chinman.com

Public Zone 公開區 => Travelogues 遊記相薄 => Topic started by: hangchoi on 08 August 2013, 11:16:52



Title: United Kingdom (London and Edinburgh)
Post by: hangchoi on 08 August 2013, 11:16:52
We had organized a trip to UK and the significant part was in Edinburgh where we would had a whisky tour. I posted some pictures here in accordance with our schedule and would my friend please feel free to add up your pictures here.

I reduced the file size of photo for easy browsing.



Title: Re: United Kingdom (London and Edinburgh)
Post by: hangchoi on 08 August 2013, 11:21:21
Flying to London is a long-haul flight but to me it is ok. This is because the flight is usually at late night so that you can sleep in the plane and arrive in the early morning.

We arrived in Heathrow T5 at 5:30am......London was having a heat-wave attack......


Title: Re: United Kingdom (London and Edinburgh)
Post by: hangchoi on 08 August 2013, 11:25:46
Due to our arrival at early morning, we decided to change our plan to activate the rail pass on the first day as we all were in good condition to start our out-bound trip to Oxford. It also made us arrived at our hotel earlier as we can take the Heathrow express by rail pass.

We took about 20 minutes from Heathrow to Paddington station, where our hotel was just 50 meter away from it. I don't want to mention which hotel we stayed, anyway the location is very convenient, that's it.  ;D

Paddington station is an old station and a big exchange point, which fits our schedule very much.





Title: Re: United Kingdom (London and Edinburgh)
Post by: hangchoi on 08 August 2013, 11:29:00
After settling down our luggages at hotel, we headed to Oxford. It took about an hour by train to this classic city. The third picture is the town hall of Oxford.


Title: Re: United Kingdom (London and Edinburgh)
Post by: hangchoi on 08 August 2013, 11:32:03
One of the famous spots is the Christ Church. Was Harry Potter filmed here?



Title: Re: United Kingdom (London and Edinburgh)
Post by: hangchoi on 08 August 2013, 11:36:17
Oxford is a university city, which means the university buildings scattered in the town. It has a college system and you can see different colleges at different places. These are the university-related buildings, library of Lincoln college, student dorm, and a study centre. Each has its own building style.


Title: Re: United Kingdom (London and Edinburgh)
Post by: hangchoi on 08 August 2013, 11:40:07
Other than university, Oxford has its own museum, and some architectures for memorial. The first one is the oldest building in Oxford, the second one is the oxford canal and the third is a tower in memory of 3 Protestants being burnt dead there by Queen Mary.


Title: Re: United Kingdom (London and Edinburgh)
Post by: hangchoi on 08 August 2013, 11:46:58
Previously we had no plan to visit Oxford. One day, a friend told me that there was a shopping outlet close to Oxford which stimulated the interest of the ladies of our group. This shopping outlet, Bicester Village, can be reached by 15 minute rail. Hence, the ladies can spend a whole afternoon there for shopping.

The village is nicely built and a lot of shops there, but I am not interested in it.....



Title: Re: United Kingdom (London and Edinburgh)
Post by: hangchoi on 08 August 2013, 11:51:16
Day 2, we planned to go to Cambridge. Before that, we noticed that Kate, wife of Prince William, got into hospital in preparing her first child and the hospital was just 1-block away from our hotel. Then we had another spot for visiting. We walked to the hospital and found lots of reporters......

We saw road block, police, and lots of reporters from all around the world. Each of them had their own area for reporting.....


Title: Re: United Kingdom (London and Edinburgh)
Post by: hangchoi on 08 August 2013, 11:57:36
To go to Cambridge, we had to take train at King's Cross station. What is famous there is the platform 9 3/4  now. We saw a long queue there for taking pictures and some station staff there will help putting a neckerchief of any one of the four colleges in Harry Potter. They can take a picture for you and you can buy at their visitor center, a good business maybe.


