Tuesday, March 5, 2019

England: Welcome to Windsor

Time to end the travel break and return to the rest of the England posts! I have always wanted to visit Windsor. Windsor Castle. Queen Mary's Dollhouse. What better time than when already in England!


Remember when I said my best travel tip was to make a great itinerary -- then blow it to bits? Well, Windsor sort of happened that way. But it was all good!


We arrived by train and found our B&B first, the delightful Dee and Steve's. It was a lovely room with a sitting area at hand and not too far from the center of Windsor so we walked back.


If you've been following these travel posts (logged at the menu bar on the top if you want to check any others out) you will know I was walking around on ruptured tendons and a seriously swollen ankle. Let's just say I wasn't operating well on both feet and no wheelchairs available! So, instead of heading to the castle, we took a cruise! Brilliant idea, Rick!


And it was the best thing we could have done. It was a glorious day, just perfect. Blue skies, loads of birds.


The Thames was bustling with sights and activity. We spotted Eton...


...Royal Windsor Racecourse (not Ascot...)


...houseboats and barges...


...and of course, Windsor Castle.


I was enamored with the swans and birds.


It was a short walk to town from there. Windsor is largely a tourist town, I think. At least that's what we say. Harry and Meghan things were seriously marked down and there were loads of people. I'd had to make a tough decision. Did I visit the castle and dollhouse I longed to see or skip it. And I skipped it for two reasons. First, I wasn't sure I could make it through the castle with my foot. And second, the dollhouse was closed for renovation. That was the deal breaker! So we shopped around and had tea!


The Drury House was a rather tea room and very charming.


The scone was delicious, the tea warm and welcome.


And I was glad to sit down!


We walked about town for a bit, enjoying the sites, picking up a few souvenirs. (This, we learned, was a chain shop, but it had very nice things!)


Then it was time for Evensong. I would get into at least one part of Windsor Castle I wanted to see -- St. George's Chapel.


As we were planning, we had considered morning services there if we didn't do Evensong -- or maybe even if we did. But when we saw the Queen's standard flying, we knew she was in residence and had been told that they didn't do public Sunday services on those days. So Evensong it was.


And it was wonderful. If you watched the Harry-and-Meghan wedding on television, you saw inside this venerable chapel which was built in the 14th century by King Edward III. Our seats for this beautiful service were right in front of the altar where Meghan's mother sat and directly across from the seats of the Royal Family.

Source: Pinterest

The service itself was beautiful and was one of my highlights of the entire trip. The chapel was exquisite and as we left we walked over a plaque in the Quire that said that beneath the stone, Henry VIII, Jane Seymour, Charles I and the stillborn son of Queen Anne were buried there. (Numerous other royals were buried at the altar.) When we emerged, the shadows were long...


...but we spent some time looking around the yard, taking it all in.


Truly beautiful and a perfect evening.


We headed back to our B&B after, first stopping by a wine store, which was rather delightful.


Then we enjoyed dinner at the Duke of Connaught pub.


Yes, a real English pub with good beer -- and pretty much an entirely Thai menu! It was one of our best meals!


And our breakfast the next day was pretty fantastic, too!


Windsor really is a lovely city and I'd love to return and take in the castle next time. There is tremendous "color"...


...lovely architecture...


....and a great sense of royal history, old...


...and new, which fascinates me.


One last story. As we hit the train station, preparing for our Oxford journey, Rick was checking on tickets and platforms. I was looking around and came back with a great discovery! An enormous group of cyclists -- and I would guess around 100 people -- were all stopped for tea at the station's cafe. (Well, of course! It was a glorious day and they were out on their rides!)


I found Rick to show this magnificent discovery and being Rick, he immediately made friends with a few and joined them!


(I went out and enjoyed one last look at Windsor.)


And will eagerly await my return!

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52 comments:

Susie said...

Hi Jeanie, I wish you had not be in pain. It's hard to enjoy many things when you are hurting. Some times my ankles will hurt terribly, I limp at times when that happens. Once I am walking in pain, I have to keep going. LOL. I loved all your pictures. The swans !!! I have never seen so many together. The cruise seems like it was fun and interesting. Blessings to you, xoxo, Susie

bobbie said...

Delightful!! How are your tendons and ankle now?

Olka said...

Wow, this castle is so amazing!
Next time when I visit UK I'll definitely go there!
Btw - have you been to Scotland during your trip? If not - go there next time! Of course Edinburgh is worth to visit, but there are so much more amazing places like Portree and all these highlands! God, I would love to return there! :D

Miss Val's Creations said...

What a fun trip (minus the injury of course). Old castles and chapels are amazing in their architecture! The pub serving Thai food is right up my alley. A perfect pairing and an unexpected find. I hope you make it back there to enjoy the castle and doll house next time.

