the bus rides begin..

London Travel Blog

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the tour finally begins....we all met at the contiki basement location at the royal hotel for check in and departure... check in involved arriving at 630 in the freezing cold to wait for the crew to arrive... turns out there were 102 people...i was expecting 30 or so... .so many people in fact, that they have 2 tours...doing the same route..but different hotels and times, etc... i got grouped with coach D which looked like the older crowd... by that i mean early 20's...

the check in involved waiting in line for your luggage to be weighed... the max was 25 kilos... if over you had to remove stuff from your bags...mine was 15k so i had plenty of room....after weigh in we waited again for the buses....in the meantime i made friend with an aussie, named marc.... like me he was traveling solo... and in the end we ended up sitting together for day 1....

the bus arrived with our driver from paris, sam and our canadian manager dangerous dan...

the bus is nice... but every seat occupied since there are 51 of us....off we left london at 730 for the white cliffs of dover...where we would catch a fairy to france...during the trip to dover, we learned the ins and outs of the tour, what to expect...the boat ride was short and sweet and was able to grab a bit of cheese and change money to euros...

back on the bus we went driving north into belgium....landscape was much the same as France...nothing to wild...open pastures...old farm houses...and lots of wind power.....we stopped in belgium..it was a quick stop for food... was quite nice for a bus stop...i enjoyed a cheese sammy and a coke....

it was at this stop that we learned that our signal that we would need to get off for a stop was a particular song.... i dont know the name of it , but it will be annoying...its the theme song from the move european vacation....boy i hope this trip is not like traveling with clark griswold...

we arrived late into the netherlands...in amsterdam at the blue square hotel...once again a lovely hotel...and i had amy own room yet again....score...

we all gathered up...and went for a group walk through downtown amsterdam...the red light district...and of course the coffee shops too... since i had been to the dam just back in december...it was just a refresher...i enjoy amsterdam immensely...more to come..

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photo by: ulysses