A Travellerspoint blog

Stonehenge

sunny 5 °C

Stonehenge - 02.jpgStonehenge - 20.jpgAfter driving throught the country side from Bath we found Stonehenge. Wow it is absolutely fantastic to see in real life. Unfortunately due to our days becoming shorter, we got there 5 mins before they close the gates so we didn't get to do the audio tour but managed to take some beautiful photos from the road of it and also of a fantastic sunset. It is well worth seeing but definately include it in a trip somewhere else as there is not alot to see for miles around it.

Posted by krissy 04:30 Archived in England Comments (0)

Cardiff/Caerphilly/Caerleon

sunny 5 °C
View Cardiff & surrounding area, Wales - Nov 06 on krissy's travel map.

Cardiff - wales - 03.jpgCardiff - wales - 15.jpgCaerphilly..es - 28.jpgCardiff is a good 2 1/2 hours form Heathrow, we thought we would be fine but once we realised we only had a map with main roads on it we got a little stuck and drove around in circles for about 45 mins which isn't really helped when you are doing it at 11 pm at night. We finally found the hostel and crashed the minute we got to the room. Staight up and out after breaky to start our adventures for the weekend. We found some birds of all sorts down by a lake and thought we would play with those for a while but soon realised we had heaps to do. We managed to find the city centre, which was really quiet busy as Australia was playing Wales at the millennium stadium. We parked the car wherever we could and walked through the university into the city centre were we found The Cardiff Castle smack in the centre of it all. We did a guided tour of the Castle where we learnt of the location of the real round table was. After finishing at the Cardiff castle we made our way out to Caerphilly where they have another completely different style of castle but also eqally beautiful but not as well maintained. Not alot else to do there so we headed on to Caerleon to see the round table. Its not actually a round table, we were told that it is just a myth but it is actually an old Roman ampitheatre that I can imagine would have held gladiator battles in it, it was said that after the Roamans left this ampitheatre it was then used for the gatherings of King Arthur's men before going to battle. We also got to see some the ruins of Roman Baths and Army Barrack's that used to be in a fortress which Caerleon now is built on top of. Lots of history.

Posted by krissy 05:47 Archived in Wales Comments (0)

Dublin

overcast 10 °C
View London, England - May 2006 on krissy's travel map.

I didn’t think we would ever get there but we did, yeah. Delays at Heathrow were unbelievable due to fog. But we finally got there and found our digs. We stayed at the Oliver St James Gogerty Hotel which was really quiet nice. We managed to get a lovely 4 bedroom mixed dorm so not too much noise from other travellers.

Dublin - 031.jpgOnce we settled in we adventured off to see Dublin. We found the Dublin Castle which is really a big fortress. We then wandered around and found Christ Church Cathedral, and the Dublin City Hall. All of the buildings around here have a strong Roman feel to them with their huge cement pillars out the front. We then ran out of time as all the attractions in Dublin close at 5pm except for the Bram Stoker experience, so we headed off there and yes we got lost. Dublin doesn’t really have very good signage but after walking around for an hour we finally found the back of the train station and headed out to see what the Bram Stoker experience was all about.

Slightly out of the way and not really worth seeing unless you are really a Bram Stoker or Dracula freak, which I am. It is basically a walk through Bram Stokers life and then through the story of Dracula, which Bram is most famous for. The walk was informative and then changes to cheesy/scary wax museum.

Day 2 saw a reasonably early start. We wandered the main street and like London nothing opens before 10 am on Sundays so just had to settle for stodgy breakfast thinking that I would be able to get back before the shops closed but unfortunately not, oh well just more shops I would have spent more money in.
Dublin - 034.jpg

We caught the Train out to Malahide to see the Malahide Castle, fantastic looking old castle sitting on acres and acres of lush green fields, truly what you would imagine a castle to look like, well just like the movies anyway. I suppose it is reasonably small for a castle be still very impressive. We had a look around inside but as the reception was closed for an hour we were unable to see if they do guided tours and decided to keep going.
Dublin - 042.jpgDublin - 050.jpg

