Memories from South-West of England

Roadtrip around South and South-West of England.

As I mentioned in the previous post, I couldn’t start the work before April so I had another week off. The car made it happily to England (ptuiptuiptui), so we decided to spend a week out of Reading. I searched out plenty of stuff, from which we by the end of the week didn’t manage to see any of. But I guess it is for the next time.

We started the trip by heading straight to South from Reading, hoping to see a sunset near Stonehenge. Unfortunately we didn’t make it on time, so it was already closed when we arrived. For my surprise they are asking money on the gates, and not little money. For an adult it costs 17 pounds to see the rocks…. Yes, 34 pounds to get in with your mate. That is overpriced for sure. As our plan was already ruined we decided to drive further and not wait until the morning when the gates open. We headed towards Salisbury and hoped to reach Poole by the end of the day. That night we ended up sleeping next to a cemetary near Poole. It was so creepy at first, but as we were both so tired, it didn’t really matter. In the morning and in sunlight we noticed a sign that there is a camping area in 100yards. Oeh…

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Yeah, You can say I have seen Stonehenge.

For the next day we planned a little hike in Dartmoor National Park. We asked from a village what places are worth to visit, packed our bags and started walking. We took with everything. And by everything I mean everything. We thought we are going to hike over the hills and hitchhike further for few days, but English weather said, hello NO, guys! SO, it was raining all the damn day, and the wind wanted to blow off our faces. So instead of hitchhiking further, we just walked down back to the car. I must say I was a little disappointed. I guess I am just already used to hiking in big mountains and suddenly few hundred meters is not enough.  And at that moment we decided that we are not going to make this trip a hitchhiking trip. We sat in the car and started looking for a place to park the car… again. This time we didn’t go too far. Found a little space next to a small road near Princetown.  When mentioning Princetown, I must say that the roads there are crazy! Not that its just up-and-down, but they have planted some bushes right next to the road so you cannot see on the sides. And what is more, most of the time you can fit on the road only 1 car. Why?!

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On our way over the hills. This time no cows, only sheep, who were so scared that escaped as soon as they noticed you coming.

The next day we were driving again towards Cornwall and the very South-West edge. In one small town local people suggested us to go to Tavistock to try local farmer’s food. After mentioning food we were already sitting in the car, speeding towards Tavistock. We ended up buying 2 types of cheese (blue cheese and hard cheese with garlic) and bread. We chose only the products that you could buy from there and nowhere else.  We wasted about 20 pounds on damn sandwich. BUT, we ate the sandwiches for like 3-4 days. The hard cheese is still left and in the fridge. So, if you divide it by the days, not that expensive after all.

From Tavistock back to the coast. Next stop was St Austell and little villages around it. Amazing coastline and amazing views! That part I recommend for sure. We took some chips from “fish and chips” in the port and enjoyed the view. It was a little rainy but the food makes it always better. And if you didn’t know, then “fish and chips” is a thing here. I think it is the most popular fast food as you can find it almost on every street. We ended up with the views in Land’s End. It is good that I can say I have been there, but I wouldn’t say you have missed anything if you haven’t. If you have visited any other coast in South of England, it is pretty much the same. I would maybe even say that the beaches before the very end were even prettier. One beach even had a little sand area, so from a distance really seamed like a paradise (check out the pic from photos). There was something like a window in the water (in Land’s End), but not sure if you can really call it a window. Surprising thing was that there are whales, sharks and dolphins swimming around. I checked the information written down for tourists and they mentioned different type of whales, sharks and dolphins. Unfortunately didn’t see any on that day. BUT, in Mevagissey I did notice a fin in the water, that from time to time just disappeared. I am not sure what was it, but I want to think it was a shark.

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Can you see it?! There is a fin in the water! On the right side in first third from up. Right?! It’s tiny, but it’s there!

From the very western point we started driving back towards Bristol. As this was the town I was supposed to meet one of my very best friends from Estonia. On the way we visited Appledore (and basically all the other small ones around there), Brigewater, and Bath. I must say I LOVED that small town Appledore. This kind of town is a place I would like to live in. As the weather was quite windy and  even a bit stormy, the sea was unbelievable. We were standing on some street right next to the sea and waves just kept jumping over the wall on the street. The waves were so big that surfers seemed like ants in them. And seeing the real surfing (without the kite)- damn, I think my bucket list just got longer. About Bridgwater I cannot say much. Didn’t really leave any impression.  But I had really high hopes for Bath, but I must say I didn’t like that one either. You know, sometimes you just don’t connect with the vibes of the place and that’s it. Bristol, on the other hand, I enjoyed a lot. Nice architecture, active nightlife, river- what else can you ask for. As we arrived already in the dark, I cannot give you any feedback of the town in sunlight. The night in Bristol was nice for sure. If you like partying and getting to know the city in that way, you should go!

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Nike tree in Bristol. Local people didn’t really know the reason why the trainers are hanging there either.

When we were already in Bristol, it came out my friend didn’t come there and is waiting for me in Littledean. My phone just keeps letting me down lately. I am not sure what’s the problem, but the messages are coming through like hours later. If I want my messages hours later I would just send a dove… Anyway, after walking around few hours we decided to drive for the night to Littledean and spend some time with my Estonian homie. I must say I loved that place. Really small, but so nice. She is living in a shared house there with an amazing view from the backyard. For the night we went to a little local pub to celebrate our reunion (as I haven’t seen her for 8-9 months). I don’t even remember when was the last time I was in a pub until they kicked you out. Probably in Erasmus. We had such a nice time.  The next day we walked around at her work (she’s working in a biodynamic garden in a some kind of centre). Again so peaceful, so nice. Had an amazing meal there (made by a lady from Nepal) and had to start driving back home right after.

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Deep, right?! When walking around in the garden that is full of small signs and interesting cute spiritual elements, it does make you feel calm and stress free.

On our way home we stopped in Gloucester as I insisted visiting the cathedral. As soon as I heard that all the scenes in Hogwarts’ corridors are filmed there, I wanted to go. I am not that big fan (as I haven’t really read any of the books), but I am a fan enough to want to see it. I must say, I wasn’t disappointed. I just wish people nowadays would spend as much time on details when building houses as they did back then. Just incredible.

And last, but not least Oxford. I must admit, so far my favourite city. I remember I had the same feeling in Bucharest when wherever you turn, the view is amazing. You can take a picture of any of the streets and it looks fabulous. While walking around the city center I even felt a bit bad not going to study there. Fortunately it is close to Reading, so I can go back for more pictures at any time.

That is about it for this time. I added a whole bunch of pictures from the trip in my photography section, so go check it out! I had 300 of them, so unfortunately I couldn’t upload all of them.

And everyone of you who is thinking now that you should go and check out some new cities/places,  MOVE!