My Trip to Europe: From London to Edinburgh and Back

A lot of people have been asking about my trip so I think it would be best to explain with a my take. My sister and I had a ten hour flight from Oakland to London. It took about a half hour longer than it should have because when we were boarding, no one really seemed to understand the words, "the physically disabled and families with small children will be the only ones boarding at this time."

This was my first time on a plane and it was a good flight. Flying on a plane reminds me of being on a roller coaster. The flight crew was clearly efficient and knew what they were doing and even though my sister and I were in economy seats, they treated us like we were in first class. About an hour into the flight they passed out dinner. We had a variety of choices for dinner. I chose chicken with marinara sauce over ravioli sand steamed zucchini on the side. I also got pasta as a side dish and some chocolate cake as dessert. They also had screens built in all the seats in front of you, so my sister and I watched one of the Hobbit movies. I only got jet lag when I first arrived to London not on the way back. The plane we flew on is called Norwegian airlines. I highly recommend them.

We arrived in London and all we really did was go to Westminster Abbey. Which was completely beautiful and I was in complete awe. I did notice that the British are very proper. It was so quiet you could hear a pin drop. The people who worked there said they would be happy to have us back. An employee pointed to a rowdy group of people and said, "they're not." I saw the graves of Charles Darwin, Sir Isaac Newton, and the graves of a lot of British monarchs. After that we were too tired. So we went back to the hotel, called our mom, later ordered room service, and went to bed early.

Day after that we went to Buckingham palace, took pictures of that and of Big Ben. We also went to a great sandwich shop that seems to have places all over the UK. It was called Pret a Manger.

Because we were so jet lagged that was all we really did in London other than see the Harry Potter play but that was after we came back from Scotland.

After a few days in London we went further north to Edinburgh. We took a ten hour bus ride to go to Edinburgh. Which was nice. We saw the coast of Scotland and the bus driver meant business so we got to Edinburgh early. When we first started the bus ride, the bus driver explained that we couldn't use the bathroom until we were out of England because the chemicals used in the bathroom are outlawed in England. The bus driver made a few jokes about how the English are uptight. They were good jokes but the British were not laughing. Again, this was a ten hour bus ride, we had a 30 minute break around noon but that was it. There was at least 6 children no older than 5 on that bus. And they were all incredibly well behaved. And none of them were on any electronic devices. Plus the parents were attentive and were playing with their kids. It almost made we want kids. And then I thought no thanks, I like my independence. Whatever we are doing in America to discipline our kids it's not working. Also, in Edinburgh I tried haggis and it was delicious. It tasted like stuffing you get around Thanksgiving.

I loved Edinburgh. We went to Edinburgh castle and saw where the black dinner took place. For my fellow game of thrones fans, the Red Wedding was inspired by the black dinner. It wasn't just the black dinner that inspired the red wedding. George R.R. Martin also had inspiration from the Glencoe massacre which happened in 1692. You can read more about it below. Also we saw where Mary, Queen of Scots was held under house arrest until she was executed. We also saw the Scottish Crown Jewels and the Stone of Scone. Or at least scholars think it's the Stone of Scone.

http://entertainment.time.com/2013/06/04/last-supper-the-real-life-massacre-that-inspired-the-game-of-thrones-red-wedding/

After Edinburgh castle, we went to the Elephant House this was where JK Rowling wrote the first two Harry Potter books. I got myself a coffee cup that says the birthplace of Harry Potter and has an elephant on it. You also get a good view of Edinburgh castle. This was also where I had my first alcoholic drink. It was a hard apple cider and I thought it was disgusting. Mainly because I have never drank alcohol before because I skipped the party stage. I also joined the thousands of fellow Harry Potter fans and wrote a note to JK Rowling. We also climbed Arthur's seat, went to Mary Kings Close, and did some shopping in Edinburgh. I now have my own authentically Scottish kilt.

After Edinburgh, we headed further north to Inverness. We went to Leakeys book shop. I didn't find anything because it had little to no organization and I was looking for something specific. My sister also got 3 bottles of whisky. One for a friend who loves whisky, one for my parents, and another for herself. Even though she doesn't really drink whisky and neither do my parents, but we got it anyways because we thought it would be good to have.