We watched a bit of local football (soccer) which was being played not far from the castle and then headed to the other side of town the see the Kilmainham Gaol, wow so much history in that jail and yes we got lost again not in the jail on our way. I can’t believe some of the stuff they told us on the guided tour. Children as young as 8 were sent there and then shipped over to Aus without their parents, all fro stealing a loaf of bread or a couple of eggs in a famine. Some really tragic stuff, through the potato famine so many people died in the gaol that there were mass graves inside the jail walls were they buried them and sprinkle some lime stuff which totally disintegrates the bones and away they go again burying more people in the same place. They told us that every single square foot of the exercising courtyards had had people buried under it that’s, how many people died. Yuck. I thought I should lift our spirits by stepping out for a traditional Irish dinner and a few pints while listening to some fantastic Irish music.
Dublin - 052.jpgDublin - 106.jpg

Day 3, Monday we headed to the Trinity college which we had walked past previously but we went in, really nice old buildings in there, everything is so old in Dublin. Off to the Guinness factory next , not that I was really that interested in seeing how beer was made but it was interested that beer comes from the Irish would beare meaning Barley which of course beer is mostly made of. We got our token for our free glass of Guinness and I tell you what we had to work/walk for it. We had to climb 7 stories to get to the Gravity bar right at the top of the store house to get it. I had first glass of Guinness ever and how fitting to have it at the Guinness factory in Dublin, the home of Guinness. So you know I don’t think I will ever have another, too bitter and thick for me.

Once we mustered up enough energy to move the next spot and of course we had to finish our Guinness, we moved on the see the Old Jamieson Distillery were we did a tour and got to sample the goods, now that is nice, much easier to drink than the Guinness, well for me anyway. Jamison is more my cup of tea…. After that we went up the viewing tower that has been attached to one of the old chimney stacks, it gave an interesting insight of the size of the old buildings and distillery compound.

Once we finished looking out at the Dublin skyline, recognising places we had been we then wandered around to find St Patrick’s cathedral which we hadn’t managed to see yet. Yes yet another great old church to add to Dublin’s many others that we had seen, but I do need to point out this one is massive. You could probably get the whole city in there if you tried hard enough.
Dublin - 127.jpg

We then only had a couple of hours left in Dublin so we settled at the pub to have a few more Jamieson’s and Ciders before getting on the bus to the airport.

Posted by krissy 07:01 Archived in Ireland Comments (0)

Amsterdam

sunny 23 °C
View London, England - May 2006 on krissy's travel map.

Amsterdam - 18.jpgAmsterdam - 19.jpgAmsterdam - 43.jpgAmsterdam - 51.jpgWe headed over to activate our Dutch working visas, spent all of Friday wandering around a little town about an hour from Amsterdam on the train, trying to sort out our visa with no success. When we got back to the Dam we decided that we would hit the town for a while, we wandered down to the Red light district and walked through the dingy little alley where you find all the display windows. Display windows for all the girls to parade their finest wears. Quiet different to what I had imagined, I thought they would just all be standing around on the street but no they have their little shop fronts which are the display cabinets they stand in and then once they have someone show them interest they open the door and take them into a room behind their display window which has their bed and bits.

After wandering around for a while we decided to go in and experience a Live sex show, well it was all that I thought it would be but still a little disappointing. They just don’t put the passion in it, of course you can understand why when they are doing the show every hour on the hour. So it was more of a choreographed display than what it should be. Shane was pulled up by on of the strippers to be part of the show, which was quiet funny he had a grin from ear to ear after getting over his stage fright.
As you all have probably heard Amsterdam is known for is drugs, I could not believe the amount of drugs offered to us in the short period of time we were wandering around the red light district and it wasn’t just pot. Mind blowing how open they are about it all. The cops just wander around like its not happening, well not really we were told that we were not to flaunt it in there faces but they will let it slide if not made blatantly obvious.
We then headed back to our hostel, you would not believe the buildings in Holland they are so narrow at the base of the building and have tiny, narrow and very, very steep staircases. Our hostel had 4 levels and of course we were in one of the rooms right at the top of the building, joy, joy, joy. Especially when you have been drinking you almost need to crawl up the stair through fear of falling back down them. They say back in the day the rates were charged by square footage at the base of their dwellings so they make them really small at the bottom to avoid the rates paid and then expand out over the streets. The staircases are so narrow that all the buildings have hooks on the outside of the building so they can hoist the furniture up through the windows rather than taking it up the stairs.
After the adventures of sleeping in a 14 bed dorm we woke and started the adventure again. Off to the Sex Museum first, tell you what was that an eye opener. Photo gallery’s with photos that go back to days where it was not heard of to be taking photos of that kind of stuff. I’m talking back to the early 1600’s if not earlier, anything you can think about sex it was documented in this museum. We had a little giggle before we left though. They had a old style Porn booth that you could pay 2 euros to have a squiz, So Cat, Shane and I all squeezed in to check it out, once we had finished we had to try and get out of the tiny little room. I jumped up on the seat to make some more room and Cat left the booth, closed the door and then Shane left the booth then of course out I came and tell you what were there some strange looks on peoples faces when we all piled out of the booth, all we could do is laugh at the posssible thoughts going through there heads.

