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I'm coming to the UK

Discussion in 'United Kingdom' started by ernie, Mar 21, 2004.

  1. ernie

    ernie Two Time F1 World Champ
    Lifetime Rossa Owner

    Nov 19, 2001
    22,046
    The Brickyard
    Full Name:
    The Bad Guy
    Hey guys

    The family and I are flying over to your little rainy rock in the sea. My wife's side of the family lives up north, Newcastle and York. We will be flying out of Los Angeles on April 4th, to London. The last time we were over we didn't get a chance to do the touristy thing in London. This time around we would like to do some sight seeing. I am of the opinion that you don't have to spend alot of loot to have a good time. Especially since the dollar sucks right now as compaired to the pound. Anyway I was wondering what you local boys can suggest we do in London, before we head up to geordie land. LOL. I would also like to meet some of you blokes if your up for it. Oh yeah one more thing, I'm gonna have to rent a car. The last time we were over I got screwed, and don't want that to happen again. So any info on that is appreciated also. See you in a couple of weeks.

    Thanks fellas

    Ernie
     
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  3. 348paul

    348paul Formula 3

    Dec 27, 2002
    1,098
    Kent - UK
    Full Name:
    Paul Hill
    Ernie

    To keep costs reasonable I always suggest staying just outside the centre of London and travel into the centre. There are Busses and a tube network. London underground is not the most elegant way of travelling but gets you from one place to another – but you don’t see much!! - There are sightseeing busses all over London (Central) that will take you round many of the landmarks. Driving in central London is not for the faint hearted - You will need another holiday to get over the experience!

    Trafalgar Square is a good starting point! You can also get boat trips down the River Thames - I believe they either run from Tower Bridge (which is a sight in it self - and the tower of London) or Westminster. If you do the boat trip, Hampton Court Palace is quite breathtaking!

    Other sites in London which are worth going to are Buckingham Palace, Tate Gallery, Westminster, St Paul's Cathedral, Trafalgar Square, Oxford Street for the Shops!(& Regents Street) Hamleys (the toy store) and of course Knightsbridge for Harrods!

    A few things to be aware of as well are: Pickpockets, - don't let any handbags or wallets get out of site!, Street traders - They will set up a stall on the sidewalk and sell goods - mostly imitation or stolen .Cabs - Always use a "London Style" Black cab - never accept anything else.

    Of a nighttime if you want to eat out the OXO Tower comes highly
    recommended! - There are also Garfunkels all over the place! but Covent Garden takes some beating for the choice of restaurants. Other places that "buzz" of a night are Leicester Square, China Town - and Shaftsbury Avenue for all the Theatres.

    You will definitely need a good Tourist map as London is full of small roads & alleyways and many roads change name halfway down the road!!!

    Hope you enjoy the stay in the UK :)

    Paul
     
  4. ernie

    ernie Two Time F1 World Champ
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    Nov 19, 2001
    22,046
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    Right on Paul thanks. This is just the kind of info I need. As for driving in London been there done that. It isn't bad, especially after you have driven in Los Angeles all your life. The only thing I didn't like was how narrow the roads are. As for the pick pockets, I will have an eye out. When I was younger I would ride the LA public transportation all the time, so I'm pretty hip on what to look out for. They are sneeky little bastards. They like to work in teams. One will try to distract you, while the other pinches your stuff. One time I saw these marines give a pick pocket a good beating after they busted him lifting a ladies wallet. They had just gotten out of basic training. Anyway thanks for the info. I guess the rest of you guys don't like Yank's. LOL!!!!!
     
  5. RAY430RED

    RAY430RED Formula 3

    Nov 1, 2003
    1,112
    Marlborough Wilts
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    Ray F
    Hi Ernie Paul really wanted to help you enjoy your trip to the country we think has the best history and hospiltality in the world But seems you already know it all so i for one hope you have a great time and come back soon RAY360m
     
  6. ernie

    ernie Two Time F1 World Champ
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    Nov 19, 2001
    22,046
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    Whoooooooaaaaa, easy there Ray.

