The ‘Ting’ Family visit the UK

07 – 12 MAY 2015:

My cousins from Cebu, Philippines and my Aunty from Texas, USA had decided to visit us in the UK for the first time. They have always looked after us whenever we’ve visited them, so we wanted to return the favour by showing them some of the tourist hot spots and English heritage sites.

People always expect you to have seen all of your local tourist spots, but in truth I think more often than not, we’re either oblivious to them or pass them up because we think we’ll always have a chance to see them later. As they say, you never appreciate what’s right in front of you until it’s gone!

STONEHENGE

‘Stonehenge is a prehistoric monument located in Wiltshire, England, about 2 miles west of Amesbury and 8 miles north of Salisbury.’

0515 UK (93)I’ve driven past this ‘wonder of the world’ many times on my way to Devon for our annual family trip, and always wondered why people would spend money to see these rocks. They are interesting but there is very little to do there besides admire them and maybe take a few snaps with the camera. My cousins wanted to tick it off their list so we decided to go with them, at least for the photo opportunity! It cost us £16 per person to take a bus from the car park to the actual stones. For that price, I expected there to be a tour guide on the bus providing some information about Stonehenge, but unfortunately that wasn’t the case.

After taking some photos we got the bus back to the car park area where there is an exhibition centre, cafe and gift shop. There was a slight panic when we found our car and realised that we had lost our car keys! Well my sister had lost them to be specific. Thankfully someone had handed them in…Honest people do exist!

All in all, one could argue it was a photo worthy experience, but definitely not something I would ever feel the need to do more than once.

Address: Near Amesbury, Wiltshire SP4 7DE

Website: http://www.english-heritage.org.uk/visit/places/stonehenge

WINDSOR CASTLE

‘Windsor Castle is a royal residence at Windsor in the English county of Berkshire. The castle is notable for its long association with the English and later British royal family and also for its architecture.’

windsor-castle-guards-21-1I personally didn’t go into the castle as I was happy just waiting outside. However, the area where the castle is situated is very nice. It’s on top of a hill surrounded by shops and cafes.

I have always liked the atmosphere in Windsor town centre. It has an old town feel whilst still having everything a modern shopper might need. As you can see, it’s easy to take photos of the outside as you can still get very close to the castle.

Address: Windsor Castle, Windsor, Berkshire SL4 1NJ

Website: http://www.royalcollection.org.uk/visit/windsorcastle

LACOCK ABBEY

‘Lacock Abbey in the village of Lacock, Wiltshire, England, was founded in the early 13th century by Ela, Countess of Salisbury, as a nunnery of the Augustinian order. Lacock Abbey is a country house with monastic roots, once home to William Henry Fox Talbot, photography pioneer.’

IMG_1065

I had never heard of this place until recently, however I am very glad I visited. The abbey and the surrounding grounds are stunning so it’s no surprise that it gets used in films quite a lot. They filmed scenes from the Harry Potter film – ‘Chamber of Secrets’, in the Abbey and also scenes from the 2008 film ‘The Other Boleyn Girl’ (one of my favourite films!)

Lacock village in general is small and old fashioned, and is also used for many TV and film productions such as Wolfman and Pride and Prejudice.

Address: Lacock, near Chippenham, Wiltshire, SN15 2LG

Website: http://www.nationaltrust.org.uk/lacock

Obviously my cousins managed to see a lot more than this. They completed a tour which included some other European cities such as Amsterdam, Venice, Rome etc as well as some other UK tourist spots like the Roman Baths. I’m glad I was able to see a few of the places with them since I’d never been to any of them before!

A notch on my UK heritage belt, one could say.

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