After Inverness we took an all day tour to the Isle of Skye. Which I think was my favorite part of the trip. The isle of Skye looks like the real life Lord of Rings. Our tour guide knew a ton of Scottish history and was hilarious. We also stopped by Loch Ness. Didn't see Nessie though. The Scottish clearly aren't offended by the idea of Nessie. No one will deny her existence.

After we got back from the Isle of Skye tour, we spent one last night in Inverness and had our bags ready to back to London the next day. We were taking the sleeper train so we didn't have to waste an entire day traveling back to London. I am a deep sleeper so I slept fine. Once the train gets moving, it rocks you to sleep.

After we got to London, the only thing we really did was go see the Harry Potter play and go to Platorm 9 3/4, and got a picture. I loved it and I especially loved the specialty effects. Don't read the script and criticize it, if you haven't seen the play. A script is far less descriptive than a play or a book. The only thing that was irritating about the play was that there was two teenage girls behind us who talk in annoying valley girl voices and one of them used my chair as a place to rest her feet. By the way, I don't care what anyone says black Hermione was perfect for the role of Hermione. Hermione is a bright, level headed witch. The actress who played her, did a perfect job portraying her. I also felt the actors for Ron and Harry were great. Harry and his son, Albus have a real father/son relationship. Ron is clearly making Hermione happy and supports her in everything she does. Also I really appreciate that Ginny in the play was fierce and bold like book Ginny and didn't have the personality of a brick like movie Ginny.

The flight back home was wonderful because we flew on Norwegian airlines. After we landed in Oakland, we flew home through Southwest Airlines. They need to step up their game. They didn't tell us our flight was late, my sister had to talk to an employee and told them we were supposed to board 20 minutes earlier and they just said, oh yeah your flight is about an hour late. And then they got on the intercom and told the other passengers. They also made us get a boarding pass even though you could pick any seat. On Norwegian airlines we got a full meal, could order food from the snack bar, and could watch movies and television even though we weren't first class. On Southwest we got to pick any drink but the only food we got was peanuts.

All together, I loved the trip. Even though I missed my family about four days into the trip. Most people assumed we were European, because our last name is Dutch. Which we are Dutch but our nationality is American. Plus, 99% of people pronounced our last name correctly. My mom says its because we were home. But even when they heard our American accent, they still didn't care that we were American. The best part is that no one mentioned Donald Trump thank god. Also, traveling is extremely tiring. No one told the streets of Edinburgh are steep as hell. That gets worse when you are carrying 15 pounds of luggage on your back. Europeans are also very heavy eaters. We spent a ton of time walking, and I still gained almost ten pounds.


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What Guys Said 16

  • 2mo

    Damn that sounds awesome! One thing Im really curious about Scotland is did you actually see a lot of the Scottish guys wearing kilts or do they pretty much dress the way we do?

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    • 2mo

      Yes men do wear kilts in Scotland but most wear jeans. It doesn't seem to be just the older generation. There were some young guys wearing kilts.

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    • 2mo

      Not too bad, thats usually our nights here

    • 2mo

      I am from Edinburgh and the answer is no. Our fashions are governed by the standard trends in Britain which means, we pretty much dress like everyone else. For some very traditional events, we might use it, and I do have a kilt, as reserve, but never used it.

  • 2mo

    Did you meet a lot of new people on your travel and share culture with them?

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    • 2mo

      There was a ton of nice people that we met. The Scottish share a lot of similarities with Americans

  • 2mo

    Jealous! I'm GOING to get over there one day.

    As for Southwest, they're junk. They've just become the cheap airline that people only fly when they can't afford anything better (or just don't want to pay for more expensive tickets). And compared to Norwegian or British Air... I mean, no comparison at all, as you saw. :)

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  • 2mo

    would run back to edimburgh asap even right now if i could

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  • 2mo

    Glad you enjoyed the UK, next time you're round, you should consider spending a bit more time in the South :D
    www.kew.org/.../JE_KEW_7590web%20palm%20house.jpg
    wegetaround2.files.wordpress.com/.../p1000832.jpg
    www.symondsbury.com/.../dorset_countryside.jpg
    www.dream-cottages.co.uk/.../...Pestridge_0683.jpg
    Okay, I'll stop with the shameless self-promotion now :)

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  • 2mo

    "Europeans are also very heavy eaters" uh no... that's only the British. They're kind of... different from the rest of Europe, if you know what I mean ;-).

