A list of things that made my two week stay in England so enjoyable!
I started off in Cambridge then spent some time in Clacton before moving on to Royston. Here's what I did:
1. I wrote lots of poems.
Something about holidays makes me ten times more inspired than usual; I even wrote one on the plane there!
2. I went on a treasure hunt.
On the first day, my sister suggested we use a treasure hunt app she knew about so along with two of her friends, that's what we did! It allowed us to explore Cambridge and see things you wouldn't normally see by asking us to figure out clues and navigate our way with the inbuilt map.
Although it was fun, eventually we got distracted by everything around us but that meant in total we got to see so much! There were two bookshops I couldn't resist going into and they couldn't have been more different. The first was Heffers; a huge store home to books of all kinds, cards and an extensive range of Harry Potter merchandise. The other was called The Haunted Bookshop, a tiny little place wedged into an alleyway, brimming with old editions of everything from Alice in Wonderland to handbooks on amphibians. If you're into books I'd recommend both equally!
3. I saw fudge be made.
We'd been told it was worthwhile popping into Fudge Kitchen - and it was! We got to sample their delicious dark chocolate & sea salt flavoured fudge and see a fresh batch being made. They had a whole selection of uniquely yummy flavours which I'd love to try next time I visit!
4. I bought some things from LUSH.
Unable to resist the concoction of scents coming from within, we went into LUSH 'just to have a look'. I was helped by Audrey (aka the loveliest person on the planet) who showed me her favourite products and we got to chatting about this, that & everything; discovering that we are extremely similar people! As we needed to get back to my sister's flat quite soon, I promised her I'd come back the next day and ask for her specifically - and that I did. Thanks to Audrey I left with a bagful of goodies and I also want everything else they stock. Look out for a haul & reviews soon!
Fifteens are a Northern Irish no-bake sweet treats that are ideal alongside a cup of tea. I hadn't had them in ages and they went down a treat with my sister's English friend who'd never heard of them before!
6. I walked through Cambridge University's Botanic Gardens.
Let me tell you, they are amazing. When we first stepped through the gate the weather was pretty dull but as we made our way through it brightened up beautifully! There was a huge choice of plants to see & smell, my favourite part of all being the cacti room. If like me you're enthralled by all things nature, I'm sure you'll love this just as much as I did.
7. I sat by the River Cam watching swans go by.
Juice from Caffe Nero in hand, this was such a nice way to spend a gloriously sunny Sunday afternoon.
8. I celebrated my cousins birthday.
Seeing as half of my family live in England, I don't often get to celebrate occasions with them in person so it was lovely to have dinner with my cousin for her birthday!
9. I stayed in a caravan for 4 nights.
My auntie & uncle invited my sister & I to a caravan in Clacton for a few days. We had such a nice time with them, getting the chance to both relax and do fun activities while we were there!
10. I fed ducks.
There was a lake in the caravan park so plenty of ducks would waddle by, quacking at us until we fed them sufficiently with the seeds we bought for them!
11. I went to Colchester Zoo.
It wasn't far from our caravan so we spent the best part of a day walking round, seeing all the beautiful animals that lived there. I have to say, as far as zoos go it was one of the best I've been to; there was a wide variety of creatures great and small to see, it was plain to see the quality of their enclosures was excellent and the scenery all around was just as wonderful to see. On the day we went the Sun was absolutely beating down, so when standing a few metres away from an elephant it was entirely possible to believe we were in Africa, not England!
12. I had a 'small' fish & chips meal in Felixstowe.
We'd arranged to spend one morning in the seaside town of Felixstowe with a bunch of my other aunts & uncles. It felt like the beach could have gone on forever as we were walking alongside it, so by the time it was midday we'd worked up a healthy appetite! The majority of us ordered fish & chips; some going for mediums, the rest going for smalls, myself choosing the latter. Well when they arrived I was glad I'd opted for a small as I could barely finish it the plate was so big! Nevertheless we were thoroughly satisfied and it was a day very well spent.
13. I walked along Clacton pier.
The weather wasn't exactly fabulous on this day but it was still magnificent being able to look out to sea from such a traditionally English seaside town!
14. I spent a few days in the company of 3 cats.
After our time in the caravan was up, my auntie & uncle kindly put me up in their spare bedroom for another couple of nights. They have three gorgeous cats and as you could probably guess, I was in my element with them!
15. I went inside Royston cave.
Directly underneath a road in Royston, there's a man-made cave with curious carvings inside and basically, the whole thing is shrouded in mystery. No one knows exactly when it was made, why it was made or who it was made by but it's been there a very long time and it was absolutely fascinating to see. The tour guide explained various theories as to what the carvings are thought to mean but as nothing is fact, it's all very much open to interpretation. A little slice of history that you'd have no idea was there unless you were told!
16. I went charity shopping.
I always find it interesting going thrifting in new places and I was very happy to get the chance to rummage through the charity shops in both Cambridge & Royston. I'll include the bargains I bought in my upcoming holiday haul!
17. I visited Wimpole Estate.
This huge historic house with adjoining gardens & farm was once home to Rudyard Kipling's daughter (as well as other prestigious people throughout time) and is now open to the public as a National Trust location. It really was stunning to look around, taking in more knowledge and more of it's glory with each room we passed through. The view from the front door was particularly breathtaking. I hope to visit here again as we didn't have time to look around the farm so it's definitely on my list of things to do next time!
18. I took 636 photos.
There was so much I wanted to capture! I've been sparing with adding them to this post but if you want to see more I'm gradually rolling them out onto my Instagram.
19. I walked 50 million miles.
Okay not quite, but over the duration of my stay it felt like that much!
Thanks for reading! Let me know what your favourite things to do on holiday are; do you like going to beaches, shops, zoo, museums or someplace else?