Ok. It’s only been 3 months, but it’s finally time for me to do a recap of my trip to England aka the best trip ever. So get ready for LOTS of pictures, a little recap of my favorite things we saw and did, and then even more pictures. Like, so many pictures. We just had the best time and there are so many cool things I want to share!
And again, since it’s been 3 whole months, let me give a quick reminder of why we took this epic trip. My family and I used to live in England when I was little (for my dad’s job) and I haven’t been back since we moved 23 years ago. We wanted to take a family trip down memory lane while we were all able to make it and while my dad was still up for making the long trek. He remembers EVERYTHING and we wanted to get his memories, his stories, and his company on the trip. I was so excited to go back and see what I would remember! I was 1 when we moved there and 6 when we moved back to the states, so I don’t actually remember a lot. It was great to see some familiar things and put a visual to some of the stories I’ve heard from my parents over the years.
To start, I’m going to share our time in Hitchin and Letchworth. We stayed at an AirBnB in Hitchin and it was perfect (we actually lived in Letchworth back in the day, but there were no AirBnBs available there and Hitchin is just one town over)! It was within walking distance to a few restaurants, we were able to walk into and explore town center, and we could also walk to the train station when we needed to go elsewhere.
I would also just like to mention real quick that my brother-in-law “volunteered” (was pretty much forced) to drive a GIANT van through the TINY streets of rural England, and he was a CHAMP. Not one ding or scratch or death – and I don’t think he relaxed until we returned the rental after a few days.
The town center was SO cute and exactly what you’d imagine to be in a cute little town in England. My mom said it was similar to what she remembered but obviously 20+ years had gone by so some of the stores were different and there were a few newer areas she didn’t recognize.
Going back to Letchworth was so surreal. The bulk of my England memories happened in this little garden city and it was so special to be back there with my family. We got to see the houses that we lived in, and they look (basically) exactly the same! Some of the greenery was different, but everything looked just like it did in my memory.
We walked around the streets where we used to live, and saw some of our old favorite places. The post office where we used to walk to get a treat, the school field where we used to play, the cow pasture where we used to pet the cows (which is now a housing development, btw), and the hotel where we would walk around back and play on the playground. My dad said that it was the ORIGINAL playground equipment that we used to play on 25 years ago, and it definitely looked like it. It seemed a lot newer and nicer when we would go back in the 90s!
During our time in Hitchin and Letchworth, we also popped over to Old Warden to look at the thatched cottages. My mom said that they look exactly the same as the last time we saw them, and they were so unique! I wouldn’t be upset if I got to live in one of those cute little houses. Not upset at all. My very best friend Kelsey just happened to ALSO be on a trip to England with her hubby, so we got to meet up with them! Kelsey and I met at school in England, so it was REALLY special to get to be back with her at the place where our friendship started 25 years ago.
One of the coolest things we got to do on this part of the trip was getting to go on a tour of the Chicksands Priory. This was an AMAZING get, since the Priory is on an RAF military base, and the building is only open to the public (for pre-scheduled tours) twice a month. This let us get on the base, which is where we all went to school and my dad worked, and we got to see the inside of this very old, historic building. (It was built back around 1150 and housed monks and nuns.)
We even got a special tour of the grounds that most people don’t get to see which was so beautiful – the tour guide was thrilled to learn that we lived on the base in the 90s and all of the workers loved hearing my dad’s stories of his time on the base.
Had enough pictures yet?!?! I thought so – I’ll share more of our amazing trip later (mainly our day in Cambridge and 2 days in London) but it was so fun to look back on these pictures again. I’m not sure if/when I’ll get to go back, but I’m so glad that I was there with my family once again!