travel happily must travel light.” – Antoine de St. Exupery

Categories: family travels, Inspiration | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | 10 Comments

South West Coast Path in 5 Minutes

 

Categories: South West Coast Path | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 10 Comments

A Look Back at London

Tower Bridge (built between 1886 and 1894) spans the River Thames and is one of London’s most recognized landmarks.

Climate change activists were out in force in Trafalgar Square, blocking the streets, but otherwise demonstrating peacefully.

Chinatown offered us colorful streets to wander and a welcome break from the more traditional English pub meals we’ve enjoyed.
An evening of entertainment and laughter at The Savoy Theatre.

We topped off our stay with a visit to Kew Gardens. The UNESCO World Heritage Site covers 326 acres and features the largest and most diverse collection of plants in the world. We were smart to wear our hiking boots – from Kew Palace (top left) to the spectacular greenhouses, there’s a lot to see…regardless of the season.

Tomorrow morning we’ll pack up our memories and head to Heathrow to catch our flight home. It’s been quite a trip.
Categories: travel light | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , | 5 Comments

Park Bouncer Busts Us

The deck chairs scattered about St. James’s Park were just too irresistible on Sunday afternoon. We’d been on our feet for hours, wandering through London’s Chelsea district, through the Victoria and Albert Museum and making a quick pass by Buckingham Palace. We scanned the perimeter of the park for an empty bench…with no luck. The chairs looked far more comfortable but there was a catch.

We hoped we could sneak a few free minutes of R & R before being discovered.

No such luck. The eagle-eyed Park Bouncer spotted us immediately and made a beeline over to collect his deck chair cover charge.

Reg displays our £3.60 entrance fee and we settle in to soak up some sun.
ThIs young man was quickly spotted and, unwilling to pay the price, was sent packing.
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Prior Park Landscape Garden

The Palladian Bridge represents historic elegance.

Wandering beyond the city walls of Bath we discovered the beautiful Prior Park Landscape Garden. Originally designed in the 1700s, the garden spills down a hillside below the Prior Park Mansion (now a private school). Meandering paths lead through woodlands and around lakes.

On a clear day one can take in stunning views of Bath far below. Weather was not so kind to us.

Restoration work is ongoing in an effort to return the garden to it’s original glory.
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Towering Over Bath, England

For centuries, Bath Abbey has soared above the skyline of Bath, England.

What a treat it’s been to spend these last three days in Bath, England. Our backpacks sit empty on the floor of our apartment, our belongings strewn about, as we explore the nooks and crannies of this historic city.

We can’t seem to avoid stairs, climbing 212 steps to the top of Bath Abbey.

Our guide allowed us a few stops on our tour to the top of the Bath Abbey Tower. After a short lesson on the history and workings of the bells, we were led into a side room where we saw and heard for ourselves just how powerful the bells are.

The next stop had our group crowded together in a cubbyhole behind the tower clock. We learned the clock was once kept illuminated by fire, carefully watched by one whose job it was to keep the fire burning…without allowing it to ignite the entire Abbey. Apparently, this was highly paid, but rather boring work.

An inside look at the Bath Abbey clock.

Eventually, we made our way to the top where we enjoyed 360 degree views of the city. Spectacular!

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South West Coast Path: A Walk Through History

The morning after our arrival at Land’s End presented a sunnier picture of this iconic landmark.

Our soggy, arrival at Land’s End will forever be imprinted on our memories, a goal we worked extremely hard for some days. However, our last day of walking was filled with visions of the historic remains of the region’s tin mining industry. Fortunately, the rain caused me to pack my good camera deep inside my pack, or I’d probably still be out on the bluffs snapping photos.

The BBC series Poldark films on location along this stretch of coast.

Much like the Doc Martin series put the little village of Port Issac on the map, the BBC series Poldark brings the world to the Pendeen Coast, where the Geevor Tin Mine (closed in 1990) remains open as a tourist attraction.

As we walked out of Pendeen, we were surprised by the number of crumbling remains of a once thriving mining industry. While it all seems very romantic now, history tells a different story of the dangers that lurked underground.

The coast path meandered past a number of remains. We couldn’t help but take a closer look.
Other scenes were best viewed from afar.
Eventually, the path required our full attention.
Categories: South West Coast Path | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 9 Comments

South West Coast Path: We Made It!

Land’s End.
Categories: South West Coast Path | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | 22 Comments

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