    Paul did help me a great deal. If my comments came off as "know it all" that wasn't my intention. I was just responding to some of the things I experianced the last time I was there. Were I really got hosed was the fish n chips shop. They charged me 20 quid for some stupid little bits of fish, just because I ate "in". It is these types of things that I want to avoid. It's like if you guys have been to the states ONCE before. You'll have a feel of what to expect the next time, but you really don't know what the locals know. Soooooooo I was asking what you local boys knew and Paul was kind enough to respond. Thanks again Paul.

    Any other local info is appreciated.
     
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  8. Robbo

    Robbo Karting

    Feb 16, 2004
    102
    It started well with the description ' little rainy rock', flattered our transport system with a dislike of 'narrow roads' and finally criticized one of our national dishes as ' stupid little bits of fish'. Looking forward to seeing you on landing, loud shirt, chino's and the preponsity for the word 'like' during all conversations. You really seem to know how to 'get 'round' us limeys.
     
  9. ernie

    ernie Two Time F1 World Champ
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    Nov 19, 2001
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    WOW are you guys touchy. Here I thought the Brits had a great sence of humor. Well at least the one's that I have had the pleasure of meeting. In regard to the little bit's of fish. In London thats what I got. Little bits of fish. I could finish it with two bites. Up in Newcastle and York for 15 quid we fed 10 people and still had fish left over and I ate till I was full. The, little rainy rock, comment was in jest. I say that cause that's what we got the last time over. Rain, rain, more rain, and then finally some rain. I was told you could see all four seasons in one day. I thought they were joking, till I did. But wow some of you guys are being little babies. At least I know that not all Brit's are so touchy. Geeze Louise man lighten up. Here I was hoping to meet some of you guys, I don't know now. Well maybe at least Paul.
     
  10. Ferrari_UK

    Ferrari_UK Formula 3

    Dec 6, 2002
    1,277
    England
    Full Name:
    Jeff Howe
    Hi Ernie.

    I think we should all be like Honey-Bunny and just be cool.

    We're all related anyway !

    I have been to NYC once and thought it was the best place ever ! The people were very kind etc etc so hopefully Ernie will have a similar experience in Londinium !

    You won't upset me unless you mean it about the little rock etc ! You should hear some of the things we call you lot in the colonies ! Especially now that the idiot Blair and ya man Dubya are best buddies !
     
  11. Dale

    Dale F1 Veteran

    Oct 7, 2003
    5,211
    uk
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    Dale Juan
    Hi Ernie hope you enjoy your uk visit,how long are you over here for,
    the reason i ask is you and the family may enjoy a visit to silverstone on the
    19th april,ferrari day going on there, cars on track etc,you may like to attend,

    cheers
    Dale.
     
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  13. ernie

    ernie Two Time F1 World Champ
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    Awwwwwwwwwwweee. Dang it!!!!!! Dale, I would have loved to go to Silverstone. We are only staying for ten days. We leave on the 14, or is it 13th, oh one of the two. We are there for Easter Holiday, then the kids have to go back to school.

    Hey Jeff, I was just being a wise crack with the, lil' rock, comment, nothing malicious intended. I know you guys poke fun at us. I think it is funny myself. I'm always up to hear a good joke. Hey if your gonna be in a mud fight, you have to expect to get all muddy. I have a really good sence of humor. To me a joke is a joke, even if it is about me.
     
  14. robinh

    robinh Formula Junior

    Jan 3, 2004
    622
    Cambridgeshire, Engl
    Full Name:
    Robin
    Ernie,

    I shouldn't worry too much about people getting on their high horses about things. We all have buttons and if pushed we can all get upity.

    I totally understand that you don't want to get ripped off by seeing to be a tourist and frankly I wouldn't want that when I visit somewhere either.

    London is an expensive city, we all think so and it's very easy to find you pay too much for something, tourist or not.

    Tips that are worth knowing - don't rent a car at the airport. If you land at Heathrow take the tube into town not the express. The tube is veerrrryyyyy slow but a fraction of the cost. Easyrent is pretty good on price and you could pick one up at Victoria station - it will be an A class Mercedes and not big so suitable for our narrow streets.

