Somehow in this life I have been blessed with friends who love to fulfill the travel bug just as much as I do. When it came down to planning our next trip we kept looking at affordable, beach options. Then things took a complete turn into more elaborate trip across the pond all thanks to a cheap flight to London (under $550 round trip!). Then what was supposed to be just a trip to London turned into London AND Paris all within a week.
We started this adventure off in London. For a day. During the first day the group split momentarily..some went to visit friends, some went to see Stonehenge…and me? Well, I went to Hogwarts….via the most expensive cab ride ever! The Harry Potter studio tour was definitely a highlight from London. I’ve been on a few studio tours and this one was very interactive and hand numerous hands on activities like wand training and of course, BUTTERBEER!
After exploring the wizarding world that is all things Harry Potter, we took a train to our hotel in St Pancras. This was the first time I experienced traveling via train. We took some time to rest after checking in to wait on everyone to finish their activities for the day before going out to enjoy dinner at a Pub as a group.
After a day in London we took a train to Paris. We took a taxi to our hotel and decided to walk around the city. We weren’t far from the Arc de Triomphe and Champs Elysees. We also experienced our first language barrier struggle while ordering our dinner. Our waitress didn’t speak any English and we didn’t speak any French. After pointing at a few things on the menu we were able to communicate enough to order successfully.
Over the next two days we took in a lot of the touristy stops like the Louvre Museum, Catacombs, Sainte Chapelle, Palais Royal, Notre Dame, Latin Square, Seine River and this small tower that seemed to be a big deal, the Eiffel Tower. And of course we tried Crepes – which were AMAZING!
After a few days in Paris we went back to London for the remainder of our week long excursion. Our hotel was the cutest and the staff was the best – I can not recommend The Sanctuary House enough! The first night back our group split again, some went to see Wicked and a couple of us went to explore Trafalgar Square and Picadilly Circus. These were the best places to find souvenirs for us to bring back to our friends and family.
The next day was really our only full day of exploring in London and we knocked a lot off of our list! The London Pass deserves a lot of thanks for that. We were able to see the Tower Bridge, Hyde Park, The Princess Diana memorial in Hyde Park, Buckingham Palace, Kensington Palace, The Shard, Westminster Abbey, Tower of London, Tower Bridge, St Paul’s Cathedral, Royal Albert Hall, Wellington Arch, and we finished out the day with more shopping at Picadilly and Trafalgar. We did have failed attempt to see Big Ben as it was hidden by scaffolding from construction.
Before heading to the airport on our last day we did make a quick stop at Abbey Road Studios to take our Beatles themed photos – Although the street is very busy and as hard as it was to get photos I strongly recommend stopping by.
Even though the trip was quick and seems like such a blur at this point, it was a great time with friends that built memories to last a lifetime. My only regret is not staying longer.
Until the next adventure…
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