Park Circus, Glasgow – Part 2

The Park Circus area

To complete my Park Circus photo blog, I started at the Lord Roberts monument, at the entry to the Circus from Kelvingrove Park. Roberts happened to be the last Commander of British Forces, before the post was abolished in the early 20th century. This is looking west, over Kelvingrove Park , Glasgow University & the part of the West End known as Woodlands.

From here, we moved east, to the entry of the Circus, looking at Park Gate.

Thence, we meandered to Park Circus’s north side, its central park area, and the south side of the Circus; complete with a Goethe Institute / Allianz Frances.

On the way out of Park Circus, we see both the Trinity Church (the Old Trinity College that was part of Glasgow University), and the old Park Church (Free Church college) on Lynedoch Place, that was rather disgracefully destroyed in the late 60s, with only the tower remaining.

After heading west on Lynedoch Crescent, there are now a number of new builds on the left, that actually follow the old design plans that were there in the past, on Park Quadrant.

Finally, on the way down and out from the Circus, we are in Woodlands Road, by the Free Presbyterian Church, travelling back westwards.


The Wolds Way – Part 4 – Filey to Muston

For the final part of this delightful walk, and one that I shall be wishing to complete some time soon, we headed from the end, in Filey, and walked briefly backwards to Muston, which at one time had a Scarecrow Festival; but was recently axed!

Before we headed off from Filey, we did an incredibly long beach walk  from Reighton (Haven Reighton Sands Holiday Park), and headed north towards Filey Beach & Filey, in order to get there; recommended!  From the start, Filey was a ways ahead, with a distinctive protrusion that you are welcome to climb if you wish.

Beach towards Filey

Looking back aways towards the Reighton section complete with WW2 formations, I think.  It was interesting to note, just how many people who were there on the day.  And also, the number of very well-behaved dogs.

Equally, there were certainly some brave souls catching the waves.

Surfing in Yorkshire!

When we finally made Filey, after only an hour, it was a very pleasant surprise.  But the appropriate British seaside food just made it seem just so right!

Beef burger; even more delicious after a long beach walk!

Whilst in Filey, there was everything to expect from a seaside experience, with huts at the beach, delightful views over the coast and a charming town centre.

From here, it was actually quite easy to meander through Filey, and onto the correct pathway.   It is not very long, and with a distance of only about 2+ miles, we were in Muston in no time . . . for a pint, at the Ship Inn.

Along the way to Muston, from Filey

After this, there was a very fast, local connection by bus, back to Reighton to collect our car.  It should be said, that Filey is connected with British Rail; for those who would wish to start their way from here, and head towards the start of the Wolds Way, located in Kingston-upon-Hull.

The Wolds Way – Part 3 – South Cave to Market Weighton

For the final two parts of our trip to Yorkshire, we decided for the third day to start from our base in South Cave, a delightful village’ish, complete with mock castle, golf course and a belter of a pub, the Fox and Coney, on the High Street. Later (and another post), for the final part, we were to start from the end point of the Way, and retreat back into the countryside.

What struck me about this route, was that while I couldn’t readily see any mountains, let alone hills, we were always up and down, up and down, all day! 

The start strikes into a beautiful small valley, that overlooks a vineyard!  Yes, a vineyard in Yorkshire (there are others), the Little Wold Vineyard, which is on my to do later list.

From there, there were many rolling hills, and a lush and cold countryside, but no opportunities for a cuppa or something to eat; the only drawback to the day.

Until we made Market Weighton, and a well-earned late, lunch.  For which we were grateful, during these COVID days.  The pub in question was The Griffin, a much-needed Thwaites public house.

The Wolds Way – Part 2 – Sykes Churches

Interesting that, I’d never heard of this area before we decided to do it due to a recommendation from a fellow traveler.  Lucky, we referenced the very excellent, Yorkshire Wolds Way; Tony Gowers and Roger Ratcliffe, 2013, and with their recommendation, sought out this day trip, that can be done, preferably, by car. 

We started from our base in South Cave, and then after a stop for breakfast in Market Weighton, also a good opportunity to have a wander and to see the village of the tallest man ever in the UK, William Bradley.  Try the steps in the High Street, where you can compare your shoes with his!

High Street, Market Weighton

From here, we traveled to Kirkburn, to see St Mary’s.

St Marys, Kirkburn

After which, we went to Garten on the Wolds to see St Michael and All Angels, that was a strange mixture between Norman and Gothic styles.

St Michaels and All Angels, Garten on the Wolds

And then to Wetwang, to visit St Nicholas.

