Tuesday, 9 July 2013

A day in Wells, and Wookey Hole

It's been a beautiful day again, but too hot for me. I've been trying to keep in the shade as much as I can, but my arms are a bit sunburnt. This morning I set off walking towards Street, the hostel is right on the edge, it's a 20 minute walk to the town. I had only been walking a few minutes when I came to a bus stop, an elderly lady was waiting so I asked when the bus was due and where it was going. When she said, there's one soon and it goes to Wells, I thought that's lucky, just where I want to go. Glad I brought my bus pass. 
I got off at the bus station in Wells and it was two minutes to the town centre. Here is the Crown in the High Street. 
This is a well at the bottom end of the High Street.
Fine displays of flowers, the shop keepers are making an effort to pretty it up.
In the corner of the Market Place is the National Trust shop, and through the arch to the left is the entrance to the Cathedral.
More flowers in planters and hanging baskets.
This cosy little courtyard at the entrance to the pub looks inviting. 
What fascinated me was the constant running water running down the gully's. You have to watch where you are walking because you could easily trip and fall into one. In this street there is one on each side of the road. Not very easy to navigate if you are pushing a buggy or a wheel chair. You have to look for the steel ramps crossing them if you want to get to the other side. 
When I walked through the archway and found myself at the front of the cathedral I thought, WOW, chuffin  WOW. What an amazing sight. Unfortunately the sun was on the wrong side to get a good photo, so I went back later on in the day.....
and took some better photo's. The West front has one of the largest galleries of medieval sculptures in the world. In the lower niches are biblical scenes, then it rises through kings, bishops, and angels, to the Apostles,  and Christ over all. 

The back is equally as stunning. It is free to enter, and you can walk all the way around it. 

This is the astronomical clock with jousting knights, installed in 1390. It's one of the oldest medieval clocks in the world. 
To take photographs inside the Cathedral you have to buy a permit for £3. I didn't bother, because it's always difficult to get good photo's anyway. I did sneak this one though, when no one was looking. I walked up the steps to the Chapter House and found I was the only one there. Isn't it a beautiful ceiling.  
Next to the Cathedral is the Bishops Palace. I took a walk over there, passing a game of croquet on the lawn, to check out the prices. I decided to give it a miss, not that bothered. I have a plan to spend a bit of money later.  
I continued my walk around the Cathedral, and found the music department in this building. 
Just off to the side was this lovely cobbled street, and each house had a tall chimney at the front. I thought, how unusual. 
At the end it was a dead end, just a narrow passageway to the right. There were two cars in the street but it looks like vehicles are not normally allowed.  
Some of the houses had an stone archway at the entrance over the gate. 
My next plan is to walk to Wookey Hole, so I set off across the fields. 
Some nice views from up here, I could see Glastonbury Tor.
After about an hour I arrived at Wookey Hole. I like this jolly pub sign. 
I paid my money to join the tour into the caves. £10.20p and a discount voucher, for a senior. As I walked towards the entrance I passed these monsters.
I took lots of photo's while I was down there, but they were not very good. Using a flash was not allowed, but it wouldn't have made it any better. The caves are enormous, a flash would have been lost in such a big space. I was a bit disappointed that we didn't see the witch, apparently she is very good at cackling. 
This is the underground storage area for the cheese. This spends a long time down here, and the value of one lump is between £30 and £40.
Back out in the open again, and King Kong doesn't look too happy. The kids love him though. 
The rest of it is a bit like a theme park, plenty to do for the family. It used to be a paper mill, and all the buildings have been converted to house exhibitions and a museum. They do still make paper here. There is a collection of early circus wagons. 
This one is used as a dressing room for the artists to get changed into their costumes.
And then I came to the mirror maze. Oh my, I stepped inside and tried to find my way around the corridors, it was almost impossible to find your way. I gave up and came back out the same way, coward that I am. I didn't want to be stuck in there forever. 
Now how do you prefer me, like Olive Oil tall and skinny.....
or short and dumpy with short fat hairy legs. Ha ha. 
It was time to go back, so I caught the bus as it was far too hot to walk. It was a short ride back to Wells, then another bus all the way back to Street. Last night there wasn't many in the hostel, in fact I was here alone for most of the night, as everyone had gone to bed. Even the Warden had disappeared, and I was left to lock up. Tonight there are a few more, a group of cyclists turned up, they are on a Lands End to John o Groats bike ride, they have a back up vehicle with them and they went down the town for something to eat earlier. They are back now. Tomorrow I leave here and move on to Bath Youth Hostel. There's one thing I must do before I go, and that's to go up the Tor. I shall drive to Kath's in the morning and we will do it together. Tatty byes and Toodle pip


