Wimbledon – Fabulously British!


At this time of the year, the most prestigious tennis tournament in the world is taking place at the All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club in Wimbledon. Currently in its 115th year, which makes it the oldest tennis tournament in the world, we have decided to brave the masses and pay the renowned courts a visit.

Competition for tickets is fierce and if you haven’t been lucky enough to score a ticket in the lottery then you will have to go there early in the morning and queue for hours hoping to get inside. We arrived at 5.30am on Monday and joined the queue at numbers 3989 and 3990 respectively. Rumour has it that a maximum of 6000 people is able to gain access on the day and there are many people camping by the gates the night before – even a few days in advance – in order to get a ticket. Luckily it was a warm and sunny morning on Monday so we stretched out on blankets on the grass, had coffee and breakfast and spent our time chatting away with the other people in the queue. Behind us more and more people turned up and I am almost certain not all of them were able to enter the courts in the end.

Queue at Wimbledon

Around 9am the stewards started moving us towards the actual entrance gates and the only real queuing of the day began. Slowly but steadily we made our way closer to the entrance and security screening and at just after 11am we had entered the courts.

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#Wimbledon

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Order of Play at Mega Monday in Wimbledon

What followed was one of the nicest days out you can imagine. We had a quick look around the fan shops and got the obligatory strawberries & cream and prosecco, then watched a brilliant double match between Marcus Willis and Jay Clarke against Mate Pavic and Oliver Marach and went on to have a sneaky peak at Courts 1 and 2. Finally we sat down in the grass on the hill next to centre court to watch Andy Murray playing Benoît Paire and Rafael Nadal versus Gilles Muller.

Everyone at Wimbledon, be it the stewards, staff, players or other guests, was just super relaxed and such a pleasure to deal with, which made the whole day a fantastic and very memorable experience. In the beginning I had been a little worried – queuing for hours just to watch some tennis just didn’t sound like my idea of a well-spent day – but I am so glad I gave it a shot and I would definitely go to Wimbledon again.

 

 

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How To Visit London The Right Way (Part Two)


I know you’ve been waiting for it! In case you’re here in London for the bank holiday weekend, you still have one last chance to do it right!

Kicked off in Greenwich, we’re moving on. You either could catch a DLR train to Bank station, or… Cycle! For those who don’t know, you can find Santander bicycles all around the city. Pick it up for only £2 and drop it off at any station within 24 hours.

Find one in Greenwich, and off we go! Fun ride down the foot tunnel, stretching across Thames river, and you end up emerging in a beautiful park by the Island Gardens station. On the other side of the river – breathtaking views of the University of Greenwich. You need to see it to believe it…
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Pedalling down the riverpath it is difficult to get lost. Unless… You love animals. Isle of Dogs is only one of many beautiful residential areas in London, but since it’s on your way, why not explore it a little bit more.

ClubCat doesn’t like animals to be captured. Instead of going to London Zoo, why don’t you swing by Mudchute Farm. Yes! It’s a farm! And yes, it is in the middle of the city. Say hi to alpacas, horsies, sheep etc. Free. free of charge and free of animal torture. Grab some lunch in a nice cafe inside the farm and continue your amazing day! Get back on track where you can smell and hear those splashing waves… The best is still to come.

My friend Karl says hi 😉

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How To Visit London The Right Way (Part One)


Not trying to sound too presumptuous, only talking plainly from personal experience… Tourists, visiting parents or friends, looking to use the opportunity of a free place to crash and tick the box ‘Got smashed in London’, have their own little plan in mind.

  1. Oxford Street (mainly Primark)
  2. Piccadilly Circus (with no basic understanding why… oh, the big screen. Well, it’s off at the moment)
  3. Leicester Square (cinemas…?)
  4. Covent Garden (I read the book once, about the homeless and his cat and I think it was based here…)
  5. Big Ben (to take THE picture)
  6. London Eye (with an adorably optimistic hope to actually get on it. As it ever happens)
  7. One of the clubs that celebrities go to. (No comments)

Little do they know… Living here for four years now, let me present you the ultimate one-day London tour, improved and approved by us & ClubCat.

