United Kingdom
Swindon

Here you’ll find travel reports about Swindon. Discover travel destinations in the United Kingdom of travelers writing a travel blog on FindPenguins.

4 travelers at this place:

  • Day9

    Sweet Swindon

    September 21, 2016 in the United Kingdom

    We set off from Oxford to the Cotswolds with Brad and Lynn at 12pm after a morning of dealing with administrative fun. When you move to the UK setting up a bank account is an absolute nightmare and involves a circular conversation about needing a proof of address to set up an account which you cant get because you don't have a bank account to pay your rent, or get paid from your job for that matter. Computer says no, no, no is the way of the UK. Anyway, after we prepared ourselves for bank battle, turns out that closing the accounts is so much more simple and we had ample free time to sample the coffee offerings of the local neighbourhood. It seems bizarre that the banks don't seem to want you're money when you get here and then don't fight for your money and try and stop you leaving . I expected to be fought for NatWest, my self worth has been destroyed and I am crushed.

    After Jamie assured me that it was the Bank and not me, we picked up Brad and Lynn, and made our way to our first stop of the day Stow-on-the-Wold which has the cutest little coffee shop in all of the Cotswolds - The New England Coffee House. After a caffeine injection and good conversation, we drove through Bourton on the Water (an elderly paradise according to Brad) and continued south through single lane country roads towards our accomodation for the night at Stanton House just outside of Swindon. A beautiful stone hotel with large lavish grounds and gardens.

    We arrived, settled into our room and went and enjoyed a high tea out in the back garden complete with egg sandwiches (or as the Scottish call them - pieces), scones with cream and jam and a selection of carrot, chocolate and fruit cakes (yuk!). On completion of the sugar gauntlet, we worked 1/10th of it off by doing a short walk around the local fish pond, complete with Canadian Geese which Lynnie was super excited about. After meeting the friendliest dog in the world and a few horses and discussing our ideas for new Mills and Boon Novels which focused on a rugby love triangle between a prop, a lock and a hooker we made our way back to our room for a few drinks and nibbles.

    A few drinks later and we headed to the hotel restaurant which offered both Japanese and European cuisine. To our surprise the food was absolutely devine and I had one of the best Aubergine (none of this Eggplant stuff, we are posh English people now) dishes I have ever had. We stayed until closing time talking about our childhoods, school life and how horrible other kids could be. A really fun day spending time with our family and wishing it didn't have to end tomorrow with our last night in the UK.
    Read more

  • Day9

    James and Pippa's

    June 12, 2016 in the United Kingdom

    These two great hosts put us up for the last four nights. Letting us completely monopolize their time and plans. They have been so great, and toured us around a ton, put up with all our weird questions about road signs, customs, language, history, beer, food, and personal life, as well as my reminiscing about high school (especial thankful to Pippa for letting me monopolize Jamie at times and reminisce probably too much), and to both of you for putting up with our "quizzing" (in both manners of speaking).
    It was also great to see Sarah and Mark again, and I was so glad to finally meet Digby and see a bit of your realm. Wishing you both the best, always!
    Read more

  • Day6

    Bath Abbey

    June 9, 2016 in the United Kingdom

    Beautiful but closed for a function when we had time to actually go in to view it. Then we didn't go back since we wanted to catch the train (after the Baths) and meet up with James.
    Cool to see a guy repelling to mend it. (Looks like he caulked a bird deterring element back on over the window.)

    Found this interesting/sad - http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2394771/Bath-Cathedral-collapse-weight-bones-6000-bodies.html
    Read more

  • Day7

    Day 7 - Bath

    July 8, 2017 in the United Kingdom

    A shorter distance driving day today. It's about a 45 min drive to the park and ride at Lansdown Road, then a 10 min bus trip into the center of Bath. No parking worries. Arriving before 10am seems to be a blessing in this part of the world. The squares and queues are less populated with tourists bused in and the endless school excursion groups who seem to visit. And a very educational and worthy place to visit.

