Sunday, July 27, 2014

Chichester and Arundel

Sunny Saturday began in Chichester, the administrative center for West Sussex that spans 100 acres. (Yes I automatically thought of Winnie the Pooh's Hundred Acre Wood.) We toured the city, then explored the chapel and it's beautiful, lush gardens.

The Cathedral was completed in 1108, after Chichester the town was founded in the existing Roman city. After more than 900 years of use, it still has regular services.

Statue of St. Richard of Chichester outside the Cathedral.

The bell tower, separate from the rest of the Cathedral.

The Cathedral.

The cathedral was full of decorative tombs of Bishops and other figures from Chichester throughout the centuries. Stunning to see, and rather unnerving to realize they were all buried right behind the walls!

The pool of light through stain glass windows will always be awing. 

Interesting pipe placement ;)

Walkway across the Cathedral grounds.

Inside the walkway.

The view from the front entrance of the cathedral. There were lovely volunteers ready to hand out fliers for us and point us on our way. Have I mentioned how genuinely kind the British people are 99.99% of the time?

Sundial on the outside.
A bright array of flowers in the garden.

Cathedral from the gardens. So beautiful, and we were blessed with perfect sunshine all day! 

I definitely could have sat here for a few hours with my book and some tea.

The Market Cross, given to the city by Bishop Storey in 1501, was originally a covering for traders to sell their wares.
Chichester Assembly room, opened in 1783, is not hired out for events.

This hospital, down a quaint little street, is now used as an almshouse.

Fragments from old Roman buildings.

Very impressive graffiti that was purposefully kept up from an art instillation.

The Pallant House art gallery.
Apparently these sculptures were supposed to be Emus, but the artist's rather crude interpretation has earned the house the nickname of the Do-Do house, after the do do bird.

Then it was a step back in time to Arundel. Arundel is not just the kingdom in Frozen, although I was absolutely singing the soundtrack in my head the entire way there. :)

We started off watching a jousting tournament, which was taken very seriously as competitors from the Kingdoms of France, England, Poland and the Burgundian Alliance fought for the Championship of Arundel Castle.

All the competitors and announcers were in full and authentic garb, even in the sweltering heat. That's dedication.

Scores for the respective teams.

There were little market stalls around the jousting festivities, all part of the allusion bringing us back to the 1400s.
There were even owls and falcons flying about!
The castle. 
Arundel Castle is one of the longest inhabited country houses in England, owned by the Dukes of Norfolk and their ancestors. One of the tour guides said the castle rooms were closed just a few weeks ago for the owners and visitors. It was founded in 1067!!!

I have never walked up such narrow staircases. Definitely not for the claustrophobic! 
Pulley system for a gate.
Wall hanging with royal lions.

Chapel dating back to the 11th and 12th century.

View of Arundel from the Keep, which dates from Medieval times in 1067. A keep is a fortified tower usually built as a refuge should the castle be under siege. 

In the center of the keep was the dungeon, with stairs going down to the dark abyss where a prisoner was held behind bars.
 Although I was eventually yelled at by a very stern woman for taking photos, I'm glad I "ignored" the sign warning against photos inside the castle and snuck a few anyway.
Private chapel.

Why are ceilings in these places so impressive?! 

The gardens were absolutely beautiful and just crawling with perfectly planned bursts of color and water features.

Oberon's Palace in the Earl's Gardens. This water fountain, backed by a wall of a decorative shell pattern, was moving the balanced crown up and down.

Secret Garden <3

Sorry for all the flower photos. I couldn't help it!

Castles will never stop being amazing to visit! Arundel Castle's architecture and history perfectly fit my cliched visions of knights fighting for honor,  fair maidens, and ladies in waiting.

Jessica, Annalysha, Me, Danielle, Lauren, and Karina!

In these little towns, even the post office was adorable and fitting for the historical period.

Marking along the river, Arun.
I loved being immersed in history, climbing narrow spiral staircases, cheering on a medieval jousting tournament and touring castle grounds that date back from the 1100s. Next time, I'm joining the little girls I saw and wearing a princess dress. Carpe Diem. :)

1 comment:

  1. Hello Young Traveler....THAT WAS SUPER AWESOME!!! I HAVE GOT to watch Ever After tonight!!!!! :) XOXOXOXOXO P.S....I love the princess dress idea...almost seems like a MUST for visiting castles!!!!