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TR: solo again in London and Wales - more art, history, & literature

TR: solo again in London and Wales - more art, history, & literature

Old Aug 22nd, 2013, 08:40 AM
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This is a terrific trip report. I have been to London and rarely think about returning. However, your report makes me want to catch the next flight out to see the parts of London that I have not seen. Thank you!
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Old Aug 22nd, 2013, 06:04 PM
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Hi KL467,

Thank you so much. Please do return to London. Granted, it does not have the charms of Paris or the splendor of Rome , but the city resonates with history, art, and literary associations unparalleled in my view for the English speaking world in particular.

There are also the gritty experiences of WWI and WWII to explore, particularly at the Churchill War Rooms which I had visited a few years back.

The problem is that once you have been there – you want to go back!
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Old Aug 22nd, 2013, 06:15 PM
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Enjoyed this report enormously.

As to London not having "the charms of Paris or the splendor of Rome" -- well, that may be so. It is, however, a powerful modern city -- the only real rival to New York, in my opinion; New York with history, as it were.
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Old Aug 22nd, 2013, 06:44 PM
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LDT,
I did visit the Churchill War Rooms in 2008 and loved it. I like history and wish I knew as much as you do. I love the way you write!

Susan001,
I have been on four Rick Steves tours, and they are GREAT. I went on one of his France trips in 2007. It has been the best of my nine trips to Europe. I hope you get Patrick Vidal as a tour guide! The best ever!!
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Old Aug 22nd, 2013, 08:30 PM
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Hi KL 467, I was hoping for Patrick, but recently found out, I have Rolinka, who has also received quite a bit of praise. Hoping for a wonderful adventure.
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Old Aug 23rd, 2013, 09:04 AM
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Hi Fra Diavolo,

Thanks so much. I have always enjoyed your posts through the years.

I see what you mean about New York. I have enjoyed seeing the modern buildings in London in recent years – like the SHARD. I also would like to visit the new City Hall on the Southbank.

Love New York too….
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Old Aug 24th, 2013, 04:21 AM
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Hi Sue001, so when is your trip? I know that we spoke about it before....
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Old Aug 24th, 2013, 06:56 AM
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Latedaytrveler: What wonderful trip report - it is so beautifully written.

I live in London, and next week I am doing a 'Staycation': Planning days in London, Bath and Oxford. You have inspired me to revisit old haunts and explore new ones.

Many thanks indeed.

Best regards... Ger
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Old Aug 24th, 2013, 08:30 AM
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Hi LateDay, I leave two weeks from today! I'm still going through the 'what clothes to pack' dilemma. I carry only a small suitcase, and will most likely be in varying climates.
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Old Aug 24th, 2013, 01:31 PM
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Hi OReilly,


You wrote: “I live in London, and next week I am doing a 'Staycation.'” That’s sounds great to me. There is just so much to see and do in London!


I spent a great deal of time reviewing my options last winter, but still could not get to everything that I wanted to do. I always think that each trip to Europe at this point is the last, but who knows? Have you decided what places you would like to revisit in the great city?


Thanks for your kind words…. 
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Old Aug 30th, 2013, 09:37 AM
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Hello LTD,

It's been a long time since I last visited this thread of yours. I've been extraordinarily busy during the past 3 weeks with no time to catch up on Fodors. However let me thank you once again for your delightful trip report and post-trip musings. Having been to many of the places you visited in London and Wales, I could identify with much of your views and viewpoints. Thanks to having family and friends across England who I visit quite frequently, I hope to visit some of the places you've mentioned that have intrigued me.

My 'public' school education in Africa was a memorable experience, and has actually influenced my work these days in many ways. If you'd care to know more about either, you're welcome to contact me at [email protected] and I tell you more.

You asked about my travel plans for this year. Having been to Paris and elsewhere in France, as well as London and Wales in 2011 and 2012 (mainly for education purposes), this year will be an Ontarian staycation for me. After winter breaks in March, I've managed to fit in a fun camping trip to our Northern wilds in June, and just returned from a lovely 3 day break in Ottawa, our nation's capital last weekend. Other Fall trips will include short weekends away to Stratford and Niagara-on-the-Lake, for theatre, wine and food festivals. If time and budget allow, a return to France and Wales may be in the cards for next Spring... but we'll see.