    So the game plan was to go on a walking tour, a boat ride on the Avon, visit the Roman Baths and stay sane. Mission accomplished.

    In front of the Bath Abbey many sprukers ply their wares. We saw a young guy (this is about 20) handing out pamphlets for a walking tour. The cost free and if you enjoy it you can make a donation. Walk starting at 10am. Brilliant time to grab coffees and chill a bit. Found a great independent (yes this is an ongoing theme) cafe who make great coffee and who have very tempting brownies etc. At 10am return to in front of the Abbey and it is full - people everywhere. Some dressed in suits. Hmmm these can't be ready for a walking tour. The tour starts and the be-suited ones don't join which is great. A party of about 30 follow the be-hatted young guy. He guides us around and narrating various sights and features of old Bath. I won't go into his dialogue or walk in detail, rather point out some facts.

    In the Bath area the archeologist types reckon they have found evidence of the ancient Celts going back 10,000 years and of course the Romans 2,000 years ago. Most of the visible architecture appears to be from the Georgian era and since. Bath was bombed by the Germans during WW2. Not because it had any strategic military target but because it was 'pretty'. There was a tit for tat 'war' going on with the Germans with each side selecting targets to upset and offend the enemy. The walk guide pointed out various walls around the city which still bear the pock marks from machine gun fire from the German fighters and bombers.

    Back to the be-suited people in front of the Abbey. According to the walk guide they are attending graduation services today for the children or acquaintances who attend exclusive private schools in Bath. The tuition fee per term 30,000 pounds. That's an expensive education.

    Back to the walk. The walk guide pointed out various residences in the square and also took us to the Royal Crescent. Some very interesting homes and architecture, surprising for the 1700s when people were dying from all manner of diseases which are now preventable. He also rattled off famous people who live or have lived in them. He mentioned that John Cleese is a permanent resident of No 8, so I have included a pic of his door for all the Monty Python. And before you comment - No I didn't knock on his door, No I didn't see him or look through his window, No I didn't ask him if he could still do the silly walk or if he paid for an argument. I have included a pic of his door for you. Our walk guide was a bit of an anti-royal, anti-nobility authority. He was entertaining. After 2 hours in the English summer sun the walk was over. We gave him 10 pounds for his troubles and he seemed to do quite well out of tips so hopefully he will eat tonight.

    By now it was time for lunch and to top up water. We found a brilliant baguette place and went and say in the park away from the before mentioned tourists and school excursion kids. Next we follows Mr Apple Maps to the Pulteney Bridge to the riverside dock to catch a scenic river cruise. Luckily there was a boat about to leave and it had space for a few more so we hopped on and away we sailed. An eclectic bunch of sightseeers. The Avon appears to be a thriving and living river. The cruise goes from the Pulteney weir up to the Bathampton weir, past fishing locals and paddling canoes and watercraft. On board also were a group of girls on a hens party event. One of whom, possible the bride to be, had the loudest voice imaginable and during the cruise talked almost non-stop about trivial topics for all to hear. Maybe she had already had a few drinks and she didn't need many more to be lethal. Pity the poor guy who is married to her, or marries her. He is in for a tough life.

    With the cruise ended we headed for the Roman Bath House tour. Earlier in the day we observed the line up and estimated it would take an hour or two to get to the head of the queue. Now later in the day the queue was a more 20 mins. We entered the exhibit and were amazed at the story and what the Romans had done some 2,000 years ago. There engineering ability and attention to detail was amazing. The area has hot springs and the Romans harnessed these in the bath house. All remarkably reserved - albeit under later generations of construction. Well worth a visit.

    By now the party were exhausted. Caught the park and ride bus back and headed to our home away from home.
    Read more

You might also know this place by the following names:

Borough of Swindon, Swindon, SWD

Join us:

FindPenguins for iOS FindPenguins for Android

Sign up now