David Gascoigne said...

Obviously I am most attracted by the birds! I see Mute Swan, CANADA Goose and Black-headed Gull. That's enough to get any bird lover into a good frame of mind. Now what I really want to know is what exactly was the "best meal of the trip," followed by an English breakfast that makes us all forget our resolve to be good. I remember forty years ago (or so) English pub meals were an exercise in artery clogging crap, but in recent visits as you pont out they have begun to serve exceptional meals. But in my experience their prices reflect it too. In any event, despite being sorely hobbled by your foot, you seem to have had a glorious time in Windsor.

DUTA said...

Stunning pictures!
The cruise was indeed an excellent idea! It reminded me of my cruise on the river Moskva in Moscow. As with the Tames, it was full of "sights and activity", and definitely worth the time and money.

Valerie-Jael said...

Thanks for sharing the wonderful photos. Sorry you were in such pain. Windsor is a pretty place, my father was born and grew up there and I often stayed there with my aunt. Hugs, Valerie

Mae Travels said...

You like doll houses? I wish I had known -- I would have showed you mine. Well, there will surely be another opportunity for you to see it. Do you have one? Have you seen the ones in Amsterdam?

best... mae at maefood.blogspot.com

Pam Richardson said...

Jeanie, I am so sorry you were in so much pain and unable to see the castle. Your cruise was a perfect idea. I haven’t been to Windsor, there is still so much to see in this big world. Evensong sounds like it was the highlight of Windsor! I love to armchair travel with you.

Red Rose Alley said...

You had a fantastic adventure in England, Jeanie. So many interesting photos, filled with beauty and all around color. Your tea time is delightful. I love those red tea cups, and the scones look scrumptious. Is The Prince Harry a café? It looks charming. You will always have memories of this awesome trip, Jeanie, and you can look back and marvel at your fantastic photos. : )

~Sheri

Lisa from Lisa's Yarns said...

I'm sorry that your bum foot required a change of plans but it sounds like you really made the most of your time there. It does look like a charming little hamlet. And I love that you got to spend some time inside Windsor. So cool to see that place up close and personal after seeing in on tv during the wedding!!

Misadventures of Widowhood said...

You made such wonderful use of your time in England, I can just imagine what a go-getter you would have been if your foot hadn't been giving you trouble. Love all your photos and I will thing of your trip when I make scones tomorrow. I can't believe how much butter they served with the scone photographed up above!

Lynne said...

I totally enjoy your travel posts.
Lovely day it seemed . . . sky was as blue as can be . . .
I too would have enjoyed viiting where Harry & Megnan tied their knot . . .
Sorry about your tendon issues, difficulty walking.
Liked the bicycle meet up, especially for Rick.
Great find Jeanie . . .
And next visit to London . . .
Windsor will be in the mix, no doubt.

William Kendall said...

It's the chapel that most impresses me.

Pamela said...

I'm so sorry the doll house was closed! You would love it. It would have been very difficult for you to tour the castle with your foot issues though. I really hope you get to see it another time.

Gina said...

Jeanie, your photographs take me right there! So beautiful! I think I would love the castles best. xo

Susan Kane said...

An amazing travelogue. Your photos are so perfect. The tea and scones were great! such a sense of festivity, I love that.

The Joy of Home with Martha Ellen said...

Windsor looks simply charming through your camera, Jeanie. I'm so sorry you had to hobble around. That's a bummer while traveling. How wonderful to enjoy Evensong at St. Georges Chapel! The bunting is so festive and so British! Thank you for the lovely tour.

krishna said...

Hi Jeanie,
That's a lovely tour. When we went to England, I eagerly wanted to see Windsor Castle, but we didn't have much time in hand.

Iris Flavia said...

"Blow it to bits", oh, yes, but still everything is good, happened to me, too :-)
Oh, cruises are always fun, glad you found this solution!
And all those white swans (I just come from the city of black swans :-)...)

To live on a houseboat must be just awesome! Oh, I´d love that!
A lot of love was put in the castle! All the details....
So sad the dollhouse was closed! Glad you were not too sad about it.
You´re such a positive person! And you have the most cheery smile, too! :-)
The Queen uses a lion, now, that is just right!
Oh, I know that feeling when the shadows go long but you haven´t seen it all or not long enough!!

I love the wine-sign!
And that you have an "excuse" to back soon, too!

On a sad side-note... Prince Harry in Germany... it was one gesture, he was very young, but that sticks to him like glue for "us"...
Glad it´s just here and he even has this store dedicated to him!

Hehe, tea! I would want water (or, being honest, a beer), like a litre at least when biking. Oh, the British people!

