Chris Packham: wild at heart

Wales is a very rich and compact area, so it has a tremendous amount to offer in terms of natural history. I’m also keen on history, by the way, so I’ve been to all the castles, too.

Chris Packham and family dolphin spotting off the Ceredigion coast near New Quay

Chris Packham dolphin spotting off the Ceredigion coast
My first trips to Wales were on the bus as a teenager, but as soon as I could drive myself, I was away. I remember with great fondness my first trip to Skomer Island off the Pembrokeshire coast, which was just magical. Nearby are Bosherston Lily Ponds which, in summer, is one of the most beautiful places in the UK, without a shadow of a doubt.

One year I spent a summer looking at all the species of orchid I could find, and I went to the Great Orme near Llandudno to look at dark red helleborine, which are very rare.

Razorbill on a rock

Razorbill on Skomer Island, Pembrokeshire
Newborough Warren on Anglesey is one of my favourite places in the UK. Sand dune systems are few and far between these days, and Newborough is a beautiful place full of fantastic plants and birds.

There’s so much more to explore, though. I’d love to have a couple of days  off with my friend [fellow naturalist] Iolo Williams as my guide, so he could take me to all the places I haven’t been.

This article is featured in Wales View 2014, download a pdf version or request a free postal copy

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