On today’s adventure we explored the amazing Stratford-Upon-Avon, the birthplace of Shakespeare. After starting our day experiencing the different train stations to make our way to Stratford-Upon-Avon we had several intriguing conversations with other travelers. One of the interactions we encountered was with a traveler attempting to find directions for the train. We had explained to him that our group was not the group to ask, as we were also new to the situation and very unfamiliar. He then discovered we were from the states from our discussion and proceeded to scream “heck yah for Americans.” After a few laughs, it was quite interesting to find a welcoming local. Many tourists in new areas are not welcoming to tourists, as we are seen as intruding on their space. Which in perspective was an assumption I had made prior to our trip. Already a few days into our trip and I’ve had plenty of pleasant interactions with locals. They have been so nice to help us with directions, information, or just over simple conversations at Starbucks, like today.
In between interactions and our Starbucks trip, I was able to do some local shopping. There were many stores and shops that had a wide variety of items. One of my most favorite stops was a local tea shop that had loose leaf tea that aged back as long as the store itself has been open (which was 1886) and a chocolate shop. Of course, I couldn’t travel to the UK without trying the tea!
Moving on from this morning, we headed straight for our tour of the Stratford-Upon-Avon area and Shakespeare’s birthplace with our tour guide Tim. To say this tour was informative is a major understatement! I remember learning about Shakespeare in high school, but our tour today doesn’t compare! It was such a beautiful atmosphere to experience. The history of the buildings dated back to the early ages, before Shakespeare was even born. This was an amazing experience to adventure in with our group. My favorite part to learn about and visit was their birthplace, specifically his home. It was so fun to participate in the walkthrough tour and talk with experts on the subject. It was a beautiful, small house that had replica furnishings in the house along with wallpaper and flooring. One of the gentlemen we talked to through the house informed us that the wallpaper we complimented on was actually a replica and the original wallpaper was at a different location. On the tour, another thing I appreciated that wasn’t a part of the educational aspect; was the wildlife. Seeing the swans and ducks being so interactive with people was fun to watch.
After our tour came to a close we headed to dinner! We helped ourselves at the Edward Moon restaurant, located in a small town. My favorite part of the meal was my dessert. I had the lemon-filled Crème Brulee, which was absolutely amazing! It was definitely one of my favorite restaurants we have visited so far!
After yet another long day we headed back to the hotel. Taking the train back wasn’t nearly as eventful as it was in the morning!