Title: Re: United Kingdom (London and Edinburgh)
Post by: hangchoi on 08 August 2013, 12:02:11
While my friends were lining up for taking pictures at platform 9 3/4, I walked around the King's Cross station. There is another rail station next to King's Cross, St. Pancras, which is a beautiful building and the station for Eurostar, a railway from London to Paris (3rdr picture). The first one is the ceiling of King's Cross station and the rest are the St. Pancras.


Title: Re: United Kingdom (London and Edinburgh)
Post by: hangchoi on 08 August 2013, 12:06:26
After an hour or so, we arrived at Cambridge. Like Oxford, it is a city of university. It took us quite a long walk (about 2 km) into the old city but we kept finding nice structures to shoot. This is the Our Lady Church on the way to the old city.


Title: Re: United Kingdom (London and Edinburgh)
Post by: hangchoi on 08 August 2013, 12:09:34
Cambridge also runs in college system. There are a number of colleges which are very famous. These pictures shows the Christ college as it is open to public.


Title: Re: United Kingdom (London and Edinburgh)
Post by: hangchoi on 08 August 2013, 12:11:56
One of the famous college is the King's college. It, together with some other colleges, lies on the route for punting and we can see the other side of the college later on.


Title: Re: United Kingdom (London and Edinburgh)
Post by: hangchoi on 08 August 2013, 12:15:14
If you are in Cambridge, one of the must-go activities is punting. In summer time, most of the punting boys are Cambridge student, they can take you tour around various colleges on the boat. The punting boy on our boat was a year 4 medical student.


Title: Re: United Kingdom (London and Edinburgh)
Post by: hangchoi on 08 August 2013, 12:19:42
These pictures were taken along the punting route. The first one is the place where Darwin resided when he studied there. The second one is the Darwin library. Third and forth are the other side of King's College and the last one is the Trinity College.



Title: Re: United Kingdom (London and Edinburgh)
Post by: hangchoi on 08 August 2013, 12:22:32
While punting, the boat passed through a number of bridges. Other than the bridge of sighs in Venice, Cambridge has its own bridge of sighs (1st picture). I rightly guess what it means.......the bridge to their examination hall.......The second picture is the bridge which Tsu Chi Mo's poem, Goodbye Cambridge, was pointing at.....


Title: Re: United Kingdom (London and Edinburgh)
Post by: hangchoi on 08 August 2013, 12:24:41
More colleges...The first two are still King's College, Henry VIII did a great job indeed. Then the St. John College.


Title: Re: United Kingdom (London and Edinburgh)
Post by: hangchoi on 08 August 2013, 12:27:04
Then we back to London and ended our second day journey. The ceiling of King's Cross is more beautiful at night (1st). On our way back, we found a funny thing in tube station, a route map made of lego.....


Title: Re: United Kingdom (London and Edinburgh)
Post by: hangchoi on 08 August 2013, 12:28:25
Next day we went to Bath and Stonehenge. Normally we should go to Stonehenge first then Bath, but we decided to go the other way round. This result was that our journey would end up in Waterloo station, which is close to the London Eye. Then we can take some night pictures of Thames and Big Ben, etc.

Bath is an ancient city with lots of footprints of Roman Empire. The city is full of Roman style architectures. The second and the third pictures are the famous Roman Spa in Bath. This is the pump room and it was re-built to the King's and Queen's Bath.


Title: Re: United Kingdom (London and Edinburgh)
Post by: hangchoi on 08 August 2013, 20:22:36
Bath Abbey was an old building. The first King of England was crowned here in AD973. An early Gothic building....as they do not allow pictures inside the abbey so I took the third one here.....  ;D


Title: Re: United Kingdom (London and Edinburgh)
Post by: hangchoi on 08 August 2013, 20:25:56
It also has a lot of buildings in arc shape. The first one is called the circus which 3 arc-shaped buildings forming a circle surrounding a round-about. The second picture is the Royal Crescent, a famous building with a huge arc......


Title: Re: United Kingdom (London and Edinburgh)
Post by: hangchoi on 08 August 2013, 20:30:41
Stonehenge......there is no need to describe what it is and you will know when you see the pictures......You need to pay for entering the area of Stonehenge but the good thing is that the structure is fenced off so that you can take clear pictures.

