Greensboro Youth Chorus of Greensboro, NC
A combination of Roman and
Medieval relics, as well as many fine timber framed buildings, makes Chester
(Roman city of Deva, one of England's most interesting cities. Roman
occupation in the later 1st Century made Chester an important military point.
During most of the Roman occupation it was the headquarters of one of the three
Roman legions in Britain. The present city wall follows the line of the
Roman wall and in places incorporates pieces of it. The most important
Roman area is the amphitheatre. It is the largest amphitheatre so far
discovered in Britain. Built of stone it covers an area of 314ft by 286ft
with an arena of 190ft by 162ft. The rows, a unique feature of the city
can be found in Watergate Street, Eastgate Street and Bridge street. You
can inspect modern shops in the appropriate stretches of the streets, take the
first flight of stairs you find between shops and find yourself walking on the
roofs of the shops besides another row of shops set further back, an interesting
form of pedestrian precinct.
Snowdonia national park.
840 square miles of varied countryside-mountains, lakes, forests, estuaries and
25 miles of coastline. It is not just a park but a working landscape,
looked after by the park committee.
Snowdon Mountain Railway
The narrow gauge railway
was opened in 1896 and the steam powered locomotives climb to within yards of
the summit. The track runs parallel to one of Snowdons most popular
footpaths. The mountain is 3,560 ft above sea level.
People have lived in the area of Llanberis since the Iron
age. Celts, Romans, St Padarn an early Christian Saint, and the Welsh
Princes of Gwynedd. The area abounds with ancient Welsh legends and
Pass of Llanberis
The road down the pass
descends some 1,200ft and is described by many as one of the most spectacular in
Britain as it is squeezed between the flanks of Glyder Fawr (3,279ft) on the
right and Snowdon (3,560ft) on the left. The road snakes down between
vertical cliffs which tower above, punctured by boulders some as big as houses.
Betws - y - Coed
village is beautifully set among conifer clad crags rising steeply above the
Llugwy`s confluence with the Conwy. It has been a gateway to Snowdonia
ever since Thomas Telford`s road to Holyhead was driven through North Wales in
the 19th Century.
Llechwedd Slate Mine
The dramatic beauty of Beddgelert`s setting is equalled by few British villages. It stands where
three valleys meet and looks South towards the pass of Aberglaslyn, while
Snowdon rises to the North. The village of course is famous for the legend
of Gelert the dog owned by Llywelyn the Great in the 13th Century.
According to legend he left the dog to guard his son, on returning he found the
dog covered in blood and no sign of a body. Thinking the dog had killed
his son he had the dog killed, a little while later his son was found alive with
a dead wolf nearby. Gelert had in fact killed the wolf to save the son,
Llywelyn was so upset he arranged for a grave to be dug for the dog in the
St. Mary's Church, Beddgelert
The parish church had
its origin in a Celtic Christian community established on the present site in
the 6th Century. It eventually became an Augustinian Priory Chapel in the
13th Century. Little remains of the original chapel except the two fine
12th Century arches in the North wall, the doorway to the vestry and the East
wall with its beautiful triple lancet window.
The mighty castle and
complete town walls on the river bank make Conwy a picturesque and richly
historic centre. It is probably one of the finest and most complete walled
towns in Europe. The walls themselves are over three quarters of a mile in
length with 22 towers and three original gateways. Conwy`s setting on the
edge of the Snowdonia National Park and the Western bank of the River Conwy is
unrivalled, as is its colourful history. The Romans arrived in the area
during the First Century A.D. and many invading kings from the East endured
great hardship trying to cross the river to subdue the Welsh Princes on the
Western bank. When Edward I did eventually seize the bank, he built a
castle to strengthen his position. The population now spreads beyond the
town walls to nearby Deganwy and Llandudno. Along the quay in the shelter
of these ancient walls is an old world full of interest. Together with a
house reputed to be the smallest in Britain and furnished as a mid Victorian
The castle was
built by Edward I between 1283 and 1289. He made it his headquarters for
the struggle against the Welsh Prince Llywelyn. Edward was himself
besieged there by a large Welsh force from the hills in 1290. The castle`s
shape is actually dictated by the very rock on which it stands. It has
barbicans at either end and eight massive towers. First impressions are of
tremendous strength, a dominating position and yet with a compactness of design
which renders it one of the most picturesque Welsh castles.
