Shropshire, the birthplace of the industrial revolution and home to some fabulous towns and villages as well as being the start of the modern day Olympic games, remains remarkably undiscovered.
The south of the county is the most geologically diverse area of its size in the world with rocks dating from 700 to 200 million years ago and over in Caradoc the oldest known complete fossil was discovered.
But we're not just about rocks and industry, the scenery is breathtaking. Stand at Wenlock Edge on the outskirts of Much Wenlock (where the Olympic mascot takes its name) or atop the Wrekin near Wellington and you'll see beautifully rolling hills for miles south and over to Wales in the west, with the Cheshire plains to the north and more flat-lands to the east.
Just above Abel's Harp is the iconic Callow which is a ring of trees atop the hill that we are situated on and just a short walk away are the Stiperstones.
Information on a challenging four mile walk starting from Abel's Harp taking in the Callow, Castle Ring Fort and fifteen styles can be found here.
Shrewsbury, the county town of Shropshire, is just 20 minutes away and is an absolute must visit.
One of England’s finest medieval towns, but it’s the flowers you will probably notice first, they are everywhere. Shrewsbury is also renowned for its picturesque cobbled alleys and squares and various events that take place throughout the year.
Shrewsbury has an exceptional number of interesting, independent shops or take yourself off to the Shrewsbury Museum and Art Gallery, one of the many churches and spires, Shrewsbury Abbey or walk the walls at Shrewsbury Castle.
Quarry Park in the town centre is simply wonderful to sit and watch the world go by or relax on a river boat trip from Victoria Quay.
Shrewsbury is the birthplace of Charles Darwin, who would probably still recognise his home town now, thought to be one of England’s most splendid heritage towns with over 600 listed buildings.
There is the National Trust property Attingham Park which is a splendid way to spend an afternoon, taking in the house, gardens and resident deer.
Ludlow, 30 minutes away, is a thriving medieval market town and an architectural gem with a lively community feel, busy with events and festivals throughout the year. Ludlow Castle is a must if you visit the town.
The historic town centre is situated on a cliff above the River Teme and is surrounded by the beautiful and diverse countryside of south Shropshire and the Welsh Marches.
South Shropshire is an area of unforgettable and varied natural beauty, which is full of hills, valleys, castles and characterful villages and towns.
Nearby Church Stretton, a mere 12 miles away, is home to the Long Mynd, Carding Mill Valley and Acton Scott Working Farm.
Long Mynd is the backbone of the Shropshire Hills and has some excellent National Trust created walks which take you from the base of Carding Mill Valley up to a picturesque waterfall or, further up the hill, to a beautiful natural pond full of newts where there are wild horses roaming nearby and views in all directions as far as the eye can see... on a clear day you can even see Snowdon.
Acton Scott Working Farm is a hit with children young and not so young and is a welcome rural distraction.
Welshpool is the nearest major town to Abel's Harp, at only 11 miles away and being tagged as 'where Wales begins' it is a good way to spend a day.
Cheerful bunting lining the streets greets you as you arrive, as well as many friendly faces. The glorious rolling hills of Montgomeryshire surround the town and it has the largest sheep market in Europe, if that's your thing!
Powis Castle is within easy walking distance of the town and is recognised as the best preserved Castle & Garden in Wales. You can also ride a working steam train or recapture the past looking at the local collections in the Welshpool museum.
Ironbridge, the birthplace of the industrial revolution, is now an absolutely beautiful little town with an abundance of cafés, unique shops and museums.
Infact, the Ironbridge Gorge has 10 museums within a 3 mile radius, ranging from Enginuity in Coalbrookdale, which will keep your kids more than occupied for a few hours, to the more adult-focused Pipe Museum in Broseley.
Paint some tiles during the school holidays at the remarkably interesting Tile Museum in Coalport (yes, we were pleasantly surprised it was so interesting!) or turn back the clock to Victorian times at Blists Hill.
Take a stroll through the Ironbridge gorge which is full of wild garlic in spring or hop on a river boat tour, or even just rest a while in one of the many riverside pubs and eateries.