Bleubeard and Elizabeth said...

What a glorious and wonderful post, Jeanie, even if you were hurting from your torn tendons. That truly must have been painful.

The trip on the River Thames must have been mesmerizing. Seeing the houseboats like they show on TV must have been a dream come true. It would have been for me. I romanticize and want to live on one someday.

What great seats you had for the evening services at Windsor. The sights must have been thrilling, too inside the cathedral. I suspect the flags were left over from Harry and Meghan's wedding. It certainly made it colorful.

Now I want an English scone, clotting cream, and a big English breakfast.

La Table De Nana said...

Such a fan of all the bunting!! And quaint shops and all thr pretties you have shared.Again I repeat..what a trooper you were Jeanie.
The chapel and the service♥
It's not unusual in Provence to stop for lunch in a small town and have cyclist abound:) Brave sould up and down tose hilly parts!
Rick must be in fantastic shape..I'm afraid I'm not a beautiful cyclist;)

Mary Rose's said...

Oh honey, this post was just pure joy, top to bottom! And gold stars to you for doing all this when it was painful to walk. I loved every photo, the river cruise, seeing your seats in the quire, and the last bit about Rick and a bonus meet-up with British bike riders. MARVELOUS!

Also very big thanks for two other recent posts: the scanner and the back-up-your-blog posts. Great information and important, too.

XOXO

Carol @Comfort Spring Station said...

Another fun trip - I am so sorry you were in pain. I hope it got better so you could continue to enjoy your trip.

Joanne Huffman said...

Next visit you will be ready to dance through Windsor and enjoy the doll house. The river trip looks like a brilliant idea - and how cool for Rick to meet up with the cyclists.

carol@The Red Painted Cottage said...

Jeanie, You have no idea how much the blue sky and sunshine in your photos are doing for me today! We're still under a winter weather advisory, :(

Beatrice Euphemie said...

Delightful little tour - love the sights along the river and the wonderful shops, tea room and pub. Sorry to hear you were in pain, but it looks like you were a real trooper, regardless. Hope you are feeling better! Love the little flags strung across the way and the views of Windsor Castle. I have just watched the finale of season 3 of Victoria on PBS and so nice to see where it all takes place. Hugs xo Karen

Beatrice P. Boyd said...

Enjoyed the tour, Jeanie, and what great weather you had as well. It was fun to see you and Rick having such a good time and the scone did look delicious too.

My name is Erika. said...

I think you made the right choice. i've done Windsor Castle, and it is cool (the doll house too), but that would have been a lot of walking. And even though it was cool, you did some fantastic things which are probably more Windsor than the castle. And certainly lots of fun! Hope it was a good trip to Marlboro. Hugs-Erika

Bonnie said...

I enjoyed thinking back on our trip to Windsor in 2017 seeing your pictures. The Queen was there and they were having a ceremony where she awarded titles so we did not get to see several areas.
I remember how much walking we did and I cringed thinking about your foot problems since I have had foot issues on several trips I can relate.
We took a bus there from London and we were the only people that showed up. I don't think that company made any money that day.
I regret not buying a teacup in the gift shop of china patterns of different royalty. They were expensive and I guess that is why I hesitated. They were gorgeous. It was crowded and they probably would not allow pictures because I don't have any of the inside of the castle.
You are smart to blog about your trips promptly because I am realizing how much I have forgottens
I enjoy your travel posts.

The French Hutch said...

Jeannie, so sorry you were dealing with the ankle and foot. Not good timing for you on this trip. You somehow managed to see a lot and that smile lets me know it was still fun. I enjoyed seeing the sights of Windsor and Eaton with you. We visited there and did get to tour the castle. At the time it was all the news about Prince Wiliam's Birthday party there. We did get to see the magnificent room where it was held. And, of course the chapel. We made many memories there which was a day trip from London. Sorry you missed the castle and doll house, next time!!! I've enjoyed your trip pics so much. I've seen so many places you've been I would love to see. Fun to see how Rick is so naturally drawn to the bikers.........

Running on empty said...

Thankyou Jeanie. Looks like a great place to visit!

Wandering Wren said...

A river cruise was a genius idea, as is to stop for afternoon tea! I love Windsor too! Great pictures Jeanie.
Wren x

eileeninmd said...

Hello Jeanie,

What a fantastic trip and visit to Windsor. The river cruise sounds like fun.
Your castle photos remind me of my trip there, we took a tour of Windsor Castle. Your photos are awesome, great post. Wishing you a happy day!

Sandra at Maison De Jardin said...

Jeanie, I have so enjoyed traveling with you today. Your photos are fabulous and amazing. So sorry you had foot issues on this wonderful trip. Thank you for a beautiful post. Great weekend to you and yours.

