Nature's beauty is priceless - my amazing European adventure

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Europe » United Kingdom
September 25th 2011
Published: September 26th 2011EDIT THIS ENTRY

Nature's beauty is priceless - My amazing European adventure

Saturday 6th August:

Today was the start of my European adventure. I was feeling very happy and really excited about my itinerary for the next two weeks. I boarded the ferry at Dover port in England around midday. On board, I had a bacon, lettuce and tomato sandwich for lunch. I crossed the English Channel and arrived in Calais port in France around 2.30pm.

I got the coach to Brussels - the capital of Belgium. I briefly visited the famous attraction Atomium. It is a silver monument consisting of nine large spheres and a number of connecting tubes. Some of the spheres have an exhibition inside and are open to the public to visit. I thought that the monument looked rather distinctive. It looked like a giant atom! I was told that the Atomium was built for the 1958 World Fair.

After visiting Atomium, I went passed some famous sights and buildings including the Chinese Pavilion. I thought the pavilion looked nice. It reminded me of my holiday in China back in 2007.

Later that evening, I visited Grand Place, the central square and memorable landmark of Brussels. There were a lot of nice buildings including the Brussels Town Hall. The architecture of the different buildings was amazing. They were very detailed and some buildings seemed to have quite a gothic theme.

I went to see the famous statue Manneken Pis. It is a sculpture of a naked little boy urinating into a fountain. I took some photographs of the little boy. There were some other copy versions of Manneken Pis displayed in shops and in the town centre. I particularly liked the one that was displayed in the window of the Leonidas chocolate shop. It was brown in colour and looked like it was made of chocolate. It reminded me a little of the Lynx aftershave advert that I used to see on television!

I visited some shops selling a wide variety of Belgian chocolate and gifts. They looked very nice and were very tempting to buy. Even though they looked very appealing, I thought that some of the boxes of chocolates were rather expensive in price. I decided not to buy any Belgian chocolate as I wanted to leave my chocolate shopping spree to when I visit Switzerland. I love Swiss chocolate so much more and can’t wait to buy some when I get there in a few days time!

I saw lots of shops selling Belgian waffles. Some of the waffles were very big in size. There were waffles that were topped with chocolate, some with fresh cream and some with strawberries. They smelt and looked absolutely delicious! I really wanted to buy myself a strawberries and cream waffle but the queue outside one of the shops was quite long and the weather was turning for the worse. It started to rain very heavily. I had to shelter myself from the rain for a short while. Even though I had my umbrella, I still got very wet. I really hope the weather is better tomorrow.

Sunday 7th August:

Today was a bright, sunny and dry day. I was pleased that there was no rain after getting very wet yesterday. I had some breakfast in the hotel then went back to my room to get ready to go out. When I left my room, there was a big dog further along the corridor. As I didn’t expect to see a dog in the hotel, it made me jump and frightened me a little. I didn’t dare to walk down the corridor until the dog had left.

I made my way to Holland. During my journey, I passed lots of windmills. I saw lots of rivers, bridges and streams. The rivers looked very nice and were beautiful. There was a very relaxing and tranquil feel to the area. The houses that I passed were very nice and pretty.

I visited a little tourist town called Volendam. Even though the weather was sunny, it was a little breezy. I saw lots of yachts and fishing boats in the sea. It reminded me of a little village called Sai Kung that I always visit when I go to Hong Kong.

There were a lot of tourists in Volendam and lots of shops selling souvenirs. There were a lot of tulip themed souvenirs including key-rings, magnets, ornaments and snow globes. As I was walking through the town, I could smell some pancakes. They smelt delicious and made me feel very hungry!

I visited a place called Zaanse Schan. I saw lots of traditional windmills. They looked very nice. I went into the cheese factory and watched a brief video on how cheese is made. It was quite interesting. I visited the cheese factory gift shop. There was a wide variety of cheese on sale. Some were in lovely presentation bags. There were lots of round cheeses for sale. They were 1 kilogram in weight and cost €14.95 each. They were placed on the top of a big barrel.

The sales assistants in the cheese factory gift shop were dressed up in traditional Dutch costumes. They looked very pretty. I looked at all the souvenirs that were available for purchase. There were windmill pens, wine and chocolate. I thought the ‘Love Holland’ teddy bear magnets were very cute. I also liked the blue and white ornaments of a girl and boy kissing each other. I thought they looked very sweet and they made me smile.

I briefly visited the wooden shoe workshop. I saw lots of clogs on display. Some looked very nice and colourful. I think there were clog making demonstrations but I didn’t stay and watch them.

I visited a diamond factory called Coster Diamonds in Amsterdam. As soon as I walked into the factory, I saw lots of people admiring The Royal 201 diamonds that were on display. The diamonds were very large in size and looked very special. They were on some type of revolving display turntable and were securely placed on a cushion that was royal blue in colour. It looked very prestigious. When the diamonds rotated, the sparkle coming from them was both amazing and magnificent. They looked very, very beautiful. I wish the diamonds belonged to me! I most definitely agree with the saying that ‘diamonds are a girl’s best friend’. They are definitely my best friend! 😊

I saw a replica of the Koh-I-Noor, the royal crown of the Royal House of Great Britain. It was securely placed on a red cushion. This too looked very prestigious. I visited a diamond showroom. I was shown a collection of loose and set diamonds. They looked very beautiful. The process of cutting and polishing of diamonds was explained. I looked at the ‘4C Diamond Guide’ on the wall. It was very interesting to read. It basically said that the value of a diamond varies depending on the carat, colour, clarity and cut. I thought the guide was a very useful source of information.

I visited the Coster Diamonds souvenir shop. There were some Holland themed souvenir plates on the shelves. I thought they looked lovely. The 2012 calendars also looked very nice. I thought the images of Amsterdam on the calendars looked very beautiful. I bought some postcards that had images of tulip flowers. The tulips were very bright and colourful. They made me feel very happy just looking at them. Tulips are one of my favourite flowers. I love the fact that you can buy them in so many different and happy colours.

I visited a local park across the road from Coster Diamonds. There were lots of little stalls selling tulip bulbs, paintings of Holland, postcards and other lovely souvenirs. I bought a few souvenirs including some tulip bulbs for my special friend Chris. He likes gardening so I thought that the tulip bulbs would be a very special present for him. I hope that he enjoys planting them in his garden and that the tulips bloom beautifully. I am sure the bright colours and beauty of the tulips will make him and his wife smile. I hope he takes some photographs when they bloom and shows them to me! I want to see the end result 😊

I visited Dam Square. There were a lot of banks and commercial buildings. There were a lot of people sat down by the National Monument chilling and watching the world go by. It was a very busy area, quite a hustle and bustle but the atmosphere was very lively. There were a lot of trams going through the square. I also saw lots of bicycles and scooters.

After my evening meal, I walked through Chinatown and the famous Red Light District. I saw a shop that was selling Sensi Seeds. I went passed a few coffee shops. I was told that it is legal to buy and sell drugs in Amsterdam. There was a lot of sex orientated businesses including sex shops and adult theatre. There were a lot of women in lingerie posing in the windows. Some were sitting on the ledges of the windowsills. Most of the windows had red curtains, some of which were closed. I noticed that there were far more men than women in the area although there were a lot of other tourists just like me who were just briefly visiting.

