Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Durham Cathedral

This is going to be a rather long post, on my entire time in Durham.

Maggie and I walked into town to go see the cathedral. The path was a really beautiful walk through some woods - it goes over a stream and across a field before you hit the streets of town. The cathedral was really quite beautiful. Unfortunately, we weren't allowed to take photos inside, but it was amazing.

The cathedral from across the river

There were a lot of stained glass windows (my favorite!), both original(ish) and much more modern ones. Some of the modern ones were really nice, and seemed to fit in with the whole feel of the place, but there was at least one that looked so garish and out of place, it was a little disappointing. The ceilings were beautiful and impressive, and the large columns holding them up were really neat - each one was carved in a different pattern!!

All around the cathedral, there were tombs set into the floor in random places. It was really quite a task trying to keep an eye out for them so as not to walk over them, but it was fun to try and decipher some of the inscriptions. Most of them were very worn down, and we could only pick out a few of the words or dates.

We climbed up the bell tower, which was exciting. It was a spiral staircase, but it switched directions a couple times, which was very disorienting. At the top we had some great views of the city and surrounding area. It was ridiculously windy and cold, though, so we didn't stay up long.

Anybody recognize this?? Guess in the comments, and I'll let you know in a few days. :)

The view from inside the cloisters was quite lovely with the afternoon light coming through.

Maggie in front of the cathedral

Next to the cathedral is a castle (!!!!) Unfortunately we didn't get to go inside because it was closed, but the outside view was something. I really wanted to be able to climb up the hill to the tower, but I think it would have been frowned upon.

This is the entryway to the castle complex, and that little speck of a person by the gate is me.

The castle a couple days later, from the train station lookout point.

Maggie took me to a fish and chip shop, only she got chips and "mushy peas" - a dish which actually tastes quite a lot like really thick split pea soup.

That's it for my photos - I came down with a rather nasty cold for the rest of the trip. We did all make it out to York, which was great despite being under the weather. The parts of town that I saw were beautiful, and I would love to go back and explore more thoroughly. We had a lovely, delicious dinner at Chris and Juan's before heading back on the train to Durham.

I had a fantastic time in England, especially getting to see all the places in Durham that Maggie had told me so much about. Her family was lovely, and very accomodating of my exuberant reactions to all the old architecture, etc that was around! I was sad to leave, but definitely looking forward to getting to Ireland!

1 comment:

  1. I recognize the picture (because Maggie told me about it before), but I'll let someone else take a stab at it. All I can say is, I am jealous! Hope you're having a great time in Ireland!! Make lots of pretty art! :)