St Nicholas, Wetwang

And finally, lo surprises!, when encountering Sledmore House, a delightful (even in the start of the cold season), house, farm and café, where there were numerous people, bicyclists and a farm shop, where we partook of needless shopping.

Sledmore House, Farm Shop & Cafe

From here it was a drive back up to Scotland.

The Wolds Way – Part 1 – The Hockney stage

Earlier in the year, I by chance had the opportunity to watch several documentaries on the Beeb, with both being about, or at least some, the Wolds Way.  For me, I had never heard of it before and subsequently, have read that it is the least traveled long-distance way in England.

The plan then was to do it, or at least part of it, in more than one trip.  For the first part, we did a variant on it via a delightful walk based on the art of David Hockney.   The walk started in the glowing village called Warter, and it then was possible to do either part A or B, depending on how you are feeling.

We chose the shorter route B, that happens to pass directly in front of Dalton Gate Cottage, which is the very place where Hockney stayed, when he painted numerously in 2007.  One of these paintings, entitled “Bigger Trees near Warter”, is now located at the Tate Modern in London.

Warter village

From Warter, we walked uphill, that gave us splendid views back towards Warter.

Looking back towards Warter

From there, it was to the outer most part at Blanch Farm, before we doubled back and started to return to the village.

Starting to return to Warter

Continuing, we passed over the B1246, and past the Hockney cottage, before we came here to where Bigger Trees was painted,

Near to where Bigger Trees was painted

Before we headed back, via a deep ridge / valley, into Warter.  

Ridge on the way back to Warter

The only pity with Warter is that there is no café, and the St James church was closed due to the pandemic.  If open, there is an opportunity to sample some of the local history.  Warter hence, is really only a place to park (which we did by the local primary school).

The next day, we sampled more in this area, by doing a tour of the renowned church architect Sir Tatten Sykes’ churches, which will be in Part 2 of my review.

The Affric Kintail Way – North Scotland

Just after lockdown was relaxed here in Scotland, and just as the first hotels, B & Bs and hostels were allowed to open, I decided to finally do this walk; one of the long distanced paths here in the UK and in particular Scotland. More information can be found here.

It was one that has intrigued me for some time, due to its remoteness and beauty.  Along with the fact, that it is possible to stay at the most remote (almost a mountain hut) youth hostel that there is in the UK.  Well, due to the lockdown, it was closed, so we had to tent it; which was quite enjoyable and warm (amazingly!).

On our first day, we started from Drumnadrochit, and after several diversions, arrived after an entire day walking, in the small village of Cannich (which itself was almost closed down).  I have to admit, that the final two hours were terrible, as there existed no trail (this needs to be rectified immediately!) and so we were on the small, but dangerous asphalt B-Road into Cannich – this was NOT enjoyable.  After which, barely making the Co-op for food, we went to our nearby guesthouse for the night.

The following morning, we were kindly given a lift to the third stage of the walk (bypassing Stage 2), and started from the Loch Affric Circuit Car Park, situated between Loch Affric (to the west) and Loch Beinn a’ Mheadhoin (to the east).  I think this was the correct call, as the trail between here and Cannich I’ve done before, and found it both rudimentary and slightly dull.   This day was actually quite easy, and in no time, we came by and passed both the possible accommodation options at the end of Loch Affric (Strawberry Cottage – run, I believe, by a walking group from Aberdeen University? and a “Trees for Life” bothy, that is fairly modern).  Just past these, in another 45 minutes, we came to the said youth hostel, where we stayed for small break.  And then, after just a kilometre more, we camped for the night.

The next day, after finally lighting our gas stove (PLEASE REMEMBER TO BRING MATCHES OR A FIRE STARTER!), we were off, where in an hour or so we had a break in the Canban Bothy.  From here it was all downhill, both altitude and weather!  It rained and rained and then, rained even more.  The river (the River Croe) was in full spate, and we finally, after another entire day, arrived in Morvich to be picked up by our previous hotelier.  After taking us back to Drumadrochit to collect our car in the central car park (next to the Tourist Information Centre), we had a lovely fish supper and a pint!

Bavaria – Part 3 – Bamberg

For the final installment of my recent Bavarian sojourn, I was very briefly in Bamberg (as I have already described the heavenly lager, Mahrs, that I drank).  What was stunning to me, was the number of churches (again!), the cleanliness and the several “brew pubs” that I saw; below is the magnificent and stately, Obere Pfarre Church – which I preferred to Bamberg Dom.