I had a walk along the streets in Amsterdam. I could hear the chimes of the church bells ringing nearby. It was really nice to hear. As it was a nice, warm and sunny evening, I had a walk along the river. There was a nice, cool breeze. I saw a machine that takes a photograph of you then converts the image into a postcard. I thought that was nice. There was also an Amsterdam souvenir coin machine. The souvenir coin had a nice design on it. It had the words ‘I Love Amsterdam’. I wanted to obtain a souvenir coin but the machine didn’t seem to work. I tried to put two Euros into the machine but somehow the machine wasn’t accepting any coins. I felt a little disappointed that I wasn’t able to get a souvenir coin 😞

I went on a canal cruise along the river. I saw lots of canals and bridges including the famous Skinny Bridge. Whilst listening to the commentary, I heard that there are over 1,200 bridges in Amsterdam. I noticed that there weren’t many high buildings. The commentator said that the land is too marshy and isn’t suitable for high buildings.

On my journey to the hotel, I saw a rainbow in the sky. It was very beautiful and as always I made my same little wish that my family and friends are always happy and safe. I don't know why but I've always found that the natural beauty of a rainbow always seems to make me smile.

The sun began to set. It was very orange and beautiful. I thought it looked like a Chinese egg yolk. I wish I could have captured the beautiful sunset on camera. The sky was very orange with some element of purple. I think that the weather tomorrow should be quite pleasant. After a while, the sky became darker. I saw the beautiful moon. It was a half moon and was hidden slightly behind the clouds. After a short period of time, I could see the moon in clear view. It was very nice.

Monday 8th August:

For breakfast, I had a pot of strawberry yoghurt and a glass of orange juice. During my journey to Luxembourg, the weather was unpleasant again. It was raining very heavily. It was very cloudy and cool.

Along the motorway, I saw lots of wind turbines. They were very large in size and looked very powerful. I noticed there was a little flashing light on the top of each of the turbines. They kept on flashing as I passed.

I visited the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg. I was told that is a very small but wealthy country and is ruled by a grand duke. The buildings in the area were very nice, unique and distinctive. The streets were generally very clean. The area was particularly quiet. There were just mainly a few tourists taking photographs and recording on their camcorders. I had a quick lunch in McDonalds. I had a ‘Chicken McNuggets Happy Meal’ with a cappuccino. The meal came with a strawberry Actimel yoghurt drink and a Smurf toy. It began to rain very heavily again. I almost slipped on the pavement. It was very wet and the little white pumps that I was wearing didn’t have much grip. I saw lots of high bridges and greenery. They were very nice. I noticed that there were a lot of flags.

I later arrived in Germany. I went on a sight-seeing cruise along the River Rhine. The Loreley ship that I boarded was nice, comfortable and was quite elegantly furnished. It had a few bars. There was a range of souvenirs on sale and a selection of on-board snacks. There were German sausages, apple streudals, German beer and Mozart chocolates. There was also a range of lovely desserts consisting of ice cream and cakes. The photos on the desserts menu looked scrumptious and very yummy!

The view from the ship was very picturesque. There were lots of hills and greenery. I saw lots of nice houses, churches and castles. The river was very long and beautiful. I was really impressed by the scenery. It was very green and tranquil. It felt very stress free and relaxing to be cruising along the river. I saw lots of other ships passing by. I never knew much about Germany previously but discovered that it is a very beautiful country. I would definitely come again to visit the beautiful sights and scenery again. After my cruise along the river, I sat on the coach and went passed a lot of beer gardens. I saw lots of cute, little houses. They were very colourful. I also passed a train station. The trains were red in colour.

During the evening, I visited Germany’s old university town called Heidelberg. I walked to the Old Bridge and took some photographs. There were a lot of buildings that were painted in pink, blue and orange. They looked very nice. I thought they were both pretty and colourful. There were a lot of pubs, hotels and restaurants. It wasn’t too busy and was generally quiet. There was a relaxing feel to the area. The cobbled pavements became very slippery when it started to rain very heavily. I had to hide under a parasol outside a pub restaurant for a few minutes until the rain became lighter.

As I was leaving Heidelberg, I saw a double rainbow in the sky. I felt very excited. It was very, very beautiful. It was very colourful and looked absolutely amazing. I captured the rainbows on my camera. Even though it was raining very heavily, the beautiful rainbows made me feel very happy and I didn’t mind getting wet!

My third day was really good as I really enjoyed myself. I was really looking forward to visiting Switzerland the following day.

Tuesday 9th August:

After breakfast, I visited the Black Forest, one of Germany’s popular tourist destinations. The route to the Black Forest was very scenic with lots of tall conifer trees. I saw lots of hotels and hotel apartments. I thought they were very nice. There was a building that looked like a huge cuckoo clock. It looked very nice.

I went into the Hofgut Sternen glass blower’s shop. It sold a range of designs and gifts made of glass. There were vases, animal figures and decorative glass balls. They looked both fragile and delicate. There were some floral designs that I really liked. I thought they looked beautiful, colourful and pretty. There was also a glass making/blowing demonstration taking place. The man was using the furnace and was making a vase. I was watching with amazement. I thought it was very interesting.

I went into the Black Forest gift shop. As I walked in, there was a big, brown bear at the entrance. The bear had a tag around his neck which had the words ‘Welcome to the Black Forest’ in different languages. Lots of other tourists were taking photographs of themselves with the bear. There was a wide variety of cuckoo clocks on display and for sale. Lots were brown in colour and were made of wood. The designs were very interesting and detailed. The shop also had a range of t-shirts, picture frames, collectibles and other unique souvenirs.

I visited Lake Titisee. I had a walk by the lake and took some photographs. It was a little cool and breezy so I didn’t stay by the lake for too long. I had a browse at the different souvenir shops, visited an art gallery and walked passed lots of hotels and restaurants. There were a few shops selling German beer and sausages. I tasted some Black Forest ham and cheese. The Black Forest ham tasted quite different to the ham that I normally eat back in England. I didn’t like it too much.

There were a lot of fresh fruit stalls in the Lake Titisee resort area. There were strawberries, plums and raspberries. They looked lovely. I was told that they were fruits from the Black Forest. I had some for my lunch. They were very ripe, soft and juicy. They tasted very fruity and nice. I loved them! I saw lots of Black Forest gateau on display in the fridges inside the cafes. Even though I don’t particularly like Black Forest gateau, they looked delicious and looked very appealing. I really wanted to have a slice.

In the afternoon, I went to Switzerland. The weather was very nice. It was both warm and sunny. The sky was very blue. I fell deeply in love with the beautiful scenery.

I visited Europe’s largest waterfall - the Rhine Falls. When I first arrived, I could see the waterfall in the distance. I was very excited and couldn’t wait to get closer to the waterfall. I ran down the steps, went to the ticket kiosk and purchased a ticket for a 15 minute boat ride. It was called ‘Kleine Rundfahrt. I found a seat on the boat and waited in anticipation for the boat to start sailing. During the wait, I gazed into the water. The water was a blue green colour. It was very clean and clear. I could see plenty of fish swimming along. They looked happy and they made me smile.