    The places to visit have been discussed. Some are pricy, some not. All the museums and the art galleries are now free. In my book stay away from Buckingham Palace (pricy) as is St Pauls. HMS Belfast isn't bad but everything on the South bank (except the Tate) will cost you tons, even more with the dollar being sooooo weak.
     
  15. ernie

    ernie Two Time F1 World Champ
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    Nov 19, 2001
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    Robin

    Thanks a bunch. I really needed the info about the rental car. That will help me out loads. I did get stiffed at the airport last time over. We even had to go through our bank to get the over charges rectified. Where do you suggest we stay?
     
  16. simonc

    simonc Formula Junior

    Nov 1, 2003
    851
    Herfordshire, UK
    Full Name:
    Simon Campbell
    Have a look at www.expedia.co.uk. You can book hotels and cars on here, or at least see some prices, there are special deals also. If you choose a couple of hotels you could then ask here about their location etc.

    How many of you coming? How long are you here for?
     
  17. Rene

    Rene Formula 3
    Silver Subscribed

    Jan 5, 2004
    1,683
    London
    Full Name:
    René
    Ernie,

    First thing to do when you arrive is to get hold of a copy of the weekly guide Time Out, which is as comprehensive as it gets. Check the 'Around Town' and 'Children' listings for the current events and suggestions.

    You can get Travelcards for your visit around London, one day or longer and you will probably only need them for Zone 1, as virtually all the monuments and attractions are encompassed within that Zone.

    Robinh is right to point you to the museums which are free -again Time Out will give you all the details. Between the Science Museum, the Natural History Museum, the British Museum, the Victoria and Albert Museum and the National Maritime Museum, there are enough and enough of a variety to keep you busy for days. Not to mention the art museums such as the National Gallery and the Tate (in two locations connected by a boat shuttle up and down the Thames). Then there are specialist museums which charge and entry fee, but there are block family rates; for instance the Kew Bridge Pumping Station, best viewed at weekends when the largest stationary steam engines in the world are in steam.

    You can shop or window shop at Harrods, the food hall is amazing. There are many fun street markets, operating on different days of the week, notably Portobello Road, Petticoat Lane, Brick Lane, Camden antiques market. Shoreditch.

    There are dozens of guided walks in different areas of London, on offer each day and not expensive -check Time Out again (and no, I don't work for the magazine).

    Talk to the other visitors at your hotel. In my experience, visitors often nose out unusual sights, routes or just something worth taking a detour for and which Londoners will have overlooked.

    Over Easter, there will probably be the first of the season's travelling fun fairs, (amusement parks), which travel around the green spaces just beyond central London. They have a good carnival atmosphere and are totally family-oriented.

    And finally, the parks in central London. If the weather is good, you can walk across the central ones like Kensington Gardens (Peter Pan statue and Diana Memorial Trail -the latter not so intereting but it does take you past the Peter Pan adventure playground for children, free and great for under 12s), or Hyde Park. You can rent a rowboat or pedalo in Hyde Park and in Regent's Park.

    Have a good time, anyway. All the F-chatters here will be wishing you well.
     
  18. ernie

    ernie Two Time F1 World Champ
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    Nov 19, 2001
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    Fantastic info Rene this will help a great deal. Thank you very much.

    Simon, there are five of us. We will be in England for 10 days. We are spending a fews days in London, then we go up north, York and Newcastle, to my visit with my wifes family, then back to London to come back home.

    Thanks again fellas for the information. This will help take loads of guess work out of our visit to London. Up north it isn't a problem cause that is were her family is. But in London this will help make our visit much easier.

    If you guys are up for it, I would like to meet you. Yessssss even the lads that got offended at my comments. This way I can shake your hand, so you can see I'm just a fun loving guy, and was just teasing. Maybe we can go to a local pub for a pint or two.
     
