A huge reason why most people choose to study in England is the amazing opportunity for travel...
Manchester: did not work out so well. The main reason any one goes to Manchester is to go to the Stadium to creep and fangirl on all the Manchester United things. You can take a tour and go through the locker room, walk through the tunnel, etc., etc. AKA, it's really awesome to anyone who gives a hoot about football. Of course, the day we went, there was a game. A game. In the Stadium. Which means that it was packed with thousands of screaming fans, some who had paid hundreds of pounds, and the actual players. And was therefore not open to tours. Which means that I myself, along with a sad (read: minimal) few of our group, was insanely upset. Hearing the cheers from inside the Stadium made everything a little bit worse. After morosely heading back into City Center and wandering (what we do best), we stumbled upon a fantastic cupcake shop and sat in a library. Then came the hostel. Not as bad as the horror stories make it out to be, but it would have been awesome if my shower had drained.
Liverpool: basically, the home of the Beatles. I am not the hugest Beatles fan ever; I saw Across the Universe and own the deluxe soundtrack, and that’s where it ends. Lots of walking, lots of interesting sites.
Oxford: Another school trip. Which means cheap, safe transportation to a tourist town! Unfortunately, we had minimal time at Oxford, as this trip also went to Bicester Village, a DESIGNER fashion outlet. But Oxford was quite nice. I think if I had more time, maybe even a day and a half, I would have been able to appreciate it more… it definitely lives up to its name and makes you feel and love academics. I highly, highly doubt a return trip is in my future, but I’m glad for the short time I had there. The school that we did get to wander through was magnificent, although I can’t imagine actually attending there… perhaps a pipe dream to be entertained at another time.
Bicester Village: Designer fashion outlet. SO not the place I needed to spend three hours at. But still, another place I’ve never been, so what’s the harm?
Stonehenge: I was a bit worried that I’d only have an hour at Stonehenge… until I realised that it’s a pile of rocks in a field, and you really don’t need much more time than that. It was definitely worth the total of eight hours on a coach and waking up at five am (seriously, there’s no sarcasm there). Also, I got a mini sheep! So yeah. Worth it.
Bath: it’s hard to cram two places in one day, as noticed by the Oxford/Bicester Village trip, and it was even worse with Stonehenge/Bath, because of the distance. But Bath is cute and a lot like Oxford. I think I liked it better because you didn’t have that almost oppressing feeling of academics and religion looming over you. Went through the Roman baths, which was probably a lot more educational to anyone but me. I loved it all the same. What was also nice was the morris dance (words are not good enough) that we stumbled upon at dusk.
Aloha and cheers,