  1. I'm so pleased you enjoyed Wells and the caves, I knew you would.
    The mirrors are where I took that photo of my multiple husbands LOL

  2. WOW..chuffing WOW! just about covers it !
    Looks like a pretty place...the only other place I've seen water flowing down gulleys in the road was in St Lucia.
    Have a great time tomorrow!
    Jane x

  3. Ilona, SO fun to see the sights with you! Question, if you get time to respond: can you share more info as to what exactly the Hostels are/provide? I imagined them to provide indoor sleeping quarters and am not certain why you are tenting...

    Enjoy, and thanks always for sharing.

    Sharon in Alabama (USA)

  4. I really enjoyed this post, it was a little trip down memory lane for me, reminding me of our visit to Wells and Wookey in 2008 :)

  5. Hello Sharon. Hostels have dormitories, from between four and ten beds. They also have double rooms and family rooms. They have kitchens where you can cook your own food, and some of them provide breakfast and evening meals, that's optional if you want to pay for it.They have dining rooms, and lounge areas with soft seating. They have showers and toilets. Some rooms have a washbasin in the bedroom. I am sleeping in my tent because it is cheaper, and I like camping when it is warm outside. I can use all the facilities in the hostel. Only a few hostels have camping facilities. Anyone can stay in a hostel, if you are not a member you pay £3 more per night than members. Tomorrow I am going to Bath hostel for three nights, I will be in a dorm because there is no room outside for camping.

  6. Your pictures are wonderful! Thank you so much I feel as though I am there with you.
    Pam in TX.

  7. I love hearing about your travels! I wish i knew more about the area; the names of so many places are so foreign to me. Thanks for sharing!

    1. Hi Momsav. I'm sorry I can't give you more information about the places. It takes me two to three hours each night to load the photo's, and write the words. You can get more info if you google the place names yourself.

  8. Thank you for taking me on a tour of Wells and Wookey Hole, haven't been to either for years. Looking forward to seeing Bath too

  9. That cathederal was beautiful. I also loved the stone arch over the gate of one of the houses. Seems like you are having the same heat wave we are here in NJ (US). We also have the humidity to go along with it. You were lucky to get that bus. Hope the rest of your trip is just as wonderful.

  10. Hi Ilona,hope you are enjoying your trip.Nice photos.Have a good time-JP from India.

  11. Danneke having a look in I am really enjoying your holiday Ilona, I did a coach tour some months ago and we had the day in Wells and Cheddar I bought a new winter anorak coat at the factory shop in Wells at a real bargain price. I agree the streets are not wheelchair friendly I was there on market day and it was so busy. The little town is a really pretty place You will have a blast in Bath theres lots to see and take pictures off There is a little market square with plenty of seating where you can eat your snack, I went to a lovely little cafe that was very basic (rustick) and did a fantastic cheap meal it was opposite a chinese noodle shop and seemed popular with the many students that were there.

  12. Thank you for sharing the photos of Wells- a close family member of mine lives there and I love it when I get to visit her!

  13. Just when I was getting used to tootle pip, you go and throw tatty byes out there. Ha
    Another Google search, although both are obvious in what they mean, I am interested in the word origins.


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