Established: 5th-6th Century (Anglo-Saxon settlement)
Population: 53 million (as at 2011)
Order of Visit: Third
First Visit: 11 November 1999
Last Visit: 21 January 2010
Duration: 31 Days
Must Do: Experience a Shakespeare play in his home country, Stonehenge, Parliament at Westminister, Old Royal College (Greenwich), Cambridge Universities and a West End show.
Cities: Brighton, Cambridge, Carlisle, Chester, Durham, Greenwich, Hampton, Lincoln, London, Oxford, Shrewsbury, Stonehenge, Stratford-upon-Avon, York, Wimbledon, Windsor.
The mother country to my home in Australia, England has had a strong influence on the country of my birth. My forebearers were likely sent to Australia has convicts or thrown out for being Catholics, it’s hard to be certain.
Australians all know about England, how our Government system is based on the Westminister system of Parliament. How up until late 1980s the English Privy Council sat higher than our High Court on legal matters and to this day English citizens who moved to Australia before a certain date get to vote in Australian elections without being Australia citizens.
This is the country that stood up to Nazi Party and has a result London had to survive the air blitz. You can feel the history by visiting the War Cabinet. This is a country with a strong Upper class and an elite schooling system and with a counter struggling lower class. The divide is breathtaking at times when you see the glamour and power of the elite next to the struggle of the common people.
England is an amazing place that must be visited. This is the home of Shakespeare and seeing one of his plays here is a must. But if you don’t fancy old plays then try the new in the West End district, probably second only to New York for live performances.
If you want history than you can’t miss it here. It feels like every street has a blue plague explaining something amazing. Cathedrals seem to be everywhere and even the smallest village has this 500 year old+ churches.
In London you can spent a month doing informative and usually fun Walking Tours of every type. I strongly recommend these tours as you find back streets and quiet areas with fascinating histories.
The English are generally polite, I recall lining up for a few hours to get into Wimbelon Tennis Championships and it was actually a fun experience with great characters in the lines, no pushing or cutting. And when I got inside it was very proper indeed.
England is also the home of cricket, one of my passions in life. I couldn’t miss a visit to Lords to view the actual Ashes that despite Australia winning most of the time they won’t hand over. My high school has some history with the Ashes Urn as well being the stated birthplace of the Ashes. For me watching cricket was a must do but despite seeing local teams I still have to come back one day and view an actual Test Match preferable Australia beating England.