Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Exploring Europe Part 5 || London City Tour

Today plan is London City Tour.. we bought the London Big Bus Tour that covers around 50 stops including River Thames Cruise.. I was excited especially to watch the changing of the guards at Buckingham Palace.. I planned that we took the full bus tour and then head towards the Palace around 10.30 a.m to catch the parade.. since the parade would start at 11.30 in the morning.. 

at queensway station
From our hotel, we have the choices of taking the underground from 2 stations, Bayswater and Queensway.. Since we're still not familiar with the area, we were lost and finally found our way to Queensway Underground (only to find out later that our hotel is much closer to Bayswater)

at green park station
while waiting for the tour bus


We stop at Green Park to catch the bus at its first stop.. There we get the bad news.. It seems that day is the London Marathon and most of the road are closed.. The tour are still operating only that they reroute from the original plan.. We'll definitely missed the changing of the guards and Buckingham Palace (its one of the route for the marathon) and London Bridge (also one of the route).. but they extend our ticket until the next day.. it didnt make any difference to us since we had something else plan for the next day..

in the bus

We decided to make do with anything we have that day.. But the traffic was bad.. We didn't get to cover much.. but it was ok.. atleast we can say that we have toured city of London.. and ohh.. we missed the River Thames cruise too..

hyde park
marble arch

oxford street
baker street station - one of original station

the first hard rock cafe

trafalgar square
west end district london

london bridge and river thames

the shards london

eye of london

big ben

an old pub
one of the upperclass area

limkokwing university in london
in london hard rock cafe

london hard rock cafe
hyde park

If ada rezeki for next visit I would do a deeper research on any events.. no more surprises like this I hope..

kebab for dinner

That night we had kebab from a nearest restaurant.. the que was long that we assume must be good.. BUT.. the food was nothing to boast about and the small portion.. it was not enough for Adam alone.. and is quite expensive compared to the one we had before at Manchester..

The London Big Bus Tour : £20 (adult) & £10 (child)

Monday, April 28, 2014

Exploring Europe Part 4 || Manchester - London

The main activity today is to travel from Manchester to London.. by train.. since Adam is obsess with train..
in the lift going down

watching the tram passing by

We checked out from Ibis early in the morning after breakfast.. and were picked up by Dude's friend for a final tour of Manchester before our train to London in the evening.. Somemore we have to maximise our rented car usage.. we have to return it back by 11 in the morning..

selamat datang

at manchester city store
We went to Etihad Stadium.. the homeground of Manchester City.. just a couple of pictures and a visit to their store..


After sending the rented car and sending our luggage for storage, we walked to the City of Manchester.. About the storage.. the name of the facility is Excess Baggage located somewhere at Track 10.. you just enter the track and tell the officer that you were going to excess baggage.. there the attendant will scan your luggage (just like security checks at airport) and tag it.. the rates are £6 per luggage..

chocolate stop
walking to Hard Rock Cafe

with our host at manchester - Hanif
eye of manchester
After we're done, we walk to the city.. thought of going to Hard Rock Cafe.. but after the long walk there, it's close.. and I just forgot to take picture there.. After that we walk to one of the mall opposite the cafe and have our lunch there.. at the food court were lots of Halal Food.. so it won't be a problem..

piccadilly manchester station

After that we just walk back to Piccadilly.. a slow walk.. we said goodbye and thank Dude's friend for being a very good host.. and he went off for is appointment.. we didn't wait that long before our train came.. Virgin Trains.. Adam was truly excited.. he asked to sit by the window.. since we travel in 3.. Dude have to be seated infront of our seat.. We didn't get a box seat..

first stop stockport

sea of mustard seed flower

The journey was smooth.. At first I enjoyed the view.. After a while the view became dark.. ehehehe.. I fell asleep only to wake up as we neared London.. my last memory of the journey was the sea of mustard seed yellow flowers..

charging in the black cab
in the black cab

Since we were with quite a bulky luggage, we decided to take the black cab to our hotel in London.. we chose Hyde Park Suites based on a couple of advices.. But we were quite unlucky though, the hotels there are without lift.. I've requested for a ground room, but we get a third floor room.. according to them, they were full.. I pity Dude.. he had to carry all our luggage up the flight of stairs.. and why Bayswater? according to some people thats the most strategic place since the Underground Station is just nearby and Bayswater area is closer to shops..

We decided to stay in that night to prepare a full day tomorrow.. It was a nice night in watching animated movie Epic.. Luckily we brought along our external hard drive..

Ibis Budget Hotel Manchester rate : £67 for 2 nights
Virgin Train : £31.25 [£12.50 (adult) & £6.25 (child)]