Bringing the Crazy to Europe (now it's a trip report) updated 09/5 (all done)

Canadian Girl 77

Hoping for some pixie dust
Joined
Oct 2, 2007
March 5

We got to sleep in on Tuesday! Not too much but later than 8! After breakfast (at the hotel) we headed back to the Golden Tour offices. We got to get in a much pleasanter line today. We, and 9 other people, were signed up for the Stonehenge Inner Circle Tour. Normally they have at least 50 people signed up for this tour. But there were only 9 of us. We got to ride a huge tour bus. It was pretty awesome. The tour was amazing. It was sooooo awesome.
7.JPG
The lovely countryside from our bus window.


First we drove to Lacock. We had about an hour to wander around this tiny village that is frequently used as a location in TV and film. Why? Because there are no streetlights and it is an easy set to dress. The guide walked us over to the house that was used for James and Lily’s in Harry Potter. We ran into a cat there which thrilled DH and DD. They are weird.

1.JPG 2.JPG 5.JPG6.JPG


3.JPG 4.JPG
 

Canadian Girl 77

Hoping for some pixie dust
Joined
Oct 2, 2007
After Lalock, we headed for Bath. We got to do a self guided tour of the Roman Baths and Pump room. Then we had time for a light lunch and some even lighter shopping.

9.JPG 10.JPG

11.JPG
Awesome window display. The boxes go up and down. Very Harry Potter.

13.JPG 14.JPG


And then we were off to the main attraction. After a very, very long bus ride. We got to Stonehenge just after it closed. We were able to go in the shop and the Visitor’s centre for a bit. And the we were off to Stonehenge. Since there were only nine of us, we got to spend a whole hour walking amongst the stones. And it was raining! A very British experience. And so fascinating. We couldn’t touch the rocks but we got to get really close and see details I was unaware of. So worth the extra $50 each to take the inner circle tour.

15.JPG 16.JPG 17.JPG 18.JPG 19.JPG

It took a couple of hours to get back to Victoria Station. DH wasn’t feeling so great so DD and I went for dinner at Giraffe Kitchen by ourselves. Food was great and super inexpensive. We also walked over to Sainsbury’s and picked up a bunch of candies (Malteser Buttons and Rowntree Pastilles – blackberry and strawberry only). We had fun. Then we went back to the hotel and went to sleep.
 

Canadian Girl 77

Hoping for some pixie dust
Joined
Oct 2, 2007
More Stonehenge photos!

We didn't touch any of the stones. That isn't allowed. But we did get very, very close.
20.JPG 21.JPG 22.JPG 23.JPG 24.JPG 25.JPG 26.JPG
 
  • Canadian Girl 77

    Hoping for some pixie dust
    Joined
    Oct 2, 2007
    March 6

    Today the plan went right out the window. We were supposed to visit The Tower of London but my family had other plans. The kid wanted to sleep. And then she wanted to shop. So, that is what we did.

    Before we headed off, we topped up our Oyster cards. Discovered that we could have saved about 20 pounds if we had visited the station earlier and had the kid’s card set at the child rate. Oops. Lesson learned and passed on to you!

    We spent a lot of time at Primark (both locations on Oxford street) and wandered High street. We ended up returning to the Forbidden Planet Megastore so that my husband could pick up some steampunk books.

    We ate lunch at the Lamb and Flag. It was fine. Nothing super fantastic but the husband wanted to eat at a pub again.
    image.jpg
    Not my photo.

    We visited the British Library so that we could see the Magna Carta and other treasures. That was fascinating.

    Less of an awesome experience was this! We went to a McDonalds to use the washroom (and buy drinks). I had to wait at least 15 minutes to get into a stall. There were only three stalls. One was broken. One could be used but there was a long line because the only other working stall had a squatter. A woman had parked herself in the stall and was yelling into her mobile, “…he’d better get his f’in *** back to England…” Eventually I sneezed and she shrieked. A few minutes later she staggered out of the stall - carrying a litre bottle of rum (1/3 full) and smoking - still yelling into her phone. She must have been there for a long time. She left a huge pile of cigarette butts behind. So, that happened.

