A Year of Myth and Legend

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Britain Myth and Legend

2017 is Wales’ Year of Legends and in March the new Hollywood film King Arthur: Legend of the Sword will be released, which was shot in Britain. Historians have varying theories about who the fabled medieval leader was, but ancient writings have connected places across Britain to his legend. To celebrate the mythical and legendary stories from this land, we've collected some of the best locations Britain can offer to provide you with itinerary ideas

Legendary locations associated with King Arthur 

  • Snowdonia National Park, Wales:  Llyn Llydaw is said to be the resting place of Arthur’s sword Excalibur
  • Tintagel Castle, Cornwall:  Arthur is said to have been conceived on this site
  • Glastonbury, England:  once known as the Isle of Avalon, the bones of Arthur and Guinevere are thought to lie at Glastonbury Abbey
  • King Arthur’s Round Table, Cumbria, England: A circular Neolithic henge
  • King Arthur’s Labyrinth, Wales: this storytelling attraction takes visitors into a world of magic on an underground boat trip into a mine
  • The Great Hall of Winchester – One of the finest surviving medieval halls which contains the legendary Round Table associated with King Arthur and his Knights of the Round Table 

 

King Arthur film locations

 

Legends of Wales

  • St Dwynwen’s Day - 25 January honours the Welsh patron saint of lovers, Princess Dwynwen, who lived on Llanddwyn Island off the coast of Anglesey
  • Dragons - The red dragon has been a symbol of Wales for 2,000 years. Newcastle Emlyn Castle claims to be the site of the last dragon in Wales and visitors can sit on its giant oak dragon seat
  • Fairy-tale castles - There are 641 castles in Wales – more per square mile than anywhere else in the world. Castell Dinas Brân was once home to a beautiful princess called Myfanwy who inspired a famous ballad. A Cadw Explorer Pass gives free entry to more than 100 historic sites
  • The Lady of the Lake - Llyn y Fan Fach under The Black Mountain in the western Brecon Beacons is fabled to be the home of the Lady of the Lake

 

Legends of Scotland

  • Loch Ness -  The picturesque villages, green hilss and the ruins of Urquhart Castle attracts visitors in search for the elusive Loch Ness creature from around the world
  • The Fairy Pools of Skye - Cascading waterfalls which empty into vivid turquoise pools makes this a magical and enchanting place to see
  • Corryvreckan whirlpool - One of the largest whirlpool in the world is a spectacular natural phenomenon which lies between the Isles of Jura and Scarba. Specialised boat tours are the best way to get up close to this bubbling cauldron of water
  • Edinburgh Castle - Perched high on an ancient craggy stronghold overlooking the capital city, Edinburgh Castle is the most popular paid tourist attraction in the country and home to some impressive exhibits including the Crown Jewels and the Stone of Destiny
  • Rosslyn chapel - Every surface of this 15th century chapel is covered in ornate and mysterious stone carvings and symbols. Surrounded in myth and legend it is said to be one of the most mysterious places in Scotland which inspired Dan Brown’s novel, The Da Vinci Code
  • Trossachs - Visitors have been drawn to this romantic landscape by the tales inspired by local legendary outlaw Rob Roy MacGregor

 

Legends of England 

  • Nottingham and Sherwood Forest - Home to the legendary English folklore hero Robin Hood. According to legend, the outlaw was a highly skilled archer and swordsman and known for his band of Merry Men robbing the rich to feed the poor
  • Stonehenge - Many myths and theories have been attributed to this mysterious site. One legendary story links back to Merlin, the wizard associated with King Arthur, who instructed a gaint to build it for him
  • St Necturn Glen - Associated with the 6th Century Saint Nectan, it is still visited today by thousands of people from all over the world. Local poeple folk believe King Arthur and his knights came to the glen before travelling in search of the Holy Grail
  • Shell Grotto - Discovered in 1853 by a boy, the origins of this maze of underground tunnels and chambers covered in 4.6 million shells remains a mystery. Still no one knows how or why this amazing grotto was built
  • Elva Hill - Meaning ‘place of elves’, head to the southern side of the hill for the best chances of catching fairies and marvel at the mysterious Neolithic stone circle also found here

 

Legends of Northern Ireland

  • Banagher Old Church - Located in County Londonderry lies the remains of St Murrough O’Heaney, famed for trapping Lig na Paiste, the last serpent in Ireland
  • Gaint's Causeway - Renowned for its unusual stone columns, the folklore legend states it was carved from the coast by the mighty giant, Finn McCool
  • Down Cathedral - Visit the grave of Saint Patrick in the grounds of Down Cathedral. Today, the famous saint remains iconic and inspires many nations to 'go green' in honour of St Patrick's Day

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