#Weekendwanderings Portsmouth Historic Dockyard #ships #history #photos

During the summer we paid a visit to Portsmouth Historic Dockyard. It proved to be a fun way to spend a few hours, though it did feel a little strange seeing armed police patrolling what is in effect a museum. I suppose that is just the way things are now.

Anyway, not to dwell on the state of society, the first attraction is HMS Warrior. It’s a beast of a ship and I had no chance of fitting it into one photo.

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I loved exploring the many levels inside HMS Warrior and imagining life on board.

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My favourite was the Captain’s cabin (and I think navigator’s cabin) because I could just imagine Commander Farrell from my Silent Sea Chronicles sitting in his cabin plotting his next mission to capture pirates.

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There is a boathouse where you can watch boats being built and repaired. But my favourite was this floating sail boat.

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The Mary Rose Museum houses the remains of the 16th century Tudor ship lost to the sea in 1545. The ship is stored in a temperature controlled environment, and it’s quite something to wander the levels seeing both the ship and the artefacts recovered from it.

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We managed to time our visit while the HMS Queen Elizabeth Aircraft Carrier was there. This was the closest we managed to get, but the size of it is still very impressive.

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Finally there’s HMS Victory. We didn’t get to go inside this time, so this is the first stop on our next visit.

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It was very busy so we didn’t get to experience everything. The great thing is, your ticket allows for a second visit free of charge. So we will definitely be returning soon and hopefully I’ll get to share some more pictures.

If you get the chance, I would highly recommend a visit to Portsmouth Historic Dockyard – but get there early as the parking can be an issue.

Next week, I hope to share a wander around Bushy Park, Surrey and show off it’s friendly squirrels a.

#Weekendwanderings Llama Park – East Sussex #Llama #photos

For my first weekend wander in a long time, I’d like to show off a few photos from our family visit to The Llama Park in East Sussex. It’s a great place to spend a couple of hours in some very beautiful English countryside.

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This Llama is very tame and friendly, and wanders loose around the grounds. There are lots of Llamas and you can even take part in a Llama walk.

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I love the cheeky little Alpacas.

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But my highlight of the day was seeing this peacock admiring his reflection, or perhaps sussing out a rival.

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Feeding time was my daughter’s highlight.

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If you are looking for a few hours of fun with some very friendly animals, check out the Llama Park.

Next week I hope to share some pictures of the historic ships at Portsmouth’s Dockyard.

#weekendwanderings – The Bishops Garden in Chichester #photos #flowers #cathedral

You may have seen my post yesterday with a wander around the cathedral of Chichester. Today I wanted to shared some pictures of the Bishops Garden, which also has some beautiful views of the cathedral. Again this is open to the public to enjoy and makes a lovely base for a picnic or just to enjoy the summer sun.

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My favourite flower here has to be the Bearded Iris.

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There is also a lot of history in Chichester. I wish we’d had time to do more, especially the 1.5 mile circular walk tracing the old wall around the city – details in the pictures below.

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I hope I’ve inspired you to visit this beautiful city, I would certainly love to go back.

Enjoy the rest of your weekend!

#Weekendwanderings around Arundel #photo #Arundelcastle

Last week we paid a flying visit to the beautiful town of Arundel. It is now officially my favourite place! I can’t wait to go back for a proper visit. Here are a couple of photos I’d like to share.

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By the bridge is this wonderful tile map of the river system. I’ve not seen anything like it before.

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I love the ship drawings too (I’m a bit obsessed with ships having featured them in my new book). I can see Farrell and his crew of pirate hunters at the docks trading supplies for the pirates they’ve captured.

There is so much history here, and a museum that definitely needs a visit. Below is a ruin of a Dominican Priory which sits by the River Arun.

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A couple of examples of the Tudor style buildings that are dotted around the town.

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The castle was something special and could be seen from pretty much any location in Arundel that we passed through. We didn’t get to go inside the castle this visit, but next time…

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I will do a proper feature on Arundel Castle in the autumn.

Over the next few weeks I have some more photo posts planned. Look out for Chichester and its magnificent cathedral, Bognor beach, and some more shots of my falconry day. I hope you can join me again.

#WordlessWednesday – Cute young Buzzard #raptor #birdsofprey #photo

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Thank you, Sally at Falco West Sussex Falconry for a wonderful morning.