A WEEK IN THE GOWER
‘What is it,’ I often wondered, ‘that my eldest daughter and her family find so compelling in the Gower, South Wales, to make them return year after year? So, when a friend posted her scenic photography on Facebook, I took a long, hard look. Once I showed my partner my Facebook page, the cynic in him died and the photographer sprang to life. When her postcard of Rhossili dropped through the letter box, we were smitten.
My partner is a computer fledgling but he’s learnt how to search, particularly for holiday accommodation. Last year we stayed in a super Peak District cottage courtesy of his googling. Once again, he found us reasonably-priced accommodation. Holiday cottages for two are scarce. Often the only option is a property for four and to pay the extra, so to stumble upon a convenient studio flat in Mumbles with double bed, kitchen area, wet room, wall-mounted television and comfortable chairs was a gem. Between 9th and 16th June the cost was £260. No complaints there.
We arrived in blazing sunshine, walked the seafront with its separate lanes for walkers and cyclists, to the Lifeboat House, ate fish and chips from Yallops and drove to Bracelet Bay. On Sunday, we walked into the centre of Mumbles, lapped up Sunday roast with wine in the White Rose for £5.49, catching a bus back to West Cross before taking the car in late afternoon to explore Langland and Caswell Bays.
After announcing our presence in the Gower on Facebook, we were inundated with sympathetic messages from friends and relations all suffering horrendous deluges or floods. Thankfully, we’d chosen south rather than north Wales so no submerged caravan for us. Seeing on television a woman holding up a dripping laptop, identical to mine, was a wakeup call to the importance of backing up files, especially for a writer. The dry weather and hazy sunshine on Sunday was repeated on the Monday but, despite taking photographs, we still hoped for improved photographic opportunities with blue skies, fluffy white clouds and bright sun. The emails, texts, photos, TV and newspaper coverage continued with tales of flooded gardens and pictures of Bognor Regis residents boating down the High Street.
But for us, things only got better. The Gower doesn’t always share the rain in South Wales and Tuesday and Wednesday were hot and sunny all day, although we began to think our luck might run out for our two remaining days. A dull sky on Thursday morning proved us right so we headed by bus to Swansea for some retail therapy and lunch in Pizza Express.
Our first impressions of the Gower were favourable especially the car parks which all hosted superb toilet facilities. The Welsh people were friendly and always helpful with directions. We discovered quickly the reason for our family’s frequent visits to Rhossili with its breathtaking views, cliff walks and large beach ideal for surfing.
I can’t wait to tell my grandchildren we have been to their favourite place.