Family Travel Times

Family Travel Times: September 2013

Thursday, 26 September 2013

Dr Johnson's House (by Robert)

Dr Johnson is the famous writer of the English dictionary. But what's not so famous is how it all began and how his great idea became a book which everybody has.

It all started in Gough Square, which comes in from Pemberton Row in London. Dr Johnson's house is 17 Gough Square and here you can experience the story of  his life and those who knew him, from his friends to his humble servant. Even the door is interesting. There were no police in London at that time, so you had to be very careful. That is why the door is so thick and has spikes at the top and a really heavy chain across it.

You can choose whether to have an audio guide or not. I recommend getting the audio guide, which is £2 for two people. Without it you are wandering around without finding that much out.

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Thursday, 19 September 2013

A Brilliant Time At Buckingham Palace (by Jessica)

My family and I spent an afternoon at Buckingham Palace. Here is what I thought...

We started our visit with a really cool audio guide, which takes you around the spectacular rooms of the palace and tells you a lot of facts. We did a lot of walking and it did take a long time, but the palace was exquisitely decorated and there was always something to look at. I loved this, as it was a lot of fun to do something different to normal .

I loved the throne room, as it was incredible to see the real throne that the Queen has sat on. The colour scheme was beautiful and I was surprised to know that many famous royal couples' wedding photographs (such as William and Kate) were taken there. Did you know that Queen Victoria sometimes used this room as a ballroom?

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Saturday, 7 September 2013

Vienna and my family history: the trip I will never forget

My sister, Jo (left) and myself, outside the Admiral Kino
It's hard to pick one trip or journey which changed my life. Or one that is more important to me than any other. I thought about the first time I visited New York with my boyfriend and realised, in that week, how much I loved being with him, enjoyed his company and didn't want to be without him. We have now been married for 17 years and when I think of New York, I always smile.

I also thought about trips with our children - taking our daughter to the seaside for the first time and hearing her squeal with happiness as the waves licked over her feet; waving at her as she sat in a baby chair on the back of my husband's bike or burying her feet in the sand on a beach in Lanzarote. And then there is the happiness as a family of four, the contentment of vacationing as the children grow up and are becoming increasingly good holiday companions.

Instead, I am writing about a very unusual trip which I made. It was just me and my older sister on a very important journey indeed.

We arrived in Vienna in November 2011 and it was all faintly unreal, especially as I walked into the Admiral Kino on the Burgasse, one of the last neighbourhood cinemas operating in Vienna which is not a multiplex.

My grandmother’s cinema licence for the Admiral Kino in 1938, dated a few months before the Anschluss
I felt as if I had stepped back in time as I explored this place, which is a strong part of my family’s history. Long ago it belonged to my grandmother, Margarethe Ebner. She ran it with my grandfather, Berthold.

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Monday, 2 September 2013

The original Gromit (and more on Bristol)

We loved Bristol (you may have gathered this by our last two posts, on Gromit-hunting and where to eat with kids in the city). Jessica has now written a lovely, more in-depth post about our trip for UK Travel Room, so please pop over there to take a look.

We were sad not to see all the Gromits during our trip, but decided that we must at least visit one more, even though we are now home in London. So, yesterday, Jessica, Robert and their dad popped off to Paddington Station to visit the one London-based Gromit and, although it was very busy, they managed to get a photo or two as well.
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