Monday, June 22, 2009

Off to Robin Hood's Bay

Seal and I rented a car to take us the 3 1/2 hours up north to the Yorkshire Moors and Yorkshire Dales. We turned that 3-1/2 hour trip into a nearly 7-hour trip, due to stopping along the way and taking pics, eating at a pub, and pulling in to any shop that might sell jewelry. But we made it to one of my favorite places I've ever been, Robin Hood's Bay, perched right above the North Sea. This was my third visit here and not my last I hope. I was here 2 years ago with two of my sons and they said this was their favorite spot too. I would love to spend a week here, painting, writing, reading, knitting and meandering along the cobblestone streets.

This is the view from the road leading down to the nearby villages of RHB. The houses are all stone and the rooftops red tile.

We got to our B&B, The Villa, had a quick glass of wine (OK, 3 glasses of wine!), then walked down the very steep hill to the main part of the village. Earlier in the week Houston had bought me a couple walking sticks to use as a cane and I must say, they came in very handy. I was moving very slowly, but every day got better and better. We were lucky enough to be on this trip on the longest days of the year so by the time we started down to get something to eat, the light was low, the moon up, the cliffs falling into the sea below and it was so achingly beautiful, we could cry.

The Bay Hotel is right on the water, with just a simple cobbled boat ramp between it and the water. There are fishing boats tied right up front, the fisherman in from a day on the water, eager for a beer.

Just above the ramp, across from the pub, is a rounded stone building with windows facing the sea. This bay was a major pirate place and these windows were used for a lookout for pirates. arghhh!

We rested our eyes on this sea shore scene, with the low light scattering pastel colors on the water.

With the tide low, there were rock outcroppings peeking up, filled with pockets of water.

After a delicious dinner, we walked back up the hill to our place of rest for the night. Passing this pub, with it's colorful lights, we almost ducked in for a nightcap.

We made it past though. But it was tempting!

This is the row of B&B's at the top of the hill. These were mainly built around the mid-1800's, catering to people coming for a respite from the cities. The first people to settle Robin Hood's Bay came around 1535, and some of the descendants still live here.

The next morning, after a full English breakfast, we walked down to the old part of town again. I can't get enough of the tiny, twisty walkways and the cute cottages built helter skelter along the cliffside.

But first a stop for our morning ice cream. It was SOOOO creamy, no low fat stuff here! It's made locally from the cows we saw grazing the thick grass when we were coming in.

We sauntered up, around, down, through, between and all over the pathways leading from one cute passageway to the next.

Cottage doors are painted brightly, offsetting the ubiquitous brown of the stone.

Even the rooftops offered a graphic picture of shapes and colors.

We'd come around a corner and go "ohhhhh cute!" or "ahhhhhh adorable!" It really is like a theme park of cuteness. But it's the real deal.

To make a place stand out from one to the next, the doors were either painted a bright color or studded with iron.

Even the pillow out drying in the sun, complemented the scarlet of the bench and trim.

Little courtyards across from the front doors afforded the family a quiet place to relax if they didn't have a back yard.

I meant to ask what these nets are used for. Kids brought them down to the water but they seemed to lightweight to use for fish. I wanted some of the nets though, they were in such happy colors.

Our proprietor of the Villa, Jane. She was so sweet to us, even let us use her computer for the entire evening so we could locate a place to stay in the Dales. We had a full English breakfast (of course!) along with 2 other couples who had just finished the Coast to Coast trail. The C to C trail is a 194 mile long path that leads from St. Bees on the Irish Sea to Robin Hood's Bay on the North Sea. When one hikes it, they are supposed to grab a pebble from one sea and throw it into the other sea. Our table mates had their pebbles to throw in after breakfast. Or they put their feet in both seas.

Regretfully leaving the Villa. But the Dales beckon!

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