Tag Archives: River Wey

A day trip to Guildford / Surrey / England

Abbot's Hospital GuildfordGuildford Castle

昨日の続き。Claremont Landscape GardenHatchlands Parkで自然を堪能した後は、ギルドフォード(Guildford)へ。イングランド南東部に位置する、サリーの丘陵地帯にある歴史ある街・ギルドフォードは、ロンドンから車で約1時間。その立地と交通の便の良さから昔から交通の要所で、ロンドンとポーツマスの港を結ぶ重要な中継地だった。町を流れるウェイ川は、英国初の航海可能な川として認定されている。Abbot’s Hospitalギルドフォード城(上の写真)等の歴史的建造物や、ナショナル・トラストの保護下にあるウェイ川等の見所もあるが、街自身は特に特色がない。これはイギリスの地方都市に共通する事だが、全国的なチェーン店(銀行、薬局、ファッション、レストラン、カフェの何もかも)が街の中心を席巻していて、どこに行っても同じに見えるのだ。だからイギリス旅行をするなら、都市部より田舎がお薦め。イングランド地方は高い山がなく、なだらかな丘陵地帯が広がり、時に羊や牛が草を食むのどかな田園風景は、ドライブしていてもとても気持ちがいい。


Continued from yesterday. After we enjoyed the nature at Claremont Landscape Garden and Hatchlands Park, we moved on to Guildford. Guildford, situated on rolling hills of the Surrey in the south east England, has been historically important place with its location and excellent transport links, and later became an essential staging post to connect the capital London and the coastal port town Portsmouth. The River Wey, which runs through the centre of town, was one of the first rivers to be made navigable. The main sightseeing spots are historical buildings such as Abbot’s Hospital and Guildford castle, and the River Wey which is a property of National Trust, but the town itself is nothing special. This also applies to any other British cities, the chains (banks, pharmacies, fashion stores, restaurant, cafe, and everything) take over the center of the town, and any cities you go look all the same more or less. Therefore, in UK, I would recommend to travel countryside and avoid cities. There is no high mountains in England, and you can enjoy a beautiful scenery of countryside with rolling hills and sheep and cows spotted here and there.

Most of the shops in Guildford close at/before 6pm. It was a shame that the town centre looked a bit like a ghost town, in spite of the long summer day time. Moreover, there was no place where we could fill our stomachs after long walks in the parks – cafes were closed, and many of the restaurants were chains that you see everywhere in the nation. We didn’t even see a British national food, fish&chips shop! We almost gave up our hope but found the perfect place at the end, just in front of the castle parking. It was a cute Greek fastfood Gyros shop, Gyros-Gyros, owned by friendly Greeks, and the Gyro sandwich was the BEST kebab we ever had in UK! The meat was juicy but not greasy, and ingredients were fresh. There are a lot of kebab shops in London, whose kebabs are usually too greasy and don’t seem to be healthy, but I’ve never see a Gyros shop. If Gyros-Gyros is in our neighborhood, we definitely would become regular customers.

Gyros-Gyros Guildford

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