Jeanne Washburn said...

Oh my Jeanie, I LOVE this post...when you mentioned where you sat in the chapel for the concert, I had to laugh out loud...in the section where Meghan's mother sat, across from the Royal Family...just perfect...Windsor is now solidly on my travel wish list. Thanks!

Decor To Adore said...

Oh I just love Windsor! Mr. Decor's family lives not too far from there in another charming village.

Karen said...

What a wonderful city!
I think I lived on a canal boat in a previous incarnation. haha

Sandra Lee said...

I hope you're healing and I enjoyed this post. So many pretty pictures and your descriptions are so vivid.

BeachGypsy said...

Oh my gosh, isn't Windsor so amazing!!? Can you even IMAGINE living in there? I can't, ha ha LOL So neat to go see. I'm so glad y'all got to enjoy this trip and all the sights, even though I know you were in some pretty bad pain through alot of it. I love all the pictures, the architecture is amazing and of course you know how I love history. I know very little about their history, so I've just recently been reading some of it. The little place where you had tea looks so cozy! With all those cyclists showing up---it's a wonder Rick didn't just ride away with them!!! ha ha LOL---just joking!! Hope you're having a great week my friend, it's almost the weekend!

Tracy said...

Oh, this was great to see, Jeanie! Can you believe, we've not been to Windsor?! Crazy, I know! It's often on our list, but somehow it has always slipped off the list... MUST get there next time! Maybe you can see the Castle next time too! I'm just amazed how much you did all your trip, and with the wonky foot. :/ How wonderful you were able to experience Evensong at St. George's Chapel! Evensong is so lovely... Fun with the wine tips at the wine shop. And fun with the pub with Thai food! And sweet The Prince Harry pub. It is also fun how Rick manages to find cyclist friends wherever he goes! Something for everyone! :) So good to be back in England... Thanks, Jeanie! ((HUGS))

Suzan said...

I am sorry that you felt unable to. visit the castle. After I left Windsor I kicked myself because I forgot the dollhouse. However, I spent more time in the chapel as the dean kindly spent much time explaining the chapel to me.

Thelma said...

We spent the day in Windsor last Sept. and visited the castle. The doll house was under renovations when we were there also. We did visit the chapel also. The River Cruise looks so wonderful. Beautiful photos. I hope your ankle is doing better.

Sami said...

Beautiful photos of Windsor Jeanie.
I have a friend who lives nearby and always says how beautiful Windsor is.

Marilyn Miller said...

How fun for Rick to connect with the bike riders.
Windsor was one place I had hoped to go on our last time there, now I really wish we had made it a priority. The chapel for Evensong would have been wonderful. Sometimes pub food is just the best and as much as I love Thai food this would have been a delicious find. Then of course you must have tea in England. So happy you had a nice one with a good scone. Of course the birds would be special for you too. And the boat tour sounds like just the right thing to do. What a lovely day!

Jenny Woolf said...

I'm so glad you hit that spell of marvellous weather, and what a wonderful post. I'm glad the b&b was nice - that makes such a difference. I am glad you found a good teashop too - that scone looks yummy! But the highlight of the trip which really made me sigh was the boat ride. what a great idea! There is something so absolutely wonderful about going down a river in small boat. You see so much life, so many sights, and it's a slow, easy way to travel. A real stroke of genius on Rick's part!

Christine Graves said...

I had to go back and take a second look. Gorgeous views and gardens everywhere! What a glorious town.

shoreacres said...

I don't have a clue about the doll house. I'm intrigued, and will have to do a bit of exploring; I've never heard about it before. How fun that you found the group of cyclists -- I'm sure Rick was delighted. Windsor looks like a place I'd enjoy seeing. I envy your trip so much, and am glad that you were able to find ways around the trouble your ankle problems. The river cruise was a stroke of genius, indeed.

Karen (Back Road Journal) said...

It looks like you had glorious weather during your visit to Windsor. I do hope you get the chance to return and see all the other things that you missed on this trip.

Katie Mansfield said...

I did love all the bunting at Windsor. I was so sad that the doll house was out for restoration when we were there in July. We did tour the castle but I really wanted to see the doll house. It looks like you had fun. Cute little town. I'm surprised all the Harry and Meagan stuff was on sale.

Lowcarb team member said...

I just love Windsor and have been many times … including the shop 'The Edinburgh Woollen Mill'

Your photographs are such a joy to see, what a fabulous post.

All the best Jan

Calypso In The Country said...

What beautiful photos - so much to add to my bucket list! You really covered all the sights. Hope your ankle is feeling better. Thanks for linking up to Take Me Away! Your travels are so inspiring!
Shelley

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