Roam the ruins of old
The remains of the 12th-century Basingwerk Abbey rise out of the ground like part of the earth itself.
The ancient stone walls and mighty archways will leave you in wonder as you twine your way around the old ruins, transporting you back through history.
The building was built by simple means, using basic tools over a long period of time until finally, the completed abbey stood tall over the 12th century Holywell town.
The abbey is a perfect destination for a day out in the finer weather.
After wandering through the remains of archways and gaping up at the stone walls, throw down a blanket on the grass nearby and pull out the sandwiches. Bring some outdoor games and spend a moment having a laugh with the family.
While the kids are up and running, you can lie back and take in the abbey from a distance. With trees scattered around the ruins and walls rising up into a hazy summer sky, it’s easy to let your imagination take you back to a time when kings and queens roamed the lands on horseback.
Just the beginning of your adventure?
The abbey stands as the start point for the North Wales Pilgrim’s Way, a trek that will lead you 140 miles, through woodland, along coastline, and up mountains until the route ends on Bardsey Island.
In medieval times, thousands would be drawn to the pilgrimage by the rumours of finding peace at the edge of the western world.
Now signposted by volunteers, the journey is a way to celebrate the beauty of ancient architecture and the natural magnificence of North Wales.
Basingwerk Abbey is one of many Welsh abbeys built in the Cistercian style of the medieval period like the Valle Crucis Abbey, south of Basingwerk in Llangollen.
Check out the chapter house, the oldest part of the abbey - you can still spot the benches where monks would sit for their daily readings.
Around a five-minute car journey away is St. Winefride’s Well, another historical must-see once the Basingwerk ruins have sparked your interest in times of old.
Founded by Ranulf de Gernon, the fourth Earl of Chester, in the 12th century, the abbey still holds a magnificence that is not easily put into words.
Even now, after being mostly demolished for over 400 years, the remnants of a time long ago stand steadfast under the North Wales skyline and are bound to leave you with a newfound appreciation for the history of the UK.
Cafe, Free parking