|BeenThere-DoneThat||The Unofficial Guide to Great Britain|
|More information about Chester, Cheshire.||Location map|
We were in Chester from a Friday afternoon until Monday morning. I did not like driving in Chester as it is very busy and the road system, to the newcomer, seems rather complex even though my wife was navigating with the aid of a street plan. I did, however, only have to drive into the hotel car park when we arrived and out of the city when we left as all our sightseeing was done on foot. It's a compact city.
The Chester Tourist Information Centre is next to the Town Hall entrance in Northgate Street opposite
the cathedral and offers an accommodation booking service, local ticket sales and bookings for National
Express Coaches & guided walks.
Chester Tourist Information Centre
Northgate Street, Chester, Cheshire
Telephone: (0)1244 4021111
There is also the Chester Visitor Centre in Vicar's Lane near the Roman Amphitheatre.
Chester Visitor Centre
Vicar's Lane, Chester, Cheshire CH1 1QX
Telephone: (0)1244 402111
If you email for printed information remember to include your home address.
Chester could be divided into four categories - the city and it's buildings, the city wall, the river and finally the canal. I have categorised the pages into those divisions.
The parts in which you will have an interest lay mostly within the city walls. There are many buildings of interest - especially The Rows which effectively double the number of shops available in the area so lock up your credit cards. The city centre is a pleasant place but very popular and because of that you will find it crowded. It is, however, compact so you should not have trouble negotiating it on foot. There are lots of nooks and crannies to explore.
The City Walls.
The city walls encircle the city almost without a break. There is a gap starting just past Bridgegate going past County Hall and the Castle, across Grovsenor Road, to the start of the racecourse. The next section of the wall runs along the edge of the race course but for most of that length you will feel as though you are just walking on the pavement alongside the road. The wall, nonetheless, is still below on your left going north. Near the end of the race course the wall rises above 'normal' gound level once more just before it turns east. The total length of the wall walk is about two miles making for an easy, and very pleasant, exploration.
The River Dee curls around the south and west of the city on it's way from Wales to the sea near Liverpool. It passes close to the city wall on the southern side and has an attractive tree-lined promenade called The Groves. There are a number of river cruisers which offer trips up river. They can't go any further down river because of the weir.
The Shropshire Union Canal goes through the northern part of the city and, like the river, runs along by the city wall passing through quite a deep cutting around Northgate for part of the way. There is also a set of three locks by the north-west corner of the city wall and it is quite interesting to watch boats work their way through.
This 66 mile canal runs from Ellesmere Port to Wolverhampton and is really a canal of two parts. North of Nantwich, the canal, built originally as the Chester Canal, follows the gentle rolling landscape of western Cheshire. The southern half, however is a remarkable feat of engineering with long embankments, deep cuttings and rather grand bridges.
It passed right by our hotel and we could see, occasionally, passing narrowboats. On one day two boats moored overnight in this section.