A Visit to Portland Bill Lighthouse

Happy Saturday Everyone! Today, the sun most definitely had its hat on and it made for the perfect weather for an adventure. We drove along the South Coast to Portland Bill Lighthouse which is near to Weymouth, on the Jurassic Coast.

I love spending our weekends visiting new places, especially when it means discovering somewhere exciting on our doorstep in Dorset. Today was no different, and in fact I don’t think I have ever climbed a lighthouse before – something to tick off a UK style bucket list.

Portland Bill Visitor Centre

What’s more, when I was younger, I wasn’t a huge fan of traipsing around museums for hours on end, but since being in my 20s and exploring the world a little more, I do appreciate learning about different cultures and dipping my toes in a little history (sometimes)…

Alex and I approached Portland Bill Lighthouse around midday and were in awe of its striking appearance.

Portland Bill Lighthouse, Dorset

The staff were absolutely lovely, from when I called up to enquire about opening times to the team who welcomed us at the front desk. Entry was £7 which included a 35 minute guided tour of the lighthouse (it is 153 steps to climb to the top – our step counters loved us!) and a look around the visitor’s centre – which is so great for kids and big kids too…!

Our tour guide was fantastic (I regret not getting his name), I just love it when a guide is so passionate about their industry and work, because their enthusiasm is contagious and I feel I learn so much more.

Portland Bill Lighthouse, Dorset

Portland Bill Lighthouse, Dorset

I knew absolutely nothing about lighthouses, but feel slightly more informed and the view from the top was just breathtaking. We were lucky enough to climb to the lantern room on a day with fabulous visibility, which meant we could see the coastline stretch down to Devon and across to Lulworth Cove and Durdle Door in the other direction.

Portland Bill Lighthouse, Dorset

We each received a little badge as a souvenir of our trip (so cute!).

I believe all the lighthouses in the country are now controlled centrally and looked after by Trinity House. An initiative, would you believe it, originally started by Henry VIII more than 500 years ago.

After our visit, we ventured outside into the brilliant sunshine to explore the coastline and fill our lungs with the fresh sea air. I actually felt the sun on my face and it was so relaxing to have it cooled by the sea mist as each wave came crashing in (summer, I can almost smell you!).

Portland Bill Lighthouse, Dorset

Portland Bill Lighthouse, Dorset

We thoroughly enjoyed exploring today and I would love to hear your recommendations on where to visit next! Let me know in the comments 🙂

If you liked this post, you might also enjoy my write up of our stay at Orchardleigh Estate in Somerset.

XO

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New Year’s Eve at Orchardleigh Estate

Happy New Year Everyone! I hope you had a magical time celebrating with your family friends!

We were lucky enough to spend two nights away at Orchardleigh Estate in Somerset over New Year with some of our best friends in the whole world. Picture a full weekend of copious amounts of food, drink, music, games and laughter.

Alex and I were the last to arrive at the house and the drive from the road deep into Orchardleigh Estate was like something out of a movie. The fog was thick, there were no lights and we didn’t exactly know where we were going, but knew to look out for a castellated building named Gloucester East – our home for the next two days.

Orchardleigh Estate Gloucester East
Gloucester East, Orchardleigh Estate

Orchardleigh Estate, Gloucester East bathroom

The grade II listed building had ridiculously comfortable beds and beautiful freestanding baths (although the hot water was temperamental – or maybe we just didn’t work out how to use it properly haha).

After an evening of Mexican food and games on the 30th, I felt like we were in a fairytale when we woke up in our very own mini castle on New Year’s Eve. We had an absolutely glorious breakfast (thanks Vicky and co.), before going on a two hour walk around the estate (this did wonders for our step count!). We discovered Orchardleigh House itself and one of the two picturesque churches which reside in the grounds.

Homemade Vegetarian Breakfast

Orchardleigh Estate

Orchardleigh House, Somerset

Church, St Mary, Orchardleigh Estate, Somerset

We had a fab time dressing up and playing Prosecco Pong (of course) in the lead up to midnight and sung our hearts out with Robbie Williams in the final countdown to 2017.

I truly had the most magical weekend celebrating with some fabulous friends and can’t wait for our next adventure together!

New Year's Eve, Orchardleigh Estate, Gloucester East

Orchardleigh Estate, Gloucester House, Somerset

I would like to wish you a very happy, healthy and spectacular 2017! If you liked this post make sure you’re following my Twitter, Facebook and Instagram pages to be the first to read my new posts  🙂

How did you celebrate the New Year? Have you been to Orchardleigh Estate before? Let me know in the comments!

XO

 

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A Winter’s Walk at Rufford Abbey Country Park

Having 10 days off in a row at Christmas is complete bliss. It’s a time when too many calories are consumed and we easily forget which day of the week it is. So today we ventured out to Rufford Abbey Country Park to blow off the cob webs and admire the stunning views which came hand in hand with the winter sunshine…

Rufford Abbey Country Park, Nottinghamshire

Half of the lake was frozen over, so it’s a shame we forgot our ice skates ;)!

Of course we fed the hungry ducks and geese (you’re never too old for this activity).

Rufford Abbey Country Park, Nottinghamshire

Rufford Abbey Country Park, Nottinghamshire

Rufford Abbey Country Park, Nottinghamshire

On the way home we followed the winding country roads and chased the stunning sunset.

Sunset, Nottinghamshire

Despite the cold, (the temperature barely exceeded zero), we had a lovely afternoon and it gave me a chance to check out my brand new Jawbone activity tracker – stay tuned for an upcoming review!

Have you been to Rufford Abbey Country Park before? Did you brave the cold this Christmas?

XO

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Frieda’s Afternoon Tea Bus

This post is a yummy one…

I recently spent the afternoon with two of my best friends in the world, on a Frieda’s Tearoom bus, travelling along the Bournemouth coastline while enjoying a delicious afternoon tea!

Frieda's Tea Bus

Everything from the decor to the service was just lovely and once we’d taken our seats upstairs on the bus, we didn’t know where to start with the heavenly spread laid out in front of us!

From macaroons to sandwiches, cakes and scones we were in for a treat and it took us a little while to decide where to start.

The girls were so thoughtful in planning ahead to definitely make sure that Frieda and the team know that I am vegetarian.

Of course, being on a moving bus means that we had to be extra careful with our orange juice, coffee and hot chocolate. Luckily we avoided spillages as our hot drinks were served in these coffee cups and there were cup holders in the tables – every tiny detail had been thought about 🙂

Afternoon Tea

Coffee Cup

We hopped on the bus at Bournemouth pier and the journey took us along the cliff top to Hengistbury Head.

Our driver was also a knowledgeable guide and told us things about the coastline we never even knew, despite growing up in the local area!

We were so lucky with the weather and our afternoon was blessed by some glorious Autumnal sunshine!

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Frieda's Tea BusFrieda's Tea Bus

We certainly polished off our plates, but who could really blame us?! The scones were my highlight, a classic for afternoon tea 🙂

Thanks so much again to the both of you, it was an unforgettable birthday present!

Have you spotted Frieda’s afternoon tea bus in Bournemouth? Do you have a tea bus where you live?

Let me know! I’d love to hear all about it! 🙂

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