Clynnog Fawr (St. Beuno's Church)
The church of St Beuno,
15/16th Century with its connected chapel of St Beuno. It was here he
founded a monastery and died in 630A.D. According to legend he brought his
niece St Winefride back to life after she was decapitated by a frustrated
suitor. The church is linked by a passageway to the chapel where the
saints tomb survived until the end of the 18th Century. Sick pilgrims were
said to have been cured of all ills after sleeping on the grave's stone slab.
Walls dating from the
same period as the castle surround the town, which is a grid iron pattern of
narrow streets. The castle has stood
guard over this busy
little town situated on the Menai Strait for 700 years. The towns earliest
days are recalled as Segontium, a Roman fort on the road to Beddgelert.
The town is apparently built on the site of the Roman fort. In Welsh- y
gaer ar fon- means the fort or stronghold on the land opposite to Anglesey, or
Mon as it is known. Therefore the words gradually became Caer-nar fon.
Begun in 1283 by Edward I,
this magnificent fortress took 40 years to build. Its walls, with the
coloured bands of stone, are said to copy those of Constantinople. It was
the chief stronghold of the English invaders against the proud and warlike
Welsh, but was completely destroyed by their attempts. Today its towers and
walls still present an impressive sight. It was here in 1969 that Prince
Charles was invested as Prince of Wales and presented to the Welsh people from
the balcony overlooking the square.
years the only access to Anglesey was by the famous Thomas Telford Menai Bridge
opened on the 30th January 1826. It is 1,000ft long, 579ft from pier to
pier and 100ft above the water. When crossing the straits remember those other
invaders who came 2,000 years ago. The Romans. Who also crossed
these swirling waters to put the Druid Priests and their flower maidens to the
sword in the 1st Century AD. Their action broke the mystique of ritual and
sacrifice that flourished at that time in the oak groves of the isle. The
isle of Anglesey is a bastion to the Welsh Language.
Isle of Anglesey
For centuries Anglesey`s
pastures and cornfields helped feed the peoples of Northern Wales and Snowdonia.
It earned the island the name “Mam Cymre” “mother of Wales” it is mostly flat
compared to its neighbour, the mainland of North Wales, but its coastline is
made up of fine sandy beaches, wide bays littered with rugged rocky headlands
teeming with wildlife. It is thought the first settlers came around
8,000B.C. and many prehistoric sites remain such as the stone age “Brycelli Ddu”
burial chambers and the Iron age hill forts at Caer y Twr & Din Sylwy.
Whoever held Anglesey (the granary) it is said controlled North Wales. The
Romans came in 78A.D. and all but wiped out the Druids priesthood. From
the 7th Century the Princes of Gwynedd ruled this area. Then in
1282 Edward I arrived building his castles to subdue the local inhabitants.
Anglesey also has another claim to fame; the village of Penmynydd was for many
hundreds of years the family home of the Tudors. Eventually merging with
the English royal family in 1422 when Owen Tudor married Henry V's widow.
Their grandson of course becoming Henry Tudor taking the English throne in 1485.
Today the island is linked to the mainland by two bridges, the original Telford
Menai suspension bridge 1,265 ft long, built in 1826 and the more recent
Brittania rail bridge which was damaged by fire in 1970 and rebuilt. In
1979 an upper road deck was added giving additional access to the island.
Even in 140 a.d. Ptolemy
observed that Eblana was a place of note, Ptolemy refers to the River Liffey as
Oboka, meaning a delta. It was however not until 840 a.d. that Norse sea
rovers landed here and built a base for their maritime expeditions that the area
really began to develop as a town. The history of the area is really tied
to the history of Ireland, never really settled, just like the name, the Irish
called it Duibhlinn, the Norse called it Dyfflin, and the Anglo Normans Dublinne
from which the present name derives. A city steeped in history, it as fine
wide streets, squares and parks with wonderful examples of Georgian
College to see the famous book of Kells and if
time allows while at St Patrick`s Cathedral visit Marsh`s library.
St Patrick's Cathedral, Dublin
1192, the Cathedral was originally built by the Norman, Archbishop Comyn.