First stop – Greenwich.

Being a little bit more remote from the center, it is the perfect place to start your tour. Getting off at the Cutty Start and Maritime Museum station and heading down to the river-path, there is your first surprise. You will see…
Going further down, you reach the historical University of Greenwich. Breathtaking. Make sure you visit the painted hall where Jonny Depp was dancing on the table in the fourth part of Pirates of Caribbean. Also, pop into the magnificent chapel (which is a part of the actual university!)
Not to mention that there are at least a few great maritime museums around, saving the precious time of the best day of your life, not strolling down to the Greenwich Market would be a significant loss.
Pancakes, pumpkins, and lasagna; Jamaican, Vietnamese and Italian – you name it, it’s there. Old stuff – new stuff and creative stuff. Little treasure box. Don’t get too lost and spend all day there!
Pick up a calzone and some mini pancakes with Nutella and head straight to the bIMG_0384eautiful Greenwich Park. Why is it better than the famous Hyde Park?

Where do I start… Despite the breathtaking scenery, it has so much more to offer. Rose gardens, tennis courts, and even deers! The highlight is the Greenwich observatory. Testing your endurance by claiming up the hill, you can reach the famous Greenwich Meridian timeline. (Yes, you can feel the time stops there… Technically, it does.) The view that opens up is something indescribable. The panorama view stretching all the way from London Eye to the O2 Arena.
Enjoy.
Greenwich Park is the last stop before your next destination…

ClubCat Tip: Oliver’s Jazz Bar is the hidden gem you MUST visit when you in Greenwich the next time. In the evening. Trust the ClubCat. It knows best.

Stay tuned!

Richmond Park :)


Took advantage of the stunning weather and headed down to Richmond Park for a walk in the largest Royal Park. Although it’s November already it was a beautifully sunny day and got quite warm in the bright sun! It’s always a bit of a mission to make it down to Richmond from where I live in North London, especially over the weekend with all the tourists and whole tube and overground lines closed due to engineering works, but it was totally worth it! Here are some shots from today:

Habe das zauberhafte Wetter genutzt für einen Spaziergang im größten königlichen Park hier in London, dem Richmond Park. Obwohl schon November war es ein wundervoll sonniger Tag und wurde recht warm in der prallen Sonne! Es ist zwar immer ein ziemlicher Aufwand, von meiner Wohnung im Norden Londons nach Richmond zu kommen, besonders am Wochenende mit all seinen Touristen und für Inspektion geschlossenen Bahnlinien, aber das Ganze war die Umstände absolut wert! Hier einige Schnappschüsse von meinem Ausflug:

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Dickensian Xmas 2012


Hey Guys,

Sorry for being a lazy pisshead these days! The point is that I’m still living in France where I went to university and now preparing my move back to the UK. So this blog will start properly in January when I’m definitely back in the world’s greatest city.

Till then – here’s a charming escape for the upcoming weekend! The Dickensian Christmas is a festival that takes place in Rochester the first weekend of December. I went there last year and it’s definitely worth visiting. It’s basically a mixture from a Christmassy fair and the Charles Dickens universe. So you’re going to find stalls offering mulled wine, bratwurst, crackers, cookies, other goodies and cute presents. Furthermore people dressed as Dickensian characters walk around, there’s a parade, Christmas carol singers and so on.
This weekend, you’ll have an even more magical moment while visiting Rochester (as if the city wouldn’t be worth visiting in general!), the ambiance is truly great, there are loads of lovely little shops down the High Street and it’s absolutely beautiful!

