Fri, July 12

Today we experienced London, with a difference. Not just any impersonal excursion for us – but a very enjoyable personalised city tour with our friends from Manchester, Ian and Jane, whom we had met on a previous cruise around Australia and New Zealand.

After setting off from their home at 4.00am, they met us about 5 hours later at Dover and we were whisked off in their car for a whirlwind tour of London, all the while catching up on all our news.

Blackwall Tunnel took us to London’s East End and the Jewish Quarter, then the Financial District, Trafalgar Square, Harrods, Buckingham Palace, Hyde Park, museums, Downing St, St Paul’s Cathedral, the Tower of London, Big Ben and the list goes on, plus all the bridges – each of which Ian crossed twice to ensure we got good photos!

Jane thought of everything and even provided lunch ‘”on the go”” as we didn’t realise it is all but impossible to drive into London and park somewhere!

Then on to Canterbury to see the Cathedral and a walk around the town, before stopping for a “cup of tea”. In keeping with my interest in trying some local food, I was quite excited to see Eton Mess on the menu, something which I had only read about. Needless to say, it was delicious and reminded me of pavlova with strawberries and cream which we enjoy in Australia, only all mixed up together in a glass.

We arrived back at the ship just in time to board at 6.30pm and reluctantly waved goodbye as we set sail at 7.00pm, clutching a bag of English chocolates which they thoughtfully gave us as a parting gift. We had a wonderful day and so we say thanks and au revoir. Today was certainly a highlight of our vacation.
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White cliffs of Dover

White cliffs of Dover

This post is dedicated to our good friends, Ian and Jane. Thanks guys, for going out of your way to make our day so memorable and enjoyable. We appreciate your friendship and hope to see you again in the not-too-distant future.