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Secret Guide to Hidden, Magical Places in Britain

Updated on July 22, 2016

Joined: 7 years agoFollowers: 2,819Articles: 358
Tintagel Home of King Arthur
Tintagel Home of King Arthur

Britain is a very popular tourist destination. From the beautiful beaches in Cornwall, England, to the majestic Castle in Edinburgh, Scotland. But most tourists don't realise that there are many hidden gems scattered around the UK. From caverns to ghostly pubs, secret gardens and ancient mazes. And if you prefer hill walking, or discovering ancient forests then there are many that are not on the typical tourist map. Even people that live in Britain may not know about some of the well kept secrets that the locals prefer to keep to themselves.

There are many villages dotted about the countryside, and even in these times of modern technology there are in fact many who still keep up the old traditions. Whether it be Pagan festivals or local dialects, farming or secret rituals, each generation will keep to themselves the ways and means of each tradition. For centuries many of the hidden secret places have stayed that way. Mainly for two reasons.

One being the fact that they don't want it to become a tourist trap. And another being that it belongs to their local folklore, and they guard it jealously. Lud's church is one of those places. Tourists may explore the area while on vacation, but many have passed by the entrance to this ancient Chasm in the hillside. The Shell Grotto is another interesting and mysterious find. When visiting Margate, on the East Coast of England, most families head straight for the coast, where there is lots of things to see and do. But by going off the main track, they will find this treasure. Along with Exbury Gardens and a beautiful Scottish Castle, it makes sense to plan your vacation with time for a diversion from the most popular and well known sites.

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Lud's Church

Lud's Church also known as Ludchurch, is situated on the hillside above Gradbach, in Staffordshire England. It is a deep Chasm caused by a massive landslide. In a wood known as Back Forest, it lies deep within the countryside. It is a 100 metres long and 18 metres deep. Approx 400 hundred feet by 60 ft. As it is mossy and overgrown, it is always damp and cool. Considered by Pagans to be a holy place, it has also been used by Christians, hence the name Church.

Throughout history, many people have escaped persecution by running away and hiding there. Robin Hood, Bonnie Prince Charlie and Friar Tuck are all reputed to have stayed there. It's very possible that Bonnie Prince Charlie could well have taken refuge here, as well as many other famous people in History. But probably not Robin Hood. As we all know, he is just a legend. Or is he? Lud's Church has a haunting aura about it. Walking down the path, it would be easy to believe that you had stepped back millions of years. Being part of the Peak District, there are many tourists, but strangely enough not many actually know how to find Lud's Church.

Following directions to get there, it is still hard to actually see where the little path leads. After climbing a rather steep hill, the trail leads to the left. After pushing through the undergrowth you suddenly step into the open and see the magnificence of the place. The height of the rocks, and the narrow width of the setting produces a feeling of awe. It is like an open air Church. The grey rocks underfoot are covered in a green algae, making it an amazing sight. The Greene Chapel in the famous poem Sir Gawain and the Green Knight was inspired by the glow caused by the algae. It makes a great story for the locals to boast about, and the Legend lends itself to the mystery and beauty of Lud's Church.

The Shell Grotto Margate Kent

justanotherblockeflickr.com
justanotherblockeflickr.com | Source
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The beautiful Shell Grotto in Margate England, was discovered in 1835 by a Mr James Newlove. He lowered his young son Joshua into a hole while he was digging out a duck pond. The hole was deeper than they thought and the boy scrambled down, only to discover a series of tunnels covered in shells. On investigation, they found that the tunnels were 70ft in length, ending in an oblong chamber. The walls were decorated with strange symbols and mosaic-ed in millions of shells.

To this day no one knows whether it was used as an ancient Pagan temple or a Secret Cult. Some believe it to be either thousands of years old, and others, just a few hundred. The trouble being that the scientists cannot carbon date the shells, owing to the fact that a hundred years ago, the gas lamps that they used produced to much soot, therefore making it impossible to test.