    The kid is quite involved with her high school’s drama council so we went to TKTS to see if we could get tickets to a show. We were able to get tickets to The Play That Goes Wrong for that evening. The play was hilarious! We even got to help workshop a skit for Red Nose day. Everyone in the family loved the play!

    IMG_8886.JPG

    Before the show we had dinner. The kid and I didn’t feel up to more pub food. We tried to visit Pizza Express but the person at the door just shook her head at us as soon as we entered. So, we ate at Wildwood in Covent garden. It was fine and the staff was pleasant.

    After the show, we headed back to the hotel. We needed some sleep before heading off to Paris the next morning.
     

    pamcarey

    Mouseketeer
    Joined
    Apr 21, 2010
    The Stonehenge Inner Circle tour sounds totally worth it! I'm heading to London in a month, but sadly we won't make it to Stonehenge on this trip.
     

    rndmr2

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    May 3, 2009
    :wave: Found your TR a few days ago, enjoying it so far. Looking forward to the rest of it. Really cool pics at Stonehenge

    We have a trip scheduled to Paris in November. (SO sad about Notre Dame...:sad1: ) I have tickets to see a concert in Paris (the band "a-ha" :rockband: they are awesome, my first time seeing them live, hope it won't be the last...) and the reason I picked the Paris show was so I could kill 2 birds with one stone and see Disneyland Paris, too. LOL Hubby is taking me to see my 2 other Loves, Mickey and Morten (the lead singer of a-ha :love: )

    I really would love to see London, too but that will have to wait for another trip (Hubby refused to let me get tix to a 2nd show, much as I would have loved to get to see them at the Royal Albert Hall, LOL)
     
  • Canadian Girl 77

    Hoping for some pixie dust
    Joined
    Oct 2, 2007
    March 7

    In the morning I sent the family down for breakfast while I got us all packed up for the French portion of our trip. In such a small room, I needed all the space I could get!

    We took a taxi from our hotel to St. Pancreas station. It was super easy to find the Eurostar. The check in process was painless. Slightly less painless was having to heave our suitcase onto the scanner. I may have packed our bags on the heavy side. Oops.

    Customs was a breeze. We all had some downtime waiting for our train. I picked up a sandwich to eat on the train (since I had skipped breakfast) and checked out the tiny selection of shops. After 5 minutes, I had done it all!

    Our train left on time at 12:25 p.m.. The worst part was hoisting our luggage onto the racks. I booked our tickets during Black Friday so I got a great deal on Standard Premier seats. It was very comfortable. Although I feel badly for the businessman that was seated at our table. Spoiler: He went to the bathroom about halfway through the trip and found a seat elsewhere. We weren’t loud. It was just an awkward setup if you’re with strangers. Kid did her homework. DH and I read. The light meal was okay. It was a cold chicken and couscous with an apple tart. Nothing special but better than airline food.

    IMG_8892.JPG
    Studying math and Shakespeare on the train.

    Our train arrived in Paris around 3:45 p.m. local time. We joined the long row of people pulling their luggage through the station. Eventually we joined a taxi cue. I had to hand my phone to the driver so he would understand where we wanted to go. We had been spoilt by the London Cabbies who know all the hotels by name. Eventually we got to our hotel - Hôtel 34B – Astotel – in the 9th arrondissement.

    The hotel was pretty awesome. Very quirky. The elevator was teeny but we were able to fit the three of us and our suitcases into it. Barely. But still! Our room was huge. It was a duplex apartment with two bathrooms and a separate room with a shower and bathtub. They also provided a complimentary mini bar in the room (water and sodas). There were frequently snacks and drinks available for free in the lobby. And the staff was all fluent in English. My six years of French tuition was apparently pretty worthless. Quel dommage.

    Here is our room -

    After we got settled we headed for the subway system. Yikes! We struggled to figure the best way to get tickets out. The 3-day Metro pass seemed like a poor value to us. We were going to get the Navigo pass but the machine that takes your photo didn’t want to accept any of my Euros. So, we got a one day pass each. Total cost 22.50 Euro. Spoiler: it was a waste of money. We ended up taking one train and then didn’t bother switching to the next train. Instead, we walked to the Eiffel Tower.
    IMG_8894.JPG
    And then we decided to walk to the Eiffel Tower from this point. Looks close, right?

