Euro Trip Week 6 Round-Up

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In case you missed it, I'm currently traveling through Europe, exploring hidden corners and must-see spots in Eastern Europe, the Balkans and the UK. I've been posting daily updates from my adventures on Facebook and Twitter, but in case you missed some of those, I've also decided to put together a weekly round-up to update anyone who's interested on what I've been up to for the past 7-ish days.

Here we go with Week 6! (With the days being cumulative.)

Day 36

After discovering a quick and easy shuttle service exists from Lake Bled to the airport, I ended up having about 3 hours to kill on Day 36 in Bled. And lucky me, the sun was shining! I went to the grocery store, bought some lunch, and sat by the lake to eat and feed the swans. Then I headed to the airport to catch my EasyJet flight from Ljubljana to London!! There I made my way to my friendย Christina's apartment, where she and her partner and I ordered pizza and watched the Opening Ceremony of the Olympics. It was amazing to be in the city for this event — we could hear the fireworks from where we were sitting and even see the sky illuminated!

Lake Bled, Slovenia
Lake Bled

Lake Bled, Slovenia

Lake Bled, Slovenia

Day 37

What could have been my first day of sightseeing in London instead turned into an impromptu blogger meet-up. We (me, Christina, Bodo, Dylan, Nicole, and Matt) had Indian food in Covent Garden, and then some of us visited a few country houses to get into the Olympic spirit. Kiwi House was fun (I nearly decided to support New Zealand instead of my own country…), and USA House was a big let down — it was just a big Team USA shop, and they would only let you in if you were American! Lame, America. LAME. Afterwards, I set out on my own to the Westminster tube stop to see some sights along the Thames as the sun went down. I walked all the way from Parliament to the Tower Bridge, and was rewarded by a light show and the lowering of the Rings under the bridge!

London, beware – the bloggers are out!



Tower Bridge, London

Day 38

This was the day I had perhaps been anticipating the most on this whole trip — the day I went to the Olympics! A coupe months ago, I managed to score a ticket for a qualifying round of women's gymnastics — my absolute favorite sport. I woke up super early to hop on the tube to North Greenwich Arena, and got to see a full 3 hours of Olympic gymnastics live! I sadly didn't get to see any of the “big” teams compete (I didn't get to cheer on my USA girls, unfortunately), but I did get to see the teams from Italy, Australia and Brazil compete, along with some very talented team-less gymnasts. When it was over, I didn't want to leave. I wanted to stay in that arena for the next week and just watch gymnastics forever. I had to leave, though, and went to the Swiss House to meet Christina and Bodo, who then graciously gave me a quick walking tour of central London in the rain.

London 2012 Olympics
The arena before the first session started.
London 2012 Olympics
Air planking? No, just a gymnast doing a sweet floor routine!

London 2012 Olympics


Buckingham Palace, London
Christina and I outside Buckingham Palace.

Day 39

I met up with Nicole again on Day 39 for a Golden Tours trip out to Windsor Castle, Bath, and Stonehenge. The whole day turned out to be a lovely surprise. Windsor Castle was stunning, and far surpassed my expectations. The Roman Baths in Bath, too, blew me away — there was so much to see/learn about! And Stonehenge… well it's Stonehenge! It was great to finally see it in person.

Windsor Castle
Windsor Castle
Windsor Castle
The changing of the guard ceremony at Windsor Castle.
Roman Baths in Bath


The infamous Stonehenge

Day 40

My plan for the morning of Day 40 had been to use my London Pass to cram in some sightseeing. I failed pretty miserably, though. I went to the Tower of London and took a fantastic free tour, then spent another hour exploring (and seeing the Crown Jewels) on my own. Then I scrambled over to Westminster Abbey. I figured I could easily breeze through in half an hour — but I was so wrong! The Abbey is HUGE; a guided tour takes about 90 minutes, and there are even audio guides on offer. I spent an hour inside and still didn't see it all. The reason I didn't have time to see more was because I had a very important date at 2 p.m. — a date with the Making of Harry Potter at the WB studios in Leavesden! This is going to become a Mecca for HP fans, I think. It's a museum experience unlike any other, because here you can see the actual sets, props, costumes, etc. that were used in the popular film franchise. I went with Viator and spent a full 3 hours in the exhibit. I could have easily spent 3 more.

