During my recent trip to the UK, it was the first time in many years that I spent time in the countryside. With new eyes, I was blown away by the beauty and friendly people.
When I was a child, we had a tight budget so our family holidays consisted of camping and hiking. Our parents would take us on daily hikes that were six to ten miles a day. My mother would offer us “power pills” (a candy) from time to time which kept us going and Dad had the Ordinance Survey map hanging around his neck. Occasionally, our parents would argue about the route to take and my brother and I would play in the nearest stream.
We hiked in various parts of the country but our parents favorite area was Snowdonia — the third largest National Park in the UK — in the North Wales. Snowdon is the highest peak in England and Wales, and as we got older we were able to make it to the top. I looked up the trails today and they were so familiar to me.
These days, hiking in the UK has become extremely fashionable. In 2018 there were 350,000 who took the hike to the peak of Snowdon and in 2021 it was over 700,000 people. As children, we would see just a few people and I would love to know what the numbers were in the 80’s.
I am sure that we would not need a map now as the trail is well worn. The disused slate quarries, abandoned buildings and many wild flowers are some of my fondest memories, along with the myths and legends we heard about the area.
A few years ago I discovered The Landmark Trust which rents out very unusual and historic properties all over the country. Whether you hike in one area or travel around the UK, I strongly suggest you take a look at this website. It would certainly be a once in a lifetime experience in regards to accommodations. Bon Voyage!