London and our Last Hoorah!

Trip Start May 04, 2013
Trip End Jul 07, 2013

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Flag of United Kingdom  , England,
Friday, July 5, 2013

 After leaving the Somme battlefields we headed to Calais to catch a train through the Chunnel back to England. We arrived at Calais at 2:50, purchased tickets - not cheap unless you book ahead online(which we hadn't). After parting with AUS $152 we boarded the train at 3:20 for the 30 minute trip under the English Channel.

Needing a coffee and internet access to find a room for the next couple of nights we headed for the nearest McDonalds as you always get free WiFi there. Our plan was to stay somewhere close to London for the next 2 nights. Chris wanted to buy some parts for his MV Agusta and Greg and I just wanted to rest up somewhere. Les decided to stay with us as we planned to have a day out in London - a city we never tire of and one that Les had never visited before.

We booked in to a Travelodge near Heathrow that we had stayed at before and knew to be close to Hounslow West Tube station for our trip in to the city the next day.

London is a city that we love to visit. There is always something to see and do. It is a city that is easy to get around and we usually find something new to explore. This visit however, we decided to play tour guide for Les - he planned to stay near London for a few extra days, so we gave him an introductory, whistle-stop tour of the city with a taste of how easy it is to use the Underground for transport.

First stop - Piccadilly Circus and a visit to Lilliwhites Sport's Store. A few Manchester United gifts for our grandchildren and it was a quick walk down the road to Trafalgar Square. But where were the pigeons? We soon discovered the reason for their absence!

We then walked towards the Thames, passing Horse Guards Parade Grounds and 10 Downing Street. One thing we noticed was the number of school groups on excursions.

Next stop was Big Ben as it was getting close to noon and we wanted to hear the chimes of this famous clock. Houses of Parliament, Westminster Abbey and The London Eye are all in this vicinity so there was plenty to see. We didn't have a tour of any of these famous landmarks - we had done all on previous visits and Les would come back in the nest few days to explore more. 

Another taste of the Underground took us to The Tower of London and Tower Bridge. We then walked along the banks of the Thames, passed The Belfast, a battle  ship museum, to London Bridge.

Back on the tube again to Harrods. Neither Chris nor Les had been there before so that was enough of an excuse for Kerrie to include this on her itinerary! We spent about an hour wandering around, buying nothing more than scones and coffee. When we came out of the store we could hear a group of people gathered on the footpath singing "Happy Birthday Dear Julian". We soon discovered that the Equador Embassy was just up the road.

We decide it was close to afternoon tea time so we headed towards Buckingham Palace hoping for an invitation to come in for High Tea - no such luck! But we did see the mail being delivered - a step up from the Honda 110cc bikes used at home!

We checked out the Australian Memorial near Hyde Park and then went looking for dinner in Oxford Street and to check out the shops. Les was keen to buy a leather jacket so this was definetely the place to go.

Les commented that he felt like we had been playing Monopoly all day - I guess London is a bit like that!

All that was left for us now on this trip was to get the bike back to Felixstowe to be shipped home. Before we parted ways we all rode to The Ace Cafe for one last meal together. We would meet up again when we pick the bikes up in Brisbane sometime in September.

Have we started planning the next trip I hear you ask? Of course we have!

2015 - House swap for 4 months to Glasgow.

Bring it on!

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Cath on

Sad this is the last blog, however will see u in Glasgow in 2015;)

Bean on

Been great reading the blog, have a safe trip home.

Jo on

Enjoyed reading each entry. Will the next blog be written in Glaswegian? Safe travelling home.

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