Taken into account that on Monday we had the last day off until Christmas ( in Netherlands), I wanted to profit about it so I thought “why not go to England by ferry?”. These days it is so easy to find almost any information you need, only some research online and that’s all. We had 2 possibilities: to go to Newcastle or to Harwich. We had chosen the second one due to the time spent on the ferry: only 8 hours and from Harwich we could visit something else than big cities.
So on Friday we were on the ferry. We didn’t had many expectations and that’s why when we entered our room we were surprised: the room was big, with a shower and the beds were comfy and near the window. And the window.. OMG! it was so big 🙂 After we’ve left our baggage in the room we went on the guest deck, where we found a restaurant, 3 bars, Wi-Fi and diverse rooms: quite room, living room and so on. Being our first experience on this kind of ships we were pleasant surprised and happy that we’ve made a good choice.
After a good night sleep we arrived in Harwich. There’s a train station right at the port terminal and in 20 minutes since we arrived a train was leaving to London. It is a good connection if you want a cheaper and nice travel. We took the train, but got out in Colchester. From there we took the train to Colchester Town – where we’ve seen a lot of specific english buses (with 2 decks). Because it was too early we’ve gone directly to the Castle Park. There we’ve been assaulted by squirrels – so we bought a bag of peanuts and it was the end for us, we had 10 squirrels that were just jumping on us to give them more. It was so funny to see small balls of fur just running to us from different directions. After 2 hours spent with the squirrels we’ve visited the castle (which was not right on my type) and spent some other 4 hours just walking through the town. I liked the architecture of the town: the houses were small and close one to another. Colchester is the oldest britain town mentioned, it was under roman invasion and you can still see peaces from the old roman wall.
From Colchester we took the train to Ipswich, where we booked a room in a hotel near the train station. The town is different, the houses are bigger and the streets larger. Since we’ve arrived in the evening we didn’t visited any tourist attraction, but walked for 3 hours through the town center. In front of a pub some guys were smoking marijuana. The bartender came and told them that if they don’t throw the joint they will be thrown out from the pub. Normal, right? 🙂 (When I have told the story about the bus trip to Germany to Muthu – a colleague of mine from India, he was like “pot?!” and I was like “Are you serious, we are in Netherlands!!”, but he calls it “ganja”) Because there wasn’t much to do and we were tired we bought some beers from the store; we like to try different types of beers – especially when the country is known for good beer.
From Ipswich we took the train to Manningtree, from where a foot trip can be done to Flatford and Dedham Vale. The area is known from Constable’s paintings. I used to be into Picasso when I was little, but from some years I don’t know to appreciate art so much. (But I would like to see Gauguin or Van Gogh). The reason I wanted to make this trip was to see something else, to know England in another way. We’ve been in London last year and just wanted to see how the country side looks like. It wasn’t a bad idea, the trip takes 2 hours of slow walking, but we’ve stayed in Flatford for a while and after that on the road to Dedham stopped a few times. We had good weather and simply enjoyed the views: horses, sheep, cows, swans (even babies).
From Dedham we took a bus to Harwich – another great choice, because the bus just went through a lot of small towns and we could enjoy the pulse of them. In Harwich we booked a hotel near the port, because on Monday we had the ferry at 9 a.m. So we hadn’t seen so much from the town, by accident we went with the bus to the train station and from there we just walked to the hotel (2 miles or so). But the town wasn’t so different from the other ones and we were exhausted, it was starting to rain, so we weren’t in such a good shape to walk around too much (and nobody was on the streets). The trip from Harwich to Hoek Van Holland it was pleasant, it didn’t rained and the sun was present all the way. I was hoping to see some dolphins or whales, but we hadn’t been so lucky – and maybe they don’t come in South ( on the route to Newcastle they were spotted). It was a relaxing trip, I had time to read, enjoy the sun and think about how life can be changed.