Trip to London plus . . . where?

Old Jan 28th, 2007, 07:40 AM
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Trip to London plus . . . where?

My husband and I are planning our second overseas trip for late april(in 2003 we did London,Paris,Florence). We're going to London and nearby areas for 4-5 days (we loved London!), then another area for 4-5 days. Due to ease of travel (we're not real confident travelers), thinking of going via Chunnel to either Belgium (Brussels, Brugges, etc.) OR norther France (Lille, etc.) Also, we considered Edinborough but the travel book info didn't exactly grab us.
Any comments or suggestions to help us decide? THANK YOU!
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Old Jan 28th, 2007, 08:15 AM
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Edinburgh, without a doubt !! I had never thought on visiting, but a friend of mine happened to get a job there and I visited her in May...I got in love with the city !! I cannot explain it but it has some kind of magic...I won't lose the chance to go back if I can so maybe you would like to give it a chance
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Old Jan 28th, 2007, 08:22 AM
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The Eurostar is certainly an option to Belgium or northern France, but you can also take a train to York and spend a few days up there. It's a lovely/historical city and the surrounding countryside is equally lovely. High speed trains take about 2 hours from London to York.
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Old Jan 28th, 2007, 08:34 AM
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Hi, Eliz --

With only 8-10 days, I'd stick to the UK and minimize your travel times between places. Pick places accessible by train to lessen the stress. You don't want to spend half your time in the car, moving from hotel to hotel and generally feeling rushed. Take your time and soak it up.

Edinburgh is a lovely place, I'd definitely recommend it. Once you see it, you'll see why. Plus, it's easy to get to from London. You could spend the whole time there or even take a day trip to Stirling or Glasgow, via train. Glasgow could use 2 days, if you're into art/architecture, for sure. But you have to read a bit and see what floats your boat.

Or, you could visit Edinburgh for a couple of days, but then, on your way back to London, stop by York for two days, which is also on the train line.

My other suggestion would be to take the train to Bath. Bath is a beautiful Georgian town that's very walkable and you can see everything easily in a day. There are Roman baths there, as well as incredible 18th-century architecture. Plus a beautiful Abbey.

From Bath, if you don't want to drive, you can take an organized day-long tour (Mad Max gets good reviews, though I've never taken it) of Stonehenge, Avebury (which I think is better than Stonehenge) and Lacock (a National Trust town with an interesting photography museum that's picture-postcard pretty). They pick you up downtown and have you back around dinnertime.

Wells, with its stunning cathedral, and Glastonbury, with its Abbey ruins and atmospheric Tor, are both close to Bath and accessible via local bus.

Bon vonage!
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Old Jan 28th, 2007, 08:38 AM
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Southern Trains will give you unlimited travel from London to the Southeast for £10 per day. Brighton, Hastings, or as far west as Portsmouth (historic shipyard). See here: http://www.southernrailway.com/main.php?page_id=122
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Old Jan 28th, 2007, 08:50 AM
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Thanks for the comments thus far ... seems I'm encouraged to focus on the UK, and to give Edinburgh (I'll be more careful with my spelling) a second look, which I will do.
I must say - I've reseached Bruges further since my post and it may be calling my name!!
I will welcome any additional suggestions or comments. THANKS
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Old Jan 28th, 2007, 09:04 AM
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Eliz -

Bruges is truly amazing, it's really like stepping back in time. It's quite a bit touristy, especially around the main square, but in the mornings and evening when the daytrippers go home, it's lovely. Canals, incredible buildings, nice little pubs with excellent beer...it's great.

If you decide to head to Brussels via the Eurostar, I believe you can take a train from there right into Bruges.

You could easily spend a few days there. If you're going in late April and the weather's good, rent a bike in Bruges and pedal to Damme, a tiny village along a picturesque canal where you can have lunch and pedal back. Of course, since it's Belgium, the path is very flat, but it's really fun and relaxing. All of the bike shops will give you a little map on how to get there.

You'll love it. Let us know what you decide.
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Old Jan 28th, 2007, 09:08 AM
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I strongly recommend Edinburgh. It's very nice. I liked Brussels, but most people find it to be a little blah.
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Old Jan 28th, 2007, 09:56 AM
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Amsterdam !
 
Old Jan 28th, 2007, 10:42 AM
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Whichever destination you choose, if you don't already have your plane tickets, consider flying into London and home from the other destination. Saves money and time backtracking.

Bruges looks appealing, although I have not bee. I have visited Edinburgh and York, and they would make a great combination given the number of days you have available. 2 hours by train to York, which is really wonderful, and another 2 to Edinburgh. Lots to do and see there; I wouldn't even recommend a day trip (but Stirling and Glasgow are each easy and provide very different experiences from each other.)
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