This early Norman church was rebuilt in the first half of the 13th Century, the
building we see today. Many interesting aspects to see, including the
Medieval Chapter House door with an hole in it dating from 1492. It gives
rise to the English phrase "chancing your arm".
The Earl of Kildare cut the hole and through it stretched out his arm to grasp
the hand of his enemy the Earl of Ormond. By taking the initiative peace
was restored between them and ever since the door as been known as the door of
Handels Messiah received its first performance in
Dublin in 1742 sung by the combined choirs of St Patrick`s & Christ Church
The storehouse was
a Guinness fermentation tank from 1904 to 1988, it is now a 7 storey visitor
centre, located in the heart of the world famous St James Gate Brewery. If
full this tank would hold 14,300,000 pints of the black stuff.
National Museum of Ireland
Opened in Kildare Street
1890, the museum contains many artefacts dating from 700bc. The
archaeological collections consist of the treasury, featuring outstanding
examples of Celtic and Medieval art. The famous Ardagh Chalice and the
Tara brooch dating from the 8th Century, the 12th Century Cross of Cong, said to
contain a fragment of the true cross, the Derrynaflan Hoard, a collection of 8th
and 9th Century silver objects found in Co Tipperary during 1980. Look
carefully at the Tara Brooch, see the intricate Filigee work on the front and
back. When you view the book of Kells this afternoon do consider it is
from these patterns that it is thought the manuscript illuminations are derived.
features the finest collection of prehistoric gold artefacts in Europe.
in 1830 by the zoological society of
The zoo was initially supplied with animals from London zoo. It as now become
one of the most respected zoo’s in the world. Set in the lovely Phoenix
Park, surrounded by lovely woodland and open spaces. Today the zoo has
over 35 keepers and animals from all round the world. Elephants from the
rainforest, giraffe and zebra from the plains of Africa. Together with
tigers, bats, lions, monkeys, gorillas, orang-utans, chimps, pandas, rhinos and
Town of Kells
place of history, the original Monastery was founded by St Columba in the Sixth
Century and from the early Ninth Century it was probably the leading Columban
Monastery in Ireland. The Monks from the original foundation on Iona fled
here after repeated raids by the Vikings on their Scottish home. It is
thought they actually made the book of Kells on Iona and bought it
with them when they moved here. By the 12th Century continued
raids by Vikings and then Normans eventually made up the minds of the Monks to
move again and they left Kells and made their way to Derry where they set up a
new headquarters. Eventually by the time of the dissolution very little
remained at Kells. But do look round the village and church yard, many
Monastic antiquities remain including some very special crosses dating back
hundreds of years.
Book of Kells
library houses one of Irelands real treasures, an illuminated manuscript called
the book of Kells. Illuminated manuscripts are derived from the Celtic
ecclesiastical tradition of Saint Columba. whose teachings spread not only
through Ireland but Scotland and Northern England, together with areas of
mainland Europe. No one is quite sure if the book was copied and
illuminated in Ireland, it may have been completed in Scotland on the Isle of
Iona or even in England at Lindisfarne. What we do know for sure is that
the book was taken to the monastery of Kells in Co Meath for safe keeping during
the Viking raids of the 9th Century. After this unsettled
period in Irish history the book spent some time buried underground, lost some
30 of its page and was not bought to Dublin till sometime in the 17th
century. The book now consists of some 680 pages written in Latin and
follows the four gospels of the new testament. It was rebound into four
separate volumes in 1950 and one now has the chance to see at least two volumes
on show at any one time. one showing an illuminated page and another a page of
Trim Village &
Plenty to see in
this little village on the banks of the River Boyne. The Castle used as a
location for the Mel Gibson film Braveheart. The first castle on the site
was a simple Mott & Bailey type in 1173 but this was replaced in the 1190s and
eventually grew into the finest and largest Anglo-Norman Castle in Ireland.
King John did stay at Trim in 1210 and Richard II incarcerated his ward Prince
Henry of Lancaster (later Henry IV) here for some time. The curtain wall
of 488 yards encloses a area of approx 3 acres. There are 10 D shaped
towers and a square keep of over 70ft in height and walls that are over 11 feet
thick. Much in ruin now but the look and feel is very much of a typical
English Medieval Castle.