But scientists tend to believe that it is very old. Their argument is that even though back in the 17th and 18th Century, a lot of land owners made similar secret chambers, this Grotto was found in a field that was nowhere near a large house, or owned by a wealthy land owner.There is a small hole that aligns with the Sun at the spring equinox in the roof of the Grotto, and the walls are full of Gods and Goddesses portrayed within the shells. Along with an Altar, this seems to point to an earlier age. With science reaching new boundaries, carbon dating or something similar will one day find out the age of the Grotto. Until then we can just stand in awe at the sight of the beautiful shells. I have visited it many times, and still feel a sense of amazement at the work that was put into making it.

Exbury Gardens in the New Forest Hampshire

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Exbury Gardens were the idea of Lionel Nathan de Rothschild, and thanks to him we have one of the most spectacular gardens in the UK. This is a garden for the young and old. With its masses of amazing colours and exotic plants, it was once described by a visitor as ' Heaven with the gates open'. Rothschild loved all plants and was a keen collector. Little did he realise that his love of plants would make such a spectacular visitors delight. Along with an abundance of colorful plants, it also has the Hydrangea Walk, the Sundial Walk and the Rock Garden.

There is also a lovely Steam Railway that will take you around the gardens while sitting in comfort. This is a wonderful day out, there are many exhibitions and things for children to do. I chose this garden because it has been described as one of the most beautiful in the whole of Britain, and after taking a look at the photos of the wonderful flowers and view, I have to agree. So whether you prefer walking, going by Steam Train or even taking a chauffeur driven buggy, I think you will love this little gem situated in Hampshire, England.

Eilean Donan Castle

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Eilean Donan Castle isn't very secret. Unless of course you don't live in the UK. Most people here do know of it, but foreign tourists tend to visit Edinburgh Castle or the surrounding countryside. Eilean Donan is situated between three of the great Lochs in Scotland and is one of the most important attractions in the Scottish Highlands. The area has been inhabited ever since the 6th Century, and the Castle was built in the 13th. Standing guard over the lands of Kintail, it has been rebuilt four times. It was partially destroyed in 1719 by the Jacobite uprising and was left in ruins for the next 200 years.

In 1911 it was bought by Lieutenant Colonel John MacRae Gilstrap, who then restored it to its former beauty. Since then it has been open to visitors. You can explore the wonderful history, take time out for a coffee and buy souvenirs from the gift shop. Eilean Donan is situated near the quaint village of Dornie on the main route to the Isle of Skye. The area is a wonderful place of discovery. After visiting the Castle you can wander through the Lochalsh Woodland Gardens at Balmacara, or climb to the top of the Falls of Glomach. Surrounded by such wonderful countryside and ancient hills, it feels as though you have stepped back in time. Wonderful.

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    • Cardisa profile image

      Carolee Samuda 5 years ago from Jamaica

      I am impressed Nell, I like these bits of history. I particularly like Luds Church.

      My Grandfather lives in Britain, I really want to visit him soon.

    • Greensleeves Hubs profile image

      Greensleeves Hubs 5 years ago from Essex, UK

      Nice page Nell, about some of the lesser known tourist attractions in Britain and the history behind them. If ever I'm in these parts of the country, I'll try to find the time to look them up!

    • marellen 5 years ago

      Hi Nell Rose....I love that name....I found this so fasanating, I would love to see them all but doubt that I will but I just did on hub pages. I bookmarked this for further reading. Thanks for sharing.

    • My Minds Eye53 profile image

      My Minds Eye53 5 years ago from Tennessee

      Most of my ancestry comes from the UK. I have wanted to go for years. When I do make it, can I come visit you?.

    • Pollyannalana profile image

      Pollyannalana 5 years ago from US

      Wow great hub and nothing like some beautiful music as a topper. Sort of haunting sound, I love it!

