Mark\’s Rants, Raves And Other Things ;)

Rants and raves about things that interest me

Edinburgh, Day 3 and train to London

Posted by Mark Sztainbok on March 27, 2008

We started the morning with breakfast with Luke, Richard (the groom not the techy), Pamela and Beth, we checked out and headed to Waverley Station where we left our luggage as our train to London wasn’t leaving until 3PM.

We then used the hop on hop off tour voucher that we had received as part of our accommodation booking. The tour was on a double decker bus with an open top and was an audio guided tour (which was a bit of a pain as the headphone cables were not long enough and every time I moved around to take a photo I’d pull the cord out of the socket). We stayed on the bus until Edinburgh Castle where hopped off.

At this point, it was nearly 12PM already and due to it being the Easter weekend, there was a long queue for tickets and by the time we got to the front it took about 1/2 hour and we didn’t have enough time to actually go inside the castle. Instead, we simply bought a guidebook and headed back to the Royal Mile to catch the bus again.

While waiting for the bus, we checked out a few of the tourist trap stores around the area. A piece of advice: if you get tempted to go into the real working tartan mill on the left as you come down from the castle, avoid it at all costs, as although you do see them making the tartans, you have to go through about 10 different stores before you can get out of the place.

After the bus arrived, we hopped back on and continued the tour before arriving back at Waverley Station to catch our train to London. As we had a bit of time to spare, we grabbed some lunch (I had a chicken pasty and Craig had a sausage roll) and sat down to relax before we had to pick up our luggage and head to the train. One weird thing we noticed at Edinburgh Station was lack of bins which was odd given the number of food outlets at the platforms. I don’t know what the station expect people to do with their trash. The strangest thing about the lack of bins was that the station was unusually clean still with very little trash.

After collecting our bags, we headed to the platform to wait for the train. Due to the amount of luggage we had, we had to put our luggage in the guard carriage then proceeded into the carriage to our seats. The train was quite crowded and fully booked due to the Easter holiday and unlike normally, there was no seat food service. We did however get offered drinks and snacks at our seat.

As the train had Wi-Fi, I took out my laptop for a while and caught up on some of my blogging. This had the other benefit that the train had a web page which showed where it was so I could see how far we were from London. We also chatted for a while to Billy and Sandy from North Carolina who were sitting at the table in the seats opposite us.

Once we arrived at Kings Cross Station, we proceeded to the Underground to head to our hotel in Earls Court. Due to work being down at the station, we were unable to catch the Picaddilly line which would have normally taken us directly to Earls Court and instead had to catch the Victoria line to Green Park then the Piccadilly line to Earls Court. One thing we discovered is that you wouldn’t want to be in a wheelchair or have to push a stroller through the Underground as it is not very accessible as there are often many steps on the interchanges between lines and to the station exits. As you can imagine, this made it relatively difficult to move our luggage. Luckily, Earls Court station had lifts and a ramp to Earls Court Road so we had no trouble with our luggage once we reached our destination.

We then proceeded to our hotel which was the K+K George. We checked into the hotel and took our luggage up to the room only to discover that it was tiny. You literally walked inside and there was a small bathroom, a TV and a bed and nothing else. The room was just big enough for the bed itself and there was nowhere to place our luggage. According to our paperwork, we were meant to have a “superior room” so I rang reception and complained. A brief time later, the porter came up to help us with our bags to the new room. The new room was a big improvement with a flat screen TV, desk, small table with chair and  enough room to place all of our suitcases.

We then decided to go for a wander up Earls Court Road to have a look around the neighbourhood and had dinner at Wagamama before heading back to the hotel and bed.

Monopoly places visited:

King’s Cross Station

Euston Road

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