    It was a good choice that you flew with Norwegian Air. I've stopped flying with any American or British Airlines years ago. They're the absolutely worst in the world. The continental Europeans are pretty okay but also pretty expensive. My absolute favorites are Nippon, Korean Air and Singapore Airlines. You should try them some time... they treat you like a royal.

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  • 2mo

    Wow. This is fantastic.

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  • 2mo

    Sounds like an amazing experience. I might have to add the UK to my list.

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    • 2mo

      There's a lot more to do than people realize. My other sister and mother didn't come even though they were invited because they didn't think there would be anything to do. I loved Scotland a lot more than London though.

  • 2mo

    I like how much emphasis you put on the actual flight 😂😂😂

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    • 2mo

      It was my first flight and I just have a lot of opinions in general.

    • 2mo

      I know. I just thought it was really funny. Also, southwest's thing is letting people pick their seat... Dat turnaround time, doe 😂

  • 2mo

    didn't go to Greece? the cultural Mother of Europe and all western civilization? you didn't go to Europe ;P

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  • 2mo

    It seems you had lots of fun on your trip, I always wanted to visit Scotland... they have beautiful nature, and awesome old castles. Excellent Take :D

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  • 2mo

    Glad that you loved my city and yes, some of our alleys are steep as hell, used to be a struggle when I was young and used a bike.

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  • 2mo

    Great tourist guide take - Well done

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  • 2mo

    Why should they mentioned Donald Trump, he is not the president yet besides we can't blame all Americans for one nomination.

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  • 2mo

    Looks great! Double Thumbs Up ( if only I can figure out how to make them into icons on a laptop)

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  • 2mo

    Sounds like a fun trip.

    Don't judge all alcohol by hard cider though; it is about the nastiest stuff around.

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    • 2mo

      I also tried a dark chocolate mousse with Baileys Irish cream. It might've evaporated because there is a chance it was cooked in the mousse. But they might've poured it on top, mixing it in with the sauce. I liked that.

    • 2mo

      Try a Guinness. Myself, I don't care for sweet drinks.

      I've never been to Scotland. It is on a long list of places I want to get to before I'm aged and lame.

What Girls Said 5

  • 2mo

    Beautiful Trip and My Take, @ginny_weasley.
    I can Understand how Breathtaking Everything is in Europe, even out in the Middle East when it was Best from the Rest. I had Gone to Switzerland, Istanbul, London and Lived some out in Egypt. So much to See... And Tell as Well.
    Good luck and Great Going. xx

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    • 2mo

      Thank you for the Like, and maybe Next stop is The Netherlands or India. xxoo

  • 1mo

    It seems that you have a really good trip. Thanks for sharing with us your experience. I am going to Europe next spring. My 1st destination point is London. From there I am going to France (Paris) then to Amsterdam and Italy (Venice). I am still planning my trip and have already found cheap flight booking service https://lowcostclub.ca/ . Travel is the only thing that money can buy that makes you richer.

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  • 2mo

    I liked hearing your take on the British hehe, I often wonder how people view my country from the outside. I've been to Edinburgh as well and looked round the castle, Arthurs Seat (Isn't it SO windy at the top!!) and Mary Kings Close.

    I had a look at The Elephant House but it's somewhere I wouldn't recommend to people to visit. The owners seemed to do a jolly good job of completely exploiting the fact that J. K. Rowling wrote Harry Potter there. I thought it completely spoilt the magic of it and I was instantly put off going in.

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    • 2mo

      I totally agree about the elephant house. I don't think I will go there again. Just one visit sufficed. It was ridiculously windy at the top of Arthurs seat my hair looked cute that day until the wind had its way with it.

  • 2mo

    Ms. Weasly stop, you're making me very very jealous. 😭

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  • 2mo

    Cool story bruh

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