Friday, June 15, 2012 (Day 9)
The sun is shining! Looks like perfect day to travel to Bath!
This was not our first trip to London. I have been here at least three times before, my DH at least twice. Still, this city never fails to offer a new experience and is well worth a return trip whenever possible, I think! As I leave London, I have some advice for you if you are planning your own trip to London:
- London is a big city. Just when you think you know it, it changes on you. Have a map with you at all times because nothing loses you faster than a GPS in “pedestrian” mode.
- London is an old city. The sidewalks are narrow and un-even. Watch your step but look up a few times or you will walk into building walls. The stone may be old, but it is still hard.
- Look left, look right, look left. Read the directions on the pavement or someone will honk their car horn and scare the hell out of you.
- Wear a raincoat with zippered pockets. You will be taking your coat on and off a lot and you don’t want your stuff to fall out of your pockets and lose your dorky hat.
- The escalators are twice a steep and twice as fast. Be alert because big American athletic shoes need more room than you think.
- London flows like a river. Londoners are like fish and they know where to go so that everything moves smoothly. But when you throw a bunch of large and heavy rocks (like tourists) into the waters, things get messy. If you must stop to look at a map or yell at your spouse, don’t stop and stand at the top of an escalator, in a door way of a shop, or the entry of a underground turnstile. Step side to get out of everyone’s way first! There are real reasons why Londoners don’t like tourists — and not all tourists are Japanese.
With that said, I only hit three Londoners with my bag as we made our way to Paddington Station to catch our train to Bath. It was a good morning for me!
We caught the train to Bath from Paddington station. It took one and a half hours by comfy train. The English country side a green with rolling hills, fluffy sheep, and stocky red cows. It was lovely. It was also raining.
I love London – it is exciting! I love Bath – it is quiet. Of course, the weekend crowd has not hit yet.
We are staying at the Kennard Hotel. (11 Henrietta Street) — view the video on the website. The room is old English charm and four flights of stairs above the street. It is located on a quiet street and about a 5 minute walk from the city center.
My DH and I were tired of sitting all day so we went for a walk. We stopped at a market and got some fruit and a French banquette. We ate them in the sun, in the plaza off the Bath Abbey. A guy was playing new-age music on an electric guitar.
After lunch, we took a long walk through the charming streets of Bath. I bought a new hat to keep the wind our of my ears.
We took the hotel manager’s recommendation at had dinner at Raphael, a small French restaurant near the city center. It was small and crowded and sparkling with glasses, dinnerware, and candles on dark wooden tables. We decided to order the two course pre-fixe menu. I ordered carrot soup and cod with mashed potatoes. My DH ordered a salad and succulent and tender Lamb Shank. Both meals were excellent.
On Yelp, we read about a comedy tour called “Bazaar Bath”. It started at 8PM so we decided to attend after dinner. The guide was a comedian, sort of. We did not like his jokes. He was just plain rude and what does throwing a stuffed rabbit into the river have anything to do with Bath? Since it was cold and windy, we left the tour and went back to the hotel.
We are looking forward to breakfast tomorrow (it is part of the price of the room). This will be our first full English breakfast and people just raved about it on Tripadvisor.com. We try to eat healthy when we travel but we do make exceptions.
FYI for those of you who asked – most museums do not allow you to take pictures of the exhibits, they want you to buy the book. Thus, I have provided links to these attractions if available.
Another FYI — my camera’s batteries are acting flaky so I have to be very selective on the pictures I take. Thus, I will not be taking and posting oodles of pictures this trip but I will provide links to various attractions if they are available.