September 2015 weeklong drive through northern and central Wales (with stops in England on the way there and back)
Visited Stonehenge on the way from Heathrow Airport to Bath, England
The "Abbey Green" in Bath, where we stayed our first two nights - the tree in the middle of the green is over 500 years old
Bath is named for the ancient Roman baths, a stone's throw from our B&B
There is also a lovely Abbey church, for which the Abbey Green is named
On our way from Bath to Wales we stopped at a hedge maze (and butterfly garden) in England's scenic Wye Valley
Wales is known for its majestic castles, like Beaumaris (interior pictured here)
Beaumaris Castle - interior
Harlech Castle - exterior
Harlech Castle - interior
Criccieth Castle, as seen from the seaside resort restaurant where we had lunch
There are other ancient ruins there as well, such as this church at Ynys Llanddwyn (a small isthmus on Anglesey, a large island off of Wales' northwest coast, where we stayed on our first night in Wales)
Our second night in Wales was spent with Tom & Jen Deakin and their family - they live in the town of Llanidoes, in central Wales, which boasts one of the last timber-frame markets in the U.K.
Central Wales used to be the slate capital of the world - we took an underground tour of the Llechwedd slate caverns
A lovely place that took us forever to get to - the Pistyll Rhaeadr waterfall
Driving can take longer than expected due to roads that look like this TWO-WAY ROAD...
...and privately-owned toll bridges that close at 5 pm
Driving around the countryside afforded some treasured views, like ancient houses...
...and everywhere, sheep (Wales is home to 3 million people and 9 million sheep)
Why is Marie so happy?
She has her scones with clotted cream and cappuccino!
I was delighted to visit Portmeirion, a brightly-colored Italianate-style resort nestled on the coast adjacent to the Snowden Mountains
Portmeirion was the filming location for the cult classic TV series The Prisoner, about a secret agent who is abducted to a place ("The Village") run by people with advanced technology who are intent on extracting his deepest secret
In addition to the fabulous gardens, statuary & architecture, there is a beach, woodland walks, and this dog cemetery
On our way back to the airport, we stopped in Shrewsbury, England, which is criss-crossed by narrow alleyways
Our favorite sign, also in Shrewsbury