Edit Blog Post
Published: July 20th 2017
Under the Channel
The new chapter on our adventure starts with a pleasant breakfast. We stayed in this hotel two years ago and found it a great starting point for our journey to the Euro Tunnel terminal about thirty minutes drive away. We have plenty of time. Already we are thirty minutes ahead of schedule. Once in the United Kingdom we plan to visit Canterbury Cathedral and then drive on to our accommodation near Maidstone. All sounds rather simple and well planned. But how plans can change.
After leaving the hotel Jane takes us through the local village towards the motorway entrance. Today is Bastille Day and it is too early for the celebrations to begin. Perhaps everyone is still in bed after last night’s carnival outing. We decide to use the toll road because it is cheap, quick, and straight forward. After the thirty minute drive Jane tells us to bear right, the gut feeling says left. We should have gone with the gut feeling. After detouring for about ten minutes we ignore Jane and bear left.
We arrive at the terminal and collect our pass from the self check-in kiosk. This is all going well. Next stop the French Customs.
Gateway to Canterbury Cathedral
A quick flick of the passport and on to United kingdom Immigration. What a nice lady. After discussing our holiday so far and asking why visit the UK for such a short time she wished us well and we’re off to the park and wait area. A van in front of us is not so lucky. The entire contents of the van is emptied and everything closely examined. The French, or maybe British, officials are clapping each other on the back. We guess the van is still in France.
We have time to kill so a visit to the enormous shopping centre, all duty free of course. Our wallets are safely tucked away. Soon the boarding call. We join a long queue of cars and eventually drive onto the train. Each compartment takes about three cars on either the bottom or top level. Once all on board the compartment is sealed, safety messages are broadcast, boarding passes checked, and we’re away. Don’t know what happens if the boarding pass is wrong. Once at Folkestone the train is quickly unloaded. The noise of the cars above us is quite disconcerting as they thump over the joins between compartments. Before we
Walking the narrow streets.
can leave an announcement is made that a car has broken down and we have to wait. Cars are now being loaded above us. We start to imagine a return trip to France without getting off the train. The efficient British remove the problem and we head for Canterbury.
It is late morning when we arrive in this historic city. The streets are very busy. We are guided through some of the narrowest of English village streets. Time to retreat. We find a Park and Ride and take a bus into the city centre. The streets are humming with people and market stalls. We wind our way to the cathedral, the reason for our visit, only to be told the nave and quire are closed for the University of Kent Graduation. Our plans are turning a little bit to custard. We stop for lunch and discuss what to do. Canterbury Cathedral is a must-see and it will be worth the 70 kilometre round trip tomorrow. So off to our accommodation at the Weald of Kent Golf Course and Hotel. Sounds rather grand.
The narrow country roads wind their way through lush rolling countryside. It is difficult to see through and over the hedgerows, a pity because it would be quite an attractive outlook. Meeting cars coming towards us adds some excitement to the journey especially driving a left hand drive car on the left hand side of the road.
We settle down for the evening and prepare for tomorrow’s visit and then drive to our next destination in Norfolk.
Tot: 0.784s; Tpl: 0.01s; cc: 12; qc: 54; dbt: 0.5803s; 1; m:domysql w:travelblog (10.17.0.13); sld: 1;
; mem: 1.1mb