Finding Tibet in the Scottish Hills

The road leading from the motorway towards Samye Ling feels long, winding and remote. It makes arriving at the centre even more surreal and amazing. We visited on a wet day but the beauty, wonder and the serenity was still a joy to experience.

Samye Ling is a monastery and international centre of Buddhist training. It offers instruction in Buddhist philosophy and meditation. It is also a centre for the preservation of Tibetan religion, culture, medicine, art, architecture and handicrafts.

Founded in 1967, Samye Ling was the first Tibetan Buddhist Centre to be established in the West and was named after Samye, the very first monastery to be established in Tibet.Read More »

Undercover in the Heart of Cornwall

Cornwall was one of Europe’s earliest industrial regions, with a scattered industrial society. For hundreds of years, people in Cornwall have made their living from mining. Cornwall was a world leader in the mining industry.

Mining was not just a job; it was a way of life. These mining areas have a strong sense of community and identity.

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Geevor Tin Mine is a 20th Century tin mine, located in an area that has been mined for thousands of years. Geevor is much more than a mine. It is also the story of people and of a landscape.Read More »

Smugglers, Pirates and Pampering in Penzance

So as apart of my recent holiday to beautiful Cornwall, I visited Penzance for the first time. The highlight for me was the historic Chapel Street, which is still reminiscent of the 17th and 18th Centuries, with interesting buildings and some quirky, independent shops to explore.

Having done a bit of research into the area we couldn’t resist checking out (and enjoying some local ale) in the famous Admiral Benbow Pub. It definitely competes for the title of the most colourful building on the street. Named after the 17th century Admiral John Benbow (born 1653-died 1702) he was an English officer in the Royal Navy.

The pub has a statue of a smuggler lying astride the roof, musket in hand. The pub was converted from cottages, which explains the low ceilings and small paned windows. Inside there is a very unique nautical feel. The decorations in the pub are genuine maritime artifacts that have been salvaged from various shipwrecked vessels along the Cornish coast over the past 400 years. The collection of treasures and fixtures and fittings in the Admiral Benbow are fascinating and they are cleverly built into the interior design of the building, such as the Captain’s Cabin restaurant with its fine woodwork from a Portuguese Man O’ War.Read More »

A Favourite View – Seeking Pacific Blue

Last year I visited Cornwall for the first time. We stayed in glorious St Ives. I spent my 40th Birthday there and fell in love with the place.

St Ives is a seemingly subtropical oasis where the beaches are golden, the vegetation is lush and the light piercingly bright. The light is incredible. It takes a day or so for your eyes to adjust to the brightness that surrounds the beaches and the sea views.Read More »

Steampunk Festival in Bronte Village

This weekend I went to my first Steampunk Festival in the beautiful village of Haworth, West Yorkshire. Home of the world famous literary family – the Brontes.  It was wonderful to see everyone in their amazing costumes. There was a very creative, friendly atmosphere in a setting synonymous with the Victorian era. Steampunk started as a sub-genre […]