i might have fallen in love with england today

Windsor, Stonehenge and Bath.

At 7 am this morning Kait, Chloe and I set out for Kings Cross (or platform 9 3/4) for our student adventure tour for the day. Thank goodness we had better directions (last weekend Chloe and I missed our Megabus ride to Oxford because of the dumb company’s directions), and timing was on our side we made it! We decided to hit some highlights of England with scheduled tours (sometimes) instead of on our own because it just might be easier to be guided by someone who actually knows what they’re talking about. Thank goodness we picked this tour though because we had the privilege of meeting our tour guide and new best friend, William.

To properly describe William would be nearly impossible unless you get the opportunity to meet him yourself. He’s very factual, practical, photographically talented, candy orientated, and has fabulous style when it comes to accessorizing with umbrellas. I think he also has a thing for Halloween.

I think I actually did a pretty good job with that one…. Kait? Chloe?

Our first stop was Windsor. Beautiful. It was about a 45 minutes trip out to the country to this quaint little town. We walked along the streets filled with pubs and coffee shops, up to the once blocked off Victorian park, and to the gates of the Windsor Castle. The town was amazing. We didn’t get to go in the castle but it was still amazing just to see. The queen spends almost every weekend there (when she’s not gallivanting all over the world like she was this weekend, Australia was her destination).

The streets:

 

The park:

The Castle:

We then ventured down to where the Thames river flows through the city (it also runs through all of London), and got a good look at the MILLIONS of birds that congregate there for the loaves of bread that children chuck at their heads.

This ended the William led tour of the city so of course it was time to seek out what Windsor had to offer in terms of coffee and pastries.

Breakfast:

They also had normal coffee, which they specifically call “Filter Coffee” and charge entirely too much for. But it made me happy 🙂

Next up were some big rocks.

Stonehenge was pretty incredible. From a couple of miles off you could start to see the rocks and it was almost unreal.

We got an audio tour too, which was actually super wordy and hard to follow.

Nevertheless we loved the stones and the fabulous things the blustery day did to our hair.

We had a few minutes to spare so we ventured to the other side and took advantage of the beautiful rollings hills that surrounded us.

Ok we had a lot of fun with the hills….

And back to the bus.

So Bath was our last stop of the day and the perfect way to end our adventure. As soon as we steped off the bus I found my future career and reason why I am destined to live in Bath.

He had a spare giraffe unicycle on the side that I was tempted to jump up on. I think we could make quite the duo. Big bank.

Bath adventure time began! We saw Jane Austen’s house for when she lived in Bath (which we later found out was for a VERY short time….they milk it up pretty well though). Other highlights included the Royal Circus, (fun fact: circus comes from a latin word that means “a square” or other gathering area…. it took us a while to realize everything is called a “circus” here and I have yet to see a single ring master), children’s park, adorable shops, Kait and my first experience with afternoon tea, old men taking over a skate park, many historical churches, and the most gorgeous red ivy.

The streets:

The Royal Circus:

A Historical Church:

Some Gorgeous Red Ivy:

 

While walking around the city Kait and I passed a cafe called The Canary which we saw served tea, so we decided to grab lunch then come back for tea. After further venturing we realized we really only had time to either grab lunch or have tea before we had to meet back, naturally we chose tea. We headed back to the shop to look at the menu outside when two older men asked what we needed as they took a smoke break on the stoop across the street. They happened to own it and took us inside and suggested cream tea and scones. The first old man then picked his favorite Afternoon Blend Tea for us in his favorite green tea-pot, and sat us down at his favorite table that overlooked both the quaint street and his personal artwork. The other man went downstairs to fix our scones (gave us a few free) and served us at our new favorite cafe ever.

Afternoon tea with scones (raisin) served with whipped cream, fresh butter, and the yummiest raspberry jam:

We had to slightly scarf down the tea and scones to make it for our bus, but just before we left the first old man sent us away with some of his favorite tea for us to brew special at home. We love The Canary.

On our way back to the bus we couldn’t help but take one last photo:

Then off we were on our two-hour journey back home to London. Honestly it was an amazing day. Don’t ask me to pick a favorite part because it was all so incredible and incredibly different. But I can truly say I would move to England in an instant. Maybe I’m not as much of a city girl as I thought, or as I’d like to be, because there is something so majestic about the country side. The ride home was enchanting watching the hills roll by filled with cows, horses, chickens, adorable cottages, massive stone Victorian houses, and everything green. It honestly was just incredible. I love my time in London, but today made me want to venture beyond the big city and into the actual heart of England which I think lies in the small towns and villages in the country side. The people moved a little bit slower, the accents were a little bit stronger, and the tea was definitely better.

I’m starting to truly love England, and I cannot wait to see more.

Erin

PS. I can’t actually take credit for any of these photographs from today, because silly me left my memory card in my laptop therefore my camera was useless. Thanks Kait 🙂

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