After a long, wet, yet scenic journey of navigating the flights of locks leading to Stratford-upon-Avon, just before sunset, we exulted sighs of relief and accomplishment as we cruised under a bridge with a row of lights which led us to the Bancroft Basin.
We were surrounded by what seemed like a "fairytale" dreamland, and my "Shakespearean tongue" was immediately activated:
'Wh're shouldst we mo'r mine own skipp'r?'
We slotted our narrowboat into one of many vacant moorings, overlooking the Bancroft Flower Gardens, and we slept the night away.
'Wherefore visiteth Stratf'rd-Upon-Avon?'
Stratford-upon-Avon, a popular tourist destination, is the birth place of famous poet and playwright, William Shakespeare, with stunning, preserved architecture of Elizabethan and Guild Buildings - a charming town for romantic strolls. Hence, my slant and emphasis on my visit to Shakespeare country, is on the picturesque and alluring settings of buildings in the town that was once the home of the author of the tragic story of Romeo and Juliet, a compulsory literature piece from my high school days in Jamaica.
William Shakespeare Statue
Library where I had images of Shakespeare visiting to write his poems and plays.
More about Stratford
'Which street shouldst i maketh mine own way across the town?'
A quick 360 degrees turn of my neck and I had the epiphany that I was in for a real treat!
From a distance, I observed that this particular street, Sheep Street was lined with historic and colourful buildings, and as I made my way across the park, I could smell the strong aroma coming from Barnaby's Fish Restaurant right at the corner.
I proceeded along in awe, at the dotted shops and restaurants on what appeared to be one of the most visited areas of Stratford-upon-Avon - it's the street where you can have a Shakespeare tour and learn a lot about Shakespeare.
Elizabethan Buildings and Guild Buildings Around Stratford-upon-Avon
Sightseeing Open Upper Deck Buses
Stratford, as it's commonly called, is a great city to traverse across on foot, or there are sightseeing open upper deck buses to take tours. It's fascinating streets are lined with interesting historic buildings which date back to the 15th Century, and museums which tell the stories of the great William Shakespeare.
Notice the different spellings of Shakespeare? Here's some explanation for William "Shakspere"
Well Preserved Architecture
'What doth thee feeleth at which hour expl'ring Stratf'rd?'
The aura of people in Stratford is calm and lovely, and I got the feeling that it's a place that reignites the spark in couples, as you could often see people (tourist and locals) strolling along holding hands.
In fact, this was my second time visiting Stratford-upon-Avon, as this is the city my husband @scubahead and I had our honeymoon when I first arrived to live in the UK over 12 years ago. However, we were not the only ones who had chosen Stratford for a getaway, as I had encounters and chats with persons from neighbouring cities, who had been in Stratford for a reprise from their mundane towns, and felt it was an ideal place to visit as a family and as couples, especially since bars, pubs and restaurants have resumed full operations.
'T's a lovely exp'rience on a narrowboat in the Basin of Stratf'rd'
Accompanied by our friend @diveratt who prepares sashimi, as he celebrates his birthday with us.
As we were moored in the basin, right behind the famous Shakespeare monument, I did some exploring on the northern side of the town — absolutely stunning!
There's an array of dining options on the river including luxury dining aboard a boat, and other restaurant outlets within the enclosed perimeters of the Bancroft Gardens and Basin, including ice cream.
Fine Dining while cruising up and down the River Avon. Doesn't that sound romantic?
If I were a boy, I would take the girl I liked here, and with a Shakespeare charm I would say: "I would not wish any companion in the world but you." - The Tempest, William Shakespeare.
'Wh're couldst i doth mine own laundry?'
With all the history and illusions of fantasy, according to population city, Stratford is home to approximately 121.599 people, so there are normal high street shops and department stores along with strategically situated laundromats where boaters, travellers and local businesses such as Airbnb can access for self-service or drop-off and pickup services.
It was a pleasant surprise for me to meet June at Laundry Quarter. June has been living in Stratford for over 14 years, and although she was born in the Uk, she has strong values instilled from her Jamaican parents and origins, so my 2 hours completing laundry blew by quickly. June recalls her mum hand washing clothes, perched on a stool with a cigar in her mouth, chatting away as she smoked handsfree while doing laundry. While waiting, June had several customers who popped in just to say hello as she has a warm persona and also works with charitable organisations with a scheme that provides laundry service for homeless people around Stratford.
High Street Shops and pubs/Restaurants around Stratford
Other Standout Buildings and Street Scenes
'Wouldst we returneth to Stratf'rd?'
C'rtainly, with pleasure!
I shalt returneth, coequal if 't be true t's just to speaketh shakespearean.