On to Madame Tussaud’s wax museum, This was an interesting way of getting some of the history of Amsterdam. Of course we took some photos and wandered around, they have a scary section there which was the Pirates of the Caribbean theme, there was this guy at the front of this section standing dead still I just thought he was another wax statue and yes he scared the crap out of me when he spoke to me.

Off to the Amsterdam Dungeon next and this time Cat got the fright of her life. This was an interesting place it went through all the history of Holland and Amsterdam in a theatrical way. They talked of the Spanish inquisition and the black plague, the slave traders and many other things that happened in the Dam, much of it got lost in translation, Dutch people in theatre trying to speak English, oh well I got the picture. After that we went to see the Ann Frank house. Well talk about stirring some emotions I was totally blown away by the whole thing. I only had a limited knowledge of what had happened there before I went and was shocked to see the conditions in which they lived in for such a long period of time. Walking back to the Hostel from there we couldn't help but to take in some of the canal views. They are absolutely beautiful.

We thought we better check out some traditional Dutch food before we left town, we went to a nice restaurant on the main street which served absolutely delicious food, if you come over here expecting to keep your figure think again, every thing is deep fried and soaked with fat.

Posted by krissy 01:26 Archived in Netherlands Comments (0)

Paris

sunny 16 °C
View London, England - May 2006 on krissy's travel map.

Paris - 037.jpgParis - 086.jpgParis - 089.jpgFrom Waterloo it is a short 2 hour journey and you are in another country all together. Cathryn had packed us a picnic dinner to go with the bottle of Moet that she got to celebrate our 30th Birthdays, then she pulls out a chocolate mud cake to top it off. First place to start looking around was walking down the Champs-Elysees (shopping strip)up to the Arc de Triomphe, climbed the million stairs to the top and nearly had a heart attack, Fantastic veiws all round though so well worth it. We saw the Eiffel tower from there so dicided to walk that way for a closer look in the day light. After wondering around the city looking for somewhere to eat we finally settled on a nice little cafe, sorry to say I wasn’t adventurous enough to try Escargot this time but maybe next time.
The next day we headed into town and wandered into the Notre-Dame Cathedral this was also a very moving experience to see all the stainglass windows that tell the story of Christ.
Wondering again we ended up at the Lovre where we found the pyramids that are seen in the movie The De Vinci Code. We didn’t make it into the Lovre as we had to head off to get ready for our Eiffel tour experience. We ended up having dinner in the restaurant on the 2nd level of the Tower, another fantastic view from there. I didn’t get to go up to the summit as there was not enough time to do so as it was we ended up taking to long and had to run down the stairs from the restaurant as the lift was taking longer than we had expected, got down to the river and caught a river cruise up the Seine which explained the history of their many bridges. While we were on the water you get to see things in a totally different perspective, the Lovre is huge so much bigger than I had thought earlier in the day, It would take at least 2 days to look at it all which gives me another reason to come back to Paris along with getting to that summit of the Eiffel tower. Th boat pulled in just below the Eiffel tower as it started to twinkle, I don’t know how to describe how absolutely beautiful it is to see. Then off to see the Moulin Rouge which was also a very good experience, they all have fantastic bodies and definately know how to shake their booty.Paris - 029.jpgParis - 112.jpg

Posted by krissy 04:26 Archived in France Comments (0)

(Entries 31 - 35 of 35) « Page .. 2 3 4 5 6 [7]