how to celebrate 21: a travel guide to northern england's lake district
1. Book a plane ticket to London, England.
2. Take an overnight bus from Victoria Coach Station to Carlisle, England.
3. Arrive at 4am and wait for your connector bus in the freezing cold until 6am. If you survive this step, congratulations! Not many do.
4. When your bus still doesn't show up after the allotted two hours, get a taxi.
5. Meet George, your 87-year-old taxi driver who's never left the small town of Carlisle, and repeatedly declares in his thick northern English accent that it's the best town in the world.
6. With tired eyes and a grateful heart, take in your first few glances of the Lake District town of Keswich.
7. Resist the urge to just jump in a canoe and GO 'splore. You're running on very little sleep and this wouldn't be a good idea.
8. Admire the ADORABLE bed and breakfasts scattered around town. From afar though, because you won't be staying here. College student = cheap.
9. Savor some afternoon tea, of the strawberry variety. Mmmm.
10. Head over to the Old Keswickian for literally, THE best fish and chips in the world.
12. Head back to where you are staying for some much needed R & R.
13. That's right, a barn. You're staying in a barn. (HOW COOL IS THAT).
14. Meet the nice English lady who runs this Hostel-Barn and drink the warm tea she so graciously provides you.
15. Try to avoid the baseball-sized spiders. And freezing to death. And losing any games of "Spoons" or "What are the Odds," as this may result in unspoken midnight punishments out in the fields with the cows. Don't ask.
16. When you wake in the morning, try to avoid the eye. Avoid it like the plague.
17. Hop on a bus back into the national park. Relax and enjoy the breathtaking scenery.
18. Upon arrival, don't be baaaad and chase the sheep. Oops.
19. Hike up the gorgeous Catbells trail.
20. Keep your clothes on. For goodness sake, it's COLD.
21. As these incredible new friends sing "Happy Birthday" to you atop the most beautiful mountain you ever did see, treasure the moment in your heart with gratitude and know that it's going to be very, very hard to beat your 21st birthday.
Be sure to check out my Ireland Travel Guide as well!