England is one of the most exciting destinations in the world and if you’re thinking of going on holiday overseas, it is a prime destination. There are a multitude of cheap flights to London so getting to the capital of Britain is not hard, and, with the metropolis offering a huge range of entertainment, there is more than enough to keep you amused for months. However, England offers a huge variety of extraordinary places to visit other than its capital and though you may fly to London, travelling to some other destinations is well worth it.
Utilising London as a base is a great idea as there are many day excursions available for hotspots across Britain. Two great places to visit are the university towns of Oxford and Cambridge. The universities are a sight to be seen with glorious architecture attracting thousands of tourists each year. Oxford’s cobbled streets are a wonderful reminder that you are following in the footsteps of countless priests, poets, scientists and writers before you as they, too, explored the buildings. Meanwhile Cambridge, also with fantastic architecture, offers the added bonus of shopping and punting on the river, and for any trip to England at least one of these destinations should be enjoyed.
Another fantastic location is Bath, a shining city which, in its entirety has been deemed a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Having become the top social haunt of the elite classes in the past three hundred years, it has also become an iconic and quintessential English city, with Georgian terraces rising magnificently from the streets. Palladium parades, ancient baths, and a carefully designed layout make this city a top attraction.
If you want to explore some of England’s rural locations, then one of the most famed and beautiful spots in the entire country is the Lake District. This stunning region is home to rolling mountains, natural lakes and quaint villages set amongst historic stone walls and ancient forests. It is a great area for outside activities with walking and hiking amongst the famed hills a popular pastime. Meanwhile, lakes allow for canoeing, kayaking and even swimming for the brave hearted, whilst crack nooks and hills are the perfect opportunity to abseil and rock climb.
For more outside discovery in a completely different setting, Cornwall is a fantastic location. Its white cliff coastline gives rise to beautiful sand beaches and has become an iconic surfing haunt for Brits. Little coastal towns litter the area and this beachside location is one of the most stunning in the entire world.
England can offer a fantastic experience where you’re visiting for just a few days or a month of two. Using London as a base is a good idea as there are many companies who offer day trips to some of the nearer locations. Meanwhile, you’ll easily be able to sort out short breaks away from the city if you want to venture further to places such as Cornwall and the Lake District. And for any holiday to England, you’ll almost certainly leave want to go back and see more.
When I was 18 and 19, I travelled around Europe with my friend Randy. We split up when I decided to stay living in Marbella in southern Spain, and he decided to go on to Morroco with another Canadian.
We met up again in southern Germany, at a train station where we both, independently, and without seeing each other for months, decided to take the same train to Amsterdam. From there, I made my way to Amsterdam, then northern Holland, through Germany to Copenhagen in Denmark, where I was down to $5, so I hitch-hiked back to Hamburg.
I got to the hostel 10 minutes after it closed at 10PM, along with 5 or 6 other young people who appeared out of nowhere. We couldn't get in; they wouldn't answer the doorbell, nor respond to our pounding. A cop came along and wanted to know what the hell we were doing (in German, of course). We explained the problem, he tried pounding, no response, took us all back to the police station and gave us each a cell. That's the only time I ever went to jail.
I went to the Canadian Embassy in Hamburg and said I was flat broke, could I borrow $10 to get back to Scotland as I had relatives there and money and a return ticket in safekeeping. They said, "No." I was quite disappointed. Then the lady continued, "That's not enough for such a trip, we'll loan you $30." So I filled out a form in quintuplicate and they gave me $30 in Deutschmarks; when I got back to Canada, there was a bill from the Canadian government for $30.
I made my way to the coast of France, Calais, and took the ferry to Dover. After buying my ferry ticket, I was down to about $6 or $7. At that time, Britain had a requirement that incoming tourists had to have at least 300 pounds in funds on the person. They didn't normally ask, but I looked like a bum: raggedy clothes, dirty backpack, long hair down to my shoulders, full beard. The Immigration officer looked me up and down, and started saying "How much money..." while he was opening my passport, then he saw my birthplace was listed as "London, England", and he stopped and said, "Welcome home, mate", stamped my passport and gave it back to me.
You are about to take a cruise for the very first time. Panic sets in as you realize you have no idea what to expect. Right now you may be nervous, excited and overwhelmed all at the same time. Well I am here to offer a few tips that will help elevate some of those fears about taking your first cruise. So forget about being nervous and overwhelmed and just get excited! I’m here to share some valuable tips to make your first cruise a breeze!
Have you ever heard the saying “To be prepared is half the victory.”? Well it’s true. If you want to have a great cruise, preparation is key.
For this article, I am assuming that you already have your cruise destination and cruise line picked out, but you are starting to figure out that you have no idea what to expect for your first cruise, so like many people you turn to others for answers. It seems like these days everyone has an opinion on just about every subject available. With the internet, it is possible to find out just about everything on just about anything. There is no reason that anyone shouldn’t be able to find out information on whatever subject is of interest.
So my first tip for those taking a cruise for the first time is to do your research on the ports of call you will be visiting. In some ports you may only have 8 to 10 hours to experience your port of call. You want to make every minute count. You do not want to get off the ship and start scratching your head wondering what you should do first.
When doing your research try to stay away from forums as much as possible, most of the time they will only confuse you. Ten people will say “it’s” the best thing ever, but you will find 10 others that will tell you “it’s” the worst thing they have ever experienced. If you do use forums try to ask questions that will offer facts instead of opinion. Here is an example of what I’m talking about. You could ask “Is the food on the cruise line any good?” With this question you will only get a ton of opinions. Instead ask “what kind of food is served at the buffet?’ This will get you more factual answers.
Another thing that will help put your mind at ease for your first cruise is to get to know your way around the ship. You can get to know your way around your before you even set sail on your voyage. You can do this by doing a search for a layout of the cruise ship you will be sailing on. If you search for a printable copy of the ship, you can print it out. After it’s printed, stack all of the decks on top of each other in order of the ship’s layout. This way you can actually see what is on every floor and what routes to take to get there. It is also helpful to see exactly what is on the floor above and below the room you will be staying in.
Finally the last tip for taking your first cruise is an important one.
Breathe! Don’t forget you are on vacation. Relax; try to remember that there will be lots of people on a really big ship. There will be lines everywhere, lines to board the ship, lines to get off the ship and lines for buffets. Don’t let this stress you out. If you know what to expect and you prepare for it ahead of time, it will make for a much more enjoyable experience. When you are standing in line for 5 to 10 minutes waiting for your food, just remind yourself it’s all part of the adventure. Use this time to get to know your fellow cruise mates; after all they are in the same “boat” as you. Before you know it you be eating and more importantly you will have made a few friends along the way.