Our (my) close encounter with a Portuguese wall during our 2019 travels left the van with a few wounds that needing tending. Unfortunately these dragged on while spares were sourced from Germany and ultimately meant that we didn’t get to use it again last year. Then the arrival of the pandemic in early Spring and subsequent lockdown kept us at home for the early summer before the return of the family from Germany meant that we were happy to stay home until August had come and gone.
Come September, however, and it was time to get back out on the road and see whether the British weather would hold out long enough for a few short trips away.
A three day trip to North Wales provided us with an opportunity to make a flying visit to the family in Bramhall before we headed out to Aberafon on the Llyn Peninsular for a couple of nights. The first evening was an interesting experience with 50+ mph winds and driving rain, but the following day brought some welcome sunshine and we enjoyed a nice walk to the tiny harbour at Trefor.
The next day we headed back along the coast, stopping briefly to do a bit of family history research at Rhuddlan and taking in Carmarthen and Conwy along the way. An overnight stop at Ruthin on the edge of the Clwydian range of hills took us into an area that we hadn’t previously visited and ended a short but enjoyable break away from home.
For our second trip we’d planned to visit the Devon coast but it seemed that everybody had the same idea and we struggled to find a decent campsite close by the sea that had space, so we eventually settled on a three day stay at the Dart Valley Country Park on the southern edge of the Dartmoor National Park near Buckfast Abbey. On the way we stopped briefly for an icecream at the lovely little seaside town of Teignmouth which looks as though it will be worth a longer visit some time in the future. One spectacle we hadn’t expected to see was the plethora (fleet?) of cruise liners at anchor out in the bay – one has to wonder when anyone will want to be cooped up on-board ship in close proximity to thousands of others? Not for me, thanks.
Yesterday we cycled the few miles across to Buckfast Abbey which is a lovely site and a remarkable achievement for the community of Benedictine monks who spent thirty odd years building it.