Why not England in the July or August?

Old Mar 18th, 2003, 01:01 PM
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Why not England in the July or August?

This message is directed to Mavis, and every other travelwise soul who would care to hand out advice to the novice. Mavis mentioned that doing England in July and August is not suggested. Why? Weather? Too hot? The annual convention of bug eyed Americans? I am scheduled to go to Sussex in August, a trip I have waited 40 some years to take. Wanting to see some of Shakespeare's country. Hope I haven't scheduled incorrectly.

Thanks for all advice freely offered.
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Old Mar 18th, 2003, 01:13 PM
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The crowds will be terrible. Not only American vacationers but ones from other European countries as well. Long lines. On the positive side weather will be very nice but the heat is nothing comparable to that of the US. We were there once when it was 82 degrees and were miserable. I am used to hot weather (live in LV) but this was unlike any other heat we've experienced. Going in the summer is fine you may just have to wait some and expect lots and lots of other vacationers. Along the streets near Shakespeare's birthplace you'll find some great tea & scones. Have a wonderful time = )
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Old Mar 18th, 2003, 01:59 PM
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If crowds and more crowds and a lack of airconditioning are not a concern then England is fine for July/August. Being from the mid-Atlantic region, 90 degree heat with muggies is no big deal to me (BTW cnmiranda, LV heat is a nice dry heat, you probably felt the 82 degree 70% humidity type heat which equals a heat index of 92.) Not that Britain should have scorching weather but heatwaves can and do occur and there are hotels with AC if needed. I've been to GB in both months and try to avoid the major tourist sites, opting for some of the lesser known museums and historical buildings. I would never let crowds and weather deter me from visiting a great town. Oh to be barefoot in Regents park after traveling in a sweatbox of the Tube...
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Old Mar 18th, 2003, 02:56 PM
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Bookworm, I'm certainly not a "travelwise soul"; however our first international trip was to England @14 years ago come August, and yes we went in August. Actually, I wore a light blazer or long sleeve sweater most days & didn't miss the extra-cold USA air conditioning at all. Ok, maybe the Tube was stuffy at times but that's not what I remember. And there were lines at Anne's cottage -- which I remember only because of the prior post. I do remember the time spent enjoying Shakespeare's garden (his house or his in-laws? memory fails me!)and we two were the only ones in the garden. I do remember the fantastic production without intermissions or text cuts of Macbeth at the theatre there & Lady Macbeth being an 18-year-old, not an old hag, as usually cast! I do remember the great flowers at Regents Park, Hyde Park, St. James etal. I too had dreamed of seeing these sites since I read my first Shakespeare and biography of Eliz I as a teenager. Go and enjoy!
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Old Mar 18th, 2003, 03:21 PM
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Hi - I'm Mavis aka rickmav. If I'd waited 40 years for a trip to England I'd go no matter what. As the other respondents have pointed out, however, it can be very hot and muggy and wherever you go there will be lots of people. Things can be more expensive, your photos contain all kinds of people you don't remember and since the British rarely have screens on their windows you may have to put up with flies and wasps in your bedroom at night. But 40 years - you must go and you must have a good time.

Some things I might suggest to make it better. Try not to be out whenever everyone else is. Go for your walk in the early morning, have dinner as late as you can. The National Trust, in their guidebook, recommends what days are better and worse at the different famous houses and estates - take their advice. Consider visiting some of the smaller gardens and estates, too. Take a picnic lunch if you are driving so you can pull over when the roads get crazy and take a break. Bring lots of comfortable clothes, cotton, loose-fitting and fill a bottle with water every day to take with you to drink. For some reason if I brush my teeth and wash my face in cold water and reapply my make-up during the day it helps me beat the humidity. Instead of regretting all the other tourists, seek out those that aren't from your country - live vicariously through them as to what they see in England/what they love/why they came. Pick smaller B&Bs where you won't be disturbed by small parties in the middle of the night or, even better, rent yourself a self-catering cottage where you can retreat. But most of all, be determined to enjoy every minute of it, look with different eyes at the world around you, keep a diary so you can relive the smells and tastes and just have fun. If I can help with any specific recommendations about Sussex or Shakespeare's country let me know ([email protected]).
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Old Mar 18th, 2003, 03:28 PM
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Lol Spongebob, love your name - I love Spongebob squarepants! I grew up on the east coast too so I'm used to the heat - but that day was unlike any other heat I've ever experienced. It was May and the warmest temp for that day in recorded history. And our hotels air conditioning was broken! We slept with all the windows open. Looking back it was lots of fun and a memory we won't forget.
Anyhoo, again, have a great time Bookworm!
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Old Mar 18th, 2003, 04:35 PM
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If you have a choice ask for a room with the morning sun (evening shade). It makes a big difference if your room is shaded in the afternoon.

Also, Aster House on Sumner Place in Kensington has individual room AC.
Old Mar 18th, 2003, 05:37 PM
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I've been in England several times in August and it's never been remotely hot at all. In fact, it's been chillier than I would have liked for August, as I needed rain gear, jackets, etc. I'm not sure it has ever been in the 80s when I was there in August, but it wasn't humid to me.

August is just a peak tourist month in comparison to others, but if that's when you can go, I wouldn't worry about it. I deliberately planned a trip to London last August because I wanted to get away from the heat where I live (Wash DC), and it was the best choice for climate in August from places I was considering. I had a very nice time. I had been there before so didn't do some of the main tourist things, but I did a few and crowds weren't that bad to me.
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Old Mar 19th, 2003, 04:18 AM
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Bookworm, don't let these folks alarm you. I've been to England in July and August and it's just not as horrible as they say. London can be either chilly or hot and humid during those months, but it's still more comfortable than most of the US at those times! Sure, those are busier months for tourists but if you plan sensibly (get to the popular places just before their opening hours, etc.) you'll have a wonderful time.

P.S. I've never had a fly or wasp in my bedroom, despite the lack of screens. I don't know how they do it!
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Old Mar 19th, 2003, 04:26 AM
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>P.S. I've never had a fly or wasp in my bedroom, despite the lack of screens. I don't know how they do it!<

It is a matter of proper English breeding and upbringing.
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Old Mar 19th, 2003, 02:02 PM
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Bookworm- August is definitely more crowded than say November in England but I wouldn't change my plans because of it. Being from the midwest I also didn't find the weather too hot. I wish that were all the hotter it got here at home. Have a great trip! Loved Stratford.
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