Paul - who brings friendly nonsense (blur_kiwi) wrote,
Paul - who brings friendly nonsense

Dunster Castle and Dunkery Beacon

Although they have been back in Poland for more than a week now, I must continue with the photos I took while I was showing Monika and Marcin around. As I've said many times before, I love showing people around my part of the world. It often helps me put things into perspective.

With Monika having been here before I wanted to strike a balance between taking them to places that were in some way familiar whilst also introducing them to new things and new places. This day was very much like that. Dunster and its castle, on the edge of Exmoor in the far west of Somerset were new places. I've always liked Dunster as a place, as a village, and it's especially nice to go there when the tourists are thin on the ground - like not during the summer.

As I said to Monika at the time, I had a vague recollection of not liking Dunster Castle, though I didn't know why and seriously wondered if I was maligning the place and that I was actually thinking of somewhere else. It didn't take long for me to realise that I wasn't thinking of somewhere else, that I wasn't doing it an injustice and that it was, in fact, a pokey, small, uninteresting house with not much in the way of garden to redeem it. Don't get me wrong, it looks very nice, and from a distance gives the impression of being something quite grand. That is, until you've actually paid the exorbitant price to get in (though I was lucky having a National Trust membership card with me) and have gone past the point of no return. Having said that, the views from it, rather than of it, were magnificent.

Anyway, perhaps you should see for yourself.

This is the main street of the village of Dunster, seventeenth century yarn market in the foreground and castle in the background.


Let's have a close-up of that a minute.

Yes, I thought so. Not something you'd expect to see in the wilds of Somerset, but a warming and welcome sight nevertheless. I was magnanimous though, I allowed Monika to visit the doll museum and I personally, bravely resisted the temptations of The Kiwi Gallery.


One of the views from the castle.


The village from the castle.





Another of the views from the castle. I'm sure you're getting the idea by now!

Slightly bizarrely, a view of the castle from the castle. (Okay, that's enough!)

The swan's head fountain frozen in a moment.

From Dunster it was on to Exmoor itself and Dunkery Beacon. Dunkery Beacon is the highest point on Exmoor and, in fact, the highest point in Somerset. That in itself isn't exactly earth-shattering; nowhere in Somerset is particularly high and, as a boast it may be akin to who can whisper the loudest. Monika had been there when she was here two years ago but didn't venture much beyond the little car park and the delightful little stream bed and gorge that it runs through at the base of the hill. This time she had her climbing boots on! As soon as we arrived, she and Marcin set off on their expedition to the summit. I didn't want to hold them up so I stayed on the nursery slopes and watched them as they disappeared into the distance. The weather was, at best, unpredictable. There were showers, mini storms, sunny intervals and mean cloudy spells in between. That's Exmoor.
Monika and Marcin heading off on the trail to the top.


While they were gone I took some photos to show the landscape and the fact that the heather on this largely barren hillside was still turning the views purple and pink.





Tags: uk pics, visitors
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