    • Nell Rose profile image
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      Nell Rose 5 years ago from England

      Hi, Cardisa, I would love to visit Luds Church too, I didn't realise that your Grandfather lived over here, what a good excuse for a visit, I will be waiting with a cup of tea! lol thanks again nell

      Hi, Greensleeves, what a great name! I picked these places because they stood out for me, but there are so many more out there, thanks so much nell

      Hi, marellen, thank you! its a shame you can't visit them, the Shell Grotto is really interesting, but thanks for reading, cheers nell

      Hi, My Minds, of course! we will have to go for a tour round London, great day out! lol cheers nell

      Hi, Polly, I loved that music too! I will have to find out who's it is, and get the CD, thanks for reading it, and I'm glad you liked it, cheers nell

    • Reena J 5 years ago

      Sounds magnificent! Britain is known for its best attractions. Thanks for presenting these secret ones. It's a life time pleasure to be there...

    • Ingenira profile image

      Ingenira 5 years ago

      I'd love to see all of the above especially the Lud's Church, and the Eilean Donan Castle. Nell, if I only have a few days in Scotland, what are the must-see places ? I like nature stuff. Castles are great, but which are the must-see ?

    • Dardia profile image

      Darlene Yager 5 years ago from Michigan

      If I do ever get a chance to visit I would love it if you could show me these awesome sites. This is the part of the country I want to see the most. Gorgeous, gorgeous, gorgeous! Wonderful hub! Voted up.

    • attemptedhumour profile image

      attemptedhumour 5 years ago from Australia

      I haven't heard of any of those places and i lived in the UK for my first twenty-five years. There are so many places all over the UK worth visiting. It seems to me that the shell grotto's location would have been recorded if it was only 200 years old. Pity about the oil lamps, but who wouldn't want to marvel at it?

      I wonder how many castles there are in the UK and how long it would take to visit them all? I visited Wookie Hole in Cheshire in the sixties and many more holes, or caves are accessible now. Oh well must press on. Cheers

    • christopheranton profile image

      Christopher Antony Meade 5 years ago from Gillingham Kent. United Kingdom

      They all seem worth a visit. The shell grotto is especially fascinating, because of the mystery.

      Thanks for bringing them to our attention Nell.

    • PDXBuys profile image

      PDXBuys 5 years ago from Oregon

      Nice! Lud's Church looks very similar to areas in the Columbia River Gorge in Oregon. I have hiked there many times.

    • RedElf profile image

      RedElf 5 years ago from Canada

      Oh my, these are such beautiful places to see. I had never heard of the shell grotto - what a fascinating place - and the Exbury Gardens are exquisite. thanks so much for sharing these delights with us!. Voted up and Awesome!

    • Shalini Kagal profile image

      Shalini Kagal 5 years ago from India

      Hi Nell - how fascinating! Places that are not on the regular tourist list are so much more interesting!

    • carriethomson profile image

      carriethomson 5 years ago from United Kingdom

      hi nell!! very nice and innovative hub hub as usual..the shell Grotto Margate Kent seems to be great the first photographs looks amazing sp the colours while the shell covered roof also looks great...there is always so much to explore..cheers

      voted up :-)

    • JamaGenee profile image

      Joanna McKenna 5 years ago from Central Oklahoma

      You're so right that locals want to keep these places secret so they won't become tourist traps. So I promise not to tell a soul! lol!

    • Island Tropical profile image

      Island Tropical 5 years ago

      Yes, England is one of the nation that I am planning to visit in the future, thanks for sharing.

    • MartieCoetser profile image

      Martie Coetser 5 years ago from South Africa

      Nell, because of this hub I will save 10 more bucks per month for a holiday in England. Oh, and if there are any haunted places, I will be the one who feel those spirits from the past with every nerve in my body. Not because I'm a psychic, but because of my vivid imagination. Thanks for this taste of a holiday in your country.

    • D.A.L. profile image

      Dave 5 years ago from Lancashire north west England

      Nell another masterpiece. Well done. Really enjoyed this one. Best wishes to you.

    • Merlin Fraser profile image

      Merlin Fraser 5 years ago from Cotswold Hills

      Hi Nell,

      another great Hub but if you keep giving away all the secrets where will go for solitude ?

