England & France What a Vacation!

Getting to vacation in England has been a long time dream of mine. I am finally on this dream vacation with my husband and our youngest daughter.

I was thinking about writing this blog on a day to day basis of what we did, but I think that would be to long of a blog. So I will do my best to remember everything.

I feel like I’ve been through a world wind this week with everything we’ve done in England. It’s all kind of a blur at this point. Makes me glad we took lots of pictures!

Our first day in London England we had a cab tour guide of the city. He took us to see Buckingham Palace, Westminster Abby, The Tower of London and a bunch of other places. That day we only saw the outside of those places. We would have gone in, but they we were temporary closed off.

The next day we were on our own and we did everything thing we possibly could in that one day.

We took a tour of the Tower of London. To me that was fascinating. I love history and to know I was in the same building that royals and such were in many, many years ago thrilled me.

After that we went over to Big Ben. Looked at it in awe. Listened to it chime and obviously took pictures.

After that we went to Westminster Abby. I’ve always wanted to go into that place. What an experience that was. To see where the Queen was crowned. Where Princess Diana’s funeral was and where Prince William and Kate were married. There is more to that place then meets the eyes though and I had no idea until we started walking. The history in that place was unbelievable.

We did a bunch more walking and site seeing after that. We “shopped” at Harrod’s and went to Leicester Square– a large shopping area. We also went to the national gallery and looked at some art. It’s all one big blur at this point. But a good blur.

On another day we had our taxi cab tour guide take us to the Stone Henge, Bath England and a little town out in the English country side. This was a special all day tour we booked in advance with Black Cab Heritage tours. The same company and driver that gave us our introduction tour of the city the first day we arrived.

The Stones were an amazing site for me. Another piece of history for my eyes to take in. We had lunch at a place called the Red Lion in the little English country town named Lacock Village. It reminded us of the pub from the show Poldark.

Craig, our guide, gave us a tour of Lacock Village. The village is a national historic site and many movies and television shows have been filmed there as it looks like it did 800 years ago. There is a very old Abby there where parts of Harry Potter were filmed and we got the chance to see it and walk through it. That was pretty cool.

Bath, England is filled with its own history with the Roman baths and all the Georgian style buildings and such. To say the I enjoy history and walking through historical towns and buildings would be an understatement.

While in England we went to Liverpool one day so I could see the Church where my great grandpa was baptized as a baby in the 1800’s. that was a true blessing for me to see. I was in the Church my ancestors were in so many years ago.

Oh, before I forget! We went to our first afternoon tea in London and had a wonderful time. I’m not a tea drinker, but this tea was good. We went to the English Tea Room at Browns Hotel. All the little finger foods were tasty. My favorite were the scones. We made sure we packed dresses for my daughter and I and dress pants and a jacket for my husband for tea. I’m so glad we did that. It helped us to fit in a bit better.

We did some shopping before we went for tea. I had to buy a Paddington Bear, yes I had to. We were in an area that I can only describe as old London and it has a store that reminded me of the BBC show Paradise. (Liberty Department Store)

We did go to the British Museum for a bit one night. The place could take me a whole day. We saw the Rosetta Stone and some artifacts from Nebuchadnezzar in Babylon.

On our last day in England we took the WB Harry Potter Studios tour for our daughter. For me personally it was boring, but she loved it. After that we went to Old Spitafields Market where I bought this really cool looking coat. Oh, yes we also went to St Paul’s Cathedral.

After that we took one last lonnnng walk along the river Thames and around London and got our last look at Big Ben.

Our next stop France….

When we got to France we spent our first day in Paris. Honestly I had very low expectations for Paris and that city met those low expectations.

We did some walking. We went to the Notre Dame Cathedral which I have to say was something to see and a place we’ve been wanting to visit for years.

The next couple of days we stayed about an hour north in the French County side at a small village called Pierrfonds. We had the pleasure of walking through this old French village and making it our home for a few days. We bought and ate fresh croissants, bread, cheese, pastries and macarons at the local shops.

The best part of the French Country for me was getting to see and tour Chateau De Pierrefonds – AKA – Merlin’s Castle from the BBC show Merlin. Visiting this castle was a dream come true for me!

We visited the Palace in Versailles and spent hours walking in the gardens and touring the palace. We also enjoyed another baguette sandwich from a small patisserie.

Our last day of vacation was spent in Paris. We did a lot of walking. We also went to the Arc de Triump, the Louvre and the Eiffel Tower. I have to say those places are amazing.

We had tickets to go to the very top of the Eiffel Tower and what a view that was. We waited around for the light show which was well worth it.

All in all my husband, daughter and I had a great time in England and France.

I had a croissant with coffee every morning for breakfast. France has the best croissants I’ve ever had and all the other pastries are so good.

There was a bit of a language barrier between the French and English language, but we handled it well.

It was without a doubt an amazing vacation, but I am happy to be home as well.

Some of the photos I took are on this blog. You can see all of them in my photo gallery.