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  1. #1
    Warren fsaviator's Avatar
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    Vacation in the UK (now with pics!)

    OK, brothers and sisters in the UK.


    I plan to take my daughters (19 and 11 yrs) on vacation to the UK this spring. My date range is 5-12 April.


    Looking for activities and things to see.


    The list currently has the following:


    LONDON
    Museums
    Universal Theaters Harry Potter




    Looking for suggestions and recommendations as well as tips and tricks for keeping costs down. Not against traveling to other parts of the UK but would prefer to stay within the radius of train travel. I've also heard of a museum attractions card or something like that.


    I am also definitely not against a couple of hours flight time in a sim.


    Thanks!


    Warren

  2. #2
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    Re: Vacation in the UK

    Take them to some plays. London Theater is the best in the world.

  3. #3
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    Re: Vacation in the UK

    Try the london eye and see whats on at the o2 arena .

  4. #4
    Executive Assistant Geremy Britton's Avatar
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    Re: Vacation in the UK

    Have fun over in the UK Warren, shame your staying down south, but there will certainly be plenty to do i'm sure. Sim wise, why don't you email Ian Sissons?
    Geremy Britton
    Executive Assistant, MyCockpit Inc
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  5. #5
    Warren fsaviator's Avatar
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    Re: Vacation in the UK

    Hi Geremy,
    not committed to the South for the whole trip. If I was to move around though, need something to bribe the kids with!
    Great idea on emailing Ian.

    Warren

  6. #6
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    Re: Vacation in the UK

    Hi. I'm 40 minutes from London.

    I will help you out a great deal here....

    Museums in London are actually free, they scrapped the charge a while back to boost tourism and stop the rogues selling dodgy tickets. I think the art museums and natural history museum is free. A trip in a boat down the Thames costs only a few pounds with a travel card and a london zone one travel card only costs a few pounds each also.

    For ultimate London fun for free is....

    1) Trocadero.....indoor fair ground, dodgems, arcades, sweet shops, souveneirs etc....all indoors bang in the middle of londons west end! Free entry / Pay 4 rides

    2) County Hall London....over the bridge from the Big Ben....indoor aquarium, indoor fair ground rides, dodgems and arcades etc....free entry (apart from aquarium).

    3)Covent Gargen...amazing place full of indoor markets, designer shops, human statues, magicians doing shows on the market where all can watch, including an arcade made of all clockwork toys (really cool)....Great for a day out etc.

    4)Leicester Square...same as covent garden really, but this is the main square where it all happens and where they do the London Red Carper premiers where all the stars and celebs go to watch / release hollywood movies in London....amazing multicultural and fun place with bundles to do.....Also Piccadilly Circus is not too far walking distance from (that place with all the famous light up signs on buildings)....

    Walk along the river, plenty of attractions on route, boat rides, stuff to see, do, eat and shop!

    London is expensive no doubt, but that's just London for ya!

    Museums are free so that's one cost saver, Trocadero and County Hall are free so again that's another great saver (just pay a few pounds for rides ,bring your own drinks and food in with you to save more money). If you see a tesco or sainsburys supermarket in london at all, stock up on food and drinks as its a **** of a lot cheaper than the stalls and westend shops!

    Just enjoy it....a cruise along the river isn't too expensive so worth a trip too especially as you will see alot of famous landmarks... be wary of pick pockets....!

    There are many many more attractions just that I will be here all day otherwise, but Trocadero and County Hall are fun and free, maybe do one a day or something!
    Last edited by AlexJ; 02-08-2014 at 05:27 AM.
    Building An Airbus In My Garage!

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  8. #7
    Warren fsaviator's Avatar
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    Re: Vacation in the UK

    OK!!


    Plane tickets have been bought and I've locked in a serviced apartment in London. The girls and I are committed.


    Look out London, here we come!


    Arriving on 4 April and departing on 9 April. It's not as long as I had originally planned on but work was getting in the way. Regardless, it's a few good days on the ground.


    I am leaving a full day open to get away from London if desired.


    Now it is time to figure out what passes/tickets/trans options I need.

  9. #8
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    Re: Vacation in the UK

    Hi Warren.

    In terms of transport, for London proper you'll all need Oyster cards. You can get these at any major Tube station or any of the major rail terminuses. Oyster is London's contactless card system and can be used in a couple of ways - the most common is Pay As You Go, where you load up the card with a cash balance and it gets debited as you use public transport. There are in-built caps so you never pay more than a certain amount per day no matter how much you travel, at least for Tube and bus. Oyster PAYG also works on many - but not all, you'll have to check - local rail services, as well as the tram system in Croydon and Wimbledon (should you end up going out that way), and I believe you can even use it on some river boat services (a trip up the Thames is a must; you can do the tourist boats, which are fine for sightseeing, or the Thames Clipper which is more of a commuter service and is a lot faster. Westminster to Greenwich is quite a good run to take).

    Alternatively, given you're in town for a few days, you can put a 7-day travelcard product on your Oyster instead; travelcards used to be paper tickets which give you unlimited travel within geographical zones for a defined time period, but now they're virtual tickets that you load on an Oyster instead. This may work out cheaper, but in truth PAYG is probably the way to go for your short visit.

    (By way of example, I load a monthly travelcard for zones 1 to 3 on my Oyster, which covers almost all of my travel for the month. But I also maintain a small PAYG balance for when I travel outside of the zones on my travelcard; the system is smart and will deduct the difference in fares automatically.)

