Returning to London Tourism is a real pleasure. We have to recognize that in our first London getaway 2007, taking advantage (as always) of any adventure opportunity as soon as we hunt for cheap flights, we discover a city that astonished us well beyond our expectations. Today we will return to what is possibly the cosmopolitan city par excellence ... cosmopolitan pearl.
A new day dawns in Bath. We may not forget in a long time the fantastic day we spent yesterday in the company of our traveling friends, the times we travel the world and the laughter we miss (although we barely hit our eyes, haha). Today we will head to the elegance made city, Bristol, from which we are separated just 20 km and that will be a point of return for part of the expedition. As David has a car, once finished our "peaso" english breakfast (3.75 GBP two), Maka, Eva and David leave with their bags on one side and Sele, Paula and Isaac go on the other. Ali and Victor are already there waiting for us.
Bath is a dead city at this time of Sunday. It didn't take long to get to the Bath Spa Station but ... !! There are no trains! They have replaced the train service with some commuter buses that pass every so often and that take us to move !! 45 minutes !!. We have to improvise although we don't have many options if we want to take advantage of the morning. After a small bargain we agreed to GBP 7.5 each for go to Bristol Temple Meads station, where we have been.
By the way, that the Bristol Temple Meads station !! is one of the most beautiful stations we have ever seen !! (next to the one we saw in Kanazawa on DAY 11 of the trip to Japan 2008). And for curious people, taxis and their taxi drivers ...
Bristol is one of the administrative centers of the southwest of England, and its prosperity, unlike Bath, is associated with its commercial port. "Maka, where are you going? Oh, you're already kicking ... Let's keep a high peak?" Indeed, we joined the group in the incredible church of St. Mary Redclifle, a Christian church since 1115. The whole group is already there, Ali and Victor have joined, that when you travel in a group it is difficult to be intimate with everyone equally but they are a couple that as they continue like this they will go around the world three times and with the same race is seen visiting someone else, hehehe. "Sele, more churches?"
It is in full mass. In fact it is the First Mass in English attended by Paula and Isaac In our life and here is a show, especially for its organ, one of the best in the country, built by Harrison & Harrison in 1912 with !! 4350 tubes !!
The entrance has been made by the North Portico, built in the early fourteenth century with a particular hexagonal shape and whose niches were the former Kings of England. Upon entering we see again beautiful vaults that have not abandoned us in all these days, here even covered with gold leaf and "supposed" with even "little green men" (do not ask us ...). There is also an area for science.
We cross the river Avon again to enjoy the Harborside, a pleasant walk (especially today) that brings together a multitude of people enjoying all kinds of restaurants, bars, shops and hotels.
We will return later to this area but previously we will approach the last remarkable building from the architectural point of view of this getaway, the Bristol Cathedral, an Anglican church founded between 1140 and 1888 initially as an abbey and with constant renovations and extensions.
We will not go into depth to describe the Cathedral, as we have accumulated them, but possibly the highlight is to find features of German Gothic architecture on its facades, which seems to be that it is not uncommon to find it in the United Kingdom.
They also highlight their skeletons of vaults and, in the back, a small cemetery with important characters
We walk back to the river bank. We are particularly curious about these particular boats in the form of "mini submarine" throughout all the swamps. There many people are doing their lives today, taking the sol. Having a little picnic or reading. It's an image we didn't expect from a city like Bristol, "Right Eva?"
The city has a number of points of interest that taking time seem interesting, such as the Clifton Suspension Bridge, a suspension bridge suspended over the river 40 minutes walk, the Georgiana House, a house of a former sugar merchant, or the Castle park, a relatively new park that keeps archaeological remains. However, the day accompanies enjoying the city and its people. "Girls? Exaltation of friendship? !! But the beers have not started yet !!"
We separated temporarily and while Eva, David, Ali and Victor go in search of our visits, Sele, Paula, Maka and Isaac we return along the riverbank, by the Harborside, which is still very lively, and where we can observe in the background the Brunel's SS Great Britain, one of the largest ships of its time (dating from 1843) that today can be visited. We also had an ice cream and some soft drinks (4.15 GBP)
It is perhaps atrocious to think that from here the main English expeditions of slave trade began. Between 1700 and 1807, more than 2000 ships left the port of Bristol with a series of goods route West Africa where they were exchanged for slaves. This human cargo was in turn transported to the Caribbean where they sold Africans to plantations in exchange for sugarcane. !! What we have been (and continue to be) capable of doing the human race !! This business triangle Bristol - Africa - Caribbean brought great fortunes to the city.
In search of a very typical place, we enter the Bristol Old Vic, the old area that is surrounded by the oldest buildings and the most winding cobbled streets in the city. !! We love these buildings !!
