Author: Emily Cunningham

Dark Skies and Shooting Stars on the Isles of Scilly

The Isles of Scilly: famous for white sandy beaches, turquoise seas, fields of flowers and delicious cream teas… but how about stargazing? 28 miles away from the bright lights of the mainland, this offshore archipelago has some of the darkest skies in England; yet the amazing stargazing is often a surprise to even the seasoned Scilly visitor.   In October, I was back on the Isles of Scilly for the Walk Scilly Autumn Weekend, the sister event to the annual Walk Scilly walking festival (4-14 April 2018). I’d been to the Isles of Scilly once before; but whilst I had soul-soaring memories of unbelievably blue seas, steaming hot pasties and the most seals I had ever seen in my life, I...

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Up Close With Fluffy White Seal Pups – England’s East Coast

Did you know that there are beaches in England where you can get up close with over 1600 fluffy white seal pups? There are 4 thriving Grey Seal pupping colonies on England’s East Coast: Donna Nook in Lincolnshire, the Farne Islands off Northumberland and Blakeney and Horsey colonies in Norfolk. I visited Donna Nook in late November, just as pup numbers were reaching their peak.   Seals, seals, as far as the eye can see. Brownish-grey adults laying on the sand intermingled with the bright white fur of newborn pups. Some pups had even opted to snooze right up against the double fence that separates seals and visitors by only half a metre. Close enough to touch – not...

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Walking and Wildlife on the Isles of Scilly

Adrift in the Atlantic, a mere 28 miles from Land’s End, the Isles of Scilly are a walker’s dream. This stunning archipelago of over 150 islands (5 of which are inhabited) is England, but not as you know it. The weather is amongst the mildest and sunniest in the UK, hedgerows bloom with subtropical flowers and white sandy beaches fade into turquoise seas. Well, the islands aren’t designated an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty for nothing…   I had come to the Isles of Scilly for the WalkScilly Autumn Weekend, the sister event to the annual WalkScilly walking festival – held in April each year (4-14 April 2018). Over a jam-packed programme of guided walks, WalkScilly celebrates the very best that the Isles of Scilly have to...

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Sicily: Street Food and Street Art

Sicily – the largest island in the Mediterranean – sits off the toe of Italy and is home to 5 million proud Sicilians.  It positively drips with history; with Greek temples, Roman aqueducts, Norman cathedrals and Arab Kasbahs dotted throughout the arid landscape. Palermo, Sicily’s capital city, is no exception – architecture buffs would be in their element, with countless churches, piazzas and TWO huge opera houses.   Alongside its buildings, Palermo is famous for its street food. Now I can appreciate a beautiful fountain but street food was what I was really looking forward to. With my Italian being as shaky as it is, I took some time before departure to learn the names...

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