Amsterdam, Paris, London, Scotland & Reykjavík,Iceland

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szaza

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If you want to ride the horses, I remember there were a few riding schools close to Reykjavik that offered (half)day trips, so it's definately possible! We thought it was a little expensive, but if you're a big fan of horses it it might be worth it;)
If you want to see more of the countryside you could do the 'golden circle' either with an organized tour or with a rental car. (It goes to the geysir, the biggest waterfall (gullfoss) and you can walk between the european and american tectonic plates. Our tour also went to a black sand beach and we fed some horses on our way back, but I think that's not included in most tours). Actually, if you want some freedom, i'd recommend hiring a car for 24hours. You'll be able to see more that way.. oh and the yoghurt is called skyr and it's absolutely amazing!
 

navigator9

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oh and the yoghurt is called skyr and it's absolutely amazing!
Skyr! So that's what it's called. We were served it at breakfast, and I remember thinking, "Wow, if this is yogurt, what have I been eating all these years?" You're right, it is amazing.
 

dixiedragon

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Congratulations on the trip! In your shoes, I'd buy some guide books, and compare suggestions from to what the book says for hours, costs, etc.

London is so amazing. There is SO MUCH packed into such a small area, and it's all so accessible by public transportation! My city has very little public transportation so I was just blown away by it.

In London, the British Museum is great. There is also the Transport Museum which discusses the building of the Tube system, etc that's very interesting. I found Madam Tussaud's to be boring, honestly.
 

earlene

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I'm green with envy! I looooove to travel, but my sick cat is holding me hostage. :( Of the places that you've mentioned, I've only been to Amsterdam and Reykjavik. Amsterdam was a whirlwind of a bus tour. We had a long layover on the way to Spain and decided not to spend it in the airport, so found a bus tour that left from the airport, and hopped on. There were no stops, just riding through, but it was a beautiful, very early winter morning, and I thought it would be a lovely place to return to some day with more time. I'm sure you will enjoy it.

I went to Iceland on a 3 day weekend. My girlfriend found a trip for $389, including airfare, hotel and breakfasts!!! We didn't spend a lot of time in Reykjavik itself, we found some bus tours out into the countryside. Iceland is clean and beautiful. Everywhere you look, it's like a post card. With only 24 hours, it's hard to do much, but if you do get out of the city, I hope you can get to see some of the Icelandic horses. I think that may have been the highlight of my trip there, animal lover that I am. I also remember the best yogurt I've ever had. If you fly Icelandair, I also remember delicious salmon, free drinks and two movies, although that was some years ago. Biggest surprise about Iceland...so few trees. I'd go back in a heartbeat.

Have a wonderful time!!!
Thank you for the suggestion to look for the Icelandic horses! And the yogurt. I will surely look for both.
 

earlene

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Congratulations on the trip! In your shoes, I'd buy some guide books, and compare suggestions from to what the book says for hours, costs, etc.

London is so amazing. There is SO MUCH packed into such a small area, and it's all so accessible by public transportation! My city has very little public transportation so I was just blown away by it.

In London, the British Museum is great. There is also the Transport Museum which discusses the building of the Tube system, etc that's very interesting. I found Madam Tussaud's to be boring, honestly.
The Transport Museum sounds like a great idea. I am pretty sure my husband would really enjoy that as well.
 

earlene

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If you want to ride the horses, I remember there were a few riding schools close to Reykjavik that offered (half)day trips, so it's definately possible! We thought it was a little expensive, but if you're a big fan of horses it it might be worth it;)
If you want to see more of the countryside you could do the 'golden circle' either with an organized tour or with a rental car. (It goes to the geysir, the biggest waterfall (gullfoss) and you can walk between the european and american tectonic plates. Our tour also went to a black sand beach and we fed some horses on our way back, but I think that's not included in most tours). Actually, if you want some freedom, i'd recommend hiring a car for 24hours. You'll be able to see more that way.. oh and the yoghurt is called skyr and it's absolutely amazing!
Alright, Skyr it is! I will look for that. I love the idea of a walk between teh tectonic plates.
 

dixiedragon

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If you enjoy reading, I highly recommend Bill Bryson's Notes from a Small Island. He was born in Iowa and moved to England for 20 years. He is HYSTERICALLY funny. His book about Australia is also very good.
 

earlene

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Lenarenee, I couldn't find anything on their website about tours. I looked and looked and just couldn't find anything. From what I am reading it has become quite popular in the UK, so I am guessing I should be able to find a bar or two easily enough. I may also look for Savon de Marsaille also in the shops when I have a chance. If I learn anything more, I'll let you both know.

