In September I did a 2 week Contiki tour through Europe. It started in London and ended in Rome – stopping in every country along the way. So I flew into London where the trip started. What a mess. Got on the wrong train at Gatwick going into London so that's how my trip started. It still went to the city, so I got off at the station that had a transfer to the Underground. That was alright. But then I spent the day wandering about looking for my hotel. It was the Imperial. My map led me to a fancy hotel called the Imperial Presidential. I knew I was at the wrong place as the lobby was way too posh for a contiki so I asked the bloke inside. He told me the entrance I was looking for was just around the block and down an alley and he sent me on my way. Went just around the corner and found it. It was next to a casino. The bloke behind the counter in the lobby told me I was at the wrong place and told me I had to walk about ten minutes just a few blocks away. He kindly printed me a map from Google maps and sent me on my way. I found the hotel and the Contiki basement so I knew I was at the right place. Exhausted and sweaty and wet from the rain, I dragged my luggage to the counter. Then the bloke behind the counter told me I was at the wrong hotel. Turns out the hotel next to the casino was the right one.
I was fed up and sick of London.
I only spent one night in London. We were on our way to Paris the next morning, taking a ferry from Dover to Calais.
I've completely fallen in love with Europe. I think my favourites were Switzerland and Austria and I can't wait to go back. The towns were so quaint and clean and everyone was so warm and friendly. I found Italy to be a bit of organized chaos and laid back at the same time - even with all the gypsies on every corner. What was up with those gypsies? They were sat on the corner flogging sunglasses and cold water until the rain started and suddenly they've got umbrellas. Where did those umbrellas come from? Anyway. Italy. Every meal in Italy is at least 4 courses. On our first night they served us a giant bowl of pasta. I was starving and hadn't eaten a proper meal in about a week so I scarfed it down as I didn't know when I'd get a hot meal again. Then they brought out the main course.