Saturday, September 23, 2017

Day Five: Liverpool

After a busy few days in Wales we had a nice slow morning. I got up and chatted away with the bed and breakfast owners (they were so amazing!!!) while Dan slept. Then we did a little shopping in the town and packed up to take the train into Liverpool.

Before we move on to England, I have to say a few words about Wales. Not only was it a very scenic place, but it just has an atmosphere of peace and mystery. The people are very genuine and kind. It was actually really easy to use (after a little trial and error) the trains and buses. We got everywhere we wanted to go using public transportation! There is just so much history in this country. It was so much fun to learn about and just see in person historical artifacts.

We never ran into another American while we were in Wales, which I was surprised about. Obviously Americans travel there but I don't think it's as popular as Scotland or Ireland. That also made it feel pretty special and made us feel like we were taking a less traveled road. :)

I think we would both highly recommend Wales.

Moving on to Liverpool. For those who don't know, Liverpool is the city where the Beatles were born and raised in. It is the city where they started and were "discovered" as a band. That was the only reason I wanted to go see Liverpool. My expectations were very low. I knew I would love the city because I love the Beatles. But I thought the city would be kind of depressing and run down. We planned to stay two nights and I thought thought that would be plenty and I would be ready to leave....

I am so happy to say Liverpool blew me away! It is such a fun city!!! There are musicians all over the place. The city is just overflowing with music and bars and clubs. There are tons of museums and piers with rides and food trucks. The city has worked hard to update some areas and they have added a very nice shopping center with restaurants. When we got off the train and saw so many people out and about shopping, eating and just having a good time we were stoked. After we got checked in (to the Beatles themed hotel of course. Haha!!!) we walked around the city.

I convinced Dan to ride the ferris wheel because, why not?!? And honestly it was a fun way to see the city.

Isn't it a pretty city? I was NOT expecting it to be so lovely!

As we were walking to the Ferris wheel (which is right next to an arena) we noticed a large group of people headed to an event. Out of curiosity I checked what it was and it turns out Blink-182 was playing there that night. They were one of my favorite bands when I was in high school and had never seen them live. Since we were in such a musical (and special) city I thought it would be so fun to see a band and why not make it one I really like?!?! Dan was super nervous. He didn't like the idea of scalping tickets. But I am so proud to say that he took a risk and let me talk to a scalper. We had a great talk and we got super close tickets for half what they were worth.

Look how close we were to the stage! SO fun! There was so much energy at this concert and I loved being there with locals. It was amazing!

Oh we had a blast! The guy next to me asked where I had gotten the tickets and it turned out he sold them to the scalper. Haha.

After the concert was over we wandered around the city and thought we may stop at a few bars. But the bars were jam packed so we decided to have a few drinks at the hotel we were staying at.

Dan and I had such a fun time drinking and chatting with each other in a quiet hotel bar until the wee hours of the morning. Liverpool is such a fun city!

Thursday, September 21, 2017

Day Four: Castles

There are more castles in Wales than you could possibly see in one trip! It's incredible!!! We chose to see two more on this day.

The first one we saw was Llewelyn The Great's (Welsh prince) castle. They suspect it might have been one of his favorite castles. We took a bus from Betwys-y-Coed to a super small village. From there it was about a mile or two walk to the castle ruins. This particular castle felt so special. In contrast to Edward's castles it wasn't very big and it wasn't very busy. Actually for most of the time Dan and I were alone in the ruins. Also the entire time I just kept thinking, "Llewelyn would have warmed himself by THIS fireplace. His wife Joanna would have sat on THIS bench. They looked out on THIS country side!" It was just incredible.

Isn't it just amazing. Even the walk up to the castle was breathtaking.

I was SO glad to have gotten to see this. So special.

After catching the bus back to our bed and breakfast we ate a quick lunch and took a bus to the west side of Wales. We went to a town called: Caernarfon. This was another one of Edward's castles. And I have to say this castle is impressive. It is huge! We spent two hours walking around it and wasn't able to see it all!

It was such an amazing castle. We had a great time looking around and learning more about the castle. So much history to learn and see. It was a really neat day. And Dan and I felt so accomplished after navigating the buses all around Wales! We had a great experience in Wales. A really amazing country.