Two weeks and a tour of Great Britain, wow! It sounds like one of those greatest trips of a lifetime, but looking at the map closely, this great nation is huge and comprises Scotland, Northern Ireland, Wales and England not to mention the many isles that need to be reached by ferry .
But my guests – my sister and her family coming from Dubai – have only two weeks to spare and they prefer that this be more of a relaxing holiday rather than chasing flights and hopping from one hotel room to another. So I was left with a challenge of drawing an itinerary that is not too physically exhausting nor mentally stressful, at the same time giving them a taste of the United Kingdom in all her glory and legendary eccentricity.
In short, I just chose one representative city each from Scotland and Wales but had to cancel the Northern Ireland leg, here represented by Belfast, because judging by the news reports, the situation there was getting unstable. Then few cities from the Midlands until we wound our way back to London.
Let’s start the trip!
Coming from Leicester in the Midlands, I, playing tourist guide for the next two weeks, arrived n London St Pancras International to the sight of many Robins gathering in front of the ticket counter. If my hunch is right, there would only be one Batman – he’s nowhere to be found though – and he would be the future groom! Yes, I’m pretty sure they are going to a Stag Party! And I couldn’t let them go without a souvenir photo and thankfully, they welcomed my request with toothpaste-ad looking smiles!
This is the flat which was to be our home for four days. It is a 2-bedroom, 2-bathroom property located about a hundred meters from Liverpool Street Station and bordering The City. For five people – my sister’s family and me and H – it’s still cheaper and more comfortable than a hotel! The wifi connection is a bonus!
For my guests, what a perfect day to arrive in London than the last working day of the week! It’s the chance to observe the British’ love for their pub which takes it peak on a Friday night! Here, grown-ups congregate just outside a pub with their glass of beer. This sight goes on till 11pm when the establishment closes for the night. In that case, if they are still on a party mood, they could head straight to the Clubs!
And speaking of pubs, a trip to the UK is not complete without getting inside one. It’s not only to try their lager, it’s also to get a feel of the ambience which is a bit noisy so forget about making serious discussions about work or love. Just enjoy yourself and observe the classic interior decoration, unless it’s a modern pub you want to go to.
From our fourth floor flat, we could see the Saturday street market going on. Great for impromptu shopping for designer-looking bags, clothes and souvenirs, but the only hitch was, it was darn too noisy the previous night as the sellers had to wheel their metallic clothes hangers onto the road, creating sounds that can drive you bananas!