After about three weeks of visiting museums, traipsing around streets, and shopping, it was felt the kids needed a break. Actually we all needed a break from museum spotting, and we wanted to do stuff that the kids would choose to do and enjoy. Master BG had expressed an interest in seeing Stonehenge and we also had a couple of surprises in store for them…
Stonehenge, Salisbury, Wiltshire
Despite Mr BG’s fondness for Neolithic stone structures (most of our previous holidays before kids involved trips to places like Avebury, Orkney and the wilds of Ireland), he had never been to Stonehenge. Words muttered were ‘crowded, mainstream’ when asked. We took the train and took a Stonehenge shuttle bus which allowed you to get picked up and dropped off at Stonehenge, Old Sarum and Salisbury Cathedral.
The day was warm and hazy and it was wonderful to be out in the countryside. There were a few people milling about, but it wasn’t crowded- maybe due to the expanse of space around the henge. The kids were chuffed to get their own audioguide for free and we spent a lot of time just looking at the stones and marvelling at the human ingenuity which created them. We stopped off at Old Sarum and I got totally spun out with the fact it was a place where Henry II had imprisoned his wife Eleanor of Aquitaine, one of my favourite queens of England (she ruled half of France when she married Henry and had been Queen of France previously, and was the mother of Richard the Lionheart and the evil Prince John- check out her story).
Legoland is a theme park based around Lego. It has rides to cater for all ages, and enough merchandise stands to satisfy any Lego lover’s desire. The kids were suitably excited when they learned of our going to Legoland. I was a bit apprehensive of having to deal with over-excited and over-tired children who did not want to wait for an hour for a ten minute ride.
This was a mega-logistical exercise which involved four trains, a brief stop in Slough (sadly no sightings of David Brent) and a bus ride, and had Mr BG and myself repeating as a mantra ‘We’re doing this for the kids…we’re doing this for the kids…’.
But when we got there and walked through the gates, we looked at each other and the view of London from Windsor and thought, ‘Actually, this isn’t so bad…’
It was gloriously warm, and because it was a Friday, and kids still in school, it wasn’t busy- the people there were younger children, a school group or two and tourists like ourselves. The queues were no longer than 10 minutes to get on a ride, which no one minded, and as the weather was so lovely, we dried off quickly after the wet rides 🙂 . A new exhibit had opened up of Star Wars miniland which had scenes from all six of the Star Wars movies. My favourite moments was seeing the look on Mr BG’s face as he sees the Millennium Falcon rise an Miss BG’s reaction to getting drenched on a pirate ride- she hated it, then five seconds later, said ‘Can we do it again?’
There was so much to do, we didn’t get around to going on every ride. Legoland has built a hotel next to the park so you can go through the park over a couple of days. While you are there, you can also extend your ticket for a few pounds so you can return the next day. The day was declared by all and sundry to be a great success. And we even got to see a brass band…
There was one more outing, which was a huge surprise for the kids…but it’ll have to wait until tomorrow:-).