6 Mar 2016

Road trip! Scotland - Wales - England

First off, a big apology for the delay in blog posts, it's been a crazy week for the 2 Travel Cheap duo. 

So here's what we've been up to...


SCOTLAND

On the morning of Saturday the 27th of February we departed our beloved second home,
Edinburgh. 


It was an elated and sad departure, and we'd be lying if we weren't a bit emotional to be saying 'see ya later'.


So with sore heads (thanks to all our pals for this valuable and painful contribution ha ha) and heavy hearts we hitched a train to Dunfermline, where we picked up our wheels and accommodation for the week, a Spaceships van. 


Once on the road we headed to the stunning town of St. Andrews, for a relaxing stay at the lovely Kingask Cottages. If you're heading to St. Andrews, we highly recommend booking a stay with Kingask. 

The accommodations are lovely, warm (the heating had been turned on prior to our arrival, a
great touch), relaxing and ideal for group
and family bookings. We really can't say enough wonderful things about our experience with Kingask. 

After a few days relaxing at the Kingask Cottages and enjoying the sites of St. Andrews, we headed towards Loch Lomond National Park, and south towards the Scottish Borders. If you haven't visited this part of the world, you really should, it's absolutely stunning, and every turn in the road is breathtaking. 


Despite preaching that planning is key when making the most of your travels, we didn't realise there's a fantastic pass you can get for only £24 (£30 from March 25th, 2016) that gains you access to a bunch of Historic Scotland sites. Had we known, we would of purchased this pass, instead we decided to forego the cost of entering these sites, in order to stay on budget for this leg of our trip.


One of the beauties of Scotland is its free camp laws, it does pay to be respectful so if camping on private property do ask the landowners first. There are plenty of National Parks you can camp in though, for example we pulled over in the Scottish Borders, next to a lovely stream. To say it was one of the most wonderful places to wake up to is an understatement. 

LAKE DISTRICT + LIVERPOOL

We had a hefty drive ahead of us post Scottish Borders, so we headed south via the Lake District (yet another stunning part of the world), to Liverpool, crossing into England and making a beeline to The Beatles Story Exhibition.


After reaching Liverpool we parked the van in a backstreet and headed for the nearest bar to enjoy a pint, relax after a long drive and properly charge our devices plus get our Facebook, Twitter and Instagram foo on.

The Beatles Story, although undergoing some work and additions, was a great collection of stories and memorabilia and if you love The Beatles, you'll enjoy the experience, telling the story pre-fame through to the official disbanding on April 10th, 1970.

WALES + THE DOCTOR WHO EXPERIENCE

We won't lie, our main reason for heading to Wales was to visit The Doctor Who


Experience... And it was worth it, more than in fact. So much so that we've written a separate post purely on The Doctor Who Experience, which you can enjoy here.

What we didn't bank on is how much we'd enjoy the stunning drive through the Welsh countryside. Yet another reason why we'd highly recommend making your own way through the UK, rather than via public transport (which can be exorbitant in cost by the way).


Do keep in mind though if driving through Wales that the roads can be narrow and winding, so make sure you're vehicle isn't too large (we were nearly caught out a couple of times ha ha).


BRISTOL

Post Cardiff, we drove to Bristol to meet up with pals, who as it turns out were all not in Bristol at the time. Oops!

At 7:30pm, we contacted a good friend we met at Burning Man in 2014, who lives in London and we were due to stay with in two days time, and asked if we could drop by earlier than planned... two days earlier, and like the champion he is Tom let us drive direct to London that very night with only a couple of hours notice. Thanks Tom, you rock!
This is Tom. Tom is awesome!

LONDON

As everyone knows, London is an expensive city. Like, prohibitively expensive. You can go from spending 6 quid for two pints in Liverpool to £5 for a single pint in London. Drinks generally provide a fairly good indication as to how expensive a city is. 

So what do you do when you want to visit a city that's outside your budget? 


Well it certainly helps if you have awesome pals like Tom that can put you you up for free. If not then do your research, Airbnb is always a great option, but do make sure to read all the reviews before locking in your accommodation. 


When it comes to attractions, finding anything that's free is super helpful when it comes to budgeting. For example the National History MuseumScience Museum and the V&A all offer free exhibitions which are fantastic and make for a wonderful day out. The Science and Natural History Museums are also great for family's, although we must admit we loved many of the interactive exhibits aimed at children, perhaps we're just big kids when it comes down to it he he. 



On Friday night our wonderful Burning Man family organised a catch-up. Many drinks flowed and conversations were had. It was wonderful, and we thank all our Burner Family for a fantastic 'see ya later' at The Magic Roundabout.


SEE YA LATER LONDON...

Tomorrow we're jumping on the Eurostar to Paris, and bid adieu to the UK, our home since December 2012. There will be art, culture, cheese, wine, Disneyland, and many adventures in one of the most beautiful cities in the world. And after that? Tokyo... Bring it!

xxoo L+N


The Doctor Who Experience

We won't lie, really the main reason we wanted to go to Cardiff was to visit The Doctor Who Experience

In 2013 we were lucky enough to attend the Doctor Who 50th Anniversary Celebration in London, so we'd already been inside a TARDIS, and seen a lot of the costumes and creature models, but there was no way we could skip the real deal. We are kind of big fans! 


During the days adventure we checked out the exhibition, an interactive adventure, and the optional extra, but totally worth it TARDIS studio tour!



We were lucky enough to arrive on the first day of new additions to the exhibition, including costumes, props and scenery from Season 9.

If you're thinking of going, here's what you can expect...


THE EXHIBITION



Delete!

The Face of Bo.
Retro TARDIS Console Replica, used in the 50th Anniversary. 

The Silence and the Ood. 

The amazing River Song outfits.



Can you guess the Doctors?

The early years of the Doctor.

The ultimate in budget travel and adventures.
War Doctors TARDIS from the 50th Anniversary film.

Davros' medical chamber.

Can you guess the episode?


THE STUDIO TOUR



Clara's TARDIS from Season 9.

EXTERMINAAATEE!

Turns out, it's bigger on the outside ;)

Entrance to the TARDIS

Pretty damn awesome inside! 

Happy :)

The Doctor actually walks here!

These are all REAL BOOKS! 

THE GALLIFREY "MUSEUM" TOUR
We'd LOVE to show you photos, but unfortunately this was a 'no photography allowed' kind of situation. You'll just have to take our word for it that it was awesome... DON'T BLINK!