The Southwest port city of Plymouth, England extends a flowery welcome to visitors. The floral design is spelled out on the Hoe, or high ground overlooking the seafront.
American and British flags flying over Pilgrims' Point, Plymouth, leading to the entrance to the Mayflower Steps. The steps are believed to be the ones the Pilgrims descended when boarding the Mayflower, before setting sail for America. In 2000, visiting for the first time, tears came to my eyes at the unexpected sight of the American flag.
The Mayflower Steps, Plymouth. Travelers descended these steps to board the Mayflower, bound for a new world.
A plaque at the Mayflower Steps honours those who made the long ocean voyage in search of religious freedom and tolerance.
The list of names of citizens sailing on the Mayflower. Perhaps William Bradford was an ancestor.
Severe August storms forced many boats to abandon the Rolex Fastnet Yacht Race and take shelter in Plymouth Harbour. Some 291 boats set out from the Isle of Wight, but few were able to complete the race.
Fastnet yachts docked following the August racing event.
Plymouth Harbour. In August, the Mountbatten breakaway was the launching pad for spectacular fireworks, set off by five professional teams participating in the British Fireworks Championship.
A working boat in the waters of Plymouth Sound.
Prayer icon for mariners on a stone wall across the road from the Mayflower Steps.
The British flag flying over stone walls at the Plymouth Citadel on the edge of Plymouth Hoe. When the Spanish Armada was sighted on 19 July, 1588 Sir Francis Drake was playing a game of bowls on Plymouth Hoe. Legend has it that he finished the game before boarding the Revenge. As the English fleet pursued the Armada up the Channel, Drake captured the Spanish galleon Rosario.
Children pose atop an old cannon at The Citadel.
An Art Deco swimming pool, club and cafe complex that has been partially restored to its 1930s glory.
Her Majesty's Customs House on the Barbican. My Plymouth-born husband once worked here. Nearby is a large stone building labeled "The Queen's Warehouse." When I first saw it, I thought it was where the Queen kept her extra furniture (a considerably bigger version of our cave). Of course, it's where contraband seized from ships is stored temporarily.
The hand-carved entryway to a corridor leading to an Elizabethan garden, near the Barbican, Plymouth.
The stone arched entrance to Elizabethan gardens.
Elizabethan gardens in Plymouth's "Old Town" are surrounded by renovated apartment buildings, designed to blend with their historic surroundings.
An arched window and stone walls, once part of an Elizabethan house.
An historic Elizabethan house with its original leaded windows near the Barbican, Plymouth. It is now a museum.
Brick streets in Plymouth's "Old Town" near the Barbican. Shops, art galleries and restaurants line these streets.
Retirees enjoy ice cream cones during a day out at the Barbican, Plymouth.
A memorial stone and boat filled with flowers is bordered by palm trees on Plymouth Hoe.
Photos by Tara Bradford and David Holmes.