Have you ever been so overwhelmed by the charm of a place that you just started crying? Well, I sure have today in the beautiful little town of Christchurch! (Granted, it has happened before in the past, in Athens, but that was over 10 years ago, I thought I’d gone past that stage.)
As the sun decided to come out from the clouds this afternoon, I thought that’s something worth celebrating and what better way to do so than going out to explore new places? With Christchurch being a short 7-minute train ride away from Bournemouth, it seemed like the obvious choice. As it was a pretty spontaneous decision, I really had no idea what to expect (I did google it, but to be honest, it didn’t seem very impressive).
Much to my surprise, I discovered that this little town of just a bit under 50.000 inhabitants really has it all: perfectly preserved architecture, a beautiful priory church, castle ruins, a very picturesque quay and stunning beaches. Everything looks so perfect and so quintessentially English that it really has touched a soft spot and yes, I started crying at some point!
One of the things that I liked the most is that it is a very quiet little town, without many tourists or people in general, for that matter, which allowed me to really take in all the natural beauty of the place and just ramble the streets undisturbed.
Apparently, there was some sort of a flower festival going on, so the floral arrangements just added to the charm of the place. I also loved the messages that were hung from the trees in the park. Some of them seemed to be there just for me 🙂 There is a lot of greenery all around and the Avon river flowing through the city makes it look even more idyllic.
The ruins are divided into two parts, the Norman house, down by the river, which dates back all the way from the 10th century, and the remains of a tower that was once part of a very large Norman castle. The tower is located on top of a mound and offers a great lookout point over the roofs of Christchurch.
This was my absolute favorite spot in the whole town, it was so peaceful and tranquil, I could’ve stayed there forever just watching the boats floating on the calm water.
As it was already getting dark, I didn’t make it to the beach – it’s pretty far out of the central part of the city and I would have gotten there too late probably. But I’m sure it’s just as beautiful and maybe I’ll get there one of these days.
I left Christchurch with the feeling that the past couple hours weren’t even real, that I walked into a fairytale land that only exists in another dimension. As always, the Universe gave me just what I needed to end on a positive note an otherwise pretty difficult week of adjusting to the far-away land of the UK!