Yesterday, I took to the coasts of Pembrokeshire. Every turn brought new surprises. This coastal National Park has more than just incredible scenes in all directions but holds a real visible history that can be experienced and seen without going far at all. Whilst here for a couple of days it would have been foolish not to get a feel of this myself and give the boots a little rest.
Pembroke Castle sits proudly in the town centre, a high wall of ruins invting you in to savour its history. A very important fortress from the 11th century Normans through the Tudors and the civil war. Over the centuries it has been built upon, changed to a home and ordered to be destroyed and yet today we are left with an intruiging and magical place to see and learn.
To be honest within every few miles you travel in Pembrokeshire there seems to be a castle. Each one individual, each with its own unique history and state. Even as you wind round the gorgeous country lanes and villages you find idyllic castles like Manorbier. A small beautifully walled castle from the Norman era. Built overlooking a quiet beach with gardens, rooms and dungeons to explore.
For grand views and walks galore there is Carew Castle. A ruins, celtic cross and the only restored and working tidal mill in Wales. Combine that with a 1 mile wheelchair/pram friendly circular walk, perfect for the hounds too A stunning place no matter what the weather. Fresh air abound.
Now this is unique, St Govan’s Chapel. Built down in a crack in the cliff face near to the village of Bosherton. Only accessable by stone steps winding down from the clifftop. Why down there? Tales and legends have brought together the story we know today. St Govan was a hermit chased here by pirates. He lived in a cave down there by the sea. In the 14th century a chapel was built over this cave. This story started to fascinate me, especially with the location and seeing this little chapel there. More of the legend can be found here and I really suggest you go see it yourself!
All this history on its own was only within a few miles of my base. Celtic Haven. And Celtic Haven is a part of history itself. An old 12th century farmstead now sitting as preserved holiday cottages. A truly tranquil place to be and base from. Without even leaving the front gates you can take in relaxation of golf, the indoor swimming pool with views galore, a fitness room and a spa/massage I can tell you from my own experience will leave you totally relaxed and more.
Pembrokeshire! I want more…. I shall be back!