Friday, 22 July 2011

Tintern & Hay on Wye

I was watching Escape to the Country tonight and they were in Monmouthshire, which reminded me to finish recording my pics of Wales.

Two of my favourite subjects in this post, you guessed it... food and books!

I'll start with Tintern, lovely little place on the banks of the Wye with the stunning Tintern Abbey but I didn't manage any pics of the abbey as the car park was too full to stop. 

However if you need a snack you must seek out the tea rooms at The Old Station in Tintern. You can eat inside the old waiting room or if the weather is nice, outside on the platform.
I had a feast with the Station Masters Platter, the cheese was lovely and there was homemade bread & tomato relish. A good hearty plate full but by no means stodgy.
Something this place is known for is its Lavender cake so I couldn't resist and it was lovely, not too flowery, just the right balance.

A very pleasant place and after you've eaten there is a nice little walk to do along the side of the river and the old railway line.

Hay on Wye is somewhere I've only driven through once when it was the book festival and it was just a crazy, busy place with nowhere to park.
This time was different, finally got a look around but as it was late in the afternoon the visit was brief. I couldn't believe the amount of bookshops, just books everywhere. Most of the shops I went in had shelf upon shelf of dusty books, out of stock books, you name it!

The Hay cinema bookshop was a place on many floors and where you could easily get lost, it was like being in a strange library. 
The Castle bookshop was a quirky old building, all musty and dusty and crumbling inside, reminds me of where I'm living! Outside, in the bottom picture, there are bookcases full of stuff they are more or less giving away, they have an honesty box for these books. I guess the books stay out in all weather judging by the state of some of them.
Interesting place.

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