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Old 01-26-2013, 08:05 PM   #31
maryr1oz
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Great updates!

It's funny.....as a kid, I think London holds more appeal because of the stuff we learn about England being Aussie. But as an adult.....Paris is so much more exciting and romantic.
Yeah, i bet you're right... i remember Mum being a little intrigued as to why i'd liked London much better Paris at the time.

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Loooove the picture of the Harrods sundae. Yumm!!
Yum is right - wish there was somewhere in Melbourne you could get something similar!!
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Old 01-26-2013, 08:21 PM   #32
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Wedding Day

Saturday was wedding day, and it we had such a fantastic time. The weather was perfect - about 30 degrees and beautifully clear blue skies, they were really lucky!



DH and i got ready in our hotel room, and then went by taxi with my Aunty to the Islington Town Hall, where the ceremony took place. It was a short ceremony, but still very sweet and intimate.









After the ceremony, the bride and groom lead the party on a small walk through the suburbs to a very nice little pub. Here we had drinks and nibbles. We have an English friend who loves pork pies, so i had to try them. They were ok, not my favorite thing though.







We spent an hour or so here, before moving to the park across the road where the photographer organised all the family and professional photos.

From there we got a taxi to a small community hall in Shoreditch which was where the reception would take place. They had decorated the bare hall themselves, and i think it turned out wonderfully!













There were so many small details that had been executed so well. The food was also pretty amazing. One of my cousin's housemates had hand made 80 pavlovas for dessert - a very Australian touch.









We ate, danced and caught up with family until late in the night. DH and i admittedly left before some of the older relatives - i think our big days were catching up with us!



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Old 01-26-2013, 10:16 PM   #33
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London Day 3

Sunday in London, and another busy day. Today we were spending the day with my half-sister and her family. I cannot believe how few photos i took this day, i think i was just so caught up in chatting to my sister and the kids that i didn't think too much about it.

We met up at Covent Garden, and walked to Regent St. The kids wanted to have a look at a couple of shops.



From there, we caught the Tube down to Embankment. As we surfaced, we came across the Paralympic marathon! It was great to watch for a little while.



We boarded a boat that would take us down to Greenwich. The cruise was lovely, although it was another quite warm day, and inside the boat was a little stuffy. As we went under Tower Bridge, the arms were raised as there was a tall ship following us!





At Greenwich, we had lunch at a little market, and then walked up the hill to the park. We didn't go into the Observatory, but stopped for ice cream and to enjoy the view.











Back down the hill, and we descended into the tunnel that runs underneath the Thames. That was fun and brought some much needed coolness.



Once up the other side, we caught the train over to the Olympic Park. This was the evening of the Paralympic Closing Ceremony, and the place was mobbed. It was really cool to see, and amazing to say we'd been there.





Back over to St Pancras station, and we grabbed a quick drink before it was time for the family to catch their train back up north to where they live.



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Old 01-26-2013, 10:28 PM   #34
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London Day 4

This was our last day in London, tomorrow we would be spending our last day in England driving up North.

First thing we caught the Tube over the Thames, as we had tickets to the London Dungeon. I was a little apprehensive as i really get scared over silly things, but DH's distant relative was killed by Jack the Ripper, and we felt a family obligation to go and check out the display dedicated to her story.





I shouldn't have worried, it was a bit scary in parts, and gory in others, but overall it wasn't too bad. It was nearly lunchtime now, so back to the hotel quickly to dump some stuff, then to the Pret a Manger by the hotel for lunch.



After lunch, we walked the 2 blocks to the British Museum. We knew we would never see the majority of things in half a day, so we picked some must sees and started to wander. A few hours in we both decided we'd had enough and called it a day.





















That night we were packing up ready to leave, and neither of us could get up the motivation to leave the hotel. We ordered room service instead, and it did the job.

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Old 01-26-2013, 10:40 PM   #35
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London to Yorkshire to Luton

Tuesday morning came too fast. Our time in London was over. This morning we checked out of the hotel, and caught the Tube out to Heathrow. We weren't flying, but collecting a rental car. We were given a Skoda, it was really nice to drive. Today we were headed to a small town in Yorkshire, Monk Fryston, to meet more family for lunch. I was driving, and after a couple of wrong turns, we were finally on the correct road heading north!



The drive was about 2.5 hours, and we met at a beautiful little pub for lunch. It was great to see all my Aunts, Uncles and several cousins who had driven south to meet us. DH had never met most of them before, so it was very nice to be able to introduce him to them.





After several hours at the pub, we drove the short distance into York, and basically had a quick drive through so i could show DH the landmarks.







Back onto the freeway, heading south. Our destination tonight would be Luton Airport, as we were flying to Malta from there at the crack of dawn the next day. We stopped at a cool highway rest stop that was much nicer than most places in Australia.





At the airport, we checked into our hotel, returned the rental car and had a walk through the terminal to orientate ourselves for the morning. I found a cute little chocolate snack to sustain me for the walk back to the hotel. We stayed at the Ibis Luton Airport. It was ok. I mean it was super cheap, and a 10 minute walk to the terminal, even with our luggage. The rooms were just ok though, very basic and just a little icky feeling. They did give us free wi-fi which was a bonus. Then it was off to sleep, we would have to be awake about 3:45am to be ready for our flight.





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Old 01-26-2013, 10:56 PM   #36
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Luton to Malta

There were 2 reasons we were travelling to Malta on this trip. Firstly, my Aunt was there working for 3 years - and in September she was in her final couple of months. She had a beautiful house with the job, and we were able to stay there with her. Secondly, DH's grandmother emigrated from Malta to Australia in the 50's, so he still has alot of family there, along with alot of family history.

