The Wanderer - Issue#11 - November 2013

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The Wanderer - Issue#11 - November 2013
UK map The Photography Edition Dear member,

Join us this month for a look at life through a lens as we give maximum exposure to some of England and Wales' most picturesque places. Whether you're devoted to your Digital SLR or simply creative with a camera phone, we're confident that you'll find all the inspiration you need to get snap happy around our rich and varied network.

Our hostels are ready for their close up so grab your camera, kit and caboodle and get out there. Missed an edition? You can view all previous instalments of the Wanderer here.
YHA Whitby
Scenery to sink your teeth into YHA Whitby
You'll be hard pressed to find a more impressive coastal property than this Grade I-listed mansion on the headland. Located right next door to Whitby Abbey, the Youth Hostel enjoys incredible views of one of the most atmospheric attractions on the Yorkshire Coast.

Beyond the Abbey you'll find the Church of Saint Mary, its graveyard synonymous with Bram Stoker's Dracula and a place of pilgrimage for devotees of the bi-annual Whitby Goth Weekend - quite the spectacle if your visit coincides in April or November. From the church, descend the 199 steps to the old town. You'll be met with the quaint narrow streets that have captured the imagination of many an artist, including pioneering pictorial photographer Frank Meadow Sutcliffe. Working in and around Whitby between 1875 and 1910, Sutcliffe created an enduring record of the town, its residents and their toil in the harbour. Why not follow in his footsteps?

For a taste of tradition visit Fortune's smokehouse and enjoy authentic Whitby kippers. It's located on Henrietta Street but with the distinctive aroma of oak wood smoke wafting through the air, we're confident that your nostrils won't let you miss it. Whitby's long stretch of sandy beach offers plenty of opportunity for family photos. Rambling enthusiasts are in for a treat, with access to a number of rewarding routes including the Cleveland Way, Coast to Coast and the Esk Valley.

As dusk falls, capture the full majesty of Whitby Abbey as her stark outline darkens with the sun falling behind her long empty windows.

Insider tips from Hostel Manager, Celia
Scour 3½ miles of sandy beach for sea washed Whitby Jet, the gemstone formed from fossilized Monkey Puzzle wood.

Stand under the highest waterfall in the North York Moors, Mallyan Spout. (You'll probably want to put your camera down first though.)

Explore Mulgrave Woods, near Sandsend, and discover the Norman ruins of Mulgrave Castle.
YHA Bath Bath header
Hone in on heritage Where better to begin your Bath trip than with a visit to the world-famous Roman Baths. The magnificent Great Bath, with its rising steam and Bath Abbey backdrop makes for an ethereal spectacle. Amateur photographers are welcome at the site and with costumed characters in action around the pool, there's plenty to inspire an extraordinary shot.

Set modern technology aside for a moment and waltz into the lovingly recreated period atmosphere of the Jane Austen Centre. The author's 5-year stay in the city is celebrated by a permanent exhibition of illuminating objects and artefacts.

Continue your magical history tour with a stop off at The Royal Crescent. Set your shoot mode to panorama for this one. Designed by John Wood the Younger, this sweeping crescent contains no less than thirty terraced houses and is one of the UK's best examples of Georgian architecture. The museum at No.1 offers an insight into the previous residents of this most fashionable of addresses. If you'd prefer a rest, the adjacent Royal Victoria Park offers an extraordinary spot for a family picnic.

Our Italianate mansion, close to the city centre, is ideally situated for weekend breaks in this vibrant World Heritage City. With so many historical and literary connections to explore, be sure to bookend your days with filling breakfasts and quality evening meals from the hostel restaurant.

Insider tips from Hostel Manager, Amy
Indulge in a restorative dip in the stunning rooftop pool at Thermae Spa

Scoff a scrumptious Bath bun at Sally Lunn's Historic Eating House

Browse the independent shops of The Orange Grove. This principle route through the city has been a place of trade for more than 300 years!
YHA Bath
walking on the beach Inspire an adventure this Christmas with Cotswold Outdoor A gift that takes you places. Now that is a rare find. From the jacket that's built for a Dorset deluge, to the restless rucksack that wants to get on the road. These are the gifts that make exploration possible. These are the gifts that inspire an adventure. Who will you inspire this Christmas? Shop online or at stores nationwide.
YHA Eastbourne YHA Eastbourne
YHA Eastbourne YHA Idwal Cottage Welcome to the sunniest place in Britain! Admittedly if you visit in the coming months this may not be apparent, but trust us - it's official. And in any case the myriad of attractions and activities on offer should be enough to warm the cockles. YHA Eastbourne (just a mile from town centre and seafront) offers en suite rooms, making this ideal for family trips.

