Paying our respects at the National Memorial Arboretum

The National Memorial Arboretum is our national monument in the UK to those fallen in the wars since WW2. I always see it on the news – normally the Queen is there laying a wreath on poppy day – so I thought we should pay it a visit.

It feels very inappropriate to say, but we actually had a nice day out there. There is a large glossy visitors centre (which feels very american – the type of thing you get in the National Parks) so we had a lovely lunch in the cafe there first, before going for a stroll round the park. Continue reading

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Time Stands Still at Coniston, Lake District

I volunteered to drive to Coniston, which was a mistake. I’m normally sure of my width (ie. the width of my car – thank you!) but I found myself going down tiny roads which made me want to breathe in when another car went past. After what seemed like hours, I was relieved when we finally got to Coniston (and even more relived when my Mum offered to drive back!).

We managed to park for free on the street which was a bonus, as most parking in the Lake District is payable – you can be driving along in the middle of nowhere and see a lay-by with a few parking spaces in a wood – and there’s a parking meter!! Continue reading

Don’t Annoy the Bride! (in Windermere)

The Lake District, is one of the most beautiful areas of natural beauty in the UK. We visited for a mini-break to explore the vast lakes, mountains, and eat lots of ice cream!

Lake Windermere is probably the most famous lake the Lake District, and the nearby villages of Bowness-on-Windermere and Windermere form a must-do part of any trip to the Lake District. Continue reading

Gateway to the Lake District

After a slow motion drive up the M6 in traffic we were glad to stop at Morecambe. Famous for its endless sands stretching to the horizon, we made a beeline for the waterfront to stretch our legs.

After a short stroll along the blustery front, we hopped back into our warm car to continue the journey north. All the while we could see the mountains in the distance, calling us forward! Continue reading

Devouring the Jurassic Coast in Lyme Regis, Dorset

The Jurassic Coast is a stretch of coast from Sidmouth in South Devon reaching east into Dorset, and including the town of Lyme Regis.sidmouth

Sidmouth is a cute little town with good cliff walks nearby. We walked up the nearby High Peak cliff-top footpath for lovely views over the bay. Continue reading

Christmas in the Cotswolds

During cold frosty December, we took a trip to the cosy Cotswolds. The Cotswolds is well known for being a pretty area of rolling hills and golden-coloured stone houses, but everything looked extra cosy and welcoming at Christmas time!

cosy-windowWe visited the small towns of Moreton-in-Marsh, Stow-on-the-Wold and Chipping Norton, which is a small piece of the Cotswolds, so plenty more places to explore! Continue reading

Birmingham’s Christmas Markets

It’s that time of year… the Christmas German Market is in town… seemingly every town across the UK has one, and a visit to at least one or two is a must, to sample the obligatory Bratwurst and Mulled Wine!

I paid a visit to Birmingham’s offering which is especially atmospheric after dark, and the snow added a certain authenticity, making me feel like I was in a ski resort! Continue reading

Cruising on Harmony of the Seas! (Biggest cruise ship in the World)

I have never been on a cruise before, so what better way to start than with the biggest ship in the world, right? 🙂  The Harmony of the Seas is a brand new ship; the newest boat in the Royal Caribbean fleet. It is also the biggest ship in the world. So how does it check out?

Central Park

The ship itself was massive; it was lovely to stroll around Central Park, which has hundreds of trees and thousands of plants. We even saw small birds in the park while the ship was at sea (!). But if that’s too outdoorsy for you, why not try an indoor promenade with bars, restaurants and shops? It is very easy to forget you are on a ship altogether! Continue reading

Spires and Bikes … Oxford calling

I actually applied to Oxford Uni, believe it or not. I didn’t get in, obv, although I had a riot at the interview. (Not literally, although an actual riot would explain why I didn’t get in!). I met this girl from Cornwall and we hit it off and laughed our heads off all week, such that people thought we had been friends for years – we were like “Oh no, we’ve just met!”. Neither of us got in but I don’t think we minded much 🙂

Oxford CollegesThe interview week provided what I like to think of as a “Mini Break” in Oxford, so I became somewhat familiar with the city then, and I still remember the layout surprisingly well. It is difficult to imagine a city more architecturally blessed  Continue reading