A Travellerspoint blog

London and Europe

Hello!

Its been a while since I last updated.

I'm doing great and enjoying many new experiences. I'm currently in the country town of Nelson, Canada. Nelson is the marijuana capital of Canada (I didn't know that until i got here). Its a real hippy town with heaps of hippy people everywhere :). But its an awesome place. Most things here are fairly similar to Australia in terms of prices but there are heaps of oraganic food which is great.

I'm wwoofing (willing workers on organic farms) here at the moment. You basically volunteer working about 5 hours a day 5 days a week on an organic farm. In return you get meals and accommodation. But the best thing is living with the locals and experiencing their way of life. Its been such an experience so far. Maybe its because of the town Nelson as there are lots of interesting characters here. As I said this place is full of hippies. Everyone here is into organic stuff, astrology, psychic readings, chinese medicine, accupunture, etc.. so you can imagine the conversations are interesting. Humm…I’ll talk about Canada a bit later but for now I’ll retrace my steps back to London and Europe.

Well, coming from Nepal to London was a bit of a shock. I still miss Nepal as it was a beautiful place with such great people. As poor as the locals were, they seem happy and content with living day by day on hard work and a full stomach.

London. Not quite what I had expected. Of course there were hundreds of old and impressive buildings, but the people in central London were not quite ‘locals’. I figure about 80% were foreigners, either working there or a majority as tourists. When you go to a shop or restaurant the people serving you seems to be all workers from Europe. The service is pretty crap, and everyone seems to be busy worrying about their own lives. And everything is expensive. Compounded by our crappy exchange rate, staying in London is just way too expensive. Oh I meet up with my brother as well in London so it was good to see him.

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The famous London Marathon. It was pouring rain that day, like every other day in London. In the background is Big Ben.

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The Rosetta Stone inside the British Museum. I think it’s the same text in Hieroglyphics, Latin and Greek. This lead to Hieroglyphics being deciphered. The British Museum is just gigantic and full of interesting stuff. And its free and jammed packed with tourists. Actually the whole of London is full of interesting buildings and Museums.

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Lords Cricket Ground. The home of Cricket. Went on a 2.5 hour tour of the ground and the best part was the guide. He was a real pompous pom! Talks and acts exactly like those rich dudes from the olden days. It was great just listening to him talk.

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Madam Tausaude.

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Tower of London. One of my favourite sites in London. It’s the old castle where King Henry or someone used to live.

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The Changing of the Guard at Buckingham Place. Zzzz… it was raining in London almost all the time when we were there. No wonder why doctors in England tell their patients to go to Spain or Australia to get some sun ?

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View of London from St Pauls Cathedral. You can see the Thames rivers and London Eye in the background.

Well, thats some pictures from London. I like the city. Its clean and there’s heaps to explore. Would’ve liked to explore a bit more of the countryside thought as the city was a bit boring after a few days. Actually I remember catching the train to the airport and there was this big redhead hooligan guy who was soo drunk standing infront of me next to the doorway. He had a six pack of extra large cans of beer and was skulling it while whobbling around in the train. He started rambling to me about how crap England is and how its full of idiots like him. Then he started singing Jerusalem which I found pretty funny because he kept on forgetting the words. Ahh..this is the England I wanted to see! ?

Well, things are just too expensive there. I mean getting lunch is like $15 minimum. Its really crazy. I’ll go back when I’m a millionaire.

After spending a fortune in London, we started our 20 days European Experience with Contiki tours. It’s a bus tour company for 18-35 year olds. Basically it’s a party bus. Highly recommended as it was a blast meeting new friends while traveling across a heap of countries and cultures. In Europe each country is steeped in history and amazing culture. Because we spent only a few days in each country, there was so much to take in and the 20 days felt like 2 months. Here’s a few pictures of some of the places we went to.

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Here’s the Contiki Gang. About half are Australians. There were others from New Zealand, Canada, USA, Malaysia, South African, Japan, and the Philippines.