With different conditions of sky, it is a good place to practice different photo taking methods.


Title: Re: United Kingdom (London and Edinburgh)
Post by: hangchoi on 08 August 2013, 20:32:24
A closer look at the stone - hang.......

The last one is a bit strange......  :o


Title: Re: United Kingdom (London and Edinburgh)
Post by: hangchoi on 08 August 2013, 20:36:42
After visiting Stonehenge, we headed back to London in the evening and walked across the Millennium Bridge. It was at evening time but the sky was still bright and clear. We took a picture of the London Eye.

After dinner, the so-called magic moment came, i.e. sunset time. Some professional photographers told me that you can only have 15-20 minutes each day and we just arrived at Trafalgar Square. I took a picture of the National Gallery. Is that magic enough?


Title: Re: United Kingdom (London and Edinburgh)
Post by: hangchoi on 08 August 2013, 20:52:34
Westminster Abbey at night looks a bit haunted.....  :-X



Title: Re: United Kingdom (London and Edinburgh)
Post by: hangchoi on 08 August 2013, 20:53:48
Big Ben......Sadly I did not bring my tripod.....


Title: Re: United Kingdom (London and Edinburgh)
Post by: hangchoi on 08 August 2013, 20:56:18
Because of the new born Royal child, later known as George, the London Eye was put Red-White-Blue colour on instead of a single colour for celebration. We were lucky to take this..


Title: Re: United Kingdom (London and Edinburgh)
Post by: hangchoi on 08 August 2013, 20:59:17
Day 4 was our London day, we spent our whole day in London, shopping, sight-seeing, museum visiting, lots of fun. We had a good breakfast at Portobello Market. It is a market having over 100 years and now it is like a flea market.


Title: Re: United Kingdom (London and Edinburgh)
Post by: hangchoi on 08 August 2013, 21:01:29
National Gallery, Admiralty Arch and Trafalgar Square (last two)


Title: Re: United Kingdom (London and Edinburgh)
Post by: hangchoi on 08 August 2013, 21:04:32
This was the second time I visited the British Museum, some new rooms visited and some old rooms reviewed. The funny thing was that I met the tour guide who took me tour the museum SEVEN years ago......  :o



Title: Re: United Kingdom (London and Edinburgh)
Post by: hangchoi on 08 August 2013, 21:07:57
After we had afternoon tea at Fortnum and Mason, we went to watch a musical at Queen's theatre. A good show indeed but you may need to book your ticket in advance......


Title: Re: United Kingdom (London and Edinburgh)
Post by: hangchoi on 08 August 2013, 21:11:15
On the fifth day, we went to Windsor Castle by train. It took us less than 1 hour traffic time.


Title: Re: United Kingdom (London and Edinburgh)
Post by: hangchoi on 08 August 2013, 21:13:32
St. George Chapel was the old chapel inside the castle and it was also the tomb of a number of Kings and Queens...


Title: Re: United Kingdom (London and Edinburgh)
Post by: hangchoi on 08 August 2013, 21:17:53
There are a number of guard post at Windsor and we can have a closer look at those "guards". It just happened that they had a roll call and their shift was being rotated. When I took a closer look of them, I found that there was an ear on their hat.... :o


Title: Re: United Kingdom (London and Edinburgh)
Post by: hangchoi on 08 August 2013, 21:26:05
Day 6, we left London in the morning and arrived Edinburgh....The city was even more classic. Our hotel is close to the Royal Mile, which is a road leads to the Edinburgh Castle. Along the road there was lots of nice chapels, buildings and street performers. St. Giles church is a big church in Royal Mile and some statues. Oh I saw Adam Smith there. Pigeon likes to rest on the head of the statues too, so most of the statues in Edinburgh have pigeon's droppings on its head  ;D


Title: Re: United Kingdom (London and Edinburgh)
Post by: hangchoi on 08 August 2013, 21:30:22
The next day morning we went to Rosslyn Chapel. A chapel of over 700 years of history which is famous by the movie Da Vinci Code. It was believed that the chapel was built by Templar Knight and the chapel was full of mystery and codes, some may say.

