Excursion to Christchurch

Monday, 6 August 2012
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theme-caterpillar


I managed to coerce my cousin into driving the kids to a theme park. Since I'm older of the two, I *ahem* suggested that SP, my cousin should accompany the kids on the rides. Ageism rocks! Barely 5 minutes passed when I saw a guy stumbled down from the Ghostly Galleon, staggered past the gates and slumped over the bench looking rather green around the gills. To my surprise, it was SP looking like he was going to retch. Meanwhile, our kids were still screaming one more! one more ride! Pleeeeeaaase! Well, hell will freeze over before I get on one of these torture contraptions so I hurried the kids along. Distractions still work. Sometimes.



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Three hours later, two adults with eyes glazed with boredom and two still highly excitable kids in tow, managed to do a quick getaway from torture park theme park and visit a nearby town. I've always been curious about the "original" Christchurch, the namesake of my hometown, Christchurch of New Zealand. Upon arrival, I noticed a signage by the road stating that the town is twinned with Christchurch of New Zealand. What a nice surprise!

Christchurch is a small town in the county of Dorset with a population of 45 000. It is situated by the peninsula on the coastal lines along the South East of England. It's an old.....old....I mean very old town where archeologists have found Iron Age barrows and even a Saxon Cemetery underneath the carpark of a supermarket.

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No visit to Christchurch is complete without checking out their colossal Priory with a length of 311 feet, reportedly to be the longest in England. It was built on a site of an original Saxon minster dated 650 A.D. There was also the ruin of a castle within the town center which we missed as the kids were getting increasingly tired. It was originally a wooden fortress but rebuilt as in stone sometime in the 12th century.


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All places of interest are in close proximity to the main street in town. Thanks to the shallow sandbars which meant that heavy vessels including customs law enforcements were unable to enter into the harbor. At one point in time, Christchurch was famous for its smuggling activities. In fact, it was their most lucrative industry between 18th to 19th century.

I'm embarrassed to say that I've barely scratched the surface of England despite being here for 4 years. So watch this space as I'll be doing a bit more traveling within the country over the summer break.

23 comments:

  1. What a stunning place, I've been to Dorset a few times but wouldn't have know that's where Christchurch was. Er, you wouldn't get me on those rides either!

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  2. Gorgeous pictures as always. I dislike theme parks intensely but still manage to find myself in one every now and then. I hate rides like that too - that's the hubs job but luckily he's a bit of an adrenaline junkie in a theme park. I've lived in England all my life and don't even know what's down my street so don't worry - you'll find out what you need to know when you need to know.

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  3. Stunning photos, looks like a gorgeous place.
    I vaguely remember being the child riding the Wild Mouse five times in a row. I feel ill just thinking about it now! x

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  4. I like quaint towns like this..places that has an old world charm to it...
    Very much like this place, Stratford-upon-Avon, which I visited many years back. :)

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  5. Your photos are amazing!I love learning about new places! Fab posts! I would love to live in England!

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  6. what a quaint little town~ Your photos are seriously amazing, they look like postcards. xO!
    www.thehautecookie.com

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  7. Yeah, you couldn't convince me to get on that ride either, lol. Adorable shot of Little L and her cousin!!!

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  8. Awesome photos Marlene and love the shot of the kids looking so incredibly happy! So cute! Looking forward to more posts of your travels exploring England! :)

    xxTheresa

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  9. Your photos are gorgeous. I love the one with the flowers and the sailboats- so pretty.

    I loved visiting Christchurch when I visited- so quaint and charming. The UK has so much to see and the countryside is truly magnificient. It's exciting to explore your own backyard.

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  10. Amazing pictures and your kids are just adorable! I wouldn't have gone on that ride either! :)

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  11. it's always the case with me.... i never really explore where i live. i lived in nyc for many years, and i never even went on top of the empire state bldg. these are lovely pics... hope you had a nice time. :) cute kids!!!!!

    jasmine
    ADAM ❤ ALEX Mommy

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  12. I love that you have so many interesting places to visit just a hop, skip and jump away. Lovely pics as usual!

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  13. it's beautiful marlene! there's so much charm and character there. i'm so glad the kids had a great time. i don't blame you for staying off those rides. MANY years ago i was just like them...AGAIN...AGAIN!!! hahaha Now it's like you'll never find me! hahaha
    http://www.averysweetblog.com/

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  14. lovely photos as usual marlene. i thought you were back in nz for a sec ;)

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  15. The pictures are so clear and beautiful! Thanks for sharing this part of England I have not visited. I have low tolerance for speed rides too. So my husband will usually take the children while I settle under a shade with a book and drinks.

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  16. LOL! I don't do theme parks or fair grounds but of course my kids love them too! Sounds like you're having a great Summer - look forward to your next adventure ;-)

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  17. It looks lovely there! nothing like the natural beauty of the New Zealand version, but quaint and pretty! Photos are glorious - so vibrant. Can't wait to follow you on your travels : :

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  18. I'm really not a rides person at all, so I get you here! I love the photos of the flower boxes outside the windows! Beautiful!

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  19. What a lovely place...
    The photos are stunning and bright, love them.
    And it looks like such a fun day for family bonding.

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  20. What a pair of cuties waving to us. Hi girls! Oh what a relief to find another mother who cannot do the theme park thing . I feel incredibly ill and overwhelmed by it all, but all my friends totally embrace the Disneyland-phantastmogia here.

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  21. You absolutely played the age card well! What a master :) The photo's are beautiful they make me really want to go. I can't believe we've never taken the time to visit considering it's not that far from Australia. I love the photo of Little L and her cousin. Too gorgeous!

    xx Mandi

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  22. gorgeous photos, m, tho' my fave is definitely of the kids on the ride--such pure happiness!
    i would have opted out of that ride too--loved it in my youth but it turns my stomach as a 'mature' woman! that said, my 4 yr old dragged me on the ferris wheel at the nyc toys 'r' us yesterday...not comparable to that boat by any means but i was proud of myself for getting on nonetheless!

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  23. These are some really gorgeous photos and what a gorgeous city! Your kids definitely look like they are having fun! Totally makes me miss the amusement park again!

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