With few signs of summer on it's way, and feeling the need to get out, I decided to look up somewhere within my own town to go and explore that I haven't yet been to. That might sound silly, but how many of us don't actually explore what is right under our noses? In my case, I live right out in the sticks, in a little village in the middle of a farming area. Our village has a population of about 3000 people, but we live several km out from the village, and literally have nothing but one house on either side of us, and a few houses and farms dotted along our lane. As for the village itself, we have a convenience shop, two snack bars (neither of which have I ever seen open!), a florist (also never seen it open), and a curiosity shop that also serves as a parcel pick up/drop off location for the post office. That's it! So I had to admit defeat and extend my search area a little, but without entering the surrounding villages. I discovered Waterloopbos. A small forest within the polder that was once used for Delta works. Many of the flood defences and various dams are now in ruins but because of it's significance in the management of flood defences in the Netherlands, it is now protected and has become a national monument. There are several walking trails through the forest and former delta works, with there being something suitable for all abilities.
Upon looking up places to see, Waterloopbos had often come up on internet searches, but after seeing big lumps of concrete, I discarded the possibility of visiting. Until now! Most of the former delta works ruins aren't very picturesque, but the forest itself is quite interesting. The best part is, it's fairly quiet! That is bliss for us dog walkers, and photographers alike. My only regret was that I didn't take any camera gear on this visit, so I had to make do simply with my camera and kit lens. No tripod or any other lenses. However, it has certainly made it onto my list of places to revisit as there were plenty of plants and bugs to snap, and my dog thoroughly enjoyed himself too! I'm thinking autumn, and to look for mushrooms in particular!
With summer around the corner, try setting yourself a challenge to visit somewhere in your local town/village that you haven't been to before! I wouldn't mind betting there's quite a few places you haven't even thought of going to! Have fun :)