Day 2 – Windsor Castle> Stonehenge > Oxford > dinner at Nando’s
We were supposed to book the day tour well in advance but Mr Map’s nature of always trying to get the best deal won over, so we decided to take a punt and book the tour after our arrival in the UK rather than booking online beforehand. I was extremely agitated on the day before, as Mr Map only did some online research the night before and found out that we would probably get on the tour bus at the Victoria station.
We arrived at the bus station before 7am and luckily we were able to book the Windson Castle, Stonehenge & Oxford tour. The only deviation from our original plan was to go to Bath instead of Oxford, so I guess I can’t complain about it too much. Mr Map was so relieved after we confirmed our tour and I noticed that he had some new white hairs from the stressful morning.
After we booked our tour, we went to McDonald’s for a quick breakfast. I was very impressed with the breakfast wrap. Such a smart idea to put the hash brown, cheese and egg a single wrap.
The bus ride took about 1 hour from London to Windsor Castle. It is the largest inhabited castle in the world and the weekend home of the Queen Elizabeth 2. It is often used for state banquets and official entertaining. The State Apartments (where they host the formal event), Queen Mary’s Doll’s House are the highlights of Windsor Castle.
It is not allowed to take photos inside the State Apartments or St George’s Chapel. I’m not a big fan of history but I had an enjoyable time visiting the Windsor Castle and walking around the grounds.
Opening hours: Mar to Oct – open daily 09:30-17:30 (last admission at 16:00); Nov to Feb – open daily 09:45-16:15 (last admission at 15:00)
Address: Windsor Castle, Windsor, Berkshire SL4 1NJ
Admission fee: £20.00 per adult
Official website: https://www.royalcollection.org.uk/visit/windsorcastle
We spent about 1.5 hours there, grabbed a sandwich to eat on the bus and continued our journey to Stonehenge. It is an ancient temple aligned on the movements of the sun. The stones were raised 4500 years ago by sophisticated prehistoric people. It is also a UNESCO-listed site.
Yes, to some this is just a pile of stones that we travelled all the way to see but I’m still amazed by how the prehistorical people built it. Some people have told me that this is the most over-rated tourist site in the world, though I was quite impressed by it, and took a lot of photos as we did the standard walk around.
Opening hours: please click here to check
Address: Near Amesbury, Wiltshire SP4 7DE
Admission fee: £15.50 per adult
Soon after we got back to our tour bus, and we headed north for our last stop at Oxford, a city most famous for its university.
Sheldonian Theatre – the official ceremonial hall of the University of Oxford
We only got to stay in Oxford for about 1 hour, which was not nearly enough, so at a spur of a moment decision we decided to get in the Balliol College, one of Oxford’s oldest college, to have a look.
The dining hall at Balliol College. It looks just like the dining hall from Harry Potter.
There are some ghost tours and other walking tours available in Oxford but we did not have enough time to join, which was a shame. I definitely wished we had spent more time here just to walk around the grounds.
After our short visit to Oxford, it was about time for us to get back to London. I would definitely recommend going on this day tour if you have more time in London and want to see something different from the city.
We had been craving for Nando’s since we arrived in London (though they originated in South Africa), something which Mr Map has missed as we don’t have any Nando’s restaurants in Hong Kong. We got dropped off at the tube station after the tour and used Yelp to look for the nearest Nando’s and ended up at a branch in Southwark.
It is famous for their flamed-grilled peri peri chicken. Mr Map has been raving about this peri peri sauce for as long as I can remember.
Nando’s is famous for their hot sauce too!
This is the famous Nando’s icon.
Nando’s (Southwark Arches branch)
Opening hours: Mon to Thu 11:30-22:00, Fri 11:30-23:00, Sat 12:00-23:00, Sun 12:00-22:00
Address: Blackfriars Road, Southwark, SE1 0XH
Official Website: https://www.nandos.co.uk
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