The boat began to sail. It was so relaxing. I drifted away. It was such a lovely feeling. I took some photographs of the views from the boat. As the boat approached the waterfall, I could feel the mist from the waterfall hitting against my face. It was very cool and refreshing. I could hear the waterfall. It was very loud. The experience was fantastic, spectacular and breathtaking. It was simply amazing and I would love to do it all again! It has made me want to see more waterfalls in the world even more. I really hope to visit the beautiful Niagara Falls one day. I would love to ride in a hot air balloon, be high in the sky and drift over Niagara Falls. That would be like a dream come true. I hope that one day I will fulfil this dream.

After my boat ride I visited the Rhine Falls souvenir shop. The lady that greeted and served me was very polite, pleasant and friendly. Her first class customer care and service made my experience more special, memorable and unforgettable. I used my Swiss Francs and bought some beautiful postcards. They had images of Rhine Falls on them. I thought they would be a nice keepsake for me to remind me of my experience. I bought some Swiss chocolate and some Switzerland themed souvenirs. I also purchased a beautiful snow globe to add to my growing collection. My snow globe collection is growing rapidly and I love every single one of them that I’ve collected over the years. They are all unique and distinctive in their own way.

I visited the wealthy city of Zurich. There were lots of banking institutions in the area. I saw the Credit Suisse bank. I saw lots of trams passing by. I had a walk along Lake Zurich. The lake and the bridges that I saw were beautiful. I saw lots of large cruise ships in the distance. The sun was shining brightly on the lake. The water was shimmering brightly and had a sparkling effect. It was very beautiful. I saw lots of beautiful churches. I wondered what they were called and what they looked like inside. I really wish I will be able to visit the area again in the future.

I went to the town centre and walked down one of the streets that had a lot of flags. I was told that each of the flags represent a different canton of Switzerland. It looked very interesting. I took several photographs of the town centre. I visited a local supermarket. Within the supermarket, there was a Swiss chocolate shop. I’ve always been a lover of Swiss chocolate so was very excited when I saw the wide range of chocolate on the shelves. There was much more choice and variety to choose from compared to what is available in England. I particularly loved the Lindt chocolate varieties on offer. Some of the wrappers had different images of Switzerland on them. They looked very nice. I bought lots of chocolate for my family and friends. I was feeling very thirsty so had a mango and orange juice fruit drink. That felt very refreshing and quenched my thirst.

I checked into the hotel that evening and something strange happened. I washed my hair and plugged my travel hairdryer into the wall socket. Next minute, grey smoke started to come out from the hairdryer. I was worried that I was going to set off the fire alarm in the hotel room. I turned it off quickly. I don’t know why that had happened. It was a new hairdryer as well. It was a good job that nothing bad happened.

Wednesday 10th August:

The weather was lovely this morning. The sky was very blue. It was a very sunny day. As the sunlight was very strong I had to wear my sunglasses to protect my eyes.

I visited Mount Titlis within the Swiss Alps. On my journey to the Alps, I saw lots of houses on the hills. They looked very pretty and were very nice. I got off the coach and stood at the bottom of the hills. I thought the scenery was very beautiful. I felt like I was standing within a beautiful postcard. Everything looked perfect. In fact, everything was perfect at that moment in time. I was swept away and amazed by the beauty of my surroundings. It made me think that nature’s beauty really is priceless. I wish I could have stayed there forever.

I had to take three cable cars up to the top of Mount Titlis. The final cable car was the Titlis Rotair. During my short ride in the cable cars, I felt my ears popping a little and my tummy was turning. It was a very weird feeling. As I was going up, I saw a lake in the distance. It was a blue green colour. It looked very nice. I saw lots of cows beneath the cable car – some were sitting and some were walking. All the cows had a bell hung around their neck. I could hear the sound of the cow bells ringing.

As I went higher up, I could begin to see the snow on the top of the mountains. I could start to feel the cold in the air. I went high above the clouds. I stepped out of the the cable car and walked outside. It was very cold. The ground was covered in snow. Some parts were quite slippery and some parts were a little slushy. I couldn’t walk too far as I wasn’t wearing suitable footwear. I noticed that other tourists were wearing snow boots. They were also wearing a hat, gloves, a winter coat and snow pants. I wished I had dressed like them.

I took some photographs of the snow covered mountains. It was a lovely and picturesque scene. I picked up some snow. It was very light and soft. As I wasn’t wearing any gloves, it was very cold to touch but this didn’t stop me from playing with the snow. It felt like it was winter time. It would have been nice to build a snowman or have a snowball fight with my friends!

As I felt cold and a little hungry, I wanted to get something to eat from the restaurant to warm myself up. There wasn’t much choice. There was only ice cream or pot noodles to choose from. I decided to have a chicken pot noodle. It cost me 6.90 Euros. It was very expensive. Even though it kept me warm, I regretted having one!

I went inside the glacier cave. It was very cold, icy and wet. There was a lot of glittering ice walls. It was quite dark and mysterious. There were some Swiss watch shops and a photo studio. I had the opportunity to wear a traditional Swiss costume then have my photograph taken. I visited the souvenir shop. I saw lots of cow bell souvenirs. They were very pretty and distinctive. There were some snow globes as well. They too looked very pretty and nice.

After spending some time at the top of the snow covered mountain, I took the cable cars to go back down. I could see the cows lying on the grass again and could hear the cow bells ringing. I was told that cows have bells on their necks to enable the farmers to locate where the cows are. I looked at the cows and thought to myself, the milk obtained from the cows beneath me is probably used to make the Swiss chocolate that I always eat. That thought made me smile 😊

I later visited the town of Lucerne. I went to see the Lion Monument, also known as the Lion of Lucerne. It was quite a large sculpture just above some water. The lion was grey in colour and looked injured. I was told that the lion was dying but I wasn’t too sure of the story behind it. I am a little curious so will probably have a look into it when I return home.

I went for a stroll along the Reuss River. It was a very beautiful river. The water looked very clean and clear. It was very blue. I think it was the reflection from the beautiful blue sky. I stood at the side of the river for a short period of time observing the beautiful surroundings. I saw the Chapel Bridge which was decorated with lots of flowers. It looked very pretty.

There were a lot of beautiful swans and ducks swimming in the river. They looked very happy and looked like they were enjoying themselves. One particular duck swam just in front me. I was looking at the duck closely and noticed its little feet kicking the water. The duck was paddling along. It was a very sweet little moment. I thought the duck was very cute. This brought a little smile to my face.

I visited a shop called Bucherer within the town centre. It is a department store selling a range of items including expensive jewellery and Swiss made watches. They also sold a variety of Swiss souvenirs and gifts.

I had a browse around the store. I saw a really nice Swiss made cuckoo clock hanging on one of the walls. It attracted my attention immediately as it was pink and purple in colour. As it consisted of my favourite colours, the clock looked like it was made just for me. It was lovely. A male sales assistant approached me and demonstrated how the clock operates. The cuckoo popped out when the hands of the clock struck twelve and when they struck every half hour. I liked the clock very much but thought it was very expensive. It was 240 Swiss Francs. Even though the sales assistant said he would discount it to 230 Swiss Francs, I made a decision not to impulse buy and walked away.

