Chirk Things to Do

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    Chirk entrance gates
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  • Things to Do
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    Chirk Aqueduct
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Most Recent Things to Do in Chirk

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    Fenn's and Whixall Mosses

    by nickandchris Updated Apr 26, 2006

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    Old tramway across bog for transporting cut peat
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    On our last full day, we decided to head for somewhere quiet so out came the map to look for reasonably interesting places for a walk. In the end, we chose a nature reserve to the east of Ellesmere, noting there were three parking areas marked on the map. This was Fenn's and Whixall Mosses trails, an area of raised bog, once used for peat cutting, now managed by English nature and Countryside council for Wales. They are working at mending the damage created by commercial peat cutting by controlling the scrub and damming the drained peat cuttings so they retain rain water.
    It's a Site of Special Scientific Interest and the third largest raised bog in Britain. It is home to rare plants, animals and birds, though I must admit, we only saw a few birds of prey otherwise it was the most sterile place we had ever come across as far as wild life was concerned. They obviously heard us coming.
    Be very careful not to stray off the paths and end in a deep gully of which there are many.

    We began our way-marked walk along the Llangollen canal where we watched a small bridge lifted many times to let canal boats through. Actually, this was probably the most exciting part of the walk as the old tramway across the peat bog was mind-bogglingly boring. Plebs we may be but we can recognise a decent bit of landscape when we come across one!!! One other intersting detail was the detailed whittled fencing.
    A small parking area over the lifting bridge and a layby this side.

    Related to:
    • Eco-Tourism
    • Birdwatching
    • Hiking and Walking

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    Ellesmere

    by nickandchris Updated Apr 26, 2006

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    This, believe it or not, is classed as the Shropshire Lake District. What a laugh, it's all flat and there's only a few small, piddling lakes!!! In fact, we were never able to stop here, as all parking was taken up apart from a boggy pay and display park outside the town.
    So, it's a pleasant enough place with a lake slap bang in the middle that you can walk round or feed the ducks and a touristy looking town full of people but not really our scene. Reminded us of Bowness on a small scale too much!!!
    There is a small parking area on the outskirts next to the Shropshire Union canal with walks going in both directions and a marina along the way. Ellesmere is also close to the junction of the Shropshire Union and the Llangollen canal.

    Related to:
    • Adventure Travel
    • Hiking and Walking
    • Birdwatching

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    Chirk Castle Gardens

    by nickandchris Updated Apr 26, 2006

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    Topiary, Chirk Castle gardens
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    Wonderful gardens, created and landscaped in 1764 by William Emes, with lawns, shrubberies, topiary, lime tree avenue and a woodland walk through the ancient hunting park. The views from the terrace extend over nine counties with the Shropshire and Cheshire plains in the foreground.

    As it was Easter, there was a family Easter egg hunt on so the gardens were busy with families rushing to find hidden clues.Even so, it was not unbearably busy and plenty of quiet corners could be found.
    I think what impressed me most, here, was the topiary. Please read the plaque for interesting info on this, including using the clippings as a cancer cure!!!
    Further down the garden, set just off the lawn, is a thatched building known as the Hawk House. This is where birds of prey were kept and bred.
    The garden has it's fair share of statues, with the largest being Atlas.Also in the garden grounds, close to the house, is the laundry where you can imagine how the maids slaved over the antique equipment. This is newly restored and is home to the largest clothes maid/horse I have ever seen!!!!

    Related to:
    • Castles and Palaces
    • Adventure Travel
    • Hiking and Walking

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    Chirk Castle

    by nickandchris Updated Apr 26, 2006

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    Chirk  Castle
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    A great place to visit, especially on a nice day. The entrance is miles along a minor road, off the B4500. A lovely driveway (one way system) through beautiful parkland.
    The marshalled carpark was filling up with a steady stream of cars as we arrived, before the castle was even open(the grounds open a couple of hours before the castle.)It was Easter Saturday, after all. When we left, cars were parked all down the driveway.
    We opted to have a walk round the gardens first, come back to the van for lunch and then do the inside of the castle (See next tip for gardens.)
    The castle was built by Roger Mortimer in 1295 as part of Edward I's chain of 14 marches fortresses across North Wales.It has been continuously lived in for the last 700 yrs. The present owners, the Myddelton family,have resided here for the last 400 years and parts of the castle are of course, annoyingly out of bounds.
    No photography is allowed inside the house.
    The state rooms are simply lavish.Amazing ceilings which you can get a better view of from hand mirrors left for your use.
    You can climb Adam's Tower which was being restored on our visit and then decend to the deep dungeon.
    There's also the servants Hall with a list of quaint rules, just about legible, on the wall.Unfortunately, I can't remember any of them!!
    All in all, we felt for the £7 admission, (including the gardens) it was well worth the money. It wasn't over done and the lack of notices forbidding you to do this that and the other was refreshing. The housekeeper gave an introductory talk and then an official was in each room to answer questions and hand out cards with information on. It was all remarkably laid back. I don't like these places that herd you all through together on a guided tour. This was much better, being able to explore in your own time.
    We found most of the paintings were extremely dark and difficult to distinguish, even on a bright day.

    There is, of course, a restaurant, a snack bar and a farm shop.Also a childrens playground and a picnic area.

    Related to:
    • Historical Travel
    • Castles and Palaces

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    Offa's Dyke

    by nickandchris Updated Apr 24, 2006

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    Offa's Dyke
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    Offa's Dyke is the ancient boundary between England and Wales, built in the 8th c. by the Saxon King Offa. It was used to defend his western boundary against the Welsh princes.
    It travels 177 miles and still seems to incorporate some of todays boundaries.
    There are many footpaths allowing access to the Dyke and some good, circular walks that use the path, around Chirk and Oswestry.
    I must admit the dyke is not impressive in some places, almost gone and yet in others, it rises up as a huge barrier, most remarkable. I guess it all depends on the area you are walking in.It is pretty well signposted but as I said, some parts, you have to use your imagination a little!!!

    Related to:
    • Historical Travel
    • Backpacking
    • Hiking and Walking

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    Canal Walks

    by nickandchris Updated Apr 24, 2006

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    Shropshire Union canal
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    From where we were camped it was a short walk down the road and onto a footpath that took us straight to the Shropshire Union canal. Here we watched the canal boats manouvreing through a lock, others waited their turn as they battled with the wind. It was pretty difficult going against the wind, boats were finding it difficult to pull out from the canalside when their turn through the lock arrived.Interestingly, the majority of boats had a dog onboard. Dogs and canalboats must go together!
    It being the Easter weekend, the canal was very busy with boats yet we hardly met another soul on foot.We walked a couple of miles back to St. Martin's, admiring the lovely canalside gardens and feeling rather envious.

    Related to:
    • Sailing and Boating
    • Hiking and Walking
    • Cruise

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    LETTERBOX AT CHIRK CASTLE

    by balhannah Written Jan 28, 2012

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    Located near the Visitor Centre, is a lovely, big and old Letterbox. Buy your postcards from the Visitor centre, then post them from here!

    Related to:
    • Historical Travel
    • Castles and Palaces
    • Budget Travel

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Chirk Things to Do

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