Tower of London
Beefeater guide at the Tower of London – he was hilarious.
Westminster Abbey, London
Westminster Abbey
Making of Harry Potter
The Great Hall!
Making of Harry Potter
The Burrow
Making of Harry Potter
Drinking Butterbeer next to the Knight Bus.

Day 41

It was out of London again on Day 41, this time heading to Oxford, Stratford-Upon-Avon, and Warwick Castle. Oxford was just as beautiful as I'd hoped it'd be, and I enjoyed wistfully imagining myself eating dinner in Christ Church College's Great Hall (inspiration for Hogwarts' Great Hall). Stratford-Upon-Avon was very touristy, but still very pretty. And seeing Shakespeare's birthplace was definitely cool. Warwick Castle was a bit of a surprise — it's part castle and part medieval amusement park. Great for kids. I went through the state rooms, walked around the grounds, and watched a jousting show in which they hilariously mocked the Olympic Opening Ceremonies. Once I got back to London, I rounded out my time there with a geek-tastic visit to King's Cross Station.

The “real” Great Hall at Christ Church College, Oxford.


Shakespeare's birth house in Stratford-Upon-Avon.
Warwick Castle
Warwick Castle

Warwick Castle

King's Cross, London
I had to.

Day 42

I bid farewell to London and hopped on a train up to Edinburgh on Day 42. After checking into Haggis Hostels, I hit the streets with my Edinburgh Pass to try and get some sightseeing in. My arrival coincided with the beginning of various festivals, though, including the famous Fringe Festival, and the Royal Military Tattoo festival. This meant that the Royal Mile was PACKED with street performers and people handing out fliers for various shows. I nearly forgot all about sightseeing. I slowly made my way to the Camera Obscura (a fun museum full of optical illusions and a giant camera obscure), grabbed some dinner, and then joined in on an Auld Reekie tour of haunted Edinburgh. On this tour, we went down into the creepy vaults under the city and heard plenty of ghost stories… I wouldn't want to go down there by myself, that's for sure!

Edinburgh, Scotland
There's nothing like a gothic city under sunny skies.
Edinburgh, Scotland
Street performer on the Royal Mile
Edinburgh, Scotland
The view of Edinburgh from the Camera Obscura.

The Week in Numbers

Each week, I'll try to give you an idea of how I'm traveling, and what things generally cost.

  • Number of flights: 1
  • Number of trains: 1
  • Number of Tube rides: Many! I love how easy it is to travel around London with an Oyster card.
  • Number of mini buses: 0
  • Number of times it's rained: Nearly every day; it's the UK!
  • Number of times I've nearly passed out from the heat: ZERO!
  • The price of things in the UK: Expensive. That's all I will say.

*Note: From here on out, many of the things I'm doing are either sponsored or already included. I will share prices when I can, though.

London 2012 Olympics
Ready to cheer on some gymnasts at the Olympics!

So there you have Week 6 of my European adventure! Come back next week for Week 7's round-up.

If there's anything more you want to know about my weeks, tell me in the comments!


If you missed previous weeks…

"It's a dangerous business, going out your door. You step onto the road, and, if you don't keep your feet, there's no telling where you might get swept off to." - JRR Tolkien

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31 Comments on “Euro Trip Week 6 Round-Up

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  1. Wow! Amazing shots, I bet you have had such a great time! It must be such an amazing experience to be there at the olympics…London is such a great city! I haven’t been is Scotland yet, but I can picture myself that Edinburgh mustn’t be missed!

      The UK has been amazing. I’ve loved every part of my trip for different reasons, but I have to say that the UK may be the most memorable so far!

    Gymnastics at the summer Olympics? That would be the ultimate to see.

      Agreed! It’s been on my bucket list for years, and was so amazing to get to cross off!