I have always loved and wanted a musical jewellery box but have struggled to find one in the shops in England. I therefore felt very excited when I saw lots of musical jewellery boxes on the shelves in this particular store. I saw a really nice musical jewellery box. It was pale pink in colour and had a pretty floral design on the top. When I opened the jewellery box, it started to play one of my favourite songs from childhood. It is called Edelweiss. I remember that Edelweiss was a song that I learnt to sing during primary school. I cannot remember all the words but the beautiful tune has always remained in my mind. I think it goes something like ‘Edelweiss, Edelweiss, every morning you greet me, small and white, clean and bright, you look happy to meet me’. I think it is a beautiful piece of music. I think it is really nice and relaxing. It is a happy song which makes me think of the summer. When I hear the song, it always makes me picture myself being somewhere in the countryside and enjoying myself on a beautiful summer’s day. I think that is a very beautiful thought.

I later visited a shop called Bachmann. It is a shop selling chocolate, cakes and ice cream. I bought some more Swiss chocolate. They had a large selection of my favourite and much loved Lindt chocolate. I was very excited by all the wide selection of chocolate in front of me. Something else caught my eye. I saw lots of little red tins on one of the shelves. I looked closely at the wrappers on the tins. They were tins consisting of Edelweiss flower seeds! I had to buy one! I have never seen any real Edelweiss flowers before. It will therefore be very nice when I take the tin home, open the lid, water the seeds and watch the Edelweiss flowers bloom. I am sure they will look beautiful. I can’t wait to take a photograph of them when they bloom so that I can always treasure and appreciate the beauty of the simple and pretty flower. As the weather was very warm and sunny, I purchased a mango ice cream from the shop. It was very tasty and fruity. It was the best mango ice cream that I’ve ever tasted. I also had a chocolate mousse all to myself. That was quite yummy too! I’ve had such a lovely day and look forward to tomorrow.

Thursday 11th August:

This morning I briefly visited a country called Liechtenstein. It was a nice little country. I went to the tourist kiosk and obtained a souvenir stamp in my passport. It cost 3 Swiss Francs but was a very nice memento. I saw a little tourist train arrive just outside the kiosk. It was very cute so I took some photographs.

I went through the town and then the surrounding areas. There were a lot of houses with flowers on the outside. They looked very pretty. I thought they were colourful and beautiful. The air in the atmosphere was very clean and fresh. I thought to myself that Switzerland and Liechtenstein would be very nice and pleasant places to live in.

I approached the border to Austria. I said goodbye to Switzerland and Liechtenstein. I was very sad to leave such beautiful countries. I know that I will miss the blue sky, the beautiful scenery, the beautiful lakes and rivers, the fresh air and the chocolate! I really hope that I will visit these lovely places again, hopefully in the not so distant future.

After crossing the border, I shortly arrived in Innsbruck, the capital city of Tyrol in Western Austria. The weather was very warm and sunny. There wasn’t a single cloud in the sky. The sky was very blue. There was a really nice feel to the town. I visited the town centre. I saw the Golden Roof and the City Tower, the famous landmarks in Innsbruck. The area was packed full of tourists. The atmosphere was very happy, lively and cheerful. There were a lot of people relaxing. I saw people dressed up in gold and silver outfits pretending to be statues and trying to earn some money on the streets. There were lots of horse drawn carriages going through the town. They looked really nice. I wanted to sit on one too!

As Austria is famous for its crystal, I visited the Swarovski shop. It was quite a large shop. It wasn’t as small as the ones that I’ve visited previously. I had a browse around the shop. There were lots of lovely crystal ornaments, jewellery and key-rings. I bought two Swarovski key-rings – one for my special friend Emma and one for myself. The key-ring that I bought for Emma is nice. It is a round crystal on a silver chain. The crystal has a letter ‘E’ inside. There were crystal key-rings for every letter of the alphabet. I hope that Emma likes this little gift from me. The key-ring that I bought myself is very special. It is a round crystal too similar to Emma’s. However, it has a pretty Edelweiss flower inside.’s lovely 😊

I saw a group of young people playing frisbee in one of the parks. They looked like they were enjoying themselves and were having a lot of fun. That was a lovely sight. It would have been good if I was able to join in too! I walked through Innsbruck Park. There were a lot of trees which shaded me from the sun. There was a light cool breeze. It felt really nice. As I left the city of Innsbruck, I saw lots of houses on hills. They looked very beautiful.

During early evening, I arrived in Verona, Italy. The weather was very warm. It was hot and stuffy. I felt that the atmosphere was a little smoky. I couldn’t breathe quite easily. I noticed a big difference compared to Switzerland and Austria.

I took some photographs outside the Verona Arena. I saw a fountain that was in the park just next to the arena. It was nice. I saw lots of Italian restaurants and pizzerias. Lots of people were sitting outside the restaurants having a drink or two and enjoying their meals. I walked through the streets and saw lots of designer shops including Louis Vuitton and Dolce & Gabbana.

I visited Juliet’s house and balcony (Casa di Giulietta). There was a small courtyard containing a statue of Juliet. There were a lot of tourists taking photographs. Lots of people had written on the walls leading to the balcony. There were a lot of love hearts and messages such as ‘Adra + Siki’, ‘Nadine e Davide’ and ‘Gaelle ♥ Anthony’. They were in different colours, sizes and handwriting styles. It was very interesting. There were also some love padlocks. The padlocks were in lots of different colours including pink, purple, blue, green, gold and silver. They too had names of couples on them. People like to believe that by writing you and your partner’s name on the wall or padlock, your love for each other will be locked forever and last a lifetime. I don’t know if this is true and cannot say if it works or not but I think it is a very lovely thing to do if you are in a relationship with someone. I think it is quite special and is rather sweet.

I took several photographs of the balcony, the statue of Juliet and the colourful messages on the walls. Just by the balcony, there was a shop that specialises in personalised embroidery. There were lots of aprons, pillow cases and other fabric goods. There were a lot of leather key-rings. Some were in the shape of a flower and some were in the shape of a heart. You could select your item then get it personalised with your name, your partner’s name or both. A man working in the shop was using a sewing machine and was demonstrating his embroidery skills on pieces of card. He asked me for my name then embroidered the words ‘Yee Wah’ onto a piece of card. He used pink cotton against a white piece of card. It looked lovely. As I have a Chinese name, I would never be able to find any souvenirs like pens, mugs and key-rings with my name on. I therefore thought it was really nice to receive something personalised with my name. It was very special to me and is something that I will keep and treasure forever.

Friday 12th August:

After breakfast, I made my way to Venice by boat. The weather was very warm and sunny. The sky was very blue. The sea breeze felt lovely. It was very cool and relaxing. I saw lots of Italian buildings, boats and cruise ships. When I arrived in Venice, I saw lots of people on the streets dressed up in masquerade costumes and masks. I walked passed lots of stalls selling masks and Venice themed souvenirs. There were a lot of lovely paintings available for purchase. I loved the paintings of the beautiful bridges of Venice. They were very colourful, nice and beautiful. I really wanted to admire the beauty of the paintings for a little longer but my tight itinerary didn’t allow me to do so.

I visited a glass making factory. Prior to going inside the factory, I looked at the surrounding buildings. I looked at the theatre located just next door to the factory. There were several posters displayed on the windows promoting the Venezia show – the story of Venice. It would have been nice if I was able to watch the show and find out a little more about this amazing place and its history. As I walked through the entrance of the glass making factory, I saw some glass lights on the wall. They attracted my attention so I took some photographs. I watched a Venetian glass blower at work. He was demonstrating how to make a glass horse. The heat from the furnace was very hot. Within minutes, the man had shaped the glass and made a horse. I was intrigued. I thought that he was very skilled.