    • Nell Rose profile image
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      Nell Rose 5 years ago from England

      Hi, Reena, thanks so much, I am glad you enjoyed it, cheers nell

    • Nell Rose profile image
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      Nell Rose 5 years ago from England

      Hi, Ingenira, I must admit that I haven't been to many places in Scotland, but the lochs are wonderful, and of course if you go to Loch Ness you may just see the loch ness monster! but there are also loads of castles and the highlands of Scotland have many little villages in the countryside that are well worth the visit, I will have to go and check out the main sites, maybe another hub? thanks nell

    • Nell Rose profile image
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      Nell Rose 5 years ago from England

      Hi, Dardia, thanks so much! we do have some lovely places over here, even I don't get to see them that much, they are on my to do list! lol thanks nell

    • Nell Rose profile image
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      Nell Rose 5 years ago from England

      Hi, attempted, I think there must be a least a thousand castles in the uk, I was actually looking at them a while ago, and counted 400 before giving up! amazing, I have only visited about ten! lots more to explore. The shell grotto must be older than that then, I would love to know who built it, thanks again, nell

    • Nell Rose profile image
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      Nell Rose 5 years ago from England

      Hi, christopher, I love the shell grotto, every time I go to Margate I have to go visit, its such a weird and interesting place, thanks for reading, cheers nell

    • LCaverson profile image

      Leslie Caverson 5 years ago from Virginia Beach, VA.

      I love history, and to add to it that bit of mystery?? Thank you, next time I am abroad I will have to look into a few of these places.

    • Nell Rose profile image
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      Nell Rose 5 years ago from England

      Hi, PDX, thanks for reading, that sounds like a great day out, I thought it was probably similar to something in America, cheers nell

    • Nell Rose profile image
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      Nell Rose 5 years ago from England

      Hi, RedElf, evidently there are quite a few dotted around Britain, but this one in particular they believe is one of the original. the gentry in the 17th and 18th century build them too, but its believed that they copied one of the originals, and the gardens are lovely aren't they? thanks so much nell

    • Nell Rose profile image
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      Nell Rose 5 years ago from England

      Hi, Shalini, I love wandering off the beaten track! mind you, I have got lost a few times! lol thanks again nell

    • always exploring profile image

      Ruby Jean Fuller 5 years ago from Southern Illinois

      I love this. The Shell Grotto is amazing, such artistic talent. Thank you for sharing. England has many beautiful places. I would love to visit.

    • Nell Rose profile image
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      Nell Rose 5 years ago from England

      Hi, carrie, up close, the shells are really laid out well, each and every shell is lined up so perfectly it must have taken decades to finish, amazing and intricate work, thanks for reading, and I am glad you enjoyed it, cheers nell

    • Nell Rose profile image
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      Nell Rose 5 years ago from England

      Hi, Jama, yes sshh! ha ha thanks for reading, cheers nell

    • Nell Rose profile image
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      Nell Rose 5 years ago from England

      Hi, Island, thanks for reading it, I hope you get to visit, there are so many great places, cheers nell

    • Nell Rose profile image
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      Nell Rose 5 years ago from England

      Hi, Martie, you must come over, you do have a reason for it! ha ha but seriously, I think you would love it, all the ghostly places, and old caverns, thanks again nell

    • Nell Rose profile image
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      Nell Rose 5 years ago from England

      Hi, D.A.L. thanks for reading, have you been to any of these places? I know you love exploring, thanks nell

    • Nell Rose profile image
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      Nell Rose 5 years ago from England

      Hi, Merlin, yes that's true, I never thought of that! lol thanks again, nell

    • Nell Rose profile image
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      Nell Rose 5 years ago from England

      Hi, LCaverson, thanks so much, I hope you get to visit, there are so many things to do, castles, lochs caverns, etc, great discoveries in every county, thanks nell

    • Nell Rose profile image
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      Nell Rose 5 years ago from England

      Hi, Ruby, when are you coming over? lol you would love it, there are some great places, even I need to explore some more, thanks as always, nell

    • Rose West profile image

      Rose West 5 years ago from Michigan

      Absolutely loved this! The Shell Grotto is especially fascinating - oh, and Robin Hood did exist (please don't pop my bubble ;) I would love to see all these places!

    • SusieQ42 5 years ago

      Oh, this is a wonderful story...actually a tourist guide. Thanks so much for sharing your love for your country!