    We had a 7:30 tour of the Eiffel Tower booked with Fat Tire Tours. It was awesome! I can not stress enough how great the tour was. It was a little chilly after a while. We ended up heading back to the hotel (via Uber) around 9:15 p.m. We had dinner by our hotel. I think it was called Café Le Brebant. The kid and I had pizza (very tasty) and DH had duck with amazing French fries. On the long 3-minute walk back to our hotel, we stopped at Amorino and got DD a gelato shaped like a rose.

    IMG_7842.JPG
    IMG_8901.JPG
    IMG_8921.JPG
    IMG_8931.JPG

    On March 2, we found out that the play the kid is in had progressed in the National Theatre School Drama Festival (formerly known as the Sears Drama Festival) to the regionals. She was very excited and (rightfully) proud. The cast was meeting while we were at the Eiffel tower. Naturally, she decided to facetime them from the tower.
     

    Canadian Girl 77

    Hoping for some pixie dust
    Joined
    Oct 2, 2007
    March 8

    Our hotel offered a free breakfast with our room so we ate there. They had quite the spread. It was very French with egg, meats and cheese.

    Around 10:30 or so we took an Uber to the Catacombs. We walked around outside and then had an early lunch at Cafe du Rendez-vous. Croque Monsieur’s and Onion soup. We ate there because it was the meeting place for our Catacombs tour. The tour was AMAZING! We tried to book with Fat Tire Tours but it was too early in the season. So, they referred us to Take Walks.

    We got to skip the lines and see exclusive areas. It was pretty awesome. People kept trying to sneak into our tour but the guide knew who was supposed to be there. I expected the catacombs to be creepy and claustrophobic. But it was fascinating. I would only do this as part of a tour. The guide brought the history to life. We also got to skip several hours worth of lines. Can you tell I liked this? My family liked it even more than I did.

    IMG_2852.JPG IMG_7883.JPG IMG_8954.JPG IMG_8959.JPG IMG_9029.JPG IMG_9069.JPG

    After our tour we got on a hop on hop off bus tour (I bought the three-day pass with the assumption we would use it like a bus). We bought tickets online for Open Tour Paris since they actually have a stop near the Catacombs. We struggled to find the stop but eventually found it. We rode the green line for a bit. Then we transferred to the blue line and got to see the Eiffel tower again. We ended up disembarking at Haussmann – Opéra. We checked out Galeries Lafayette Paris Haussmann – all three buildings. We didn’t end up buying anything though. But we did stop for some food at Cordial Café. The food was good. Kid was getting a bit cranky and didn’t want to eat anything fancy. We walked back to the hotel. Eventually we went out for treats at Amorino again. Tip: hot chocolate is very, very thick and bitter in France.

    IMG_7970.JPG

    I can’t recall anything else. It was a long day! Lots of walking and lots of bus riding.
     

    pamcarey

    Mouseketeer
    Joined
    Apr 21, 2010
    How exciting to be in Paris now! I’m going next month. We plan on going to the Catacombs, but I hadn’t really thought about doing a guided tour. Were there really several HOURS of lines waiting to get in? That’s making me nervous!
     

    Canadian Girl 77

    Hoping for some pixie dust
    Joined
    Oct 2, 2007
    How exciting to be in Paris now! I’m going next month. We plan on going to the Catacombs, but I hadn’t really thought about doing a guided tour. Were there really several HOURS of lines waiting to get in? That’s making me nervous!
    If you can get a tour, do it! It is far more interesting. And lines are bad! They really limit the number of people that can be in at a time. There is even a counter at the entrance and exit!
     
  • Canadian Girl 77

    Hoping for some pixie dust
    Joined
    Oct 2, 2007
    March 9

    We ate breakfast at the hotel. Then I met a representative from LaveyLivrey in our hotel. He took our dirty laundry and returned it several hours later. The concierge brought it to our room an left it for us while we were out being tourists. LaveyLivrey was awesome!!!

    We had booked a tour through the Louvre that started at 11 a.m. I think our taxi got us to the Louvre around 9:45 a.m. We entered through the pyramid. It was relatively painless. We looked around and then sat and people watched until it was time to meet our tour group.