    You certainly saw a lot of awesome stuff! The Tower Bridge looks awesome with the Olympic rings on it; I hope they’ll leave them up until the next time I can make it over to London-town. ๐Ÿ™‚

    Your readers who are passionate about Shakespeare should realize that there are additional points of interest in and around Stratford-upon-Avon – among them Holy Trinity Church (where he’s buried) and the house where Anne Hathaway grew up (Ms. Hathaway having been the Bard’s wife) in the adjacent town of Shottery The Hathaway house, in addition to making for a fascinating tour, also has beautiful gardens (depending on the season). Also, it’s quite an experience to see a Shakesepare play performed in Stratford. Along similar lines, I highly recommend seeing a Shakesepeare play at the re-created Globe theatre in London.

    I hope that in Westminster Abbey you had a chance to check out the Poets’ Corner, where so many big names are buried . . .

      I would have loved to spend some more time being a Shakespeare geek in Stratford. Like you said, there’s plenty to see/do!

    Looks like a super fun week! So very awesome you managed to make it to the Olympics!!

      Very fun! Though just wait for Week 7!! More epic-ness ensues.

    Looks like you had an absolute ball!!! What fun captures of London, it must have been such a joy to attend the Olympics!! Stunning captures, loved them all.
    Wish you a wonderful week Amanda ๐Ÿ™‚

      Yes, I still kind of can’t believe I was there! Such a cool time to be in London.

        It will slowly sink in, what a time you had… When the Olympics will get over in a couple of days and only memories will be left.
        Have a wonderful weekend Amanda ๐Ÿ™‚

          Yes, I agree. It hasn’t quite hit me, all the amazing things I’ve been doing/places I’ve been going. Once I get some time to decompress, I know it’ll seem much more amazing!

    You got to see Gymnastics!!! How exciting ๐Ÿ™‚ Your trip in London reminded me of one I took many years ago. I took day trips out to Bath, Windsor, Stonehenge, Stratford too! Loved every minute of it. This little glimpse of the British countryside made me want more.

      Yes, my little teaser of London and southeastern England has definitely left me wanting more!

    You’re making me miss England SO MUCH! Gah, we love London and Bath and Stonehenge and the Cotswolds – and August is a great time to see them all. We seriously need to go back…. mostly for the Harry Potter experience. ๐Ÿ˜‰

      My time in the UK is going to be FAR too brief, I think.. I’ve enjoyed it a lot more than I expected to so far!

      You definitely do need to go back for the HP experience, though!

    I’m so jealous you got to watch gymnastics at the Olympics! It must have been amazing, you got some fantastic shots!

      It was indeed amazing! My only regret is that I didn’t get to see the U.S. team compete. Maybe next time…

    Sounds like an amazing week! So cool about the Olympics but pretty lame about America House! Not cool.

    I need to do the Harry Potter thing! Amazing!

      Yeah, I was really disappointed by USA House! No Olympic spirit!

    So glad to see you enjoying my hometown! (I live 5 minutes from Windsor Castle!) I WANT TO DO A HARRY POTTER THING! Badass.

      I very much enjoyed your hometown!! The only bad part was that you weren’t around!

      And you NEED to do the Harry Potter thing the next time you’re home! It’s AMAZING.

    Would have LOVED to watch the gymnasts live! Always my fave. Looks like a hectic week!

      It was amazing! A bucket list item ticket off!

      And this whole trip has been hectic, but I don’t mind!

    LOVE the picture of the Tower Bridge. That’s my favorite bridge in all of Europe.

      The Tower Bridge is awesome!! And seeing it decked out with the Olympic rings was definitely a treat.

    Looks like you are still having a blast. I’m so jealous for 2 reasons… 1 you were able to attend the Olympics. That is a dream of mine. 2 you were able to go to the Harry Potter attractions. I love Harry Potter. Oh & I would have pushed the cart too.

      I’m so so glad I decided to go to London for the Olympics. My only regret now is not staying longer! If I had, I would have perhaps been able to see even more. But it was still amazing getting to go, even if it was only to one event!

      And I loved being able to be a Harry Potter nerd all over London!!

    Now THAT is my definition of a cute blogger ensemble photo ๐Ÿ˜‰ Glad you’ve been having fun โ€“ proud of my country for treating you to a great time!

      I agree! An awesome blogger ensemble photo. ๐Ÿ˜‰

      And yes, the UK is treating me very well so far! I can’t believe I have less than 2 weeks left here though. Crazy!

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