A Travellerspoint blog

Back to Byron Bay

Picking up the almost obligatory cold on the way

overcast 30 °C
View 2019 Europe on kforge's travel map.

After an excellent breakfast at our Premier Inn (just moments from Blackfriars Bridge), we strolled across the Bridge to the historically "bad" side of town to take one of the most historic walks in London to visit Southwark Cathedral. We turned left at the end of the Bridge and headed alongside the Thames past the Tate Modern and the reconstruction of Shakespeare's Globe Theatre, under Southwark Bridge, past the house where Sir Christopher Wren watched St Paul's being built (and incidentally where Catherine of Aragon stayed on arrival in London), past the ancient (1615) Anchor Pub, past the site of Clink Prison, past the ruins of Winchester Palace (the bishop owned Clink Prison), past the replica of Sir Francis Drake's ship (in which he circumnavigated the world), arriving finally at the Cathedral just steps from London Bridge and the famous Borough High Street

And it was closing in 10 minutes for a funeral! We scurried around, looking at some of the less obvious works of art and were, of course, quickly outside again. We had been in the Cathedral a few years ago, so it wasn't a disaster for us. We were back at the hotel by 11:30 ready for midday check-out. We left all of our bags in their secure luggage store and started the long walk along the Embankment towards Mayfair where we were meeting two yoga friends of Jeni for a long lunch at the excellent Aline Lebanse Kitchen in Maddox Street, just off Regent Street

It was a much slower stroll back to our hotel! We collected our bags and 200 metres later we were in Blackfriars Station where there are trains to Gatwick Airport every few minutes. We had Oyster transport cards but they were down to £1 on both cards and we didn't particularly want to mess around topping them up so there is a nice option for using the Greater London (Gatwick is considered to be in this area!) trains these days: use your "paywave" or "tap and go" credit card. It all works perfectly and easily. The only issue is that the fares they quote online for using paywave can be vastly different to the actual cost. All the trains on this line seem to be new and very fast; in 40-50 minutes you're at the airport

Check in for Premium Economy with China Airlines was very fast (Economy looked fast as well) and the security checks at Gatwick are now so well managed that we were through to the departures lounge in minutes. Pret a Manger has competition at airports now, with Itsu (they are owned by the same company!) offering very good Japanese/Asian food with lots of vegetarian/vegan options

The 13-hour flight to Taipei was excellent, their lounge in Terminal 1 was superb (5,000 points per person if you're not flying Business class) and the final 9-hour flight into Brisbane was again excellent

1f8b7350-bcc6-11e9-918a-55250dd66f4f.jpg

The last stage from Brisbane Airport to Byron Bay was courtesy of Brisbane2Byron shuttle bus (A$58 each) who dropped us off at the hospital car park, and our very kind neighbour Mick who picked us up there and carried us up the hill to home

Posted by kforge 22:52 Archived in Taiwan

Email this entryFacebookStumbleUpon

Table of contents

Comments

Whew! Finally finished reading...not without tinges of jealously...of your wonderful (and not so wonderful) jaunt around Europe. We look forward to catching up soon...
David & Gerry

by David Brown

That was quite a trip! Whew! Where to next Mr Traveling Man?

by Alexis

Comments on this blog entry are now closed to non-Travellerspoint members. You can still leave a comment if you are a member of Travellerspoint.

Login