    • AliciaC profile image

      Linda Crampton 5 years ago from British Columbia, Canada

      I used to live in Britain but all the places that you have described are new to me! Thank you for a very interesting description and lovely photos. I hope very much that I can visit some of the places that you've mentioned one day, especially Lud's Church and the Shell Grotto.

    • Artin2010 profile image

      Artin2010 5 years ago from Northwestern Florida, Gulfcoast

      Interesting travel hub, very informative too! Thumbs up thank you for sharing with us!

    • marimccants profile image

      marimccants 5 years ago

      I really like it.

    • CASE1WORKER profile image

      CASE1WORKER 5 years ago from UNITED KINGDOM

      Why do we ever go abroad? There are so many quaint and interesting places in this country!

    • QudsiaP1 profile image

      QudsiaP1 5 years ago

      Oh this was fantastic Nell; if I ever visit; these are the places I would like to visit first.

    • Nell Rose profile image
      Author

      Nell Rose 5 years ago from England

      Hi, Rose, ha ha okay he was real! actually he may well have been but they have changed bits of the history around him, glad you liked it, thanks nell

    • Alastar Packer profile image

      Alastar Packer 5 years ago from North Carolina

      Hidden places of mystery are always the best. This fantastic article makes me want to drop everything and come right over. Lud's church second, after we hit the pub, right Nell. Can one imagine being there alone...especially at night. The Shell Grotto is absolutely fascinating. I'll bet its thousands of years for if hundreds wouldn't at least the memory have been around somewhere into the 19th century? Is the Scottish castle on a little isle, that is a magical area. Wish, wish, wish. Maybe some day. Triple tack Nell for a superlative Hub.

    • akirchner profile image

      Audrey Kirchner 5 years ago from Central Oregon

      Nell - Well done and wish I could visit~

    • Chatkath profile image

      Kathy 5 years ago from California

      I wish I had this information 10 years ago when I first visited, I guess I will have to make another trip! Well done Nell, I'll be back :-)

    • Nell Rose profile image
      Author

      Nell Rose 5 years ago from England

      Hi, Alastar, yes the Castle is on a little island, I have visited the shell grotto lots of times, as Margate is one of the places I used to go on holiday to, so, when we go to the pub, I will have a vodka and coke please! lol thanks again nell

      Hi, Audrey, I got back in! thank goodness! thanks for reading, and glad you liked it, cheers nell

      Hi, Chatkath, that's a shame that you missed these, there are so many lovely places over here, maybe you will come back over? thanks again nell

    • DzyMsLizzy profile image

      Liz Elias 5 years ago from Oakley, CA

      Hi, Nell--

      What a great selection of secret tours! I love going 'off the beaten path,' and seeing things others miss.

      Your descriptions were intriguing; the videos excellent.

      (The gardens put me in mind of the world-famous Butchart Gardens of Victoria, British Columbia, which originated from an abandoned stone quarry!)

      Perhaps some year I'll have the budget to travel to visit the Great Britain; if not, it'll be first on my list of places to see when I become a ghost! ;-)

      Voted up and all kinds of other things! ;-)

    • prasetio30 profile image

      prasetio30 5 years ago from malang-indonesia

      Wow...wow...wow...wow. I really enjoy this tour. You describe this very well. Nell, I not familiar with all these place and I give thumbs up for your research. You have stunning pictures here and all the pictures are beautiful. Well done, my friend. My vote always for you. Cheers...

      Prasetio

    • Simone Smith profile image

      Simone Haruko Smith 5 years ago from San Francisco

      GAH!! I wish I knew about these places BEFORE I returned from my UK vacation!!!

    • Nell Rose profile image
      Author

      Nell Rose 5 years ago from England

      Hi, DzyM, ha ha that's a bit drastic! but I am glad you liked it, and thanks nell

      Hi, Pras, thanks so much! I am glad you like it, the shell grotto is an amazing place, and I am hoping to explore the other sites soon, cheers nell

      Hi, Simone, thanks again for your help, bit of a panic there! lol what a shame that you missed some of these, and there are many more, maybe stay for a month next time, lol cheers nell

    • Rebecca E. profile image

      Rebecca E. 5 years ago from Canada

      half of these didn't know of, and now I want to go and se them, my list is getting very long much thanks to you.