Looking forward to your next adventures.
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Old Aug 30th, 2013, 11:23 AM
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Oooops... I meant 'LDT'
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Old Aug 31st, 2013, 03:46 AM
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Hi Mathieu,

Thank you again for your very kind words. I would enjoy learning more about your life experiences and travel after your public school training in Africa. Will contact you anon.


As of now, I have no plans for travel in the near future. But who knows? I enjoy writing up these jaunts and expect to print them out with pics from Google Images of the places I am describing to be given to my two grandchildren so they can see where “Nan” has been when planning their own travels in later years. I am not very good at photography.

In the summer of 2012 I took a very similar trip to Paris and Normandy which I wrote up on Fodors. Same format – five nights in a hotel in the center of Paris with a seven night tour in northwest France. Of course, the trip report contains my musings on history, art, and literature. I am not into fine dining or shopping but I enjoy the experiences of others in these venues on this board.


http://www.fodors.com/community/euro...and-beyond.cfm

Again, Mathieu, thanks for following along….
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Old Sep 8th, 2013, 01:14 PM
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Thanks to Lee Ann, I just found this wonderful TR, latedaytraveler, and have booked the Strand for the London portion of my April 2014 trip. As with yours, mine will be to see places I missed before: the Tates (closed when we were there) and St. Martin in the Fields (we got hung up in the wonder National Gallery—hope to eat there). I’ll also pray for cool weather! No AC at all?

How cool to visit British Library for a lecture. Regarding Churchill, may I recommend <u>Eleanor and Harry</u>? Letters between Mrs. Roosevelt and Pres. Truman, compiled by Steve Neal. Churchill is mentioned in the post-WWII talks with a bit of exasperation.

Is the Shard the one that melted the Jaguar? Mayor Johnson was on David Letterman-don’t know if it was before or after Mitt’s comments.

Your description of the Queen’s Garden Party revelers gave me a giggle. Don’t know if I’ll have time for the Queen’s Gallery loo though. LOL Will def. make time for Portrait Gallery. Have you visited the one in D.C. with the contiguous Gallery of American Art? Very nice to visit.

I loved the Windsor Castle tour. When we were there, they were still restoring after the fire.

Rants to that single supplement. I have booked this through Orbitz and, knock wood, no problems. Their Strand rate was good. It will be my 3rd through them: San Francisco; and Menton/Lyon but my first solo.

A wonderful report as was your Paris one (which I enjoyed very much!)


BTW, What type of Oyster card did you purchase? Pay as you go or one to top off? Thanks!
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Old Sep 10th, 2013, 05:54 PM
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Hi TDudette,

Nice to see your post. I think you will enjoy the STRAND PALACE, not fancy but clean and soooo convenient for seeing the sites. The hotel was fully booked when I was there. I divided my days into two parts with a respite in between adventures which is possible given the hotel’s location.


Thanks for recommending ELEANOR AND HARRY which I will definitely check out. Interesting what you said about Churchill – of course, he adored FDR, but I believe that Eleanor had reservations about the PM.


Glad I visited THE SHARD. I read recently, however, that they are really having a tough time filling up office space – such a grandiose undertaking. Who knows? Personally, I prefer the LONDON EYE for a “birds eye” view of the city. I also get a kick out of Mayor Boris Johnson. I often check him out on Youtube. Good for a laugh, but he makes sense all the same.

Re: the Oyster Card. They can be purchased at any Tube or train station. I put £35 on mine. You can choose an open-ended arrangement too. Each time you “swipe,” you will see what how much you have used. I was left with a bit of change but didn’t have my passport with me when I tried to redeem it so remainder was forfeited – no biggie. As I said in my report, it was the first time that I took public transportation in all the trips I have taken to Europe, except for Paris where I found the Metro very intimidating. Actually I was quite proud of myself going from the Tube, to the train, to the bus. Oyster card definitely worth it – cheaper than individual tickets and so convenient. I had studied the Tube map on line and planned my excursions in advance.

Did you say that you are going solo? Good for you. Just London? Where and how long? I hear you about the single supplement, but what can you do? Actually, I find the price less onerous in Europe than in the States and I love the privacy. I look forward to your trip report.


Thanks for following along on my journey. I would never get tired of London…
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