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Published: September 16th 2019
Sunset from Tower Bridge
Monday woke up on the boat to the sound of steady rain...thank god we are getting off today....standing out in the open stearing the boat would have been no fun. Had pre ordered a full English breaky at the Norbury Wharf Tearooms so that was a bonus and on our way down to Birmingham. As we could not get on a Peaky Blinders Tour in Birmingham the boys decided they would like to do a tour of the Land Rover and Jaguar factory where the Range Rover Velar and Jaguar F-pace are made....seeing as these are our families fave cars.....I thought I wouldn't go but decided to and I was so glad I did...it was the most interesting tour....well worth the afternoon to see it. We had a guide take a group of 10 of us around...the tour took three and a half hours....there were loads of people working there but hundreds of robots....a state of the art factory......just incredible! Then went into Birmingham and booked into our gorgeous hotel The Old Crown, loads of atmosphere and our two bedroom apartment was up stairs, very comfortable. Then for a bit of a scoot around town...still looks very industrial and lots of
Landrover Jaguar factory
bogans hanging around the streets but found some lovely old pubs and a couple of pints later had dinner at a Fish and Chippery, Markey has taken a liking to the old English Cod...being someone who couldn't eat any fish other than Dougie Smith's flake! Good nights sleep and after a hearty breaky at the pub off to the Cotswolds...we have explored this area before so picked towns we had not been to before so Mark could experience this picturesque part of the world. It is so pretty, green, rolling hills and picture perfect villages....its just a nice area to explore. First port of call was Bourton-on-the-Water which has a pretty stream through the centre and then onto Stoke-on-Wold...another pretty place...made a little purchase of jewellery here from a husband and wife designers who have the cutest shop. Then onto Hook Norton township to visit the Hook Norton Brewery...had a lovely girl give us our tastings...Sophie was only 18 but she knew loads about the beers....then short drive to the tiny village of Great Tew and to stay the night at the Falkland Arms...another old, old pub with loads of character....Mark had a really nice room upstairs but John and
Landrover Jaguar factory
I were upgraded to the cottage across the road from the pub...would highly recommennd if anyone coming to these parts! Great meal in the pub that night with a few pints! Wednesday heading to London via Oxford seeing as we were driving straight past it....managed to have a great walk around the university and a nice coffee in one of the coffee shops. Dropped our car back at Heathrow and caught the train into Bermondsey where we had booked an AirB&B, two bedrooms in the home of Cedric, a brit but of Jamacian descent...lovely guy...very nice apartment and so close to everything....just a 10 minute walk to Tower Bridge. Loads of bars, restaurants and pubs nearby.
Over our four days in London our biggest walking day was 28klms and 22klms so covered a lot of ground and as I always say the best way to soak up a city is by walking. We found a great pub quite close to where we were staying for some meals...very reasonably priced Pommelers Rest...also good for breaky. Had a sensational Italian meal nearby as well. Getting a bit sick of chips with everything even curries with chips!!! Second day we had booked
Old Crown Hotel
to go on a tour of Buckingham Palace....on our previous visits to London it has not been open to the public....usually only open for a two month period each year...so we really enjoyed that! We bought the Royal Day Out...which included the Queens Gallery and the bonus was an exhibition of Leonardo da Vinci drawings, absolutely fantastic exhibition..we all enjoyed it, also included The Royal Mews and of course the State Rooms....but no photography inside. Walked to Spitalfields Markets, Brick Lane, Little Venice, Kensington Palace, Bomber Command Memorial in Green Park, Diana's Memorial in Hyde Park.....Hyde Park is always a lovely walk...Maltby St Markets, St Pauls, houses of Parliament, Tate Modern great view here from the viewing platform and of course Burrough Market! Saturday afternoon the hour trek to the airport to stay overnight before flying home Sunday....taking Qantas direct flight to Perth (17hrs....will let you know about that one....so, so long) then refuel Perth and onto Melbourne. Another great adventure has come to an end. Well a little hiccup with the travel blog was off the air for about 36hrs.....we did get to Perth in 16hrs so made up an hour enroute...but shattered...such a long flight!
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