A lots of rose symbol were seen on the wall, door arch, and even the ceiling....


Title: Re: United Kingdom (London and Edinburgh)
Post by: hangchoi on 08 August 2013, 21:36:06
It was built in gothic style but full of non-catholic symbol. You will see some strange or even, some may say, heresy symbols.

The good thing was that after the movie, lots of visitors came to this chapel. The chapel was lack of funding to repair its roof years ago but now they can do the repair work by charging the visitor entrance fee. Now they can even have enough funding to run the chapel. I do concur with some academic that no one, either public or Christians, wants to dig up the secret of this chapel as this will be a loss-loss situation.


Title: Re: United Kingdom (London and Edinburgh)
Post by: hangchoi on 08 August 2013, 21:40:37
In the afternoon, we were back to town and hanged around. The Edinburgh castle was situated high on the hill......


Title: Re: United Kingdom (London and Edinburgh)
Post by: hangchoi on 08 August 2013, 21:43:33
Walking up the hill to the castle, the entrance fee was about 16GBP. My friend told me that years ago he went there for an entrance fee of just 4 GBP.  :o

I did not enter the castle, given the shortage of time and just took some pictures of its surroundings.


Title: Re: United Kingdom (London and Edinburgh)
Post by: hangchoi on 08 August 2013, 21:44:51
We started our out-of-town trip heading north of Edinburgh for the following 3 days. The first day of the three was sightseeing.......

On north-east side of Edinburgh is where the home of golf situated. St. Andrews - a dream place for golfers and we had to go and take a look, eventhough we cannot have a swing there. Unfortunately, it rained heavily that morning and the fairway was turned into a pond.....but the signature bridge was still looking good.

The first one shows the first tee and 18th green at the far end as I was standing on 18th fairway. The second one is the bridge and the third one had the signature ROAD HOLE at the far end. You see the flood on the fairway.......  :-\


Title: Re: United Kingdom (London and Edinburgh)
Post by: hangchoi on 09 August 2013, 11:58:02
After the visit of the home of golf, we took a short visit to St Andrews University. How come our trip has so many Prince William and Kat related spots, this was the place where they studied. Then we headed to Glamis Castle. A castle of 600 years old at least and it was said that it had a haunted chamber where you can still hear the voice of card playing by the previous owner of the castle in Saturday's night......  :o

The first is the St. Andrews University, then the castle, the guard towers and the surrounding....


Title: Re: United Kingdom (London and Edinburgh)
Post by: hangchoi on 09 August 2013, 12:03:40
Castle, castle, castle.....Castle visiting is a must do event for visiting highland Scotland. Our next castle was Dunnottar, an even older castle where some of its buildings were established in 5th century. The view there was stunning and beautiful, close to coast on a rather isolated island.....


Title: Re: United Kingdom (London and Edinburgh)
Post by: hangchoi on 09 August 2013, 12:09:46
The place we stayed was also a castle too  ;D

We stayed in the Kildrummy castle hotel, a small hotel with not many rooms and we took 4. Each room has different colour tones and interior furnishes. The hotel is beautiful, quiet and we all suspect that it may have something "fun" at night. One of my friends had her bed-side alarm on at 0:00.... :o

These photos show the hotel and its garden. The third and the forth ones are the interior (3rd is the entrance corridor, 4th is the drawing room)


Title: Re: United Kingdom (London and Edinburgh)
Post by: hangchoi on 09 August 2013, 12:12:12
Don't think that the rooms for customers were in old style and classic. They are quite modern, except the key (1st).....


Title: Re: United Kingdom (London and Edinburgh)
Post by: hangchoi on 09 August 2013, 12:14:21
More hotel pictures.....


Title: Re: United Kingdom (London and Edinburgh)
Post by: hangchoi on 09 August 2013, 12:21:08
The next two days were our whisky tour.....We visited 5 different distilleries / whisky company in total. I will write something about each of them later.

