Sunday, July 11, 2010

Honeymoon

And finally, I blog about the honeymoon! Life has been totally mad since we got back home (nearly a month ago now!). Work has been really busy and I've been working late a bit, and clearing up after the wedding, and sorting out stuff like wedding photos and writing letters and things like that! And trying to get caught up on some gardening whenever the weather cools enough to let me spend any time outside. Last night I was attempting to weed at 21.45 as it got dark as that was the first time it was cool enough!

We stayed in the most fabulous Victoria Apartment in Stratford, which even came equipped with knitting books! No, I did not know about this in advance, despite the OH's suspicions!

The apartment was in a great location, and even had its own car parking space, which made getting the luggage in considerably easier than if we'd had to park several streets away. It was only five minutes walk from Shakespeare's Birthplace in the centre of Stratford:

We did "do" the Shakespeare properties (well, four of the five) although the Birthplace itself is overwhelmingly, awfully, touristy. It looks pretty though. Apart from the slip hazard sign outside it. Pretty gardens though (look at that grass. It's green. Can anyone remember seeing green grass? Ours is yellow at home thanks to the lack of rain).

As well as doing the terrifically touristy Shakespeare places (if you're going, Hall's Croft, where Shakespeare's daughter lived, is nice, quieter and with a beautiful garden), we had some days out in the car. One day we went to Coventry, stopping en route in the suburb of Earlsdon to visit the Yarn Gathering:

I'd never been in a yarn shop with it all arranged by colour before. It looked amazing! I also met Kate, whose blog I've been reading for about five years now.

Honeymoon yarn and book purchases will feature in another post. Otherwise this one will win some kind of world record for length of post!

We explored Coventry, which the OH used to know very well. It was years since I've been in Coventry cathedral, old and new versions:

I think I like the old medieval cathedral best. It was destroyed by bombing in the Second World War, so is now an empty, but evocative, space.



On a different day we went over to Warwick, where we found Warwick Wools, and also Warwick Books. We loved Warwick, as it still felt friendly and townish with not many of the big chain shops, just lots of independents. Both the wool and book shops were very friendly, with a good range of stock in relatively small amounts of space (the wool was piled up to the ceiling!).

In Warwick we visited the Lord Leycester Hospital, not a medical hospital but one of those institutions that housed the needy and aged hundreds of years ago.

 
It had some fascinating buildings, and yet another beautiful garden!

We avoided Warwick Castle, as it looked like a theme park and cost a fortune to get into so ventured on to Leamington Spa for some lunch, and where I managed to accidentally find Web of Wool (which I'd forgotten was there!). How much sock yarn?! Another lovely shop.

After some lunch we journeyed onwards to Kenilworth Castle, which we had virtually to ourselves. This was lovely as there was plenty to explore and see, and it wasn't at all touristy (plus, there weren't any audio guides. We hate audio guides! They turn going to an exhibition into a miserable experience). There was a new Elizabethan Garden set out last year, pictured below, with the castle behind.

Parts of the castle date from the 12th century, although there are plenty of later additions. There is also a tea room with very tasty scones...

A lot of the honeymoon was spent mooching around Stratford, and walking along the banks of the Avon and the Stratford canal, not just visiting places! It was a shame we'd managed to choose the week when there weren't any plays on at the Royal Shakespeare Company, although the main theatre is still being refurbished.

On the drive home we stopped off for some lunch at Stowe Landscape Gardens:

We had an hour's walk in the gardens and didn't cover a third of it! It is one of the stranger places I've visited, surely only a Brit would be mad enough to fill a landscape with enormous temples and monuments?



But still, a beautiful place to visit and a good finishing touch for the honeymoon!

Hopefully it won't be so long this time before my next post as there won't be so many pictures to sort out...

7 comments:

Mary Anne said...

A delightful tour of your honeymoon! I especially enjoyed following up all the links to the sites you visited, and the photos were most excellent.

ps: I did notice an amazing number of wool shops that managed to find their way into your tour, and the knitting books in the apartment, well that was icing on the cake ^.^

Thanks for sharing with us, Katie, and may your grass grow greener soon!

acrylik said...

Sounds like a wonderful honeymoon, with lots of lovely memories :)

SerineKat said...

Ahhh good old Warwick Castle. I loved it but it was crazy busy and touristy. Try to catch it in the fall or another off season time when they have no events scheduled. It's really an impressive Castle and Estate.

pip said...

what wonderful pictures... and yarn shops... and knitting books in your room!!... are you sure you didn't arrange it like that ;) great post :)

Victoria said...

It looks like you had a wonderful time! I hope I remember to take my camera on our honeymoon and take pictures.

Linda said...

That looks perfect! I am glad you had a great time.

Tina said...

Wow, THAT sounds like a great honeymoon! Thanks for sharing!
I think I know now where I have to go if I ever get to England again!