Dixiedragon, I'll look for that. It really sounds interesting.

Monday afternoon I went shopping for new clothes for the trip. JC Penny was having a humongous sale and I got several items for the trip. It seems like a lot, but once I got them home and sorted, it wasn't such a huge amount of stuff. I do have to return one item though. I don't recall any statement or signs saying all sales are final, so I believe I can return or at least exchange the item.

Today I bought a pair of galoshes (rubber shoe covers) that will fit over the shoes I am bringing. I wore my shoes into Farm & Fleet to try on the last pair in my size and they were a perfect fit, so I got them. They may not be high fashion, but they will keep my feet dry if we walk in the moors or get caught in a downpour and I won't have to pack any Wellingtons (which I wouldn't anyway.) They are actually a man's footwear, but I don't care. They didn't have any women's galoshes in stock and I was glad to find a pair that fit.
 

szaza

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Galoshes are a great Idea! Autumn rain can be a real pain..
Aleppo soap is getting more and more popular all throughout Europe, so you wont have a hard time finding it. The only problem is finding a good quality at an ok price. Mainstream you find them in luxury home shops, but a syrian friend once brought me some that was way better quality and according to him at 1/3 of the price. I think you have to find an arabic shop to get those. If you decide to drop by in Brussels I can ask him where he bought that soap and take you to the shop.. Marseille soap is everywhere in the supermarkets in the cleaning products or laundry isle (or souvenir shops in france)
 

OldHippie

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Back in the day, when I hitch-hiked a LOT, I visited the medieval city of Haarlem. With its ancient buildings, cobbled streets and winding waterways, it is one of the most photogenic destinations in the Netherlands. Easily reachable by train (just fifteen minutes from Amsterdam Central Station), it features the Christian Müller Organ. With more than 5000 pipes, it covers the whole west wall of the Grote Kerk church and measures almost 100 feet from the ground. It was played by G.F. Händel in 1740 and ’50, who travelled to Haarlem especially for this purpose, as did the ten-year-old Mozart in 1766. Mendelssohn also traveled to play there. It's sound is indescribable.
 
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Back in the day, when I hitch-hiked a LOT, I visited the medieval city of Haarlem. With its ancient buildings, cobbled streets and winding waterways, it is one of the most photogenic destinations in the Netherlands. Easily reachable by train (just fifteen minutes from Amsterdam Central Station), it features the Christian Müller Organ. With more than 5000 pipes, it covers the whole west wall of the Grote Kerk church and measures almost 100 feet from the ground. It was played by G.F. Händel in 1740 and ’50, who travelled to Haarlem especially for this purpose, as did the ten-year-old Mozart in 1766. Mendelssohn also traveled to play there. It's sound is indescribable.

LOL... I'd forgotten (by choice) about the pipe organs. My ex-husband is an organist (and grew up in NL). His favourite pipe organ is the one in the Dom in Utrecht... or one of his faves, which we visited every time we were in NL.
 

nframe

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...if you are going anywhere near think it's Plymouth they have the remains of an old battle ship they lifted from the sea bed can't for life of me remember the name of it think it was a Tudor ship possibly the Mary rose.

Sorry to contradict you, but the Mary Rose is actually in Portsmouth Historic Dockyard - not Plymouth!

As for Paris, I definitely recommend the Sainte-Chapelle. It is a most beautiful building. You could do the Conciergerie and Sainte-Chapelle at the same time as they are very close to each other.

In London, you could go to see the site of the Prime Meridian (O degree longitude) in Greenwich as well as the Royal Observatory and Maritime Museum. By the way, all public museums in London are free (everything else is expensive!). I don't know about the rest of England as I live in the London area.

Enjoy your trip!
 

Chris_S

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Sorry to contradict you, but the Mary Rose is actually in Portsmouth Historic Dockyard - not Plymouth!

Not contradicting me just correcting me :thumbs:. Not even sure why I thought it was Plymouth iv never even been to Plymouth :rolleyes:
 

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