The most northerly county in England, this sparsely populated swathe of wild moorland, deserted beaches and vast forests sits adjacent to the Scottish border and was once plagued by attacks from Border Rievers – raiders of both nationalities that pillaged their wealth from local homesteads.
But now, protected by the Angel of the North, all is peaceful throughout the landscape.
And believe me…it is SO quiet!
Like many people, I love a good bridge. I’d like to give some poetic reason, such as they’re symbolic of links between points in our life journey, but the simple truth is I just find them structurally appealing. Strong architectural lines with the added bonus of generally being near another personal favourite, water.
I’m lucky enough to live very close to the Humber Bridge, once the longest single-span suspension bridge in the world. Its arrival in the early 1980s put it firmly on the map as an iconic local landmark, for many, a comforting signal of home as it looms on the horizon after a long trip.
Seeing as I’m also a big fan of classical music, it was a given that I wanted to get tickets when the City of Culture team announced an event in conjunction with Opera North to walk the bridge to a unique, specially composed soundtrack: The Height of the Reeds.
Unfortunately, as tickets were free, they went swiftly and I lost out. Then, hurrah! They announced it had been so popular they were extending the run and this time I was in, albeit alone as we could only get hold of one ticket.
So yesterday, amidst the extraordinary heat we’re experiencing at the moment in the UK, I set off for a 5K trundle.
The southernmost region of continental Portugal, the Algarve has been popular with British tourists for years and we are lucky enough to have (through family) the use of a villa there in a small town called Olhos de Agua.
Very close to the resort of Albufeira, this sleepier area is within a few minutes walk of some beautiful beaches which are relatively empty, even in peak season, where you can watch fishermen bring in their catch.
It’s ages since I’ve done one of these travel photography posts (if we’re not counting Iceland) and as we’re heading off tomorrow for a week in Portugal, it’s put me in the mood to look back on some past adventures.
Now, although I have used some of these images on the blog, I can’t believe I’ve not shared them in their entirety and talked about our whirlwind trip to the French capital!
The final stop on our mini-European escapade, with only 36 hours until we boarded the Eurostar back home, we had a lot to cram in since landing from Rome!
‘So sick, so sick of being tired and oh so tired of being sick…’
2017 has not got off to the greatest start from a health point of view, in fact we didn’t even manage to see the New Year arrive! Stricken down with ‘flu over Christmas, it is still refusing to let go of the family and has even put one of us temporarily in hospital. Sigh.
But, despite being the living embodiment of a line from a Taking Back Sunday song, there are far too many exciting things going on in our neck of the woods at the moment, so I’m forcing myself out of bed!
You may remember last year when I wrote this post, Would you…Go ‘blude’? about a mass naked artwork being created for my home town in preparation for it becoming UK City of Culture 2017.