Where Did We ?
This stone formation is one of the best- known prehistoric monuments in Europe. It has become a symbol of England for many years now. It takes just a little over 2 hours to get to with a car or a train from London. It consists of a ring of standing stones some of them weighing around 25 tons and its dated to be constructed from 3000 BC to 2000 BC.
London cannot indeed be described with one word, but maybe vibrant would somewhat do the job. Many European cities are an excellent mix of old and new, but England's capital seems to hold the first place.
The Queen's residence- Buckingham palace is just minutes away from the bustling with life and some of the finest shopping experiences- Oxford Street. Take a relaxing stroll or perhaps a nap at Hyde Park, then off to the museums- some of the finest in the world and almost all are free admission!
If you are arts lover- Royal Opera House is the place to be. Quite often referred to as simply Covent Garden, the house of today's Opera and Ballet societies of Britain was initially constructed in 1732. It might be quite a challenge to get a ticket for a performance here, but I can guarantee you it is a stunning experience.
Pro Tip: If you have not purchased a ticket in advance, you can go to ROH at the day of the performance around 10 am in the morning, they sell day tickets that go extremely fast!
The unique thing about England and especially London is that you can be in China, Italy, India, and Britain at the same time. Thanks to the 3.2 million foreign-born migrants in 2015, you can experience different cultures, food, and social activities in just one trip. The food is really fantastic. Curry and samosa on one corner, crispy french pastries on the other and high-quality tea served in a silver cup on the next. Amazing experience.
East Sussex. These chalk cliffs are tallest in all of Britain. They attract thousands of tourists every year. Clearly, the ones not afraid of heights. The mighty white rocky formations can be quite scary, but it is definitely worth the 3-hour ride from London.
Other SEEs and DOs worth mentioning
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- Lavender Fields
- Hadrian's Wall
- Durdle Door
- Waterloo sunset
- St. Nectan's Kieve
- Shakespeare's Globe Theatre
Banstead is the home of England's fine smelling lavender. 25 acres of purple smelling goodness located just a few miles outside of London.
You can't quite see it from space, but at 73 miles Hadrian's Wall was the most significant single engineering project undertaken by the Roman Empire and is now a World Heritage Site. The country's newest national trail - the Hadrian's Wall Path - sweeps over the north of England's hills and moorland.
This arch type rock formation is very similar to the Londragnar rocks on the Snaefellsokil peninsula in Iceland. Stunning natural limestone arch is a reminder that water does what it wants when it wants.
A walk across the Waterloo bridge offers the most exceptional river views in the capital, as the Thames bends away from St Paul's, snaking its way towards Westminster.
· Nearest tube stations: Temple or Waterloo.
This unusual keyhole- shaped waterfall in Cornwall is just magical. A nickname for it is Merlin's well... Not surprising.
Seeing a play at Shakespeare's Globe Theatre is, they say, an authentic experience and a journey to the past.
PRO TIP: Get your seat cushion! Well worth it!
Toad in the hole
The Toad in the hole is a traditional English yumminess. The main ingredient is the toad or sausage, which is thrown in Yorkshire pudding batter. Then once baked to gold the mixture takes the shape of the dish that was baked in, and the sausage is nestled in between. Very often it is served with onion gravy. Beautiful dish.
Oh, who doesn't like mashed potatoes and gravy? The two main ingredients of the pie are minced lamb and vegetables, they are topped with the mashed potatoes, and the onion gravy is poured upon serving! Nowadays, restaurants are putting their own spin on tradition, and you can find interesting variations of the dish!
The English breakfast is commonly known around the world and especially in the hotel business. This hearty meal has multiple items to create a good caloric bomb to kick your day off. Bacon takes the main stage first, followed by poached or scrambled eggs, grilled tomatoes, fried bread, sausage, and beans. Again, you can find quite a lot of variations of it, and some of them even labeled healthy.
Eggs, flour, and milk are the main ingredients in this delicious baked goodness. It is commonly served with the "gravy" dishes in British cuisine to suck up the sauce. In many occasions, it is used instead of bread. Can be part of an English breakfast too, and sometimes you can get different sweet and savory variations of it.
Oh! One of the best things in England- the transportation system. While driving everywhere is just as easy as any other European country, what really sets England apart is the public transportation system.
Numerous trains depart every second from the hundreds of stations. Underground, overground, public buses, trams, you name it! Ah! Let's not forget the bikes, you can pick them up anywhere for cheap. Definitely, a well thought of transportation paradise.
Okay! This one is tricky. Your England experience can vary greatly depending on your budget, but for the most part, you can visit the country on any budget, in my opinion. Accommodation can be found for cheap, as low as 12-20 pounds a night, of course, if you want to stay in the center of London, you should expect to pay way more. Eating out can be costly. An average meal in a restaurant will set you back at least 15 pounds. Food trucks, on the other hand, are cheaper, and sometimes the food is better than the restaurants.
As a European Union citizen, I was not required to obtain a visa to enter England as a tourist. Citizens of some countries will be required to hold a valid electronic visa waiver or ESTA or some other sort of travel identification. You can quickly check if you are required to get a visa or other type of document for your visit here.
The proud British Pound is the real ruler here. You can even see the Queen on the one pound coin.
One GBP goes for about 1.3 USD. Wow, expensive.
Unlike many other European countries, especially in Eastern Europe, it is not common to just drop in at your neighbor's. Visits are usually pre-arranged.
A firm handshake and the regular "How Do You Do?" is the greeting norm in Britain.
Queuing is a big part of English culture. Take your spot, allow those who came first to be served first, and if you are really in a rush, ask nicely, they will perhaps let you through.
The Brits are generally very punctual. If you are late for the first tea sip, it might be considered very impolite or rude.
Travel Tips and Resources
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London is England's capital and also one of the most vibrant cities in the world. One that deserves your attention!
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