I walked through the factory and saw lots of glass chandeliers hanging down from the ceilings. They were very colourful. There was a range of glass souvenirs on the shelves including a lot of gondola ornaments. They were made out of glass and were in a range of colours including pink, purple, blue and green. They were placed in a lovely presentation box with white fabric inside. They looked very special. There were also a lot of murano glass bracelets and necklaces for sale. They looked very pretty and were available in a variety of styles and colours.

After I left the glass making factory, I went to the river and queued up to sit on a gondola. The gondola went through the Grand Canal, along the river and went under several bridges. I saw lots of nice Italian restaurants and hotels. The man who was steering the gondola had a nice, friendly smile. Even though there were several times when I felt that the gondola was going to topple over, I thought that the man generally steered the gondola quite well. It was quite a smooth ride. I enjoyed my gondola experience and felt it was very nice. I liked it very much. I would love to sit on one again.

I visited St. Mark’s Square. There were a lot of pigeons. I didn’t like it too much. It reminded me of Trafalgar Square in London. There were a lot of Italian cafes and tea rooms. They looked very different and nice. Just outside one of the restaurants, I saw a group of people playing a range of musical instruments. They were playing the piano, flute, cello and violin. It sounded nice. I watched and listened to them play some lovely tunes for a short period of time.

I had a walk around the town. The streets were very narrow. All the streets looked very similar. I felt like I was walking within a maze. It was very easy to get lost. There were a lot of shops selling souvenirs and accessories including fans, handbags, scarves and jewellery. I bought some lovely murano glass bracelets. I bought a pink bracelet for my friend Emma, a blue bracelet for my sister Helen and a purple bracelet for myself. I also bought a pair of purple ear-rings for myself.

During the afternoon, I went to a nice Italian restaurant. It was called ‘Falciani Ristorante Pizzeria’. As there was far too much choice on the menu, I didn’t know what to select. The waiter therefore recommended a pizza that had four different toppings. He said it was a very popular choice. It had olives, pepperoni, ham and mushroom. For my drink, I requested an iced coffee. After a short wait, my pizza arrived. It looked delicious. I took a photograph using my camera. The pizza was very tasty and the coffee was rather refreshing. I enjoyed my meal but thought it was a little expensive.

I went passed St. Mark’s Basilica. There was a very large queue of people waiting to go inside. The surrounding buildings looked very old and historic. The architecture of the buildings was very intricate and detailed. I took some photographs by some bridges. I thought they were really nice. I loved them very much.

After spending several hours in Venice, I left the town by boat. The sea breeze was very nice. I closed my eyes and let myself drift away. I could hear the sound of the waves and I could feel the heat from the sun. It felt very nice and was very warm. The boat went passed a cruise ship. It was called ‘Pacific Princess’. It was a very large ship and looked very grand and elegant. I decided to wave at the people on board. I smiled happily and waved my hand. People then started to wave back at me. It was a very nice feeling.

I checked into the hotel and had something to eat. As it was still light, I decided to go for a walk within the local neighbourhood. I went to a local supermarket called ‘Aliper’. As I entered the supermarket, I saw some watermelons. They were huge in size and were very heavy in weight. I have never seen such huge watermelons before so was a little amazed by the sheer size of them. I asked if I could take a photograph of the watermelons but was told I wasn’t allowed to. It would have been nice if I was able to capture it on camera.

I had a walk around the supermarket. I saw lots of fresh cakes and pastries. They looked very yummy. I also saw lots of different types of pasta on the shelves. They were in different shapes and sizes. There was a wide variety to choose from. I wish there was this much choice back home in England. There were a lot of local residents doing their weekly shop. I felt like a local doing my weekly shop of groceries too! I bought a few items including orange juice, strawberries and some Italian biscuits. The Italian biscuits looked quite unusual so I thought I would buy some for my colleagues.

After leaving the supermarket, I walked back to the hotel. I saw a fountain in the middle of the road. It was lovely. I passed a vending machine in the street. I looked inside the machine and was a little surprised at what I saw. I was expecting to see lots of Italian snacks, confectionery and drinks but saw lots of contraception instead. In England, contraception vending machines are hidden away privately in the toilets of pubs and restaurants. The machines are also quite small in size. I was therefore a little surprised when I saw a big vending machine publicly on the streets containing a range of Durex condoms! I suppose it must not be classed as a taboo item in Italy.

When I got back to my hotel room, I washed and ate my punnet of strawberries straight away. They were very fresh and juicy. They were very yummy! I opened the curtains and looked at the view outside my window. I could see lots of houses and trees across the road. The houses looked quite different to the ones that I normally see. I saw some local residents walking along the street and some going passed on their bicycles. I felt comfortable and very relaxed.

The sky went from light to dark. The moon came out and was shining brightly in the sky. It was very round and yellow. It was very beautiful. I loved it very much. I decided I was going to have a nice rest and then be ready for tomorrow’s activities. I felt very excited as I was due to visit Florence.

Saturday 13th August:

This morning, I woke up bright and early. I drew open the curtains and opened the window for some fresh air. I looked through the window and looked at the view. It was very nice. The weather was very warm and sunny.

After breakfast, I went to the top of a hill and overlooked Florence. I looked at all the monuments, buildings and churches in the distance. I could see Florence Cathedral. I looked at the river and all the bridges. I took some photographs. I saw lots of little stalls selling Florence themed souvenirs and gifts. There were also a lot of paintings. I saw a sightseeing tour bus. I went passed a lovely building. It looked like a restaurant but I wasn’t too sure as I only had a little glimpse of it. There were some parasols outside. It was also decorated with lots of colourful flowers. It looked very pretty.

I later visited the Cathedral Square and took some close up photos of Florence Cathedral. I went to the Piazza della Signoria square. There were a lot of statues and sculptures. I saw lots of historic buildings. They looked very old but the architecture was very detailed. I saw the Palazzo Vecchio Town Hall and went into one of the museums. I also saw the Fountain of Neptune. I went for a walk along the River Arno. The arched bridge looked very nice.

I saw lots of cafeterias, pizzerias and restaurants. They looked very nice. They were decorated with flowers and had parasols outside. I also saw lots of gelaterias and shops selling ice cream and a range of other desserts. I went into a gelateria and bought myself a mint ice cream. I sat down for a while and enjoyed the few minutes of eating my ice cream. I admired the beauty of the glass chandelier on the ceiling and the beautiful decor of the gelateria. It was lovely. I also loved looking at the pasta dishes and desserts on display. They looked very delicious and made my mouth water a little!

There were a lot of shops selling leather goods. This included leather gloves, jackets and handbags. I could smell the leather as I walked passed. The smell was very strong. I visited one particular shop selling leather handbags and purses. The shop owner was very polite, friendly and welcoming. His skin was very brown in colour and he had a very strong Italian accent. He gave me a hug to welcome me into the shop!

I saw lots of horse drawn carriages going through the town. Lots of tourists were sitting on the carriages. They looked like they were enjoying themselves very much. I watched one particular horse that was having a little rest. The horse started to eat some hay from the bag that was hung around its neck. I felt like stroking the horse but didn’t want to frighten him.