    The tour was okay. It was really hard to understand the guide. Her English was very broken and the museum was very busy. But we saw the highlights and heard a few interesting stories. It was an hour tour and when it was done, so was my family. They didn’t want to see any more art. No if ands or buts.
    IMG_7979.JPGIMG_8052.JPG IMG_8059.JPG
    I got in trouble during the tour. When you walk in there is this huge wall. It goes on and on. The tour guide mentioned that it was used to keep people out. I touched it. I wasn’t thinking – there weren’t any signs saying don’t touch the walls. I was told by the guide not to touch the wall. Oops. I can tell you what I was thinking though. It really seemed as though the wall would be easy to climb up.

    So we looked in the mall attached to the Louvre. Really, I was on the hunt for a bathroom. I found one! Of course, it was a pay to pee one. So I paid my 1.50 Euro. It was a very nice experience. There were no crazy, drunk girl encounters. A bunch of Americans were hanging around outside the toilets complaining that is wasn’t free. Honestly, I was surprised this was the only pay toilet I came across in Paris.
    IMG_9076.JPG
    We hopped on the bus (see, the Open Tour Paris pass wasn’t a waste). We ended up taking the blue line tour again. It was completely different than the day before. Why? Because of the protests. We didn’t get off the bus because of the protests. Considering the rioting reports we later read, I’m glad we did that. We saw lots of police and lots of guns and tanks. It was an experience. But I never felt unsafe.
    IMG_8069.JPG IMG_8153.JPG IMG_8189.JPG
    IMG_9086.JPG IMG_9092.jpg
    We got off the bus at Haussmann – Opéra again. This time we bought things at Galeries Lafayette Paris Haussmann! We picked up some fancy eclairs, pastries and macarons. I think we had lunch at the Opera Café along the way. Once again, tasty food. Way better than the pubs!

    We stopped in a Kilo shop near the hotel. The kid found a couple of pieces of clothes she had to have. This triggered a love of vintage that lasted for the rest of the day. We had a break at the hotel and made a booking for dinner the next day on Captain Fracasse’s Seine cruise.
    IMG_9089.JPG
    Eventually we headed out on a vintage hunt. We ended up going shopping around Les Halles. The kid found a leather coat that she fell in love with. She wears it all the time now.

    We ended up having dinner at Mamie Burger by our hotel. Oddly, none of us had a burger. But the food was delicious.
     

    pamcarey

    Mouseketeer
    Joined
    Apr 21, 2010
    I made a note of Lavey Livrey for my trip. I will definitely need to do laundry while I’m in Paris!
     

    Canadian Girl 77

    Hoping for some pixie dust
    Joined
    Oct 2, 2007
    March 10

    This was my most disappointing day. We booked a tour of Versailles through Paris City Vision. https://www.pariscityvision.com/en/versailles-morning-minibus-tour We had to indicate the language we wanted the receive the tour in. They picked us up at our hotel on the dot at 8 a.m. Then we drove to another hotel to pick up five additional passengers. It was a group of 5 older women. They didn’t speak English. As a result, our tour guide had to share everything in English with us and then repeat himself in Spanish for the entire hour-long ride. Of course, the ladies were crazy loud chatting to each other while he tried to share history with us in English. And he didn’t ask them to quiet down. I asked him to. He said no. So, I suggested that I would start laughing and talking loudly when he spoke in Spanish. He sort of asked them to quiet down then. Although it didn’t make much of a difference.

    We had an hour to look around the gardens on our own. It was a rainy day but it was interesting to see. Unfortunately, the hour to look around the garden happened before the official tour. We met our minibus group back at the front. Our group of 8 was then divided and merged with other groups that spoke the same language as us. The tour was interesting but so, so, so crowded. Ridiculous crowded. Can’t imagine how awful it must be in the summer!

    IMG_8211.JPG IMG_8220.JPG IMG_8241.JPG IMG_8273.JPG IMG_9125.JPG
    I’m glad we saw Versailles but I don’t think I ever need to return. The tour was done by 11. We met our bus group and drove back to Paris. We were dropped off at the hotel around noon.

    We had a late lunch at the La Crème de Paris crepe restaurant by our hotel. The food was great but the portions were huge. We almost didn’t eat there because it was so hot when we entered the restaurant. However, there was just a wall of heat and then it was normal temperature.

