On our last weekend in London, my friend Nancy and I wanted to see a few more places near London. We did a day trip to Cambridge and then the next day we went to Cardiff, Wales.
Using our first class Brit rail passes given to us from Millennium tours, we rode comfortably to both Cambridge and Cardiff. Friday when we went to Cambridge we took the train after class and headed into the city.
I liked Cambridge because it was a smaller city than London but still offered a lot of the same things. I also liked that it was a college town and Cambridge has to be by far the coolest university I have ever seen. Every college and building looked like a castle and had great history.
The best way to learn about Cambridge and the university is punting. Punting is a small boat ride that you can take on the river Cam and a guide paddles you down the river. Our guide told us about the city and all the history in Cambridge including stories of Isaac Newton and the writing of the first Winnie the Pooh book. Exploring Cambridge was wonderful but we got tired in the afternoon. The perks of the train system around London is that there were trains going back to London every 20 minutes, so we were able to head back when we wanted to.
The next day we used our first class train pass again, but this time we went to Cardiff, Wales. It was a nice hour and a half train ride to Cardiff from London. We got there with no plans other than to explore. When we first got there we walked down an “arcade” which is like an alleyway with a lot of cool stores. We stopped at a vintage shop and found some cool pieces of clothing. We then went into a massive market area. We decided we wanted to get some snacks and picnic food for lunch so we picked out food from the market. There were so many Welsh food vendors so we decided to try some new food. One of the things we got was Welsh cakes which are like pancake cookies and tasted so good. After collecting food we found out we were only 5 minutes away from Cardiff Castle. We walked over to the Castle with our food and sat in a courtyard surrounded by the castle eating our picnic and it was so fun!
After enjoying some serene and peaceful time at the castle, we took an Uber down to Cardiff Bay. Cardiff Bay was busy with people enjoying the water on a nice day. There were a lot of waterfront stores and restaurants to explore. We ended up sitting down at one of the restaurants for dinner and it was such a great place to eat and enjoy the views. Once again with the perks of the train system, we were ready to go back to London after dinner and had no problem catching a train back.
Exploring different parts of England and even going to Wales for the day when staying in London is so doable. Not only is London one of the greatest places I have been, being able to travel other places so easily makes it even better!