Friday, February 11, 2011


Nov 2010: We spent our 2nd Anniversary touring around Europe. We went around London, Paris and Rome. Since it was the beginning of winter, we got the chance to catch some snow here and there.


First stop was London. We travelled around by tube and walking… its the easiest way to travel here. You just pay nearly 7 £ and can get up in ANY tube to ANYWHERE around London. Their system is so efficient that there’s a train every minute!

Hyde Park
Nothing much, just walked around. Locals
go about their daily routine, jogging ,
cycling, some on the way to work. Lots of statues/monuments/memorial if you like
taking pictures of them. We saw the
Buckingham palace horses on the way to
the palace and we followed them.

Buckingham Palace

I did not get to see anything!. There were just too many people and it seems its packed like this every day. The man and the horses are beautiful (especially the red ones), but if you want to see the change of guards, you can watch it on Youtube. You cant really see anything here, because you have to stand outside of the palace with thousands of other people holding their camera high up to get some picture. Not interesting. The wind was so cold, we were freezing standing there for so long.
Then we walked to a nearby restaurant to have lunch. Then proceeded to Madam Tussaud’s The ticket queue was very long, so we decided to give it a pass. Maybe next time. Then we took the tube to St Paul’s Cathedral.

St Paul’s Cathedral
This is a beautiful cathedral, but you cannot take pictures. You are given Iphones where you can listen to its history while u walk inside the cathedral. The tickets were about 12 £ per person. It was worth it, but a bit disappointing when you cant take pictures.


We managed to meet my hometown friend and her husband in London. They drove us around town. It was Christmas season so, at night the place was beautifully lit. The jam was terrible. We had dinner at one of the many “Little India”s. We went to the one in Wembley. Managed to take a pic outside Wembley Stadium. Thanks to Vino and Siva. :))


We took Eurostar from London to Paris. It was 3 hours journey and the ticket price was about 39£ (booked earlier). I think on the day ticket would cost around 140£. The train can travel up to 186 mph. very fast. It cuts through the English Channel, so basically we sort of travelled underwater.
At the border, on both sides (England and Paris), it snowed heavily and the ground was fully covered in thick snow. We thought were we going to have tough time in Paris, but as we approached the city, it was clear. No snow, but much colder than England; it was about ­3°.

Notre Dame

In Paris, we also travelled by tube and bus. Here it is a little tricky due to the language, but still we manage to find our way around. First day we just walked around. We crossed the river Seine and the walk along the bridge to the other side of Paris is the best way to be in the city. Once across there are may shops selling souvenirs at reasonable prices. Most of the interesting places are just walking distance. We passed by the LouvreMuseum but did not go in as we need more time. We planned to go there the next day.
We walked to the Notre Dame Cathedral. This is also a beautiful Cathedral. It is free of charge and you can take pictures. Outside of the cathedral also there are so many small shops selling souvenirs.

Food in Paris
… to die for. Everything that we ate or drank was tasty in Paris. The Pizza, pasta, coffee, hot chocolate; all were excellent. Even if it is a small stall , an expensive joint or at the hotel, food is really yummy.We were both quite amazed at how the milk served every morning was very tasty.

Louvre Museum

Early morning, we took the Open Tour bus to this museum. I never thought going into a museum filled with statues and paintings would be interesting, but there were many beautiful things in this museum. The tickets were 10€ per adult. You are allowed to take pictures but without flash. But usually in certain places, people conveniently forget and you can see flash.Monalisa is a favourite in this museum, so there were many people taking pictures here. My favourite were the beautiful paintings on the ceiling. We took about 3 hours in the Museum.

Arc De Triompe

We continued our journey on the bus. Stopped by at Champ Ellysees, where there were rows and rows of shops selling knick knacks and food. We were freezing, so we had some hot waffles and piping hot coffee… marvellous. Then walked to the end and took pictures at the Arc De Triomphe.

Eiffel Tower
After that, we hopped on the Open Tour bus and continued our journey to the EiffelTower. As we got down from the bus, it started snowing. It was beautiful to see the little snowflakes. As it drops on us, it just disappears… lovely!


By the time we reached there, our camera was dying on us. We had to on it each time we want to take a shot, and without idling we have to take the shot before it shuts down itself. But despite all that, we took beautiful pictures.