The majority of the streets were very narrow. I walked along some side streets. There were a lot of wheelie bins and litter in the area. It was very smelly. Some cars drove through the narrow streets that I was walking along. I had to take extra special care as there didn’t seem to be any rules or a sense of order.

On two separate occasions, two beggars approached me. Both of them had a little tin can in their hands. They shook the can up and down and asked me for some money. I was previously told to ignore the beggars on the streets and not to take any notice of them. I therefore ignored them and walked away.

There were a lot of people selling jewellery and paintings on the streets. I saw some lovely paintings of Italy. They were very beautiful and pretty. I bought myself some postcards from one of the stalls. I walked passed the Santa Croce church. It was white in colour. I thought it was beautiful so took some photographs.

The weather was very warm and sunny. I felt very hot holding my rucksack. I couldn’t wait to get back to the hotel and have a shower to cool myself down. When I arrived at the hotel, I had a really bad headache. I wasn’t feeling too well. I don’t know if it was caused by the heat from the sun. It may have been due to the fact that I wasn’t used to such hot weather. If not, it may have been due to exhaustion from my past week’s activities. I took two paracetamol tablets then shortly fell asleep.

Sunday 14th August:

I woke up bright and early. I was feeling a lot better this morning. I went downstairs and had some breakfast. The breakfast area was simple and nice. There were a lot of cakes and croissants. I had a small ham baguette, a buttered croissant, a cup of tea and a glass of orange juice.

The hotel had a lovely feel to it. It was quite homey with a very relaxing atmosphere. There were a lot of wooden cats, lions and owls. Some were placed on the coffee table just in front of the sofa. There were a lot of artificial flowers including pink peonies/roses and yellow sunflowers. There was an old fashioned wooden piano. It looked really nice. I really wanted to have a play on the piano. There was a newspaper rack and a children’s play area with children’s books and toys. There were lots of yachts on display and a shelf that had a lot of old fashioned tea cups. There were some pretty pictures on the walls as well. Outside the hotel, there were some garden chairs and a gazebo. It looked very relaxing and peaceful. There was a really nice, chilled out feeling to the hotel. I really liked it. The green plants and the pink rose plant outside the hotel were very pretty.

After breakfast, I visited Vatican City and Rome. I went to St. Peter’s Square and visited St. Peter’s Basilica. There were some lovely fountains outside. There were a lot of pillars. There was a big television screen. The screen was turned on and was broadcasting images of the pope and the cheering crowds. I saw several nuns going passed me. There were also some people begging for money. I noticed one man begging with a tin in his hand. His leg looked injured.

I joined the long queue of people waiting to go inside the church. People wearing strappy tops and short skirts weren’t allowed in. I was wearing a dress and a cardigan so passed through the entrance freely. After passing through security (just like in airports), I went inside the church grounds.

I saw a statue called ‘Fabrica Di S. Pietro 301 S. Gregorias Armeniae Illuminator CCC1’. He was holding a book. The book had an eagle design and there was some writing on the front. I wasn’t sure what language it was in. I wondered what it had said. The priest was wearing a locket around his neck. He wore a robe decorated with crosses. His hat had a bird design. The priest was also holding a gold cross in his right hand. Just below the statue, there was a holy water basin. There were some taps. Lots of people were drinking from the taps and filling their own plastic bottles with water. I drank some water too. It was very sweet and refreshing. It tasted really nice. I wish I had taken my own bottle to fill up too!

I went inside the church. I could hear the church bells ringing. As soon as I walked through the door, the first word that came to my mind was ‘WOW’. My eyes started to water. I cannot explain or describe how I felt. The church was just beautiful. It really was amazing. The ceilings looked very nice. Everything was very detailed and intricate. There were a lot of confession boxes. Lot of candles were lit. I could hear people singing hymns. One of the priests walked passed me swiftly. He was wearing a green robe that had a large cross on the back. I think he had to go and attend a service that was due to take place in one of the rooms.
It was the nicest church that I have ever visited. It was a very religious place of worship. My presence in the church made me feel closer to God. It was a very special feeling. My first impression and the time that I spent in the church will last forever in my heart.

I visited the Coliseum and the Arch of Constantine and took some photographs. They looked very old and historic. There were a lot of people selling souvenirs, hats and Italian themed umbrellas. Lots of tourists were taking photographs. I bought a white teddy bear key-ring as a little souvenir for myself. It was wearing a little t-shirt that had the words ‘I ♥ Roma’ printed on it. I thought the little bear was very cute so gave him a little kiss then placed him inside my bag 😊

I visited the famous Piazza Venezia and took some photographs of some famous buildings including the National Monument of Victor Emmanuel II. I went to the town centre and saw the Pantheon building. I saw some people selling fake designer handbags. There were some fake Louis Vuitton handbags being sold at bargain prices.

The weather was very hot and sunny. The sky was very blue and there wasn’t a cloud in the sky. I made sure that I applied a lot of sun lotion to protect myself from getting burnt.

I visited the Trevi Fountain. It is one of the most famous fountains in the world. It was very, very busy. The atmosphere was very lively. There were a lot of tourists taking photographs and making wishes. The fountain is supposedly meant to bring you good luck and happiness and guarantee a return to Rome. It is tradition for people to take two coins, make a wish then throw into the water. I wanted to make a wish too. I looked in my purse and found two coins. With my back facing the water, I placed my hands together then made a little wish. I used my right hand and threw the coins over my left shoulder into the air. The coins landed into the water. I turned around and looked into the fountain. I smiled. I really hope that my wish comes true. I will be a very, very happy girl if it does. I placed my hand into the water of the fountain. It was very cool. The water was very clear. I could see all the coins that people had thrown in. I really enjoyed my visit to the lovely fountain.

I went through the town centre. I saw lots of other tourists taking photographs and people wandering along the streets. I noticed that there were a lot of people taking a rest and sitting on the pavements. There were no seats or benches in the area. I joined a group of people and sat on the kerb of one of the pavements. I spent an hour sitting on the pavement. I was people watching. I was watching the hustle and bustle and the crowds of people walking by. It was noisy but the atmosphere was both happy and lively. Some horse drawn carriages went through the town. I had my evening meal then ate some watermelon for dessert. It was very watery and helped to cool me down.

As I left the town, I passed lots of fruit trees. They looked like they were either oranges, tangerines or clementines. I wasn’t too sure but they looked very nice. During my journey to the hotel, I saw the beautiful orange sunset over the mountains. It was a lovely sight. I felt that it marked the end of my exciting day of exploring and sightseeing in Rome.

Monday 15th August:

After breakfast, I made my way to the city of Pisa. During my journey along the motorway, I saw a beautiful field of yellow flowers in the distance. I looked carefully and realised they were sunflowers. They were very yellow and pretty. They were really bright in colour. They looked such happy and cheerful flowers.

I had to take the shuttle bus to the Leaning Tower of Pisa. When I got off the shuttle bus, I saw lots of African people selling African goods including ornaments and jewellery. There were also people on the streets selling umbrellas. The designs on the umbrellas consisted of images of Venice, Florence and Rome. I liked the umbrellas very much. I think the designs on them looked very attractive but thought to myself I probably wouldn’t use the umbrella if I had bought one.