  19. MarkCollins

    MarkCollins F1 Rookie
    Owner

    Jul 2, 2002
    3,199
    South England
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    Mark Collins
    Ernie

    Do you have kids coming? if so what age? it's worth a trip to Legoland (about 12 miles West of London) near to Windsor so you can do the Castle as well, and while you are looking at the Map you'll find Ferrari UK just round the corner!! :)

    I'm on a trackday on 5th (not in the F Car but the P4 replica and Caterham) but if I can be of help while you are here you can give me a call, I've pm'd my mobile number to you :)
     
  20. Il'inglese

    Il'inglese Karting

    Dec 6, 2003
    55
    ernie my man! i am just back last night after a quite trip over the pond, had a great time! london is excellent! very, very multicultural, lots of tourists and young visitors from around the EC and all over the world.

    the dollar is as weak as a peso! like tokyo - the best deals are with more traditional things - pots of tea, a big fried breakfast and pints of beer are actually a good deal.

    my advise: walk. bring good shoes, get mentally prepared, buy a map (A-to- Zed) and just walk all over town.

    one other thing - they are not as slobby as us yanks. i have been denied service due to jeans/sneakers. and dont forget your brolly!
     
  21. ernie

    ernie Two Time F1 World Champ
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    Hey Mark, great I'll keep your number handy. There will be my wife, myself, and our three children. Thanks for the information about Legoland. There is a Legoland here in San Diego, California. We went when it just opened, about five years ago. So I don't think we will be visiting it. However Windsor sounds like it should be fun. Last time over we missed seeing the changing of the guard. So I think we will do that one.
     
  22. ernie

    ernie Two Time F1 World Champ
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    Nov 19, 2001
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    Thanks alot guys for all the advice you gave me. We got back to the states last wednesday. We had a great time. We ended up renting an E-class Merc. The car got awesome fuel milage. We drove from London to York, drove around York for two days, before we had to fill up the tank. In York we went to X-scape, an indoor ski place. It was good fun. Then we headed up to Newcastle. We when to Wet-N-Wild and Beamish. Beamish was very interesting. Road the little steam train, trams, and the old double decker bus, ate at the tea room, and went down the old coal mining shaft. Stayed up there until after Easter, then went back down to London. Mark it was too bad we didn't get to meet. Anyway we stayed at the Thistle Westminster. I waited to book the room until we got there. We found a great deal in a news paper in York. Better than any we could on the net. We were right across from Buckingham Place. We took the Big Bus tour. We also go a boat ride on the Thames with the Big Bus tour ticket. The tickets are good four 24 hours, and we made full use of them. We hit the British Museum, the Tower of London, and of course the changing of the guards at Buckingham Palace. We didn't have engough time to ride the London Eye, so we can do that next time. The weather on the last evening, and day in London was great. We had a nice time in St.James park, and perfect weather for the changing of the guards. We had a great time. Other than the narrow roads and city street signs, I really love driving over there. Driving on the other side of the road doesn't bother me. You guys really know how to follow the rules of the road, especially on the highway. I just love that if you are coming up on someone how they get out of your way. Not the case here in the states. The idiots over here have no clue what "PASSING LANE" means. A HUGE thumbs up to your driving. Oh even though your roads are narrow they are better maintain than over here. All in all we had a very nice time. Thank's again to you guys for all the advice.
     
  23. steve f

    steve f F1 World Champ

    Mar 15, 2004
    12,030
    12cylinder town
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    steve
    i am glad you enjoyed your trip over here so i take it you are back to cheap petrol breakfast at dennys and loads of hamburgers and big boats with two or three v8 enginesin them what a life do you want a swap
     
  24. ernie

    ernie Two Time F1 World Champ
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    Nov 19, 2001
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    LOL! I'm eating McDonald's right now, but it isn't a burger, chicken mcnuggets, hahahaaa. The grass always looks greener on the other side.
     
  25. Dale

    Dale F1 Veteran

    Oct 7, 2003
    5,211
    uk
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    Dale Juan
    Ernie gald you had a nice time in the uk,all the best,

    cheers
    Dale.
     

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