    My family was tired and wanted to just chill at the hotel. So, I left them and walked over to Galeries Lafayette Paris Haussmann. I did quite a bit of shopping. Bought a new ring and some souvenirs. I had a lot of fun. It was nice to have some time to myself.
    IMG_8359.JPG BCLN6978.JPG IMG_9164.JPG
    We had dinner scheduled on Captain Fracasse’s Seine cruise. This was pretty awesome. The food was fantastic. It was a great experience. The kid got to try a sip of champagne (didn’t like it) and a couple of sips of wine (did like it). We took an Uber there and back. I used Ubers instead of Taxis because of the language barrier.
    IMG_8359.JPG IMG_9183.JPG
     

    Attachments

    Canadian Girl 77

    Hoping for some pixie dust
    Joined
    Oct 2, 2007
    March 11

    We slept in on Monday. I had booked a car to take us to Disneyland Paris. I had sent a confirmation email on Saturday but apparently it never went through. As a result, the car never came. And he was very rude about me not responding to a WhatsApp message he had sent me. I don’t have WhatsApp. But, whatever. The hotel arranged a taxi for us. My husband did not enjoy the taxi ride. He thought the driver was a little nuts. I didn’t feel the same way. But also, whatever.

    We checked in at the hotel. I asked about upgrading to Castle Club. They came back with two offers – one WAYYYY over budget and one that was less than I expected. So, I took them up on it. As a result, we got to keep our free premium board dining plan. We were walked up to Castle Club. Our room wasn’t ready yet so we had a drink and chocolate chip cookies in the lounge. Yummy!
    IMG_9214.JPG
    Great thing about our room is that it was across the hall from a public bathroom. A large, room with just one toilet and sink.

    Then we took the elevator downstairs and walked out of it and to the gate. DH was super excited about that! We walked through the arcades to the castle. The first thing we did was seek out the dragon under the castle. Eventually we figured out where it was. Pretty cool!

    We then headed over to Pirates of the Caribbean. The different layout of Disneyland Paris compared to Disney World and Disneyland made it hard to get our bearings. But we did it. The ride was great. There was a small wait. After, we made a reservation for an early dinner at Captain Jack’s. We had an hour until then so we wandered around. We got totally lost on Adventure Isle. That place is so dark! But it was great. We also ended up going on Peter Pan’s Flight. Hurray for the VIP fast pass courtesy of Castle Club.

    Dinner was great. We had a seat by the water. The food was fantastic. It also didn’t take too long. I was expecting it to be dragged out. But no, just the right amount of time.

    After dinner we walked around a little bit. But DH wasn’t feeling so great. So, we headed back to the hotel. Our room was ready. It wasn’t as big as the room in Paris but it was huge compared to the room in London. There weren’t any gifts left in our room but they did give us free bottles of water. We unpacked and got some more drinks from the lounge. We ended up watching the fireworks from the Castle Club lounge. I think there was only one other family there. It was great. The only problem was that they decided to refill the breakfast are during the fireworks and the lights kept creating glare on the windows.

    After the fireworks and projections (which we could see well), DH still wasn’t feeling great. He had a migraine. So, the kid and I walked around. We figured out where Walt Disney Studios was and wandered around Disney Village. We decided Disney Village wasn’t that great. So, we headed back to the hotel and went to sleep. We wanted to get an early start in the morning. Well, early enough to take advantage of Magic Hours.
    IMG_9193.JPG IMG_9195.JPG IMG_9205.JPG IMG_9207.JPG IMG_9209.JPG
     

    pamcarey

    Mouseketeer
    Joined
    Apr 21, 2010
    Exciting that you’re at DLP now! I head there in two weeks, basically doing your trip in reverse. I get so jealous reading about people staying at Disneyland Hotel! It sounds amazing to be so close to the entrance, but I can’t justify the cost. We’ll be at Sequoia Lodge.
     

