Tag Archives: Destinations Travel Show

Manchester and Leeds

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Well after our relatively disappointing day at the travel show, it was up bright and early to explore the city of Manchester. Our first stop was the town hall, now in case you are wondering what on earth would be of interest in a town or city’s town hall, well firstly a lot of our Town Hall’s in the UK are magnificent buildings and excellent pieces of architecture and probably get overlooked as tourist attractions, and secondly not many people know that many of them allow visitors to wander through their halls and chambers, and entrance to these is normally free. So after consulting my trusty Tripadvisor app on my phone and learning that the cities town hall was in the top 10 places to see we decided to give it a look, and we were not disappointed. Manchester Town Hall is a very large and imposing Victorian building built-in 1877 and designed by the architect Alfred Waterhouse, unfortunately the day we visited the main staircase and grand hall upstairs was closed due to meetings but what we did see was very impressive indeed. After our walk around the town hall it was time for a coffee and onto our next stop the John Rylands Library, as this too was on the list of must see attractions in Manchester. John Rylands Library is another impressive Victorian building, it was opened to the public in 1900 and like the town hall entrance is free. There are 4 or 5 levels, with plenty to exhibitions to peruse through, a must see if you are in the city. One thing not to miss if you visit the library is the toilet, strange you may think especially if you don’t need to go, but I did need to go and was amazed on entering the said loo (at the bottom of the grand staircase). it was like being transported back in time, seems like nothing had changed in over 100 years, apart from the cleaning thankfully so give them a look.

Well after a full day it was time to move onto our next stop on our mini trip and that was the City of Leeds. We had booked a hotel on the outskirts of Leeds, so after a very nice evening meal and a good nights sleep it was up bright and early for our next full day touring the city of Leeds. Now like Manchester I consulted my trusty Trip Advisor app and our first port of call was the cities Corn Exchange, but before we moved onto the Corn Exchange, where we had parked we had to walk through the city’s Kirkgate Market, which as it turned out was very pleasant surprise indeed, the market is another grand Victorian building, first opened in 1822 as an open air market and was later covered between 1850 to 1875. The structure is well worth the walk through to view the workmanship and excellent architecture. After walking through the market we turned the corner and we were confronted by the Corn Exchange building which was built-in 1862. the corn exchange is now occupied by shops and restaurants, and has been restored to its former beauty I must add very well indeed, well worth the visit.

After the Corn Exchange our next stop was the amazingly restored Victorian Quarter¬† shopping arcade, another piece of excellent Victorian architecture. Now I know there are a lot of very good, modern architectural wonders today but considering the lack of technology and machinery in those days you can’t help but marvel at the workmanship. Our final stop on our day tour of Leeds was the Royal Armoury now even if weapons and conflict are not your thing I have to say the Armoury is well worth the visit just for the amazing workmanship that went into the making of the many suits of armour and weaponry, even my travelling companions both women found it interesting and were glad they went.¬†So a great couple of days were had by all, as always. Next trip our big one to Thailand, Cambodia & Vietnam. So stay safe, keep well and keep following

Destinations, Travel and Holiday Show

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Firstly an update from my last blog post for those of you that read it, the Vietnamese visa’s arrived just as promised, in five working days. So anyone who is planning on visiting Vietnam, just follow my advice on obtaining the visa’s and you should be fine well that said onto our latest mini trip.

It was that time of year for our annual pilgrimage to the Destinations travel show to get some ideas for our future travels. This year we decided to have a change and visit the show at Event City Manchester, having a change from previous years where we visited the show held in London’s Earls court. So we waited for the good old Travelodge sale and booked an overnight stay at Travelodge Trafford Park and another nights stay at the Travelodge in Morley Leeds, but more on that later. Back to the show. After queuing in traffic for the car park and by the amount of people arriving we thought we would be in for a good show and come away with lot’s of ideas for our next trip but once inside it was a different story we were confronted by a fraction of the stalls and exhibitors than at the London event’s we had previously attended, also a good many countries we were used to seeing were not represented, the whole thing was a bitter disappointment. Also the events website promoted a new feature for this year, a stand which supposingly was to showcase some 700 foods and wines from around the globe which I was looking forward too but this turned out to be an absolute joke. It consisted of a stand with a few items of food in paper cup cake cases which were to change every hour, we had only one tasting, pepper chocolate which incidentally was very nice but when we returned later to see what next they had to offer the stand was empty, so much for that , and quite how they intended to have 700 foods, one every hour in a four-day event which only has 32 hours of opening times is beyond me, it was a good job we had complimentary tickets as if we had to pay for such a disappointing event it would have been robbery.

Oh well, but being the eternal optimist I am, every cloud has a silver lining and this day was no exception, you see one of the guest speakers was the radio DJ, journalist and traveller Andy Kershaw, now I have listened to Andy quite a lot on the radio on the various shows he has presented, mainly because he has a very broad taste in music like myself, but surprisingly during his talk I learned not only was he a seasoned traveller, he also has been a war correspondent. He spoke for nearly an hour and I was enthralled by his stories, really interesting stuff. I was so impressed that I bought his new book “No Off Switch” which I shall read during our trip to Vietnam:- To Be Cont’d in next post, so stay following.

London 2011

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Well it’s off to London for the weekend, it’s our first trip of the new year. We are booked in at the Travelodge Docklands for two nights, and on Saturday we are off to the Destinations travel show earls court. So should be a good weekend I will post pictures, locations and info off our travels so follow us on our trip and ask any questions if you want. I will post reviews on Yelp of any restaurants we visit, and supply regular updates via twitter. So join us on our travels to the big city.