Two years ago, to mark my 6th year in UK I made a round-up of all the places I’ve been to. Funnily, it was a round number: 100, here is the post. I thought it would be nice to continue and last year I put 22 more flags on the map, here is the round-up. Now is my 8th Anniversary and I have 31 new flags on the map.
Last month I’ve mentioned that I went on holiday in Cardiff and someone asked me puzzled why. I don’t think my choice would have received a similar response if I would have said Ibiza. Well, in that particular holiday, I went into a mine, I had lunch in a working prison, and I saw a museum in which all the houses were moved brick by brick from all over Wales (St Fagans). Of course it is a matter of personal preference, but for me this is much more exciting than sunbathing.
In the last 12 months I’ve been further north than before, reaching up to Inverness. This month we’ve been to Brighton and south. Travelling wise, this year was great (and not only travelling wise), but I still have lots of places on my to-travel list and this is why these updates will most likely continue in the next years. Now I’m going to share five of my favourite new places I’ve been to in the last year, in the order in which I visited them. I blogged about the first four and the last one will follow in the next weeks.
Blenheim Palace, post here, is not the only post I shared from there. There is one with Festus walking on the estate and with the Butterfly house. The Palace is beautiful and the estate is really great. We’ve exchanged our entrance ticket for an annual pass and we’ve used it frequently, almost every time all three of us are in Oxford. It is the birthplace of Winston Churchill.
Balmoral, post here, is another choice. It’s not the only Royal residence I’ve been to this year, as I’ve also been to Buckingham Palace and Holyroodhouse in Edinburgh. I think Balmoral was my favourite because it is a small building, a family home, and a place where Royals went on holiday since Prince Albert bought it for Queen Victoria. It was a privilege to visit all these three places.
I didn’t know about St Fagans Museum, post here, before seeing it on the shortlist for the Museum of the Year. St Fagans won and I’m not surprised why after visiting it. As a historian in the making, I particularly enjoyed seeing the castle (in this picture, there are two at the museum) and the church, beautifully painted as it would have been before the reformation.
The Royal Pavilion, post here, is my fourth choice. It was breathtaking to see the interior, especially the Banqueting Room. I would gladly visit it again.
After three impressive buildings and a fascinating museum, my last one was a field. You might wonder why my last choice is so inconspicuous. It is soon clear when I mention where this field is: Hastings. It is the location of the battlefield where Harold, King of England, and William the Conqueror fought. I wouldn’t have expected to be moved by seeing a field, but I was. So many people died on this field, many of them defending their kingdom, only a couple of weeks after fighting in the north against the invading Vikings. History is written by the victors and, unfortunately for Harold, he lost that day. William built an abbey on the place of the battlefield. The abbey was destroyed during the dissolution, by one of his descendants.