    Canadian Girl 77

    Hoping for some pixie dust
    Joined
    Oct 2, 2007
    March 12

    In the morning we had breakfast in the lounge. It was tasty. Not as busy as I expected it to be. After eating, we headed over to the Studios for extra magic hours. I love the covered entrance. It’s really brilliant and helps set the mood. We immediately went to ride Crush. This was DD’s favourite ride ever! The best way to describe it is “Space Mountain, but super smooth and way better themed.” We waited about 25 minutes (no fastpass here for some nutty reason). Then we headed over to ride Ratouille. The line was ridiculous. I couldn’t tell where the fastpass entrance was. So, we paused and must have look confused. We were out in the courtyard near the line but not blocking anyone or trying to cut. Someone in the line asked what was wrong. I explained we were looking for the fastpass entrance. I must have said something about the VIP fastpass because she abruptly informed me that “we are all VIPs”. Alrighty then. I guess I'm a jerk?

    We said, screw this and went to Toy Story land. We promptly rode RC Racers twice and Slinky Dogs once. Then we looked at Ratouille. The line wasn’t no longer in the courtyard so we were able to get to the fastpass entrance. Yup, they let us in. Probably 20 minutes had passed since our interaction with “VIP lady”.

    We were underwhelmed by the ride. DD and I just didn’t love it. It didn’t feel innovative at all. We walked around the rest of the park and went on Tower of Terror, Aerosmith and RC Racer (again).

    The rest of the morning is a bit of a blur. We ended up leaving Studios and going to Disneyland again. We were horrified to discover that Big Thunder Mountain was closed for 10 days – it wasn’t showing as closed on the official website or app. DD was super upset. She was really looking forward to it. Thankfully, it had actually closed on Sunday before our visit. DH was already annoyed that Haunted Manor wasn’t open either. That we were prepared for. We took a bunch of pictures and then headed back to the studios for lunch.
    IMG_9225.JPG IMG_9232.JPG
    We had lunch at Chez Remy. The food was great. Service was fine. Theming was awesome. It was a good meal. Even better since it was “free.” I'm pretty sure we all got soup as a starter (there wasn't any foie gras on the menu then). DH and I got the beef fillet from the Linguini Menu. The kid decided to order the grilled steak from the "cheaper" Emile menu. DH and DD got the apple tart for dessert. Very yummy. I got the cheese plate. I should have got the apple tart.

    After lunch, we went back to Disneyland where we tried all the rides that were open. We rode Space Mountain (DD didn’t love it as much as she loves the Orlando and California version), toured Nauticulus. Walked through the labyrinth. We went on all the rides. Skipped the shows though. It was all pretty great. Crowds were low. Weather was often damp but not too chilly. It was awesome.

    The fireworks were cancelled because of the weather. But the projections still happened. So, we watched them from the Castle Club. It was busy. I think everyone wanted to skip the rain. The show was nice but I’m glad we saw it with the fireworks the night before.

    For dinner, we went to California Grill. The food was great. The décor was nothing to write home about but the food was great. And brilliant since it was also “free.” I tried the cheese plate again. This one was much better! I got to make choices from the trolley. The other two got the dark chocolate ball. They liked it but I had no regrets about this dessert choice. I remember getting the pork tenderloin for the main course. I can't recall what the others got.

    IMG_9251.JPG IMG_9253.JPG IMG_9255.JPG IMG_9256.JPG

    We walked around the hotel for a bit after eating and then went back to our room. We tried to get to bed early but we failed. Everyone got wrapped up in reading or surfing the web. Oops. It’s okay. I set an alarm on my phone so that we could go to magic hours the next morning.
     

    Attachments

    pamcarey

    Mouseketeer
    Joined
    Apr 21, 2010
    Oh wow, I would’ve been so upset if they randomly close to big thunder mountain railroad while I was there! I’m glad to hear that you enjoyed your meals at Bistrot Chez Remy! I will be eating there in a few weeks! I can’t wait!
     

