As most people who blog I constantly scan the web for articles of interest and I came across a feature on the Guardian’s website called Enjoy England so I thought I’d make a list of three of my favorite things to do in England, except of course I’m including Wales.
Sea Fishing – rocks, estuaries, beaches, everywhere…
It had to be the first thing I mentioned.
England, in fact the entire UK and Ireland coast has some of the best sea angling in Europe, if not the world, and we’re lucky enough to live very near the coast so we try to get out and wet a line as often as possible.
We’re not always hugely successful in our quests but the scenery and wildlife more than make up for any short comings in our angling ability.
Our most notable catches have been from Anglesey, but the fishing up here in Lancashire and its neighbour Merseyside, on the right day, can be truly stupendous where anything from Bass to Thornback Rays or Cod to Smoothhounds can show up to the skillful or lucky angler.
As we’re approaching winter all angling eyes will be firmly fixed on the weather reports hoping for some good westerlies to churn the sea bed up and a good drop in temperate. This should bring in the larger Whiting and following close on their fishy heals will hopefully be some large Cod. I’ve yet to catch one of the monster Cod that we know are caught around the Fleetwood and Liverpool area, 2.5 lbs is my biggest, but I’m an angler, and as long as there’s a line in the water, there’s always a chance.
Hiking, Fel Walking, Rambling – whatever you want to call it.
With the Lake District and the Three Peaks only an hour away, The Lancashire Fels even closer and North Wales only about 2.5 hours away it seems almost inevitable that loving the outdoors, we’d make the most of the hills and mountains surrounding us.
We’ve ambled for miles and miles around the surrounding countryside, in all weathers and at all times of the year but by far the best and most satisfying was when we went up Fairsnape in the middle of winter. As we climbed higher we ended up walking through pristine snow covered hillsides until we reached the top to find a landscape that was so perfect it could have been a painting.
Bird Watching – another excuse to be outside.
England is truly blessed by the bird gods as all twitchers (as more dedicated than I am birdwatchers are called) will tell you.
Due to our sometimes less than predictable weather some very rare birds can be found almost anywhere in the UK.
Up here in Lancashire we have some of the best wetlands and salt marches anywhere in the world for migrant species such as Pink Footed Geese and when winter falls, the Ribble estuary is home to literally thousands of these birds as they escape the cold of more northern countries.
The RSPB have a couple of very notable reserves in the area. Leighton Moss at the top end of Morecambe Bay has a very respectable breeding population of Bitterns as well as a number of Marsh Harriers. Marshside near Southport, Merseyside is a terrific area to watch the huge flocks of geese during the winter as they move inland onto the salt marshes to escape the incoming tide.
As well as these two fantastic reserves we have WWT Martin Mere almost on our doorstep which has been host to BBC Autumn Watch in previous years.
So with so many brilliant opportunities is it any wonder we go bird watching. It’s another good excuse to get outside and most of the time we can combine it with sea fishing, walking (some of our fishing is a long way from the car) or both.
So… what are your three favourite things to do in England?
Are you like us and anything outside is good or do you enjoy going to see live bands, see new cities or go out to the pub. Whatever it is I’m sure you’ll agree, England, the rest of the UK and Ireland has it all.