Beachy Head is a must visit for any landscape photographer. The UK's highest chalk sea cliffs offer unrivalled views over Eastbourne and the English Channel. If you're feeling energetic, make the ascent to the cliff top and you'll be rewarded with a great view of the famous red and white-striped lighthouse. If you prefer a gentler pace, there's no need to miss out – take an open-top bus tour or a boat trip to the lighthouse itself.

Spanning the length of the award-winning seafront, the 5-mile promenade showcases just why Eastbourne is regarded as the quintessentially British seaside town. The pier with its Victorian boardwalk, shops, amusements and nightspots has something for all ages; the busiest bandstand in the UK offers a year-round programme of events and the famous Carpet Gardens showcase flora and fauna from all over the world.

Finally, take a step back in time with a visit to Redoubt Fortress. First built to defend the coast from Napoleon, this extraordinary structure now houses a museum collection charting over 200 years of conflict. And with an arsenal of activities and events on offer, this is one for all the family.

Insider tips from Hostel Manager, Susan
Take in some of the best scenery in Sussex with a walk along the old coach road between Alfriston and Firle. Stop off for a pint in the Rose Cottage.

Strip off on the naturist stretch of Birling Gap beach (worth noting that this is a seasonal pursuit!)

Hire a bike from the seafront, build up an appetite cycling to the harbour side restaurants and tuck into scrumptious seafood.
YHA Alnwick YHA Alnwick
Step into a Constable Centrally located in the town's former Court House, YHA Alnwick makes a great base for exploring Northumberland's enchanting coastline and mighty medieval castles. Alnwick Castle, home to the Percy family for over 700 years, is one of the largest inhabited castles in Europe. Embroiled in most major milestones in British history, the family annals are littered with drama and intrigue. And the kids will love the place – it was used as the location for Hogwarts in the Harry Potter films.

A 15-minute car journey from the hostel takes you to the dramatic Northumberland coast. Blow away the cobwebs with a bracing walk along seemingly endless and relatively people-free beaches. Breathtaking views of Dunstanburgh, Warkworth and Bamburgh Castles will be your reward. Separated from the mainland, The Holy Island of Lindisfarne is a magical place to visit and offers a sense of peaceful isolation (and the mead's good too!). Enchanting as Holy Island is, don't lose track of time as the causeway - your route home - disappears at high tide.

For the bookworms amongst us, Barter Books is one of the UK's largest second hand bookshops and a must visit. Located in the former booking office of Alnwick's Victorian railway station, the building retains a number of original features. You'll also find quirky additions like the model railway linking book columns in the central room. It's a true original and a great place to while away an afternoon. With a roaring coal fire in winter and the best fruit and nut cake in town, you're in for a real treat with this one.

Insider tips from Hostel Manager, Andrew
Go puffin spotting with a boat trip to the Farne Islands. Just beware the inhabitant Arctic terns; they're prone to aerial strikes!

Take a stroll from Craster to Low Newton and end with a pint at The Ship; the pub makes its own brew on-site.

Wind your way around the magnificent water cascades and ornamental beds at Alnwick Garden. And don't miss the fatal flora of its Poison Garden.
YHA Alnwick
360 Tours 360 Tours - make a virtual visit! Can't decide which YHA property to stay at next? Imagine being able to explore a hostel without leaving the comfort of your own home. Hang on, you don't need to imagine - just go to the YHA website and take a virtual 360 degree tour. There are ten on there already and more to follow so keep a look out.
Next Month:
The Winter Wonderland EditionWe're dusting of the sleigh and scouring the network for all that sparkles! So draw that mulled wine nearer, grab a mince pie and enjoy the offerings and opportunities to be found out there this Christmas and New Year.
Bagpuss slippers
Find out how we're changing lives one stay at a time Because YHA is a charity, when you stay with us you're helping keep prices affordable, hostels beautiful and you're even enriching the lives of young people. Find out more.
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