Originally the Fort of
Munster and once capital of the southern province. The town is completely
dominated by the very famous Rock of Cashel which rearing up from the plain
dominated the land routes to the south. Kings of Ireland came to this spot
together with St Patrick who preached here. On this limestone outcrop
stands the most beautiful and complete Romanesque church in the country. a
medieval Cathedral, a castle tower house, a round tower and a 15th century hall
of vicars, all of the finest medieval Irish architecture. The Hall of
Vicars was built in the 15th century to cater for eight vicars who assisted in
the cathedral services. The Cormacs chapel was built circa 1127, a
superb Romanesque church, the architecture as clear continental influences.
The Cathedral built circa-1227 Anglo Norman in conception, it has Gothic
arches but without doubt it is a purely Irish built unit. The central
tower is excitingly grand but did not appear till the early 14th century.
The Round Tower is without doubt the earliest building on the rock probably
dating back to the 12th century although locals suggest even earlier circa
Renown for its beauty,
famed for the splendour of its scenery, Killarney is one of the world`s best
loved tourist spots. It became a significant town about 1750 when the
local magnate, Lord Kenmare, developed the tourist business and four main roads
were built to the outside world. The present population is approx 9,000
and the main economic base is tourism. The great assets of Killarney are
the lakes, mountains and woods, although scattered and difficult to get around
they are so very beautiful. Situated in the South Western corner of
Ireland with its three great lakes reflecting the ever changing skies, it has
been an inspiration for poets, writers and painters for centuries.
Church of Ireland is located just a few yards from the centre of Killarney.
The Church contains some beautiful stained glass windows, including a replica of
the “Christ with Lantern” also seen in St Pauls Cathedral in London. This
very pretty church was built in 1870 in the English Gothic style. Long ago
the site was part of an ancient religious complex and once included St Mary's
well, reputed to cure a variety of ailments. The interior is quite
attractive and the Victorian tiled floor particularly impressive.
Ring of Kerry
obtain a really panoramic view of
most outstanding scenery, this tour is a must!
for 112 miles and usually done in an anti clockwise direction, it follows the
coastline of the Iveragh
along the banks of the
along the southern shores of
comes into view. The
tour continues to Waterville
and along the coast via
pass and Derrynane
and onto Sneem.
and up the mountain road to
gap, then ladies view and back to
Situated in a beautiful location on the estuary of the Arsheelaun River, Sneem
is a past winner of the Irish National tidy Towns competition. A colourful
village and last resting place of Cearbhall 0`Dalaigh a former President who his
buried in the local Churchyard
town of the peninsula situated at the head of Valentia harbour on the Fertha
river, the town is the main shopping area for this end of the ring. In
1867 the great Fenian conspiracy led to an abortive rising here against the
British. It was planned to occupy the barracks and then the cable station
in Valentia and from there inform a startled world that the Irish Republic had
been proclaimed in Cathersiveen, but circumstances proved adverse.
The Island is approx 11kms long by 3kms wide and is one of the most Westerly
points of Europe. The surface is rugged and rocky but does provide good
sea angling. The first telegraph cable (now superseded) across the
Atlantic from U.S.A. came ashore here in 1858.
The town nestles between Lough Currane and the Atlantic and is a world famous
game fishing resort. Fine scenery and many good beaches in the area.
Well loved by artists, archaeologists, botanists in fact everyone. Also
claims a world renown 18 hole golf course.
area contains evidence of occupation dating back 6,000/7,000 years. From Beaker
folk coming from Spain to mine copper in 2,000 B.C. right back to Prehistoric
graves from Neolithic times 4,000 B.C. invaders landed several times including
the first military invaders from Greece on the 14th May 2680 B.C.
Royal Victoria Hotel,
Victoria Hotel. Situated at the foot of mount Snowdon, Between the lakes of
Padarn and Peris. Set in acres of grounds with breath taking scenery all
around. The hotel was built some years ago but has 116 modern well
equipped en - suite bedrooms and is proud of its comfortable and friendly
atmosphere created by a fascinating mix of local characters and guests from all
Rochestown Lodge, Dun
nice hotel recently refurbished. All 90 bedrooms are en-suite. Excellent
restaurant and bar facilities. With health centre and heated swimming
extremely nice four star hotel with all en-suite rooms. Air conditioning,
Health centre with heated swimming pool, lovely restaurant and Scruffys, the
hotels attached Irish bar. Situated in the centre of the town.