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First stop was France. Eiffel Tower during the Day. The view from the top is not bad as well. In France there must be a restriction on building height because most buildings around Paris is not that big. There was however a separate area where the commerce centre with big buildings were located but it’s a bit outside of the downtown area. This is similar to London where the financial district is a bit outside of the main downtown area.
Actually I didn’t really see many skyscrapers in Europe.

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Eiffel Tower at night

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Heard of the Hunchback of Notre Dame? This is the Notre Dame Church.

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Snails…tasted quite good actually.

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French countryside.

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Crazy Parking! This happens in many European countries but seems to be worst in France. Apparently due to limited parking space in the city, people park bumper to bumper. To get out they just bump each other out. Its crazy. Theres BMWs and Mercedes getting bumped out and stuff, its crazy.

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Country town of Oingt. My Favorite country town in France. Thats my brother. He quit his job as well to travel. Which is good because working is overrated. hahah

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Beaujoleas wine region.

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Mediterranean Seaside town of Nice.

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Monte Carlo, Monaco. Outside the Palace Casino. Flashy cars of the rich and famous.

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Monte Carlo.

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I think this is Florence, Italy.

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St Peters Basilica, Vatican City. I think this is the smallest country in the world. Its within Italy. Its where the Pope resides and the balcony in the picture is where he gives his speeches and stuff.

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Inside St Peters. It’s the biggest Church in the world I think. Amazing place. The Sistine Chapel and the artwork in all the buildings is spectacular.

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This is the castle at the end of the secret passage from within Vatican City.

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Venice, Italy. This is my favorite place in Italy. Full of Gondalos and tiny back streets with interesting little shops.

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Venice again.

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Some Church in Italy.

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Florence.

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Everyones seen the Colosseum from the outside, but here’s what it looks like inside.

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The Parthenon.

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The Spanish Steps.

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Leaning Tower of Pisa.

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Gelati. Its soo good. Humm..the pizzas were nice too but I found the pasta average.

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View of the tiny country of Liechtenstein.

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Our tour guide Greg. Our driver, Derek actually puked on the bus while he was driving. Haha.. he had food poisioning the night before and looked really crook in the morning. So while he was driving on the freeway he suddenly puked… he’s actually from Scotland and is one funny dude with his strong accent which I don’t think anyone on the bus understood.

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Germany’s famous beer halls. That’s a 1 litre stein and some tasty pork knuckle.

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Switzerland. My favorite country in Europe. Its such a picturesque place. Small quite towns with spectacular mountains everywhere.

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Mountains in Switzerland which inspired the shape of the toblerone chocolate.

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Paraguilding in Austria. My second favorite country in Europe but definetly my most memorable moment. Amazing views while soaring like a bird. I wish I could do this in Nepal.

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Swarovski Crystal, Austria. This is the biggest Crystal Wall in the world..can’t remember how long it is but it extends further than shown in the picture.

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This cheese maker in Amsterdam was stoned when giving us the talk.. he couldn’t stop giggling.

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Marijuana lolly pop. Walk into maccas and there’s stoned people. Its legal here and its a crazy city. The red light district was also an eye opener.

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Everyone rides a bike here. Maybe because the country is just flat as a pancake.

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Can’t forget the clogs when in Amsterdam.

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Some random pic at some aquarium.

OK that’s its for now. I’ll update with photos of Canada next time. Till then, take care!

Posted by phong 21:03 Archived in England Tagged round_the_world

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Hi Phong, good to hear from you at last. You have had your fun, now it is time to come home we miss you soooo much. I am pleased you are having a huge time, wish I was there too. Your photos are great and makes me feel that I am there with you. I would love to go myself one day. Oh well when Lotto comes in. I won my job so I am a bit more at ease here. How are the funds lasting, ok I hope. Quite a few changes here, people have come and gone. When can we look forward to seeing you back in Aus? Look forward to seeing more of you comments/photos. At least you have not forgotten us back home. Cheerio Jenny (boss lady).

by jennyw

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