We woke up super early, checked out and trekked over to the terminal about 4:30am. We were flying Ryanair, and i wanted to make sure everything went smoothly. I had pre-paid our luggage, i had also paid extra for an allocated seat, and pre-boarding. Check-in was great, very smooth. We got our boarding passes stamped, and then headed for security. It seemed very crazy up there, and there were so many people everywhere. It did take some time, but we went through each check point with no hassles, and were eventually out in the departure area. We grabbed some breakfast, stood in a long boarding queue, and then finally boarded the plane. We were given seats in the second row, and fortunately no one sat in the 3rd seat, so we had room to stretch for the flight to Malta. I believe it took about 3 hours.





We landed in Malta and my Aunt had sent a car for us. When we arrived at the residence, she had just gotten home, so we dumped our stuff, and she took us out in her car for some sightseeing.







We headed first to the 'Popeye Village'. This is an actual movie set they built to film the Robin Williams Popeye movie. Now it's a tourist attraction (trap?) that you can walk through and explore.







Then onto Golden Bay, where we enjoyed a drink overlooking the beach.





We went home for dinner, but afterwards we went back out the old town of Mdina. It was fantastic to walk through there at night, it was beautifully lit, and there were so many people around!







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Old 01-27-2013, 06:54 AM   #37
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wonderful pictures. You did have a great time. I want to travel.
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Old 01-27-2013, 02:58 PM   #38
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Gorgeous shots. Love the ones in England and Malta is wonderful! You must have such happy memories of your time there.
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Old 01-27-2013, 03:19 PM   #39
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Great TR! I'm really enjoying reading about all your family connections (history) and catch ups.
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Old 01-27-2013, 11:59 PM   #40
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Finally caught up on your London section and the start of Malta. You sure packed a lot in to your days! I'm not one of those people who can lie on a beach all day either, but I don't think I could keep up that pace

I know someone who got engaged in Medina, and then and there decided that they would call their first daughter Medina. And went through with it years later
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Old 01-28-2013, 05:07 PM   #41
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Isila View Post
wonderful pictures. You did have a great time. I want to travel.
Reliving this trip is making me desperately want to go back there!

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Originally Posted by PrincessInOz View Post
Gorgeous shots. Love the ones in England and Malta is wonderful! You must have such happy memories of your time there.
Malta is really beautiful... definitely somewhere unlike any other.

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Great TR! I'm really enjoying reading about all your family connections (history) and catch ups.
There are more to come very shortly!

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Originally Posted by zanzibar138 View Post
Finally caught up on your London section and the start of Malta. You sure packed a lot in to your days! I'm not one of those people who can lie on a beach all day either, but I don't think I could keep up that pace

I know someone who got engaged in Medina, and then and there decided that they would call their first daughter Medina. And went through with it years later
Awwww that's a really sweet story, and what a beautiful place for a proposal!
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Old 01-28-2013, 05:31 PM   #42
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Malta - Day 1

Thursday in Malta, and our first full day of exploring. The little village my Aunt lived in was called Naxxar (pronounced Nashar). It was really pretty, and had amazing views down to the sea. Thursday morning we got some much needed laundry going, then walked up to the centre of the village - the church - to catch the bus to Valletta. The bus system was very good, we used it alot. My Aunt had a car we could have used, but i just did not have confidence there.

As we left the house, there are a fruit van pulled up outside, so we bought some breakfast, and walked up the hill to the bus stop. The bus ride was very cramped, but fortunately it was the busiest time we ever struck over the next couple of days.



In Valletta, we first walked to the Upper Barracca Gardens, and looked out over the Harbour... Wow. It really was an amazing view.











After we left there, we walked towards the St John's Cathedral, and spent an hour or so in there. I'm sick of using the word amazing, but it fits!













In the small square outside the church we stopped at a little cafe for lunch. A tourist trap i'm sure, but nevermind. The pasta was ok.



We visited the Armoury in the Parliament building. Unfortunately the Parliament section was closed, so we only saw the Armoury. It was still pretty cool. I work in a Museum, and i was a little shocked to see the objects that are so extremely old, just out for anyone to touch, but it seems to work for them






After the Armoury, we strolled back up to the bus stop, and returned to Naxxar. We went for dinner that night with my Aunt to a seafood restaurant right on a cliff overlooking the water - i can't believe i didn't take my camera! We had beautifully fresh fish.
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Old 01-28-2013, 06:11 PM   #43
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Malta - Day 2

Friday in Malta. Today we woke early, and walked up into Naxxar. We got the bus into Valletta.





When we got off, we ended up having to jog down the bottom of Valletta, to catch the film 'The Malta Experience'. It was a great introduction to the history and culture of Malta.





Back up the hill we went, to the bus, this time to Tarxien, where we had tickets to the Hypogeum. It's a underground prehistoric temple, the only one in the world. Really mind blowing. We had pre-booked tickets months in advance, as they limit the amount of people to 10 per hour. We had to check our cameras at the door.





From there we wound through the streets on foot to the Tarxien Temples. These are megalithic temples, that date back to 3150BC. Really amazing.















We were starving once we left the Temples, but it was about 2pm, and we had hit siesta time! We had to go back home via Valletta, so we stopped off there for lunch at the Jubilee Cafe. This place was really cute.





Back on the bus, we headed for home. We had a swim in the pool, and then cooked dinner, watched a movie, and turned in for an early night.
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Old 01-29-2013, 04:52 AM   #44
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Amazing , just amazing!


Beautiful pictures. Pity that they didn't allow pictures in the underground temple. And I noticed the cat....I used to have a calico cat just like that one.
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Old 01-29-2013, 05:32 AM   #45
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Wow you had such an amazing holiday . Great to see some photos of Malta. It's our wedding anniversary while we are in Malta and I think I would like to visit Valletta for the day, thanks for a great report
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