Little and lovely -
I knew Luxembourg was small, but it wasn’t until I looked at the map of Benelux that
I realised just how little it is. Up against the Netherlands and Belgium, pretty
Nowhere in Luxembourg is more than one hour away at most, one of the locals told me. This was something I was going to dispute throughout our travels around the Grand Duchy. Many of the roads are so full of bends and wind through such scenic country that you just have to slow down to look or get out to explore. Thus even short distances seem to take forever.
Birmingham’s a curious city to behold. It’s a bit like a kaleidoscope, constantly
changing. At first glance, it’s a sea of cranes, building sites, factories and some
ugly 1960s/70s concrete monstrosities. But a few twists and turns here and there
show grand Victorian buildings, among them the neo-
IT’S ALL WIGHT!
Soon after we land on the Isle of Wight, we meet Dean, who works at the zoo in Sandown. “Just arrived?” he beams. He’s a terrific ambassador for the island. “People think that this is a small island, but the amount of history and things to do is incredible. Their jaws drop when they discover this!” he enthuses.
Dean’s words are very reassuring because I’ve had a bit of a pang on the ferry over
from Portsmouth, heading across the Solent instead of in our ‘usual’ direction of
France. But we’ve not come just for the island’s tourist attractions – ‘though our
teenage daughter Sophie would like to think otherwise. I have rather romantic visions
of walking cliff paths at sunset, wandering across windswept downs and along olde-
MY KIND OF MANN
Getting around the Isle of Man is such fun! We jump aboard one of the ancient clacketty trams of the Manx Electric Railway for one of the most delightful – and shaky – rides of our lives. Our destination is Snaefell, 2,036ft (620 metres) above sea level and the highest point on the island. We switch at Laxey for the mountain railway, slowing down to photograph the Great Laxey Wheel, probably the most iconic image of Mann. As we climb higher, the conductor points out south east Scotland, the Solway Firth and part of Anglesey. On a clearer day we’d be able to see the Mountains of Mourne.
|Isle of Wight|
|Isle of Man|
|Isle of Wight photos|
|Isle of Man photos|