Chester Places to See

Chester  Places to See

Chester Places to See

If you are not going to make a separate stay at Llandudno and Shrewsbury, both the subject of separate entries, then at least pay a day visit; and some of the attractions listed under both of them are within easy reach of Chester, too.

Among the thematic museums, the Boat Museum at Ellesmere Port, only 15 minutes away, offers a boat trip and a chance to study many of the traditional craft that used to ply on Britain's extensive system of inland waterways.

Erddig, Wrexham, Clwyd, is a late seventh-century home with original furniture plus an agricultural museum. Nearer at hand, Chester Zoo spread over 110 acres, is of international standard. Arley Hall and Gardens at Northwich give you a chance to study a fine Victorian manor house and private chapel in a superb setting.

Two of Britain's great mercantile cities are within easy reach of Chester. Manchester is full of fine buildings to remind one of the time when Lancashire cotton and other industries helped make Britain the greatest industrial nation the world had ever had. Just walking its streets is a thrill for those interested in fine buildings (the dirt of the industrial age has been washed away from many of them) and the ambiance of a city that remains great but has had to adjust substantially to changed times. The Castlefield Urban Heritage Park, the first such in Britain, tells the story of the area from Roman times, through the industrial revolution to the space age, more formally, and the area's many industrial and transport museums include one devoted to textiles, Manchester's traditional industry: the Helmshore Textile Industry Museum at Helmshore.

As already mentioned, from Chester you can make a round trip to Manchester, out by one railway route and back by the other, letting you see some surprisingly dramatic country, charming old towns and of course occasional industrial sores. Or still comfortably within a day, you could visit Manchester and then travel along the world's first Inter-city railway, the Liverpool & Manchester of 1830, to Liverpool, before returning direct to Chester.

Liverpool has had even harder adjustments to make, its water-front no longer busy with shipping, no trans-Atlantic liners now adding a touch of glamour, though the Garden Festival area which has been created out of abandoned docks is worth a visit - as are both the Anglican and Roman Catholic relatively modern cathedrals with a difference. But go to Liverpool to discover how the Mersey Sound came about, listen to the dialect and look at people having a very different lifestyle to that of most of Britain.



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