I had a schnitzel, for probably the first time in years, with pomme frites in a delightful outdoor court, complete with covering for the rain, and also visited Bamberg Dom, that was complete with a roof top garden, and a spectacular view over the rest of Bamberg.

Finally, went to the start of the St James Camino in Bamberg at St Jakobs Church, that also featured several maps of the complete set of Caminos in Europe.

Bavaria – Part 2

As this isn’t really a “beer and vomit” type of elegy to Germany, Part 2 will start with something that is even spiritual, the Saint James Camino, or as stated in German, St Jakobs Weg. Yes, THAT camino, and there are numerous variations of this not only in Bavaria, but in other parts of Germany as well, as this map shows; with the red way in northern Spain (The French Way) being the most popular. If interested, please try this site, for further information.

My journey was only for two days, and was in southern Franconia, though still beautiful!  And this comes to another point about Germany, and specifically Bavaria – their churches.  I have always wondered why they are not as renown as others in Europe.  The particular style in Bavaria is Rococo, though I could be wrong that it applies to every church here (probably I am!).

On our first stage to Effeltrich was delightful, and still so close to cities, but JUST far enough to feel a sense of remoteness – however false that was.  In addition, there will always be a village or small town within an hour of you, complete with all things German (bakeries, Gasthauses with Bier, etc). What was unusual here in Effeltrich, was a bizarre “church / fort” (in German a “Wehrkirche – Fortified Church”), at the end of the stage, called St Georg.  More information can be found here.

St Georg, Effeltrich, Germany

The second stage was continued a few days later, and started from Effeltrich via a bus, to Forcheim.  Whilst we took a wrong turn in a forest after Pinzberg (to Kersbach), we still had time to discover a delightful trinity of churches / chapels in Pinzberg.

The first was a chapel (Kappelle)

Kappelle near Pinzberg

Followed by another Kappelle, complete with outdoor seating for services.  Interesting and with an ode to German efficiency, it was possible to not only collect a stamp for your Camino book, but also to listen to some spiritual tunes as well.  Magnificent!

Seating for outdoor Mass, near Pinzberg
Kappelle, on outskirts of Pinzberg
Shell and Stamp for your use. Cool hi-fi system!

The final stop in Pinzberg, was at St Nikolaus, with a smaller chapel inside, for use of children.

St Nikolaus, PInzberg
Shell and Stamp, St Nikolaus, Pinzberg

Afterwards, we meandered to Forcheim central, but stopped along the way at a Lutheran church, St. Johannis – Evangelisch-Lutherische, in it’s outskirts, though still part of the camino.  Yes, non-Catholic churches take part here; even in Bavaria.  Though in this case, it was not as ornamental as other places.   Though it still had the blue and yellow shell signifying the camino.

St. Johannis – Evangelisch-Lutherische, Forcheim
Inside St. Johannis – Evangelisch-Lutherische, Forcheim

Finally, ended in the centre of Forcheim, with what else a bier. In this case, it was a Tucher, information here.

Lunch and Tucher beer in Forcheim

If you do notice one thing though, in the summer in this neck of the woods, there are wasps EVERYWHERE there is food.  Hence, you simply have to use the beer coaster (Untersetzer) on top of a beer. You’ve been warned. But if you require more information on this, please check out here.

Bavaria – Part 1

It’s probably been said numerous times; a traveler goes to Munich, and talks about, or ONLY talks about the Lowenbrau tent at Octoberfest, and getting hammered, etc.  Seen it, done it, years, as in YEARS ago!  Not impressed, and besides, for anyone with any, and I mean any inclination or brains, it’s Augustiner beer that’s the best that Bavaria (or Munich) produces.  So the purpose of this post, is not the stereotypical reminiscing about Deutschland, but of some unknown or even idiosyncrasies that I’ve noticed this last trip and before.

First, the cigarette machines.  Yes, they are everywhere, and with a finger to the PC brigade, it gives people there the choice – and btw, you can only purchase with credit cards; no cash.

Cigarettes for Sale publicly

The second part, is the food.  Whoever has said that the cuisine in Germany is shite, has simply never been there or in Bavaria.  Even something very simple as a salad, has ALWAYS come in a dressed, elaborate manner, that is delicious.  For example the Swiss variety of Wurstsalat (sausage salad).  So simple, with a non-fattening style of dressing; more vinegar than oil.

Wurstsalat – Swiss variety

As for the Churches, that will be next, in Part 2, when you can see my report from one of their St James Caminos.