Results tagged “Buses” from UK and Japan 2010

Didn't sleep all that well last night.  Not helped by the pillows that were about a foot thick :/  And breakfast was pretty stingy too (had to order again, but this time they just had the choices, and they brought them out in a set quantity - so if you only ordered three things out of six, you'd get half a plate of food).

Well after seeing both Leaky Cauldron's last week, the Hogwarts Express two days ago and Hogsmeade station yesterday, today I finally got to Hogwarts!!

First stop was Durham Cathedral.  We found the Howlands Park and Ride thingie and caught the bus into town.  Apparently Durham has a congestion charge, but we didn't see signs anywhere, so we're a bit worried that our drive to and from the hotel was charged and we don't know about it.  Definitely not a user-friendly town this one.  When we got off the park and ride, we really had no idea where we were or the best way to get to the cathedral.  Ended up picking a direction and walking in it, and eventually found a tiny sign pointing to the cathedral and castle.

Kayakers on the River Wear
Rowers on the River Wear

So the cathedral is quite impressive (especially since the thing is nine hundred years old!!).  It's free to get in (they ask for a donation) but they don't let you take photos inside the cathedral itself.  I wanted to go up the tower (£5) so did that.  Then we paid £5 each to see the stuff around the cloisters.  You don't need to pay to see the cloisters themselves, just the other special exhibitions.  Of course I was there to see the cloisters and courtyard.  These of course being where they filmed the corridors and courtyard from Philosopher's Stone and Chamber of Secrets.  I was epic excited to walk down the same way the kids did and round to the little gate (couldn't actually go out into the courtyard).  Probably took a few too many photos ;)  Had a look at the "AV" presentation - a 17 minute doco about the history of the cathedral and St Cuthbert which was really interesting.  Also had a look at the "treasures" which included one of Cuthbert's coffins and a gold and garnet cross that was with his body (no photos allowed there either).

Durham Cathedral
Durham Cathedral

Durham Cathedral
Durham Cathedral

Cloisters from the tower
Cloisters from the tower

Durham from the tower
Durham from the tower

Durham Cathedral
Durham Cathedral

Durham from the tower
Durham from the tower

Cloister of Durham Cathedral
Cloister of Durham Cathedral

Cloister of Durham Cathedral
Cloister of Durham Cathedral

You can see the little gate over the other side that the kids walked through
You can see the little gate over the other side that the kids walked through

Here Harry tells Ron and Hermoine he's made the Quidditch team
Here Harry tells Ron and Hermoine he's made the Quidditch team

Fred and George are on the team too
Fred and George are on the team too

And here's where they walk out into the courtyard
And here's where they walk out into the courtyard

Cloister of Durham Cathedral
Cloister of Durham Cathedral

Courtyard of Durham Cathedral
Courtyard of Durham Cathedral

There's a shot of the towers in the movie, but they've completely CGIed the top of them
There's a shot of the towers in the movie, but they've completely CGIed the top of them

So then we headed north.  Made the decision not to go to Lindesfarne as it just wasn't going to fit in timewise.  Had lunch at a Little Chef on the motorway.

Angel of the North in sunlight this time
Angel of the North in sunlight this time

So went straight to Alnwick (pronounced Annick).  It was supposed to be £2 parking, but we walked up and down and couldn't find a ticket machine, so eventually asked someone and they said a dude at the entrance was selling the tickets.  Well the dude was nowhere to be seen so we scored free parking!  Win! :)  £12.50 each entrance to the castle.  More squeeing on my part as we came up to the gate that they filmed in Philosopher's Stone.  We arrived just before a 2:30 "Broadswords to Broomsticks" tour, so went along on that.  Most of it was telling me stuff I already knew, but there was some interesting history thrown in as well, some behind the scenes stuff, and stuff from other movies (Robin Hood Prince of Thieves) as well.  Some stuff I didn't know - they used twelve identical Ford Anglias, and wrote off seven of them; they filmed the train scene from Philosopher's Stone in a building in the courtyard, as well as the restricted section of the library scenes.  So after the tour had a good wander around the area where they had their first flying lesson, as well as the little courtyard where Ron pays out Hermione about "leviOHsa, not levioSAH".  Had a wander through the staterooms (no photography there unfortunately).  People actually live in this castle in the winter, so there were a couple of completely incongruous things, like a fusball table!, in one of the rooms.  Found the sweetie, went up one of the little towers, then another quick walk around the grounds before heading off.

Alnwick Castle
Alnwick Castle

Entrance to Alnwick Castle
Entrance to Alnwick Castle

The car drives through here in Chamber of Secrets
The car drives through here in Chamber of Secrets

Inner building of Alnwick Castle
Inner building of Alnwick Castle

There's a high angled shot of this courtyard in Philosopher's Stone
There's a high angled shot of this courtyard in Philosopher's Stone

Medieval Bridge.  I would like to have gone down to see where they filmed Black Adder, but we were running too short on time
Medieval Bridge. I would like to have gone down to see where they filmed Black Adder, but we were running too short on time

Hagrid's Hut was over there in Philosopher's Stone
Hagrid's Hut was over there in Philosopher's Stone

Alnwick Castle - give it here Malfoy or I'll knock you off your broom!
Alnwick Castle - give it here Malfoy or I'll knock you off your broom!

Here's where the kids had their first flying lesson!
Here's where the kids had their first flying lesson!

Alnwick Castle
Alnwick Castle

On the Broadswords to Broomsticks tour - that was our guide
On the Broadswords to Broomsticks tour - that was our guide

A very well defended entrance to the castle
A very well defended entrance to the castle

Alnwick Castle
Alnwick Castle

Little Princess
Little Princess

Alnwick Castle
Alnwick Castle

Alnwick Castle
Alnwick Castle

It's LeviOHsah, not LevioSAH!
It's LeviOHsah, not LevioSAH!

Same courtyard, different angle
Same courtyard, different angle

Stu inspects a canon
Stu inspects a canon

Alnwick Castle
Alnwick Castle

Headed down to the coast to find Bamburgh Castle, which looked quite impressive in the afternoon sun.  Went down to the beach north of it to get some photos.

We had to stop for like five minutes for this freight train to appear.  And a rainbow.
We had to stop for like five minutes for this freight train to appear. And a rainbow.

Bamburgh Castle
Bamburgh Castle

Bamburgh Castle
Bamburgh Castle

Bamburgh Castle
Bamburgh Castle

Lighthouse on an island offshore
Lighthouse on an island offshore

Sadly we didn't have time to get to Lindisfarne
Sadly we didn't have time to get to Lindesfarne

Then onto Edinburgh.  We arrived too late to do our washing (it closes at 8pm).  So just had a pint (not a quiet pint - the pub was filled with noisy people watching football) and then got some takeaway dinner and came back to the hotel to eat and do internetty stuff.

Scottish border
Scottish border

Scottish border
Scottish border

Driving through Scotland
Driving through Scotland

The local
The local

Prepare for some disappointment regarding Edinburgh in tomorrow's post...

Photos on the Canon: 343
Photos on the Sony: 7
Photos on the Blackberry: 2
Photos on the Video: 34
Videos on the Video: 8
Steps walked: 13164
Pounds Spent: 74.93