With a couple of nights to explore, every time that I investigated where to stay in Rotterdam the newly opened luxury hotel, The James, kept popping up at the top of all of my searches.
Whether it was fate or clever Google remarketing, I’ll never know, but it was such a lovely stay that I’ll chalk it up to fate. (Ps. that’s what I’ll blame all my future booking choices on I think – fates that have excellent taste in luxurious hotels.)
It isn’t often that you visit an incredibly popular tourist attraction and find an afternoon of peace. The Kinderdijk Windmills were designated a UNESCO world heritage site and I was visiting for the heritage – but what I hadn’t counted on was glorious sunshine and a quiet fishermans nook to spend an afternoon in.
Kinderdijk is situated in the Alblasserwaard polder at the coming together of the Lek and Noord rivers. To drain the polder, a system of 19 windmills was built around 1740. This group of mills is the largest concentration of old windmills in the Netherlands.
When we picked this month’s travel linkup topic, about movies, books & TV series that have inspired travel or visiting set locations in a certain destination, I knew exactly where I wanted to write about.
Over the years we’ve been inspired and surprised by so many places – Downton Abbey (Highclere Castle), The Big Bang Theory set at Warner Brothers studios in Los Angeles, we found an unlikely Batman location near Heathrow Airport, obviously everything Harry Potter in London, oh, and I was an extra in a Lord of the Rings Movie. That’s my only claim to fame.
In London it’s been hot. We’ve been teased mercilessly that it’s not that hot, but trust me, during a London heatwave, being in the city is not the place to be in 35°C+ temperatures. It feels more like the surface of the sun: the concrete edit. So, if we were having coffee right now, it would be an Affogato served with a few generous scoops of rich vanilla ice cream.
July has been filled with some lovely, lovely moments.
Forget snow-white steeds tossing their manes and knights in chain mail, baring swords. All the modern princess of today needs is a train ticket, a great friend with exquisite taste in music and a glass of bubbly in the sunshine. Disclaimer: we were guests of Hever Castle.
Leaving London quickly behind (it’s only a 40-minute train ride, the perfect day trip from London Bridge Station.)