These posts will highlight some of the places I have visited and if you are in the area you may like to take a look for yourself.
Valle Crusis (Valley of the Cross)
This is the view of Eliseg's Pillar or Croes Elisedd (Welsh) when you approach from the Horsehoe Pass, a couple of friends and I (on motorbikes) had envisaged visiting both Eliseg's Pillar and Valle Crusis Abbey but when we rode down the road we passed by the pillar and parked at the Abbey.
Not content with just visiting the Abbey as our original goal was to see both, we walked back up the road a few hundred yards (with full motorbike gear on) and saw that this tree had been hiding the pillar from our view.
This picture is taken from the roadside, where you could park (had you known it was the space to see this piece of Welsh history).
The Pillar gave the valley it's name Valle Crucis. Apparently the pillar was originally erected by Cyngen, Prince of Powys for his great-grandfather Eliseg and was mentioned in records as far back as 1200AD but is believed to have been erected at some point in the 9th Century AD.
During the 17th Century, the cross was defaced and broken by Cromwell's troops; hence the 'pillar-shape' now.
Originally it would have been much taller (twice the height) and with a cross on the very top (that would have put it above the tree and made it easier to find it).
The inscription on the sign doesn't give any more away that I have put above, but if you would like more information then click here.
Valle Crusis Abbey is also well worth a visit if you are in the area, it is a cisterctian abbey of the 13th Century and extraordinarily peaceful and quiet when you are in the grounds of the Abbey.
It doesn't take much imagination to perceive how it must have looked with the Monks, in their white habits, purposefully doing their tasks.
Cistercians were an enclosed order but also self-sufficient with lay-brother running farms to provide all of their needs close to the Abbey itself.
Although many of the building are now ruins it still retains a majesty that time has not eroded