The same weekend we visited Hay-on-Wye we had packed our walking boots. Since we were now going to be in Wales we were intend on doing a nice stroll. We stayed at the Caer Beris Manor in Buith Wells. Powys, www.caerberis.com. Since it was the end of January I think we were the only guests. It’s a very nice hotel. Staff were friendly and the room was perfect. Also I simply have to mention the WONDERFULLY tasty shortbread which was in the reception area offered complementary to the guests, i.e. us! I must admit we helped ourselves freely since it was just soooo good. Below a few shots of the hotel from the hotel grounds.
The house has a long history dating all the way back to AD406. However it has been damaged and rebuilt many times. The foundation stone of it as it now stands is dated 13th October 1896. It was remodelled into a manor by Captain Charles Gam Harcourt Wood, late of the 15th Hussars.The dining room panelling dates from about 1570. Other rooms which are now hotel bedrooms include the Servants Hall, the Nursery, the Butlers Pantry and the Housekeepers sitting room. The original servants’ call bells are still to be seen on the ground floor. I loved the sight of it, made me feel nostalgic and I got visions of Mrs. Bennet ringing the bell for Hill..
After a hearty breakfast we set off. It was cold, but who cared, the wonderful spectacle of a hazy winter morning was awaiting us. I do not exaggerate if I say that the scenery during this walk was one of the most beautiful I ever experienced. It was a combination of things: the weather, the landscape, the stillness. The frosty early morning haze covered nature with a thin layer of white pearls. It was magnificent.
From the hotel you can do several walks. There is a hanging bridge crossing the river Irfon. The hotel has been built just in the bend of the river. Across the bridge we turned left. There is a little holiday housing estate we had to cross in order to cross the road to continue our walk. Although we had taken our fantastic book with walks in Britain, which we actually picked up in a book sale at a National Trust House for 50p (!), the hotel also provides some maps with walks.
In the distance we noticed a little church. I was very pleased because I love churches. In truth I am a silence seeker and often silence is to be found in a church, or in its graveyard.
The angel stood out in the cemetery. It looked eerie and almost surreal. The entire setting did, it was the silence combined with the soft wintry light. The little pearls everywhere. We felt as if we had landed in a fairy-tale.
Then we came across this tombstone in which was displayed this fabulous spider’s web. It looked as if an artist had deliberately put it there. And it was true: Mother Nature is the artist.
Notice the stillness of it all. The only noise one could hear were our footsteps.
As a Dutch person, undulating landscape always appealed to me massively. I still remember the first time we drove from Holland to France. As soon as one leaves Lille behind one finds this softly hilly landscape with all these hues of green. Wales is a bit like that. The difference being that it is even more sparsely dotted with villages The calm and peace of Wales have utterly touched me.
The pictures above have been taken with my new camera, I did not used to have a camera, just used my Iphone. However Santa offered me this precious gift last Christmas and I am so happy with it. I’m still learning to shoot nice pictures, and above you can see what a different angle and light does to a pic. I like experimenting with it.
It almost looks as if there was a filter on the camera lens, but of course there wasn’t.
As you can see the early morning haze was lifting very very slowly as the sun chased the clouds and gave us this spectacular light show. Just for us.
And after the little pearls had melted, a soft green, almost mossy coloured landscape revealed itself to us.
I thoroughly enjoy walking in the UK. I’m only just starting, but I already love it. It has been my wish for ages, but as a devoted mum I never wanted to leave the kids while they were little. So now with them having grown into young adults its MY time and boy am I enjoying it. The pictures above were taken in the morning during our walk around Builth Wells. In the afternoon we were heading back to the Cotswolds where my partner lives, but we stopped along the way to do another walk. We did 4 miles in the Breacon Beacons of which the pictures are to be found below.
A totally different scenery of course, now we were no longer walking between meadows on a narrow country road, we were on the footpath which took us through much rougher ground.
We reached the top. Boy it was cold. I know it’s a silly hat but it kept my ears warm.
After this walk it was definitely time for a cuppa. We were really pleased with ourselves. It’s lovely to make the most of your day and the outdoor exercise makes you feel so alive. So now I got a thorough taste of Wales. It made me resolve on one thing: I will come back. Actually I am going to do a long distance walk in a few months. The Offa’s Dyke path. And you will be reading all about it on this blod if you choose to.