CIE Tours Travel Blog
Discovering Stratford-upon-Avon and York
By: Courtney Buzzanca
Date: August 6, 2017
And we are off!
Welcome to my first blog post as CIE's second Social Media Concierge for the CIE pilot program. I will be on CIE Tour's Grand Tour of Britain and Ireland Tour. This morning we left our hotel, The Park Plaza Waterloo, and made our first stop at Stratford-upon-Avon. It was difficult to part with our hotel given that when I woke up that morning I had a clear view of Parliament and the London Eye. With our bellies full of a grand English breakfast, we began our pursuit for the city of York in Yorkshire.
On our way to York, where we will spend the evening, we made a stop in Stratford-upon-Avon. This delightful town was filled with endless options for coffee, tea, snacks, souvenirs, ice cream, and street music! Here, we visited William Shakespeare's Birthplace and explored the busy area of Henley Street. My only complaint was that we couldn't stay longer. There was a lovely canal with locals relaxing on the water and an ice cream boat- I'd have to say that I prefer an ice cream boat to an ice cream truck! The atmosphere of the town was relaxed and welcoming.
Statue of Shakespeare surrounded by his characters, Stratford-upon-Avon, UK
The weather was wonderfully warm with a refreshing breeze by the water. While looking around, I noticed locals lying out in the sun and feeding the ducks nearby. An excellent site on our tour was the Birthplace of William Shakespeare. The guides around the Bard of Avon's home were dressed in traditional garb and were eager to answer any questions our guests had for them. Once we left Shakespeare's home, actors were entertaining the visitors and giving them a taste of English theater.
Stratford-upon-Avon Canal, UK
William Shakespeare's Birthplace
Two of our CIE guests enjoying the exterior
of Shakespeare's home
From Stratford-upon-Avon, we made our way to our final destination of the day, York. Upon our arrival, our tour guide, Ian, led us through the streets of the gorgeous city on a walking tour. Ian was a wealth of knowledge regarding York's history and even shared some interesting ghost stories! While speaking with guests, we all agreed that Shambles Market resembled something out of a movie. The small street resembled Diagon Alley from Harry Potter, with its cobblestones and numerous shops. I found some guests straying from the group to grab some of the most delicious fudge I've ever smelled. Needless to say, our group was quickly becoming smitten in Shambles.
The Shop That Must Not Be Named, Shambles Market, York, UK
Shambles Market, York, UK
Our tour continued with an excellent sight of York Minster. I was not aware that in order for a Cathedral to be a Minster, there needs to be schooling associated. I found that interesting and started imagining how wonderful it would be to attend school at such a beautiful piece of architecture.
Our tour guide, Ian, capturing the attention of our group with the building's history York Minster, York, UK
Though we have been seeing some grand sights, what I am enjoying most of all thus far are the guests that I get to travel with. I am thrilled to be joining this group of people and they have been quite welcoming. I feel fortunate to join in the fun and be a part of everyone's experience. We still have a long road ahead of us and many new cities to experience.
Next on our grand tour will be the city of Edinburgh.
CIE you there!