We started with another up and at ‘em exercise for us both: James a run and K day 2 of Norking. Since we were parked by it, we went looking for the underground caverns that housed an art gallery and a concert hall …. a local sadly advised that it had gone bankrupt and was now closed. Shame for the area as there was a water park, holiday hostels, other art galleries etc and the caverns must have been quite a tourist pull.
A short drive to one of the best churches we have ever seen. It is the largest wooden church in the world. The Reverend felt that nearly half the 12,000 residents should be able to attend church at the same time. So it was built to accommodate 5,000 people in 1847. Perched on top of a rise, it dominates the town, but the inside is really quite spectacular – the nave is 27 metres high and there are two tiers of balconies. Even the organ is made largely of wood. Although heaters were installed, they were insufficient to heat the church as well as being a fire risk, so a smaller church was built at the rear. This main church is used in summer and at Christmas, when it is lit by candle light (fire risk?! But must look wonderful).
One lot exercise being insufficient we headed up to Kolovesi National Park and did a 3.3 km walking trail. Not far, I hear you cry, but actually this was the only trail on offer. To get around most of the National Parks around here you need a boat, and neither of us fancies the expense of hiring, let alone the rowing effort. The walk was not as arduous as in the Swedish High Coast, but still involved a little clambering. Yet again, we were taken with the colours of the lichens, leaves and tree bark. A few information boards along the route explained how cutting down any of the trees would have changed the ecology as the plant and animal species need dead and rotting wood and damp. DAMP should have been a warning to us …. our first encounter with mosquitoes. James 4 and Katherine 0 bites … K so thankful J is so much tastier!
A real bonus was coming upon a small woodpecker pecking away surprising low down on the tree trunk, only about 3 metres from us. Real shame the woodpecker was lost in the pics with the standard lens.
There was a perfect campsite beside the lake: fire pit, free logs and earth toilet. But J would not be persuaded to carry tent etc … why should he when he has perfectly comfy mattress in Chardonnay? He did compensate by doing some serious log splitting … do scroll down to the pics of ma man being manly!