Bristol, Bath and Stonehenge

We tearfully left London – our home away from home- and made our way to Bristol.  The walk to our Airbnb was a 10 minute walk, but everyone was fried from traveling after a cold. So, a quick taxi.  We had a late lunch, and began to walk Bristol.

What a nice city. We sat on college Green and listened to the church bells peal… for what felt like 45 minutes. We explored the harbour area, and watched the setup for the Bristol Pride parade the next day.  Sadly, we missed the parade.

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On Saturday, we hopped on the train to Bath. The location of ancient Roman baths, cathedrals and the famous Bath Circus (round building around a green). We saw a model of the circus at Mini Europe in Belgium last fall!

We didn’t see all of the sights.. we walked past the baths, but no one was up for standing in line that afternoon.  We did some essential shopping. Baby KJ got new outfits from a shop on the side of a bridge. I got some new shorts. We saw signs on the side of the North Face for an event on Eiger (mountain in Grindelwald that we visited)

 

The street was covered in a rainbow of umbrellas. Can you find the hugging pair?

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We peeked into the beautiful Abbey (next to the baths, had delicious gluten free bagel sandwiches for lunch, and visited a really neat woodworking store. They made all sorts of tools from old bobbins saved from closed down woolen Mills.  The tree outside was planted in 1790, and shared its wonderful shade with us. They also showed us the upstairs apartment- where Mary Shelley finished up Frankenstein.

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On our last day in Bristol, we hopped a train to Salisbury, where we grabbed the tour bus to Stonehenge.  We arrived at lunchtime, and had a nice GF meal at the new Stonehenge visitor center. They had great exhibits on how Stonehenge was built over the years before the giant stones we shipped in from Wales. I had no idea about all of the burial mounds, the giant rectangles carved into the nearby grounds, or that there was a wooden henge in the nearby town.  This area was a major location for the ancient people of England in the winter (at least)

Buses drive you to the actual Stonehenge from the visitors centre. We hopped off halfway, and walked through a cow pasture full of burial mounds and other ancient artifacts hidden below (as well as not-so-hidden cow pies 🙂 )

Behold – the cow-henge!

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There was a nice trail around Stonehenge, and the audio guide provided lots of details about the stones, and how we think there were built. I had no idea that there were mortices carved into the giant rocks to fit them together

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This is the view looking through.  If you stood here on the solstice – you’d see the sun rise (maybe set?? – this is the trouble of writing blog posts 2 weeks later :))  through the center of the stones.

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The bus to Stonehenge was from Salisbury. The cathedral there holds a copy of the Magna Carta.  We got back too late in the day to get in to see it – but the church and its grounds were beautiful:

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We raced home that night to watch the Euro Cup final.  France V. Portugal.  We found an Irish pub that had Gluten free nachos.. We got to watch half the game there – as the pub pushed us out – no kids after 9:30.  So at halftime – we wandered until we found a pub that didnt mind – and we watched the remainder of the game there

On our last day in Bristol, we took a boat ride down the Avon.  We passed this giant ship that is now a museum. It was a gorgeous sunny day, and we capped it all off with GF pizza, and a taster of 5 GF ciders (all ciders are GF!)

 

After a fun few days in Bristol- we boarded the train to Paiginton – for some time on the southwest coast!

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