    Don't try to pay cash for buses and Tube. The cash prices are significantly higher than the Oyster fare, in an effort to force people on to Oyster. In fact, cash fares are being withdrawn altogether on buses later this year.

    http://www.tfl.gov.uk is your place to start for London transport.

    For transport outside London, it's not that different from Germany. The South East in general has good rail coverage, you can get most places by rail. Beyond the region, the intercity rail network is patchy; some places are very well served, others less so. It's easy to get from London to Birmingham, Liverpool, and Manchester, for example, and quickly with modern tilting trains. But if you want to go to parts of Wales, for example, it can be a very different story. Despite the rail network's reputation for being unreliable, it's really not that bad. Delays happen, fairly frequently, but major foul-ups are comparatively rare. Watch out for the pricing, though - most of the rail routes have 'peak' and 'off peak' periods, and travelling in the peak periods costs a lot more. This is because the train operators - remember, we have a de-regulated rail system with multiple companies providing services - need to screw business travellers out of enough money to subsidise their discount fares at other times. Plan to avoid peak time services.

    http://www.thetrainline.com will help you book tickets or lookup train times. Most train companies have their own Web sites, but they all run off the same back-end; though you will get charged a booking fee and a card fee when you book online, so watch out for that.

    You've already had some great suggestions for things to see in London. I'd add a few - Greenwich Park for its views over the city; if you're into museums and galleries, we have some of the best in the world, and most are free due to generous government subsidies. The Science Museum is a must for anyone with a science and engineering bent. The Natural History museum is fantastic. We have the Tate galleries - Modern and Britain, the National Portrait Gallery, and so many more. For architecture, don't miss out on St Paul's Cathedral, the various Wren churches in the City, and if you can stomach the steep fee, go up to the top of the Shard, Europe's tallest building. A long walk along the Thames is great when the sun is shining - start at Tower Bridge and go west towards Westminster and end up in Parliament Square. We have lots of parks - Hyde Park / Kensington Palace Gardens together form the largest green space in central London. Do a circuit of it, stopping off on the way to visit places around the edges, end up at the Albert Hall, see the Albert Monument, and end up park on Hyde Park Corner, then head up The Mall and do the obligatory drive by Buckingham Palace.

    I could go on, but there's more to do than you could fit in a month, let alone 5 days. I've lived in London for 18 years and I'm still not tired of it

    And of course, we have more and better restaurants than almost anywhere else, and yes, I include Paris in that (sorry, Paris, but I've lived there too and it's just not a patch on London from a culinary point of view). Most of the rest of the UK - not so much, though our once well-deserved reputation for bad food is thankfully now just a myth.

    You should still have my contact details somewhere, so feel free to drop me a line if you need any tips or suggestions.

    For the simming, I leave you in the hands of others. My own project is dead. I'm moving house in the next few months, and once I'm settled in I'll look to start again from scratch, but for now I'm strictly a desktop simmer

  10. #9
    Warren fsaviator's Avatar
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    Re: Vacation in the UK

    Hello everyone! Back from the UK! What a great time the kids and I had.


    We saw all the sights, and even got out into the country to visit some friends. I won't bore you with pictures of the Tower of London, Big Ben etc but will get to the real good stuff.


    As some will know, whenever I travel I try to fit in time for my hobby. That usually involves my trying to talk someone into showing me their sim. Well this trip was no different.


    This trip I had the privilege to drive up and visit Ian Sissons. He and his lovely wife welcomed my daughters and me in and we flew a Frankfurt to Gatwick flight in his excellent 737 sim. Thanks Ian. It was truly and experience to fly the 737 that has been an icon to a lot of us.







    After leaving Ian we headed south to the Cotswalds for an overnight with Charlie and an opportunity to fly a Comet 4. Charlie and his family were the perfect hosts and I can't thank them enough for how comfortable they made us feel. Thank you Charlie.


    As for the comet... words can't describe it.



    Let me prep you for the next shots by telling you that almost every gauge is fully working, every button does something, and all controls work. Even the circuit breakers!









    Charlie and his brother in law have done a fantastic job on this build. I was speechless at the attention to detail. They let me jump in and head off out of Heathrow. Now, let me say that for first time ever flying a comet (or even seeing a comet cockpit) I took off and flew a great circuit but stalled it and crashed. I was in sensory overload from everything going on in there when the very real buffet struck at 1000 feet on final. I was having so much fun hand flying and using the working trim wheels that I forgot all about watching my speed. The second attempt was much better.


    Ian, Charlie... thanks again. If you guys are ever in Stuttgart let me know and I'll return the favor.


    Warren

  11. #10
    500+ This must be a daytime job ian@737ng.co.uk's Avatar
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    Re: Vacation in the UK

    Hi Chaps.....
    Well we did have some fun didn't we .
    Pleasure to see Warren and the Girls (who were lovely).
    And we did a missed approach at Gatwick so he could hand fly the circuit
    into the bargain before the best landing i've seen by a visitor ever.
    Of course I do it like that all the time
    Come and play again any time captain.....
    Regards

    Ian

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    Mr. Ian. P. Sissons is hereby recognised as an Honorary Flight Sim Captain following his passing in February 2016. This is in recognition for his commitment to Flight Simulation.

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