Monday, April 18, 2011

Adventures In England--Day 29 & 30

Saturday, April 16, 2011
We started off our morning at 6:30am walking to the Epsom train station. We had to be at London Victoria by 8:20am so we could leave for our tour of Leed's Castle, Dover and Canterbury. We had to leave a little extra early this time because we decided to get off at Ewell East, scan our Oyster and then wait for the next train. We didn't want to get separated again! We made it to the tour bus and we were headed out to Leed's Castle in Kent, England. The Castle is built on a lake and I would have to say that it's the prettiest, most romantic castle we've been to. Leed's Castle was last owned by an American woman, Lady Olive Baillie, and she added a lot of wooded area around the castle. She loved birds so she made sure to have plenty of flowers, trees and water so it would attract birds to the property. Peacocks were roaming the property, swans were swimming on the lake and she even had a bunch of exotic birds housed on the property.
We had such a great time exploring the grounds at Leed's Castle. Leed's Castle is on about 900 acres of land, so unfortunately we didn't have time to explore it all but we tried to soak in as much as we could while we were there.
We left Leed's Castle and we headed to the Dover. Dover is known for the white seacliffs and the English Channel. The English Channel is the water that separates France and England--we were actually able to see the mountains of France from the beach at Dover. The sea cliffs are one of the 7 wonders of the world and it was one of the places that I definitely wanted to do on our trip here.
Once we got to the beach at Dover, I was a little disappointed. The pictures online (shown above) were so beautiful...the white was a great contrast to the deep blue color of the English Channel. We were by the marina so the view that we had of the cliffs was filled with other things. Oh well, they were still beautiful just not what I was expecting. The beach was all rocks and pebbles--no sand. Definitely a different type of beach than we are used to! We made sure to throw a pebble into the English Channel and to touch the water. The water was so cold...I found this out on a little more of my body then I would have liked. I got too close to the water and when the wave came up on the beach, my feet got drenched. After ringing out my socks, we headed to the medieval town of Canterbury. Along the road to Canterbury, we went right beside Dover Castle. Dover Castle is more of a strong looking castle because it is the first line of defense from any attacks from the English Channel. Canterbury Cathedral is the main attraction of Canterbury. The Cathedral was definitely built with the gothic style in mind. It was so large and mystic looking--the inside was full of intricate designs, beautiful stain glass windows and catacombs full of history. We wandered around Canterbury but the Cathedral and a few other buildings were the only buildings with any history. The whole town got distroyed by cannons in war and the cathedral was one of the few things that survived. After Canterbury we headed back to London. We were taking a river cruise from Greenwich to Embankment Pier. The cruise went through the main part of London and a lot of the popular sites could be seen. We made sure to sit on the outside so we could get some pictures! We finished up our day around 6:00pm walking across London to get to the train station. We had a great day exploring Leed's Castle, Dover and Canterbury.

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Our only plans that we had for today were to REST. I woke up with Jason's sickness so I wasn't feeling up to too much at all. Hot tea, cough drops, movies and naps were about the extent of our day. Jason still has a little bit of a cold so he didn't object to the agenda for the day. Today was also the London Marathon so I'm glad we stayed in Epsom and away from the crowded streets of London.


David and Elizabeth said...

LOVE the pics! I love how old everything is.

Kelsey Claire said...

The pics are to die for! Thanks so much for taking them and showing us your fun little adventure!