With Blueberry’s arrival imminent, field trips too far from home aren’t really an option. I guess we could go to the seaside with Chris’s Aunt and Housemate (the housemate used to be a midwife and train new midwives) and be covered as I’m sure the Housemate could save the day.
Anyway I figured I could plot and plan an imaginary road trip.
I posted on Facebook and Twitter for ideas of destinations. I wasn’t particularly clear so ended up with options like Atlantis, Route 66, Prague, Warsaw, Auschwitz, Berner Oberland, Portmeirion, Positano and Rio. Route 66 starts in Santa Monica, California and finished in Chicago, Illinois – if you follow from West to East (and it’s almost 2,500 miles from start to finish – that’s a mammoth road trip all by itself!)
Berner Oberland, Prague, Auschwitz and Warsaw could all be done on trip together – it was take a chunk of time similar to Route 66 but would still be really interesting. Berner Oberland would start you in Switzerland, you’d then go into Germany, followed by the Czech Republic and then into Poland – you’d definitely need the phrase books to hand then. Having said that if you were in the right part of Switzerland you might get away with just a German phrase book. Anyone else want to sing “The Sound of Music”? Some of the pictures of Berner Oberland look like that opening scene with Julie Andrews singing her socks off.
Positano is on the South Coast of Italy near Naples and Salerno. You could do a road trip along the west coast of Italy. You could start somewhere near the French border and then head all the way down through Rome and Naples. Italy is on the list of places I would really love to visit one day.
I decided to focus on Portmeirion though, I’ve wanted to go and see the village itself for quite a while (apparently the time I was actually offered the chance to go I turned it town – I think I need to go back and have a strict word with myself!). According to travel search website GoEuro it’s 4 hours 15 by car from Bedford, it also says you can go by train and by plane although by plane it involves a 3 hour drive from Manchester and that’s after the hour or so to Heathrow and the plane flight! – I would stick with the car from Bedford to Porthmadog, you also get to see all that scenery that you’d miss if you flew across the country.
Portmeirion itself is a tourist village and was built by the designer Sir Clough Williams-Ellis. A lot of the buildings were adopted from other places and moved to the village in North Wales.
A four episode story of Doctor Who starring Tom Baker as The Doctor was filmed in Portmeirion but in popular culture it’s probably most famous for appearing as The Island in The Prisoner. It was either on this show or on a documentary about the village that I first got interested in going to Portmeirion.
The images are from Flickr and as usual should each link back to their original sources.