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Review: Waterloo

Escorted Tour - Rail

York, United Kingdom

Great Train Journeys meet their waterloo!

  • By SilverTraveller annette-hall

    21 reviews

    Ribbon

  • Jun 2010
  • Husband

44 people found this review helpful

My husband is interested in history, so was attracted to the Great Rail Journey trip to Waterloo, to see the special enactment.

Thursday 15th June. Walked over to St Pancras via the Conran Foundlings hospital. First hic cup of holiday, Philip hadn’t checked the train times and we were last to check in at the very last minute!. Quick journey to Brussels on Eurostar, coach transfer to hotel, a walk round the local park and evening meal. Modern hotel with Klimt style decor, but a view of a brick wall though the bedroom window.

Friday 16th.  June was a free day in Brussels. Bought a ticket on a hop on hop off bus and rode round city, getting off to look round the old centre, then back to hotel. Salmon and chips at local restaurant, then evening excursion to a firework and light display, which was spectacular, but an hour late starting, and a very cold evening.

Saturday 17th June. The morning was free, so walked into the centre and back. Set out to the site to see the Allies and French camp, but didn’t get there until 3pm, and they closed at 5pm, and were 2Km apart, so only saw the Allied camp. Looked round visitor centre, which was very poor by British standards. Lack of communication meant we thought we had to walk to the evening battle, so set off, walked for an hour and turned back as no battle site to be seen. The plan had been altered and a bus used, (it was more like 4Km!) but that decision was not taken until people had dispersed, and not ever one knew. Walked back to centre, saw no-one, walked to pick up point, saw no one, so walked back to centre. Decided to look through all bars and eating places to find others. Found a single lady almost in tears over a large brandy, so stopped to cheer her up. Finally met up with other stragglers and walked to the pickup point, where the coach arrived a good hour late. Went the scenic way back to Brussels – the leader thought he might have lost someone, so didn’t get back till midnight.

Sunday 18th June and the chaos continued. Coach was late from hotel, got stuck in traffic and we arrived just as the re-enactment was beginning – so no seats to sit down. Had to stand for two hours in the rain. Coach not due to take us back till 3.30, so had to kill time round a very busy visitors centre. Nowhere to sit. Climbed the mound, then queued for the films, just for a sit down. Philip was quite exhausted by now and slipped down a flight of steps, but luckily nothing broken. Meal in hotel in evening.

Monday 19th June was free time in Brussels. No galleries open, and bit tired, so just pottered to centre, had snack and sat in hotel lobby reading and chatting. In Brussels the weather had been very cold and wet, including a downpour on Saturday. When we emerged from St Pancreas, the heat stuck you The most interesting bird was a pheasant that had been laying low in the corn while the battle raged around it, then it broke cover and flew terrified over the crowds!! When I got back, I realised I had left a coat in the hotel! By far the worst experience from this company, we wrote to complain, but only got a token refund and no apology!

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This review is solely based on the opinion of a Silver Travel Advisor member and not of Silver Travel Advisor Ltd.

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