Thursday, May 11, 2006

North Wales

I guess this is what many people expect of North Wales. Dark jewel-like greens, slate grey and rocky hillsides. Many of the hills are nothing but opencast slate mines that are dire and miserable--but most of Wales is beautiful, as you can see. This is Harlech Castle. The ramparts are high and the fall long--I HATED taking my kids there.

Every single year of my childhood my parents and us four kids camped on a beach about 30 minutes north of Harlech. It was wonderful when it wasn't cold and raining :) I remember getting lost on the beach aged 3 or 4--the Coastguard were called, my parents frantic and I'd wandered off to find a man selling balloons. Can you imagine? I was gone for about an hour and they thought the worst. Kids!

Below is another part of North Wales, a tiny, unexpected island of Mediterranean beauty, complete with palms and bright colored architecture. Portmeirion. Check out the website--it is where the prisoner was filmed in the 60s.

Clough Williams-Ellis built Portmeirion from 1925 to 1975 on a peninsula off the coast of Snowdonia to show how 'the development of a naturally beautiful site need not lead to its defilement'. He fought for Beauty - "that strange necessity".

Isn't it gorgeous? When I'm rich I'm going to buy myself a peninsula and open it up to writers, families and conservationists. But I'm in charge :D


  1. Sorry about the colors and links. Blogger hates me today!!!

  2. I even like the dark, brooding open cast slate hills. I love anything to do with our industrial heritage - well, anyone's industrial heritage. I like to see industrial landscapes too, as well as all the pretty stuff.

    Oh, and the colours aren't too bad my end.

  3. Beautiful.

    So, are you planning this rich thing soon, cuz I could use a break.

  4. This really is gorgeous. You are lucky to have grown up near such beauty. Curious, the person who built Portmeirion has my last name, and from my family tree I trace back to the Isle of Man. I wonder if I am related.

  5. Beautiful pictures. Makes me yearn for a visit to Britian. Was the castle used in a movie? It looks familiar? Or maybe all ruined castles look familiar.

    And, yep, would die if my 3 year old went missing for an hour. Your poor parents.

  6. Diane--did I tell you I'm from near Ironbridge? LOL. Industrial Heritage is very cool :) And pretty. I don't like the grey mines though. Maybe it is because I always see them in the rain!

    Eve--I'll let you know hon ;-)

    Scott, I am lucky, much of Britain is lovely--much is urban sprawl. Hmm. I've heard the name Ellis in my old hometown, don't know how common name it is. IOM is a nice spot too--I spent a year there. Windy though.

    Peggy, I'm sure it has been used in movies, though you'd be surprised just how different most castles can be--at least on the outside!

    Thanks Dennie!!

  7. PS. Kendra dissed me today. Is that how you say it? dissed? Or dished? Hmm I wouldn't mind being a dish. OK rambling and should be working.

  8. Oh, Ironbridge is one of my most favourite places in the world. I love it there, you lucky thing.

  9. Beautiful, Toni! Lovely, lovely homeland you have. :) And on your peninsula where you make all the rules, are you going to have high speed internet? If you are, sign me up!

  10. OOh, wonderful dream, Toni ;). Sign me up, please.

    I feel as if I have an affiliation Wales (which I don't), because of my name. Combine my first name with my married last name and it's such a tongue twister that people immediately assume it's Welsh. But it's Cornish (my married name, that is :) )

  11. Diane, I spent the first six years of my life living about three hundred yards from the Ironbridge on the river. I must take a bunch of pictures when I'm home.

    Then we moved back to my parents birthtown, a mile up the hill LOL. My parents were great explorers!

    Meretta, HSI--oh yeah! Broadband here we come. and geothermal heating too. And a windmill.

    Loreth, I knew what you meant ;-) Cornish--yes, of course. Makes sense now. I love Cornwall. Had our honeymoon there.

  12. It's dissed - and she sure did. *gg* Like I said, I think Chris is going to be a star without AI, which is why I didn't vote for him. But I was surprised that he went before Katharine. You know, there is a group of people who hate AI and will vote for the worst person in the group just to mess things up ... I haven't heard anything about them this year, but ...

  13. Oh, it's absolutely beautiful! I could live there!

  14. I'm just mesmerized by the photos. LOVE them Toni.

    I've always wanted to visit old castles, wow, what a sight.

    Thank you for sharing these and I can't wait for future ones *hint hint* LOL

  15. So incredible - i love your confidence "when I am rich" - that is the way to make it happen!

  16. Thanks guys!!

    Janice--one day :)