Rochester is not far from London and therefore a great idea for a spontaneous weekend or even a day trip. Train tickets aren’t that expensive (I spent around £18 return last year and didn’t book in advance), if you book in advance or try a coach, it might get cheaper.
People in Rochester know about their touristic attraction, so the prices are as high as in the capital…

But – and that’s a good one – drinks in the pubs are quite cheap! So if you fancy a few drinkies, I recommend The King’s Head! Lovely place, friendly service, good prices, great atmosphere and the guests are as nice as you could just imagine – if you go there, you’ll probably find yourself all of a sudden sitting and chatting with the locals. I got stuck in that place last year – so stuck that I almost missed my train back to London but the lovely owner of the King’s Head finally walked me to the station and that says all about the pub and my suggestion for your first December weekend this year!

More information:
Rochester, Kent – 1 & 2 Dec 2012
http://www.rochesterdickensfestival.org.uk/

 

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Hey Leute,

tut mir leid, dass ich im Moment so ein fauler Schluckspecht bin und hier zu gar nichts komme! Der Punkt ist einfach, dass ich zurzeit noch in Frankreich lebe, wo ich studiert habe, und gerade meinen Umzug zurück ins Vereinigte Königreich vorbereite. Dieser Blog wird also erst im Januar richtig starten, wenn ich wieder in der tollsten Stadt der Welt bin…

Bis dahin hab ich hier einen charmanten Ausflug für das kommende Wochenende für euch! Dickensian Christmas ist ein Festival, das jedes Jahr in Rochester, Kent am ersten Dezemberwochenende stattfindet.  Ich war letztes Jahr dabei und es ist ganz definitiv einen Besuch wert! Im Prinzip ist dieses Festival eine Mischung aus Weihnachtsmarkt und dem Charles Dickens Universum. Man findet also Stände, die Glühwein, Bratwurst, Knabbereien, Plätzchen und andere Leckereien und außerdem außergewöhnliche Geschenkideen anbieten, zudem Schausteller, die als Charaktere aus den Dickens-Büchern verkleidet sind, es gibt eine große Parade, Weihnachtslieder, Vorführungen und vieles mehr.
An diesem Wochenende ist es geradezu magisch in Rochester (als ob die Stadt nicht normalerweise schon einen Besuch wert wäre!), die Atmosphäre ist wirklich großartig, es gibt massenhaft süße, kleine Läden auf der High Street und es ist alles in allem einfach nur schön!

Rochester ist nicht weit von London entfernt und deshalb eine super Idee für einen spontanen Wochenendtrip oder auch nur einen Tagesausflug. Zugtickets sind nicht mal teuer (ich habe letztes Jahr umgerechnet weniger als 23€ hin und zurück bezahlt), falls man im Voraus bucht oder auf einen Bus umsteigt, könnte es sogar billiger werden.
In Rochester weiß man um die touristische Bedeutung dieses Festivals, deshalb sind die Preise leider ebenso hoch wie in der Hauptstadt…

Aber – und das ist eine gute Nachricht – in den Pubs sind die Getränke ziemlich billig! Falls ihr also nach dem Stadt- und Weihnachtsmarktbummel gern ein paar Drinks zu euch nehmen würdet, empfehle ich The King’s Head! Dieser Pub, zentral an der Kathedrale gelegen, bietet tolle Atmosphäre, freundliche Bedienung, gute Preise und die anderen Gäste sind so nett wie man es sich nur wünschen kann! Geht hierhin und ihr werdet euch vermutlich ziemlich plötzlich in einer großen Gruppe wiederfinden und mit den Einheimischen lachen und trinken. Ich bin letztes Jahr so dermaßen versackt, dass ich beinahe meinen Zug zurück nach London verpasst hätte – die liebe Besitzerin des King’s Head hat mich schließlich zum Bahnhof gebracht und dafür gesorgt, dass ich meinen Zug erwische und das sagt wohl alles aus über diesen Pub und meinen Vorschlag für euer erstes Dezemberwochenende in diesem Jahr!

Weitere Informationen:
Rochester, Kent, England – 1./2. Dezember 2012
http://www.rochesterdickensfestival.org.uk/