Next day, we took a flight to Rome by British Airways. At the airport, met a very nice driver- Davidde. He shared a lot of info with us on the way to the hotel. Told us the best places to shop.
After checking in, we walked to Quai De Conti for some shopping. Many brand outlets with branded items for very good prices…. We loved this place. There were many Indians in this place trying to make a simple living. They are the in every corner trying to sell something to you… bunch of roses, umbrellas (it was rainy then), souvenirs, some even have small stalls or vans selling food items. Food in Rome was bad.

St Peter Basilica
Early morning, we walked to the Sistine Chapel & St Peter’s Basilica at Vatican City. Free of charge and you are allowed to take photos. This cathedral is magnificent and the paintings on the walls were elaborate. At the end of the Basilica is an Art Museum. To enter into the art Museum inside you need to buy tickets.

Piazza De Trevi – Fontana

After that, we hopped on in the Roman version of open tour bus. As the weather in Rome was bearable (about 16°), we sat on the open deck. The view was magnificent. The buildings, structures, monuments were all beautiful. First we went to the fountain – Piazza De Trevi. Beautiful Structure; took some pictures, then hopped on the bus again.

Next stop: Coliseum. It is basically just the remains of the Grand Olympiad that it was. There were tickets to go in, but we didn’t go in as we were told that it was not worth going in. There are only ruins in there.

But it was nice to take pictures all around the building. We even walked a bit further to get onto another building to take some shots.

Victor Emmanuel Building
Then we continued walking and we saw a beautiful white building. At that time we didn’t know what building it was , but we took pretty pictures here. Then we found out it is called the VictorEmmanuelMonument. It was huge and took so many pictures here. They also had a short ceremony of changing guards here. At least we were able to witness it at a close distance unlike BuckinghamPalace.

By now, we realised that the Green Open Tour bus that we took does not do as many trips as other buses. We already saw many Red Open Tour bus, but no sign of the green one. Instead of waiting any longer for the bus, we decided to walk to Pantheon. Someone showed us the wrong way and we took a long route to Pantheon when it was actually very nearby. We found that out when we walked back to the Emmanuel monument. Pantheon was quite small and nothing much compared to the other cathedral’s.

Time Elevator

Time Elevator Roma is a “must experience” in Europe. When my hubby suggested this,I thought “Oh no”. But it was fantastic!. With Time Elevator, you can see, hear and FEEL great moments in Roman history, not as a spectator but as a participant. It will be good if you can take this simulation ride before you go around Rome, because after this ride you will know more about the places you visit in Rome. It is open everyday from 11am to 7.30 pm. The show lasts about 45 minutes. Tickets are 12  per adult


Piazza Del Popolo - Villa Borghese Park
From Piazza Del Popolo, you can walk up to a huge park, the VillaBorghesePark. From here you can get a magnificent view of Vatican city. Looks like a good place for sunset here, but we were not there during sunset.

This park is quite huge, we walked around a bit then came back to Piazza Del Popolo. 

Castel Romano

Last day in Rome, we wanted to go shopping and asked the friendly driver, Davidde. He told he will take us to Castel Romano and we can shop there for about 3 hours. Its about 20km south from Rome.There are many brand outlets here : CK, D&G, Nike, Levi’s, Guess, Ferragamo, just to name a few. Of course price is much cheaper than the outlets in Malaysia, so it was shop , shop shop till we dropppp!!!

London Again

We left Rome for another day in London before we left to KL. We arrived here in the afternoon. We checked in at Citadine, Kensington. Oh, I must tell about this place. We were given a one bedroom apartment because there were no rooms available. The apartment was beautiful. When you walk in, there is a kitchen fully furnished with fridge and crockery. Then there is a cozy living room with computer table, TV and such. Then the bedroom is upstairs… and it was purrrrfect! The best of all the hotels we stayed in this trip. Only one word to describe a studio apartment : COZY
Ok back to the topic, we walked to the nearest tube and went to Oxford Street for SHOPPING!!! More branded outlets here. We shopped n shopped till late evening.
Then we took the tube to visit the main attractions that we missed on the first day. First we went to the London Eye. It was dark already and the queue was long. Not worth the wait, so we just took pictures of it. At night it is beautiful with the lights on.

We walked around and took pictures of Big Ben, Trafalgar Square, London Bridge and TowerBridge.

That was all for this trip. We enjoyed this trip very much and would love to visit again - maybe experience spring or autumn.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Comments are welcome :)