The first one we went to was Benromach. This is the smallest distillery in Speyside area. It had a close-down period of about 10 years and was re-open in 1998 by Prince Charles. You can see the cask signed by Prince Charles too.

The distillery is intact and tidy, very artisan. They also have a little museum showing the old equipment for making whisky (the rest of the pictures)


Title: Re: United Kingdom (London and Edinburgh)
Post by: hangchoi on 09 August 2013, 12:23:30
Second spot is a whisky merchant. We had a tasting there and after the tasting, we went to their shop at Elgin which has about 200 years of history. What are we doing there?? Shopping of course......


Title: Re: United Kingdom (London and Edinburgh)
Post by: hangchoi on 09 August 2013, 12:25:44
The next one is Macallan, a world famous brand.


Title: Re: United Kingdom (London and Edinburgh)
Post by: hangchoi on 09 August 2013, 12:27:30
If you look at the logo of Macallan, you will see a small classic Victorian building (1st). Its name is East Elchis House. This is the real stuff (2nd)


Title: Re: United Kingdom (London and Edinburgh)
Post by: hangchoi on 09 August 2013, 12:29:11
We had a tasting there, of course........  ;D


Title: Re: United Kingdom (London and Edinburgh)
Post by: hangchoi on 09 August 2013, 12:32:05
A nice tasting room and full of wonderful display....whisky I mean  :D

When we left Macallan, we saw the highland cattle...... cute..... :D


Title: Re: United Kingdom (London and Edinburgh)
Post by: hangchoi on 09 August 2013, 12:36:48
Day 2 of our whisky tour, we first went to Balvenie distillery. Another artisan distillery which they produce whisky from the very beginning, i.e. from growing barley to bottle. It was a wonderful experience as I can witness the whole process from malt to whisky, and even I can SMELL them. I am writing something about it and will post some pictures in later post in somewhere else (you know where I will post for sure).



Title: Re: United Kingdom (London and Edinburgh)
Post by: hangchoi on 09 August 2013, 12:40:34
Balvenie and Glenfiddich are under the same group, William Son & Co. Their distilleries situated just next to each other and our tasting was indeed carried out in the Glenfiddich tasting room. Hence, we had an extra visit to Glenfiddich distillery.


Title: Re: United Kingdom (London and Edinburgh)
Post by: hangchoi on 09 August 2013, 12:42:15
Again, we had a tasting in the well-decorated tasting room.....


Title: Re: United Kingdom (London and Edinburgh)
Post by: hangchoi on 09 August 2013, 12:45:56
Glenfraclas was the last distillery that we were visiting. We were almost running out of time so we just went straight to the cellar to do the cellar tasting. In total, I tasted about 15 different casks of whisky. So not many pictures taken but the vintage whisky display in their customer center was impressive.......

And I found this.....  ;D


Title: Re: United Kingdom (London and Edinburgh)
Post by: hangchoi on 09 August 2013, 12:50:40
We back to Edinburgh that night and had dinner at Scotch Malt Whisky Society. What a whisky day.

As we will head back to HK next day, we pull all our whisky together and took photos......


Title: Re: United Kingdom (London and Edinburgh)
Post by: hangchoi on 09 August 2013, 12:52:58
Our flight will leave Edinburgh in the evening so we still had some time to do a bit more sightseeing. We went to the National Museum of Scotland and the Grass Market.


Title: Re: United Kingdom (London and Edinburgh)
Post by: hangchoi on 09 August 2013, 12:55:33
In total, I took about 700 photos. Some of them were so poor that I won't show you and all photos with faces will not be posted here too. Part of my photos were solely academic and whisky related, which will be shown in separate occasion.

Overall, this trip was full of fun and eye widening. Would my friends please post your pictures here if you want to........


Title: Re: United Kingdom (London and Edinburgh)
Post by: wongyan on 12 August 2013, 11:00:29
英女皇頭像個枝感覺很正!