The Big Smoke

June 8, 2009

Thanks to Sarah and Dave for putting us up for the night. On Saturday morning we left early and took the local train from Waun-Gron park to Cardiff central, and then the 7:55 to London Paddington. Very nice journey, arrived in London at 10:05 – amazing!

Walked across Hyde Park to Knightsbridge, spotting these two icons of Britain on the way.

Albert Memorial, Hyde Park

Albert Memorial, Hyde Park

Aston Martin, Princes Gate Court, Knightsbridge

Aston Martin, Princes Gate Court, Knightsbridge

Then we spent an hour at the Science Museum. We intended to do the Natural History and the British Museums, but carrying packs etc was tiring us out, so we walked into Knightsbridge and found a Sushi restaurant with a very nice Teranyaki Chicken for a reasonable price. Fortified with food, we looked at taking the tube across town, but at four pounds each, we decided the walk would do us good! So out came the map, and we plotted a route avoiding the worst of the crowds and traffic, across Hyde Park, Mayfair, Soho, Bloomsbury to Euston. This is a great way to see the real London, with minimal traffic and crowds. We crossed Knightsbridge Road, Park Lane, Regent Street, Oxford Street, Totenham Court Road and Euston Road, so we did see that side of it briefly, but we also walked through Hyde Park, Mount Street Gardens, Berkeley Square, Hanover Square, Soho Square, Bedford Square, Bloomsbury and Endsleigh gardens, all wonderful green oasis in the city. Got a superb coffee at Coffee Republic on Great Marlborough Street.

Caught the 15:10 from Euston to Chester, which took just 2 hours, scarily fast! Changed onto the Flint train, straight onto the bus, and back to Sychdyn by 18:00!

Sunday we relaxed a bit, but also climbed Moel Fammau from Cilcain, then went along the ridge line towards Moel Arthur, and from thee down into Cilcain again, about 8km in 2 hours, with 400 metres of climb.

Today we are planning the last week or so of our trip. We have decided to have another two nights at Knoll House if we can get in, before taking the train to Heathrow. This trip and the trip to Bournemouth will use up our last two days of tickets on the Britrail, so we are planning a trip to York and Northallerton the weekend before in Mum’s car. More details as we finalise the plans.

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