    • Nell Rose profile image
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      Nell Rose 5 years ago from England

      Hi, Rebecca, lol sorry about that! I am glad you liked it, thanks for reading, cheers nell

    • James A Watkins profile image

      James A Watkins 5 years ago from Chicago

      "The Shell Grotto Margate Kent" is my favorite among these. Your Hub fascinates me. I appreciate you giving me the opportunity to learn about and see these unusual places. Thank you for this treasure! :-)

    • Peggy W profile image

      Peggy Woods 5 years ago from Houston, Texas

      Oh my! What wonderful treasures you have shown us. If I could only pick one to visit it would have to be Lud's Church. What a fantastic place to hike and see nature up close. Loved reading this and also watching the videos. Hitting all kinds of buttons on this one! Will also tweet and FB this so that others can enjoy it.

    • Nell Rose profile image
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      Nell Rose 5 years ago from England

      Hi, James, the shell grotto is a fascinating place, it feels like going home when I haven't been there for a few years, we always went to Margate when we were children, with our mum and dad. everytime I go, it brings back memories like an old friend, thanks for reading, cheers nell

      Hi, Peggy, thank you so much! I love these mysterious places too, and would love to visit Lud's Church myself, thanks for reading, and I am glad you enjoyed it, cheers nell

    • Hello, hello, profile image

      Hello, hello, 5 years ago from London, UK

      You have picked some beautiful places and with magic. Thank you for this descriptive hub.

    • Nell Rose profile image
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      Nell Rose 5 years ago from England

      Hi, Hello hello, I am glad you liked them, I love the shell grotto, that's my favourite, thanks again nell

    • Greenhousewife profile image

      Greenhousewife 5 years ago

      Hello Nell!

      I am glad to see you are still writing wonderful hubs! I am now back and writing after taking time to plan my wedding.

      I would love to see all of these places you shared with us! They are all so lush and natural! It is no wonder people think my wedding was held overseas when I compare your pictures here to pictures of our wedding day!

      I look forward to reading your new hubs and catching up on the ones I have missed while I was away!

    • Nell Rose profile image
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      Nell Rose 5 years ago from England

      Hi, Greenhouse, congrats on the wedding! I look forward to reading your stuff, loads of photos please! lol thanks for reading, cheers nell

    • acaetnna profile image

      acaetnna 5 years ago from Guildford

      Britain does have some amazing, stunning beautiful places. There is always so much to see. A great hub Nell Rose with masses of information. Thank you, I shall book mark this for future reference.

    • Nell Rose profile image
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      Nell Rose 5 years ago from England

      Hi, acaetnna, thank you, I am so glad you liked it, we do have some wonderful places over here, we think we know them all then another great one is written about and I amazed that I never knew about them, thanks nell

    • b. Malin profile image

      b. Malin 5 years ago

      Oh Neil what a Rich and Reward Read...I too Love History and Britain is no exception...I just got a Mini Education. What would we do without you and James Watkins and your Enlightening Hubs! Thank you.

    • Eiddwen profile image

      Eiddwen 5 years ago from Wales

      Well it's my catch-upwith reading hubs today and this one is a treat. I love it and you have obviously worked so hard to present this one. It has paid off without a doubt.

      Take care and here's to many more to share.

      Take care

      Eiddwen.

    • Nell Rose profile image
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      Nell Rose 5 years ago from England

      Hi, b. Malin, I am so glad you liked it! we do have lots of lovely secret places over here, I wish I could fit them all in! lol

      Hi, Eiddwen, thanks this took a while trying to figure out which ones to add! lol I will have to write a book to show all the other lovely places, thanks again nell

    • Leanne1783 profile image

      Leanne1783 5 years ago from Bradford, United Kingdom

      Hi Nell, what a great hub, I have heard of a few of these places, but not all, so definitely worth a visit! Lets just hope we have some nice weather soon, so I can enjoy them even more! Thanks for some great visiting ideas!