There were a lot of stalls selling a range of souvenirs including the Leaning Tower of Pisa themed magnets, key-rings, ornaments and t-shirts. Some t-shirts had images of Snoopy pushing the tower. I’ve always loved Snoopy and his friends so thought the t-shirts looked very cute 😊

I noticed that one particular stall sold a variety of pasta. They were in different designs, shapes and sizes. They looked really colourful consisting of yellow, orange and green. As I passed all the stalls, I could see the tower in the distance. I felt excited and wanted to get closer. I’ve seen images of the Leaning Tower of Pisa in travel books, holiday brochures and on the internet many times. It was therefore really nice to see the real thing.

The tower was leaning towards the right and looked like it was going to topple over. I thought it looked very cool. Just like everyone else, I pretended that I was pushing the tower. Lots of tourists were doing different poses. I took several photographs of the tower and the cathedral within the Square of Miracles. I enjoyed my visit to the tower. That’s another item ticked off my ‘bucket list of things to do and places to see’.

After a long journey along the motorway, I arrived in Monaco. I went along lots of bridges and went through lots and lots of tunnels. The bridges were very, very high. I went passed lots of trees that had deep pink and yellow flowers on them. They looked really beautiful and attractive. I liked what I was seeing and I was getting a really good feel for the area.

I could see the sea in the distance. Even though the sun was shining brightly, it was a little cloudy. The sea was visible but the view wasn’t very clear. It looked a little misty. I briefly stopped at the top of a hill and took some photographs of the breathtaking views beneath me. I was very high up and felt a little scared. Even though it was quite scary standing so high, the view was amazing. I could see lots of nice houses. They looked very orange and yellow in colour. I could see lots of cruise ships and yachts in the sea.

I headed to the Casino Square in Monte Carlo. I passed lots of lovely palm trees. They were very nice. I went passed the Fairmont casino. It looked very posh. There were a lot of flags outside. I went passed the Chanel shop. It too looked very posh. I visited the Hotel de Paris. It was very posh and elegant. I saw a nice chandelier on the ceiling. There was a really grand floral design in the centre of the hotel lobby. It was a design consisting of white phalaenopsis orchids in a large white vase. It was a very impressive and extravagant vase arrangement. I thought that it created a lot of impact and attention.

The Monte Carlo Casino that I went passed looked very nice. There were a lot of posh and expensive cars parked outside. I particularly loved a red Ferrari that was parked outside the casino. A lot of people were taking some photographs of the car. I stood by the Ferrari and had my photograph taken too. As I stood in the Casino Square, I noticed a lot of posh cars including Ferraris, Porsches and Lamborghinis driving passed me. Some of the drivers were deliberately revving their engines and showing off. They knew that tourists were excited and were looking at their cars with amazement. There were a lot of wealthy people in the area. Lots of women were carrying designer handbags. There was also a lovely fountain and a unicorn statue.

I visited the Laboutique souvenir shop. There was a range of souvenirs that were fairly expensive in price. As Monte Carlo is famous for its casinos, racing and yachts, there were a lot of souvenirs and goods based on these themes. There were casino slot machine souvenirs, playing cards, racing cars and yachts available for purchase. There were also a lot of I ♥ Monaco and I ♥ Monte Carlo t-shirts and handbags. There were some brown teddy bears on the shelves. They wore red Grand Prix outfits and caps. They looked very cute but were quite expensive. I saw a really nice snow globe in the form of a racing car. The car was red in colour. I saw the Monte Carlo sunset on my journey to the hotel. The sun was very big and very orange in colour. It was a very beautiful sunset. I liked it very much.

Later in the evening, I arrived at the Ibis Nice Palais des Congres hotel in France. There were some pink orchids in the reception area. They looked lovely. I thought the beautiful flowers in the hotel were very pleasant and welcoming. It looked like a nice and comfortable hotel. I spoke to the lady on reception. She was very polite and friendly. She spoke to me about the local area and amenities available. She told me that there is a supermarket nearby but wasn’t open today because it was a Monday. Apparently, the French rest on Mondays. I went up the hotel lift then went into my room. I thought to myself that there are only a few more days left of my European adventure. I’m having a really lovely time but am missing my friends very much and really want to see them. I really wish that they could be sharing this amazing experience with me.

Tuesday 16th August:

I had some petit dejeuner in the hotel. There was a lot to choose from including cornflakes, muesli, yoghurt, bread, croissants, petit pains au chocolat, pancakes and fresh fruit. I had two pancakes and a ham and cheese baguette. I had a cup of mocha and a glass of orange juice.

I visited the city of Nice. I thought it was a very pleasant and pretty area. I loved all the trees that I passed. Some trees had pink flowers and some had purple flowers. It was really nice to see my favourite colours dotted all over the place. I think they looked really cheerful and made me smile.

I went to Nice pebble beach. When I arrived, I saw some people sunbathing, some para-surfing and some swimming in the sea. I was excited so ran down the steps leading towards the beach. I took my flip flops off and walked on the pebbles towards the sea. It was quite difficult to walk on the uneven pebbles and I felt that my feet were hurting a little. However, this didn’t stop me from going to play in the water. I rolled up the bottom of my jeans and went into the water. I kicked and splashed the water for a short while. The waves kept on coming towards me. I found it very fun and enjoyable. I decided to collect some pebbles from the beach. I picked up some small pebbles, wrapped them up in some tissue then placed them into my bag. I thought that the pebbles will be a nice memento for me when I return home.

I visited a town called St. Paul’s Village. The entrance to the village was very peaceful, tranquil and relaxing. All I could hear was the birds singing. The weather was very warm and sunny. The streets were very narrow and the pavements were made from pebbles. There were a lot of shops selling paintings, pictures and sculptures. There were a lot of lavender scented bags that were on sale. They looked and smelt lovely. I visited a souvenir shop that was selling bags, t-shirts, fridge magnets, postcards and pictures. They looked very nice. I saw some nice teddy bears on one of the shelves. They were lilac in colour and smelt of the lavender flower. The bears were cute and the scent was lovely.

Later on, I visited the well known city of Cannes. It has always been famous for hosting the annual international film festival. I went to the Palais des Festivals et des Congrès where the festival is held. I took some photographs. I walked along the red carpet. I posed and pretended to be a celebrity. I waved my hand and walked down the steps. I saw the Avenue of Stars handprints. I briefly looked at some of the handprints on the floor but couldn’t spot any stars that I know. I didn’t recognise any of the names that I saw. I took some photos of the area. There were lots of flowers and palm trees.

I went to Cannes beach. I had a short walk along the beach. The sand was very hot but it was nice. I’m not sure what the temperature was today but I think it was the hottest day of my holiday. Lots of people were swimming in the sea and sunbathing under parasols. Some people were playing beach volleyball. It looked really fun. I wish I had the time to sunbathe, swim in the sea and play beach volleyball too!

In the evening, I made my way to Lyon in France. During my journey, I passed lots of vineyards. I saw lots of grapes hanging down from the bushes. They looked nice. I also briefly visited a lavender farm. Unfortunately, the lavender flowers weren’t purple in colour anymore. Even though they were quite dry and brown in colour, I still could smell the strong scent of the lavender. Hopefully, I will visit a lavender farm again in the future, hopefully when they are in bloom.

I stayed in a hotel in Lyon that evening.

