Showing posts from April, 2018

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FLORENCE     Florence –  the capital of the Tuscany region and the cradle of Renaissance   We opted for Flix Bus while traveling from Venice to Florence. The road journey takes about three and a half-hour. In Florence, it terminates at the rear end of Santa Maria Novella (SMN) train station. One of Italy’s busiest stations, it got its name from Santa Maria Novella Church just across the plaza from the main entrance. We debarked at the station and refreshed ourselves at McDonald's before hiring a cab for our hotel. Florence, popularly known as ‘Firenze’ by the Italians, is located in central Italy. This dreamy city with a romantic name is the regional capital of the lovely Tuscany region.   Columbus Hotel, where we stayed, is located in Lugarno District. We always prefer to book our hotels through as we always land up getting good hotels at good locations. Despite being a little away from the heart of the city and Santa Maria Novella station

221b Baker Street

Sherlock Holmes Museum, London London. The most convenient city in the world from a touristic point. On landing at Heathrow on our first visit, we were least jittered. Having read and heard about its oldest tube system and its iconic red double-decker buses, we were confident enough to smartly saunter to the Airport Tube station from where we bought Oyster Cards valid on all public transport systems including motorboats on the river Thames. Remarkably all Oyster vending machines at all metro stations are manned efficiently to help the passengers get the right cards. London underground opened in January 1863. The first train ran between Paddington and Farringdon. The first colour coded line was Metropolitan (magenta), followed by Circle and Hammersmith & City Lines (yellow and pink) in 1864.  The lines were electrified in 1890. Prior to that, the trains were of gas-lit wooden carriages hauled by steam locomotives. During World War II, when Germany resorted to carpet bombing,


Cruising to Amsterdam ---- (Part 1) Long time back I had travelled to Bangladesh by road. On the last phase of the journey, the bus moved on to a huge barge to be ferried across the mighty sea like river Padma for the final road to Dhaka. I recall the moment exhilaratingly exciting as that trip was my first brush with sailing. I could not rid my mind of the thrill of sailing, and finally the opportunity came when we planned our journey from England to Europe. We booked a luxury cruise with Stena Lines from Harwich port in England to Hook of Holland in Netherlands. Harwich is a seventeenth century maritime town in Essex. Greater Anglia rail runs around three dozen trains daily from Liverpool Street station in London, with journey time to Harwich of about two hours. We left for Harwich after lunch at my wife’s aunt’s house in Belmont, a tranquil little suburb south of London.  Belmont station is very close from their house, but it is a lonely, cute little station away from the main li