    • Nell Rose profile image
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      Nell Rose 5 years ago from England

      Hi, Leanne, they are great aren't they? we had thunder and lightning today, and so much rain it hurt! lol thanks for reading it, cheers nell

    • kittythedreamer profile image

      Author Nicole Canfield 5 years ago from the Ether

      Ohh, you make me want to visit England so very badly! I had no idea these places existed. Wow, the chasm is breathtaking and definitely a sacred/holy place to Pagans and Christians alike. The shelled grotto is extraordinary, too! Voted up and awesome. Great job yet again, Nell.

    • Nell Rose profile image
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      Nell Rose 5 years ago from England

      Hi, kitty, I would love to visit the chasm myself, what a mysterious place! but luckily I have been in the Grotto, and it never fails to leave me in awe, thanks so much as always, nell

    • tsmog profile image

      Tim Mitchell 5 years ago from Escondido, CA

      wow! what an eye opener and a door into the imagination. When I have written short stories about brave knights Britain of course is the setting. Usually forest settings with a meadow. Now I am motivated to research some more when that fancy strikes. Thank you Nell , , , I'm going to dust off those stories for possible re-write.

    • poetvix profile image

      poetvix 5 years ago from Gone from Texas but still in the south. Surrounded by God's country.

      You really made it all come alive. It was such a treat to see these far away places. You made them all so appealing, romantic and mysterious. I could feel the history here. And, that was by far the most beautiful garden picture I have ever seen. Thank you so much for this!

    • Lucky Cats profile image

      Kathy 5 years ago from The beautiful Napa Valley, California

      Nell! Outstanding! thoroughly breathtaking...astounding! WOW!!! What beautiful and magnificant places...incredible! I can't come up with enough adjectives to describe how much I enjoy and love this hub..the magisty of Ludchurch....unbelievable beauty...the astonishing feat that is Shell Grotto and, what's eveh more amazing is that no one knows, for sure, what the age of the painstakingly intricate cave is...and so huge! Makes one wonder...who would have taken the time required to have created such a lovely place...and so well done that it stands many years later..I swear, Nell, I could make out 'faces' in some of the rooms either by the way the light played on the walls or the ways in which shells were placed!

      Exbury Gardens...exceptionally beautiful...now, I feel that I must go out and purchase all type of flowering shrubs, bulbs, perennials and rhizomes so that I can create something with a wall of color..magnificant!

      Eilean Donan castle..on top of the world! I swear, this home of yours is fantastic and now, along with the pubs we talked of earlier...this is no doubt I must make it to the gorgeous UK before too long...

      Much respect, regards and so impressed with your fabulous writing and these gorgeous environs. UP Beautiful Useful Awesome and Interesting!!!!!

    • rockdresses profile image

      rockdresses 5 years ago from Turkey

      Very brilliant post?

    • laine harrison profile image

      laine harrison 5 years ago

      oh! this is great, makes me want to go there, right now. excellent nell!

    • tillsontitan profile image

      Mary Craig 5 years ago from New York

      As always great hub. Folks in England might not appreciate you giving away their secrets but everyone else does. Beautiful photos as well. Voted up and interesting.

    • Nell Rose profile image
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      Nell Rose 5 years ago from England

      Hi, tsmog, that's brilliant! I am so glad its given you a feel for England and the Knights of old! good luck with the writing, and thanks!

    • Nell Rose profile image
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      Nell Rose 5 years ago from England

      Hi, poet, I am so glad you liked it, there are so many lovely places over here, I have only just touched the surface, and I hope to visit more, thanks nell

    • Nell Rose profile image
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      Nell Rose 5 years ago from England

      Hi, Lucky Cats, thank you! Britain is a lovely place, I don't think I would want to move from here because of all the lovely history, there is so much more over here, I will have to find some more places to write about, thanks as always nell

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      Nell Rose 5 years ago from England

      Hi, rockdresses, thanks so much for reading, cheers nell

    • Nell Rose profile image
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      Nell Rose 5 years ago from England

      Hi, laine, thanks so much, we do have some lovely places over here, I am glad you liked it, I shall have to go explore some more! lol cheers nell

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      Nell Rose 5 years ago from England

      Hi, tillsontitan, I promise to keep them quiet! ha ha thanks again, nell

    • Gypsy Willow profile image

      Gypsy Willow 5 years ago from Lake Tahoe Nevada USA , Wales UK and Taupo New Zealand

      Margate was where my grandmother always went for her summer holiday. I wonder if she visited the grotto, definitely on my list of places to visit. Have you read my hub about Tregrwg castle near Usk in South Wales/ Another mystical place. Love this hub, thanks.