We have gone to find another exquisite decoration pub, absolutely picturesque and thought to the last detail. There we rest next to a fireplace and take the opportunity to make the last meal (15 GBP) of this getaway together
The rest of the group joins us. It's time to say goodbye, those that nobody likes. Friends, from Travel KeysIt has been a real pleasure to share this getaway with you, and it will surely be a before and after in future destinations. We carry you in our hearts, the dreams and illusions of Sele (you are a crack), Eva's joy and enthusiasm (I hope you fulfill that Antarctic dream soon), the whole heart and the sympathy of Maka (You are an uncle, sorry,! fucking!), want to travel from Ali and Victor (you don't have it much in summer, hehe) and the David's kindness and closeness (Thank you very much for guiding us, hopefully you fulfill your wishes of Australia). See you all soon! Have a good flight back to Madrid.
Once we say goodbye (sadly) to our colleagues, it is time to head to the capital, London, since like the past DAY 1 TRAVEL, since there are no flights from A Coruña to Bristol without going through the obligatory Madrid and we were leaving the price thing, we finally opted for some direct flights to London and thus take advantage of today to re-discover one of the cities that we love most, especially Paula. We will be separated by a journey of about 2 hours and 190 km. Tickets (28 GBP each), postcards (2.80 GBP) and ... Cabezadita?
zZzZzZ zZzZ ... "wake up, wake up, we're already arriving ..." With the historic London Paddigton station in the background we open our eyes again. Today it is already a completely modernized complex, with rail connections, express services to the airport, metro, etc ...
As we did in our previous stay, we will stay at the hospital Balmoral House Hotel (COMPLETE ARTICLE ON ACCOMMODATION HERE) in a quiet area just 5 minutes from the station. !! Thanks Ruth again for the recommendation on your day !! (By the way, !!! PRIMICIA !!, the SECUOIAS Ruth and Juve (family CHAVETAS.ES), they come with us in the GREAT summer trip from August 13 to August 28, 2011. Destiny? You breathe a bit in the atmosphere ...)
We check-in, leave our bags and ... go for the Metro to Lancaster (whose tickets valid for one day are given by the Galician owner of the hotel).
The London West End, and for that we get off at the Holborn station to go down the street and get into !! COVENT GARDEN !!, one of the main leisure and shopping districts
London continues as usual. It's Sunday and people fill its streets. One with a turban, another speaking Chinese, Spanish, German, Japanese and many Indian voices are heard ... We have not seen any place with such a mixture of people passing from side to side, making their lives alien to intercultural problems raised in other parts of the planet .
Covent Garden It is one of the most charming places in London. A lot of people fill their bars, their stands and their shops ...
We continue through the streets towards Leicester square, which is closed on these dates, but does not stop hosting multiple pubs for admission, theaters, shops and people walking through Lisle Street. We are in the center of London cinema. Here we can also see corners that are true leisure temples.
Now we go west to reach the main intersection of the city, the Shibuya equivalent (DAY 12 of the trip to Japan 2008) or the New York Times Square. Here we can observe how traffic and traditional taxis cross patiently. Also red mailboxes, double-decker buses icons of the city, the fountain of horses and megastores of souvenirs and gifts (5 GBP).
We are in Piccadilly Circus, named in countless songs and hundreds of movies. Here where you can see the most diverse street artists around the main fountain, today without water. Where thousands of travelers and tourists take their pictures with those huge luminous signs in the background. It is a unique urban landscape, and we will not be less.
Without entering the main streets of Regent Street and Osford Street, fashion and design centers far from our pockets, we turn north again, we go to the Soho. We enter a residential area of rich and poor, clubs, pubs, restaurants and bars. We arrive at a large entrance arch that welcomes the famous London Chinatown. Impressive is to observe signs and lights in Chinese that invite you to enter supermarkets, hairdressers, restaurants and all kinds of Chinese businesses concentrated in three streets. It is an impressive nighttime colorful, as it is amazing to see this magical world within London itself
We have practically kicked all of London's West-End. We have the "eroded" feet of this "weekend traveler". It's time to change third and say goodbye to the Islands with a zenith (GBP 30) in an italian (If we can speak wonders of the shops, the atmosphere, the churches or the pubs, not the English food that arrives for 2 days).
The We do it again in Metro directly from Piccadilly Circus to Paddigton. The Metro works in luxury, although it looks somewhat damaged. It wouldn't hurt a "face cleaning." Especially price. However, the London underground has been running since !! 1863 !!
Today is March 20, 2011. What does this mean? Than today is officially spring. The day has been more than spring and not less the night, which dismisses us with a beautiful full moon, of those that Paula and Isaac like so much to communicate when we are far from each other, and so much "told us" in the trip to Antarctica 2009 Thousands upon thousands of kilometers.
The day has been long and it's time to try to sleep for a few hours before saying goodbye once again to British lands, which although economically still expensive for the Spanish visitor, low-cost companies such as Ryanair (which has just recovered its link from Santiago and of course from Madrid) put us closer and closer . Who is not encouraged to spend a few days in the cradle of the industrial revolution, of great writers, of good opera ...? !! We will be back !!
Isaac and Paula, photo of Bristol, but from London (United Kingdom)
EXPENSES OF THE DAY: 126.70 GBP (approximately 154.77 EUR) and GIFTS: 5 GBP (approx 6.1 EUR)