Okay let’s start where I left off: the ferry from Dublin to Holy Head, Wales. Bridget and I took a little two-day journey through the countryside of Wales and England. Our two main stops on the way to London were the Roman Baths and Stonehenge. I have been asked to include maps. So, here ya go ladies and gents!
We took the Ulysses Irish Ferry from Dublin port to the port of Holy Head. This was a great decision we made. It was a peaceful ride, only lasted about two and a half hours and there was enough room to spread out and walk around. The alternative was to take a short flight from Ireland to the UK. But, I liked this option so much more and would recommend it to anyone who has the ability to take a longer, more scenic route. The port station connects to the rail station in Holy Head where we hopped on a train and away we went!
The welsh countryside is a sight to see on it’s own. There are beautiful mountains, pastures, sheep (little newborns everywhere! So cute.) and picturesque farm homes. I got the window seat and my eyes were glued to the glass while Bridget read her book. After six hours on the train and observing the slowly changing countryside from mountains and rivers to woods to flowering fields, we were ready to get off and eat some food in Bath.
When we got out of the train station, I am not sure but I believed our mouths were like gaping holes and our eyes were bigger than they ever have been. This place was like a fairy tale. The architecture was a mix of old and older, grand and grander, English and Englisher? (Eh, you get the point). A little walk into the city center and we found our hotel. A 1740’s Georgian Townhouse made into a bed and breakfast: The Parade Park. Yeah, we might have had the smallest room in hotel but it was so close to everything it didn’t matter. We dropped our bags at the hotel and did a little exploring. We stopped in this little Italian Restaurant that was rated well on Trip Advisory (Joya) and ate dinner. I am still a little sick at this point so I really couldn’t tell you much about the food, only that I enjoyed myself.
The next morning we got up, packed up and headed to the Roman Baths. This was Bridget’s main attraction. She studied British Literature in High School and has been dreaming of the day she would see all of the places they talked about. We were the first ones in line to go to the museum. To be honest, I had no idea what these were or what to expect. My expectations were low but I was blown out of the water (haha… get it? Bath?).
Under the City of Bath there is a naturally occurring hot spring. I have no idea how they knew that, or how they found it back in the day but they did. So, when the Romans occupied Great Britain for a shit ton of time, they built this bath house that brought the water up from the ground, filled a big bath and naked people swam in it. This site wasn’t only a place with a bunch of baths, it also was a temple for sacrifice.
So there’s the gist of what the Roman Baths are… now a list of thoughts that went through my head.
- So there were just naked people just chillin’ in here?
- This seems like a really extensive water system…. How did they know how to do this stuff?
- Uh oh… Where did Bridget go?
- Found her.
- Hey! We can drink the water!
- Oh this tastes like warm irony water.
- This place is for sure older than dad. And I thought he was ancient.
I will eventually have to make it back to bath because we didn’t spend enough time there to explore all of the beauties of bath. But, onto the next stop: Stonehenge right outside of Salisbury.
So, we bought tickets in advance to Stonehenge. And we looked up online about how to get there from the train station. There was a shuttle bus that you could pay to hitch a ride to the park or you coule pay them for a tour of the town, the tickets and a return trip. Unfortunately, this was my turn to figure things out and I double bought tickets… whoops! I had some miscommunication with the bus driver and bought a tour, two more tickets and a return trip. Eh, you win some you lose some.
So, we get off the bus, get a second ticket and try to figure out how to get to the rocks. We might have accidentally snuck into the park… Seriously, we thought we were avoiding the line and then ended up not showing anyone our ticket, not picking up an audio tour yet still hoping on a shuttle out to see the stones.
So, all in all, we saw Stonehenge. We aren’t very educated about the subject. But, we saw it and that is what counts. We got back on the shuttle, to get back on another shuttle to get to the train station to take us to London. And man, we were unprepared for the differences in pace from quite posh Bath to the middle of the largest train station, in the largest city in the country during five o’clock rush hour. Uff Da! Get prepared to read all about city life and two lost sisters in London.