    • Nell Rose profile image
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      Nell Rose 5 years ago from England

      Hi, Gypsy, thanks for reading, and I will come and take a look! cheers nell

    • mel22 profile image

      mel22 5 years ago from ,

      some nice places, although my clan surname is from the lowland areas, so I'd actually spend my time there first, but it still looks like a nice country to visit for scenery.Highlands or lowlands; it doesn'y matter. I want to go.

    • Nell Rose profile image
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      Nell Rose 5 years ago from England

      Hi, mel, that's a good idea, have a vacation and look up your long lost relatives! lol! thanks so much for reading, cheers nell

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      Mark Pitts 4 years ago from United States

      My grandmother had an old Bible that listed my kin from her line. They were left in Georgia in 1756, when it was a penal colony, I believe for the debtors prisons (so I was told). I would love to see Eilean Donan Castle, and wonder if my ancient kin knew of it.

    • Nell Rose profile image
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      Nell Rose 4 years ago from England

      Hi, Mark, Yes you may be right, they very likely did! wouldn't it be great if you could maybe visit there and take in some of the old churches to see if your family name is in the records? It would be lovely to see where you originally come from! thanks for reading, cheers nell

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      Tony 4 years ago from At the Gemba

      I also always had my holidays in the Margate area, either Broadstairs or Ramsgate when I was a youngster with my grandparents and have since taken my Kids there. The Shell Grotto was a fascinating place, I discovered it by accident one day when I got lost and have been back several times.

      Some suggest that it is a fake, but to be honest the number of shells and the work that has obviously gone into making it tends to say otherwise. It must have been truly breathtaking when all the shells were fresh and shining!

    • Nell Rose profile image
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      Nell Rose 4 years ago from England

      Hi, leanMan, I always went to Margate every year, and love the Grotto too. I also don't think its fake, but how old it is I am not sure. Maybe its a couple of hundred years old, because at that time many people were into secret caves and strange meetings! lol! like the hell fire club in high wycombe, thanks for reading, and I am glad you liked it, cheers nell

    • suzettenaples 2 years ago

      Thanks for sharing these places off the beaten path. They usually are the most interesting. I'd love to see all of them, especially Lud Church. Thanks for an interesting and informative hub!

    • Nell Rose profile image
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      Nell Rose 2 years ago from England

      Thanks suzette, yes they are lovely aren't they? some I have visited like the grotto and others that I still want to go and see, hope you are having a wonderful weekend! nell

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      John Hansen 2 years ago from Queensland Australia

      Interesting hub Nell. The only one I knew of was the Shell Grotto, but they would all be fun to visit. The lesser frequented places are often the best.

    • Nell Rose profile image
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      Nell Rose 2 years ago from England

      Hi Jodah, yes the shell grotto is amazing isn't it? its wonderful to see first hand, thanks so much for reading, nell

    • rustedmemory profile image

      David Hamilton 2 years ago from Lexington, KY

      I have not heard of many of these places. Thanks for sharing.

    • Nell Rose profile image
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      Nell Rose 2 years ago from England

      Thanks rusted, glad you liked it, we have some awesome places over here to visit, thanks, nell

    • LaurieNunley517 profile image

      LaurieNunley517 12 months ago from Deep South

      I would love to travel there and see some of these places! The music you chose was perfect. Loved the Shell Grotto. Thank you.

    • Nell Rose profile image
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      Nell Rose 12 months ago from England

      Hi Laurie, thanks for reading, yes we have lovely places over here to visit, and the Shell Grotto is one of my favorites, nell

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