Travel Journal

To Sleep in Stratford or not to Sleep in Stratford. That is the question...

(Saturday 21 August 2010) by Mike and Julie's sort of round the world trip
There was a light drizzle as we made our way to the train station. We got into Stratford a little after 9 AM and made our way to the tourist office which opened at 9AM. We got some information on buses to Warwick castle and were directed to a shop that would handle left luggage for 2 pounds apiece. We wanted to catch a train around 5 PM to Bath, so we decided to do Warwick castle first since it was out of town and leave sites in town and near the train station last in case we had to skip some items.
Easy-peasy getting to the castle but I was horrified by what I saw in line. There was a cast member dressed up as a fair maiden asking if anyone wanted tickets to the Princess Castle. Was this place a theme park? There were a lot of kids waiting in line and the cost was what you would expect to at Disneyland. We had spent a bit of time getting here so I thought we should give it a chance. Fortunately inside was not amusement rides although there were quite a lot of food stalls.
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There were demonstrations with catapults – I forget the French term Trechault or something like that, eagles, jousting, etc and the castle tour was interesting showing what castle life was like a couple hundred years ago. Expensive but I would recommend a visit.
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We had a little trouble getting back to town as road construction had changed the pickup spot for the bus but we sorted that all out and got back to town about 2:30. Julie wasn’t terribly interested in the Shakespearian aspect of the town and did some shopping while I toured the birthplace of Shakespeare which I would highly recommend. There was a slide show at the beginning which showed great actors who took on Shakespeare: Olivier, Branagh, Burton, McKellen, DeCaprio… wait Leonardo DeCaprio? They must have thrown that in for the younger visitors.
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I passed by the house that Shakespeare died out but didn’t visit that or the other main draw, Anne Hathaway’s Cottage. There would be no chance to see a play here because of our schedule, but I would hope to catch a play at the Globe Theatre when we got to London.

The train stations are a bit odd here. There are no water fountains in any of them nor are there trash bins. After searching the station with a wad of paper to throw away, I finally asked a security guard where the trash can was. He told me to just throw it on the ground and someone on the cleaning crew would pick it up.
Got to the train station and caught the train but we got off a station too early. Apparently there were two stations in the city so we lost a bit of time catching another train to Bath. We got in after eight and went directly to the hostel which was close to the station. We had hoped that the 4 bed dorm would just be us but we found the other two bunks in use so we knew we would have roommates soon. I was tired so I went to bed directly. I used the nasal strip bandage to try and lessen my snoring but I will discuss that in the next exciting entry.

 


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