    Canadian Girl 77

    Hoping for some pixie dust
    Joined
    Oct 2, 2007
    March 13

    Well, I set the alarm for 7:30 p.m. not a.m. so the kid woke us up at 8:30. DD and DH got dressed and I sent them off to ride Crush. I stayed behind to pack. I also grabbed some pastries from the lounge and kept them in the room while I waited for my family to come back. They were gone until around 10. They grabbed something to eat and then we made sure our bags were fully packed. On our way to the parks we stopped at the Castle Club concierge and made arrangement to pick our luggage up at luggage services later in the afternoon. They didn’t recommend us sending our bags to the Eurostar since the lineups can be crazy long. I tried to make a reservation at Walt’s for lunch. However, Walt’s was closed for a renovation so we made a lunch reservation at Inventions.
    IMG_9258.JPG IMG_9275.JPG IMG_9280.JPG

    We went to the parks before our 2:30 p.m. lunch reservation. We ended up waiting in line to ride Crush again. That was by far and away the kid’s favourite ride. We also went on Pirates of the Caribbean again. Honestly, it is all a blur. It was really easy to get around the two parks. Lineups were short. The 45 minutes we waited for Crush was by far the longest line we were ever in. The kid also enjoyed the Indiana Jones roller coaster so we went on the couple of times. I do recall that the last ride we went on was Pirates of the Caribbean (our first AND last ride of the trip).

    Lunch was fantastic. I took a video of the offerings. Now, I don’t think it was worth the 80 Euro they were charging. However, it was fine with us because it was free. Thank you, free dining plan!

    IMG_9285.JPG IMG_9290.JPG IMG_9297.JPG
    After eating, we went and sat in the Castle Club lounge for a bit (they told us that would be okay when we made our lunch reservations earlier in the day). We chilled out until it was time to pick our luggage up from bell services. It took forever (probably 20 minutes) for them to bring our bags out.

    Then we walked to the train station. There were a few moments where I got mixed up. I tried to take us through the employee entrance at one point since the signage was confusing. Regardless, eventually we made it to the train station (in about 10 minutes including my mess ups). Then we entered the world’s longest line to board the train. I am so glad we got our luggage from the hotel instead of picking it up at the station. It was chaos. Our train ended up getting delayed by 15 minutes because of the volume of passengers. I guess they just weren’t prepared for everyone to show up?

    While waiting in line I was able to book a reservation (and use a groupon) for dinner that night at Trader Vic’s at the Hilton in London. DH and I love tiki bars!

    The train ride was uneventful. Nobody was seated with us. The only problem was that I actually had us exit the train a station early. Oops. We were able to get back on the train. Just my ego was harmed.

    When we arrived at OUR station (St Pancras) we had to get in line to go through immigration. It was hard to see but there is a special area to the left for people who are not members of the EU. It was a lot quicker for us.

    Unfortunately, our train arrived in London about half and hour later than we expected. DH started getting antsy worrying about being late for our reservation. As a result, I let myself get a bit rushed. So, we went and found a taxi. It took us the Amba Hotel Marble Arch. He had to double park to let us out. It was a dark side street so I didn’t get to do my usual show check and double check to make sure we hadn’t forgotten anything. But, I counted our bags and assumed everything was fine.

    We checked in. They asked to see our passports. I went to get them. Oh crap. No passports.

    Cue the massive panic attack. DH and DD dash outside to see if we dropped them on the street. There are tears. Our customer service rep was very kind. She talked me through it. She told me she was sure everything would end up okay. She decided to give us complimentary access to the Executive lounge while we were staying at the hotel. It helped take the sting out of my stupidity a bit. We took our bags to our room. I tried to reach the taxi company and the train station. No luck. So, we decided to go for dinner. We were late for our reservation but, whatever. We needed a drink.

    There was about 30 minutes that passed between realizing our passports were lost to getting to the restaurant. We took another cab there and discussed our plight with the driver. He gave me some other numbers to call.

    The restaurant/bar was pretty dead when we got there. We got our seats and reviewed the menu. And then my phone dinged. I had a message! It was the train station. They had found our passports (they were all in a pink passport pouch). Thank goodness! Unfortunately, they didn’t leave a return number but the message told me to go to lost items in the morning.

    IMG_9308.JPG IMG_9306.JPG IMG_9311.JPG IMG_9314.JPG

    A bit more relaxed now (I couldn’t completely relax until I had them in my hands). We enjoyed our dinner and had a couple of drinks. They were quite potent. The food was excellent! We took a cab back to our hotel. I set an early alarm so that I could go to the train station first thing.
     



    Connect

    Disney News and Updates

    Get Daily Email Updates

    DIS INSTAGRAM

    Top