Tag Archives: tours

Windsor, Stonehenge and Bath

Today I took the first of two full-day tours of areas outside of London. The tour today was a tour of Windsor castle, the primary residence of the Queen; Stonehenge, the oldest relic in the U.K., and the city of Bath and the Roman baths therewithin. If this entry is less than coherent, keep in mind that it has been a long day and I am writing it while sitting in the hotel lounge, having already consumed a shot of Jose Cuervo Gold (no Patron, I’m afraid) and half a pint of Old Specked Hen.

And for some reason, I have a sneaking suspicion that the majority of the comments on this post, if any, will focus on my consumption of alcohol, and not the fascinating places I visited. But I could be wrong.

Come join me on this journey

The Plan

I was up early this morning and worked out what I was going to do the rest of my stay. I worked with the hotel concierge, who was incredibly helpful, and who made many of the arrangements, but try as he might (and he tried three different places), all the day tours to Paris for Saturday were booked. So, I am still trying to decide what to do on Saturday. In the meantime, here is the plan for the rest of my stay:

Thursday (today): I am taking a bus tour of London. It’s The Big Bus and it is what the hotel recommended as the best of the bus tours of London. It’s one of those tours that you can hop and and hop off to see the various sights. Aside from doing the complete tour, the sights that I am definitely going to see are: The Tower of London, London Dungeon, and the London Eye. Depending on my schedule, I may also try the one of the three walks that are included. In the evening, I am probably going to do the “Sinister London” tour, which, among other things, includes Jack the Ripper and the East End. This tour includes a “supper” option at a riverside pub with a traditional British menu, so at least I’ll get to try some of the stuff.

Friday: the forecast is for rain tomorrow, so I was planning to make tomorrow a museum day (as I’m sure everyone else is). Museums that I’d definitely like to see are: The British Museum (since half of Greece and Rome is contained therewithin), the Natural History Museum, and the Science Museum.

Saturday: as I said I was trying to go to Paris on Saturday, but all of the tours that I could find were booked up. I guess it’s a popular destination. I’m considering other options as this point, but it will definitely be something outside of London (Windsor, Bath and Stonehenge are one possibility).

Sunday: I have booked an all-day tour of Oxford, Stratford and Warwick Castle, the highlights of which include: visit to Shakespeare’s birthplace, extended visit at Warwick Castle, a walking tour of Oxford and a visit to Christ Church. I paid for the lunch option, which includes lunch at a traditional English pub.

Monday, of course, I head home. I arranged for a car to the airport. I have a noon flight out of Heathrow, business class, and I’m supposed to arrive at Washington/Dulles around 4 PM. I’ll let you know what I end up deciding on Saturday. In the meantime, I have a Big Bus to catch.

Naples, Vesuvius and Pompeii

This was a very early morning for me because I wanted to watch the sun rise and a very nice sunrise it turned out to be. The sun came up over Mount Vesuvius as the ship approached Naples from the south. I stood on the deck of the ship as it came up, taking several pictures of it. I then wandered to the front of the ship and watched us enter the harbor and then make what was essentially a three-point turn and back into our parking space at the pier.

More to come…