Wednesday 17th August:

After a very long coach journey, I arrived at the Palace of Versailles in France. I’ve always wanted to visit this palace so it was really nice to finally visit this beautiful place. The entrance looked very nice. There was a big gate that was gold in colour. It looked very royal and prestigious. The sun was shining very brightly which emphasised the gold colour on both the gate and the palace. There was a shimmering and gleaming effect. I paid fifteen Euros and purchased a day ticket. The ticket had a lovely design on the back. It had some angels, some clouds and a blue sky. It will be a little keepsake for me as a memento of my visit.

After going through security, I entered the palace grounds. I visited the palace. I saw lots of chandelier lights hanging from the ceilings. There were a lot of nice paintings on the walls. I went into the different rooms and looked at the items of furniture on display. They looked very nice.

I visited the beautiful gardens. There were lots of yellow, pink, purple and white flowers. They looked very colourful and nice. I saw some trees that were triangular in shape. I took lots of photographs. I visited the souvenir shop. There were gold fans, key-rings, postcards, cushions with floral designs and some other royal themed souvenirs. They were very expensive.

I had my evening meal in a brasserie/restaurant just by the Palace of Versailles. It was called ‘Cafe Bleu Roi’. There were some pretty lights by the table. They looked very nice. I sat under a blue parasol and had something to eat. I felt a nice cool breeze and enjoyed relaxing there for a short while.

Later that evening, I went on a ‘Bateaux-Mouches’ boat ride along the River Seine in Paris. As I boarded the boat, I slipped on some water and fell onto the floor. I hurt my right hand, arm and leg. It was quite sore but I didn’t let that spoil my evening. I picked myself up and found a seat on the boat. After resting for a short while and until the pain wasn’t that bad, I started to enjoy my boat ride.

I went passed lots of famous monuments, boats and barge ships. I saw lots of people sitting along the river. They were having picnics and drinks. I noticed they were waving at the people on the boat. I admired the beauty of the Eiffel Tower. I felt that it was just as beautiful as the time when I saw it a few years ago. I’ve always loved Paris. I think it is a very beautiful and romantic place. The sun started to set and the sky became darker. The Eiffel Tower was lit and was orange in colour. It was very beautiful. I took lots of photographs.

After my enjoyable boat ride, I walked towards the Eiffel Tower. I saw laser beams coming from the top of the tower. The view was amazing. I could hear some music in the background. I think some people were playing the flute. I thought the music was very nice to listen to and was very appropriate. I was enjoying the music, appreciating the beauty the tower and immersing myself into the lively atmosphere. At 10pm Paris time, the whole of the Eiffel Tower starting to sparkle. The crowds cheered loudly at what they were seeing. The lights on the tower were twinkling brightly. They looked like shining stars. It was a very beautiful sight. The shimmering lasted for about five minutes. I enjoyed it very much. I thought it was amazing, astounding and absolutely stunning. It was really beautiful and romantic. It was magical. I felt lucky to be there.

I went on a night tour around the beautiful city of Paris. I went along the Champs Elysees, by the Arc di Triomphe and passed the Louvre Museum. I went passed the Paris Opéra. I thought it was a very lovely building. I saw lots of designer shops including Gucci, Chanel, Dior and Louis Vuitton. Lots of shops and buildings were nicely lit up with their neon lights. They looked very nice and colourful.

I arrived at the hotel sometime after 11pm. It was a hotel just by the airport. It was very noisy. I could hear and see lots of planes flying above me. Tonight was also the first time during my trip that I saw some stars in the night sky. I thought they looked very nice and they made me smile.

Thursday 18th August:

I went on a day tour around the centre of Paris. I took some photographs of all the different sights. I went to the Arc di Triomphe. The traffic was very bad. It was very busy and noisy.

I went passed some souvenir shops. I went into a souvenir shop that sold I ♥ Paris and J’ad♥re Paris clothing, handbags and gifts. I saw a really nice perfume. It was called ‘Aubana Paris’. It had a lovely purple butterfly on the top. It was a very pretty bottle and the fragrance was very nice. I really liked it.

I went to see the Eiffel Tower again and took some photographs by a small park that had lots of pretty flowers. I went to the Louvre Museum and took some photographs. I sat by one of the fountains for some time. I put my hands into the water. It felt very cool.

I was feeling very tired from all the travelling and the tourist activities that I participated in during the past two weeks. My body was starting to take its toll and I could feel the exhaustion in me. I walked to the Hotel du Louvre to get a drink and take a rest. I didn’t have the energy to find an alternative coffee shop. I went to the bar. It was very dark and was only lit by some candles. I ordered a cup of hot chocolate, sat on a sofa and had a little rest. The sofa was red in colour and was very comfortable. I almost fell asleep! I enjoyed my hot chocolate. It was very sweet. I felt that the sugar gave me the necessary energy that I needed. I had a browse around the hotel. There were a lot of orchid plants. They looked very nice. The staff members working at the hotel reception were very friendly and pleasant.

I visited a famous department store called Galeries Lafayette located at Boulevard Haussmann. The ceiling was domed in shape and was very beautiful. I visited the floor that sold Paris souvenirs. I bought some chocolate. They had some lovely images of Paris on the wrappers.

After another lovely day, I went to the hotel, had a shower then went to sleep.

Friday 19th August:

After breakfast, I headed to Calais ferry port to make my journey home. I boarded the ferry back to Dover. I sat on a coach and went through the city of London. I went passed the Tower Bridge, the London Eye and the Big Ben tower clock. I hadn’t been to London for some time now so it was nice to pass and see the lovely sights again. I went through the City of Westminster. I saw lots of mansions and nice buildings. I went along the motorway back to Manchester then headed home.

Summary and evaluation of my holiday around Europe:

I’ve had a really enjoyable holiday. It was a very amazing trip and a truly awesome experience. I visited so many beautiful places and have come back with lots of special and happy memories. I will cherish all these special moments that I now have and will keep them forever within my heart. My most favourite places would have to be Switzerland, Austria, Venice, Monte Carlo, Nice and Cannes. I think they are naturally very, very beautiful. I think the natural beauty of a place is always the best. There are still many lovely places that I would like to visit in Europe including the colourful Northern Lights in Norway, the historic city of Barcelona in Spain and the lovely countries of Sweden and Denmark. I also would like to go dolphin watching in the beautiful island of Gibraltar. I also hope to visit other continents mainly America and Canada, Asia and Australia. Let my journey around the world continue...bye-bye for now 😊 x x x

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2nd January 2012
Cuckoo clock in Bucherer department store, Lucerne

cuckoo clock
In November 2011 my brother and I bought cuckoo clocks. they're beautiful,but it's not giving us precise time. It's fast. At first it was just 15 minutes,then 30 minutes fast, then 2 hour fast. Now I just let the clock stop running. I am disappointed with this because Swiss clocks are precise. Now what I want is that how can you remedy this problem so that it gives me the correct time? I live in Palm Bay,Florida 32907. Thank you for any help you can extend.
6th May 2013
Hofgut Sternen glass blower's shop

Hi I was just on a trip to your shop and would like to purchase some glass ware can you help me out I see no pictures of your work. Thank you
6th May 2013
Hofgut Sternen glass blower's shop

Hi I was just on a trip to your shop and would like to purchase some glass ware can you help me out I see no pictures of your work. Thank you

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