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What's this blog all about?

Hi, I'm Nicola - welcome to a blog begun in 2012 about family travel around the world, without leaving the UK.

I love travel adventures, but to save cash and keep my family's carbon footprint lower, I dreamt up a unique stay-at-home travel experience. So far I've visited 110 countries... without leaving the UK. Join me exploring the next 86! Or have a look at the "countries" you can discover within the UK by scrolling the labels (below right). Here's to happy travel from our doorsteps.

Around 2018 I tried a new way of writing my family's and my own UK travel adventures. Britain is a brilliant place for a staycation, mini-break and day trips. It's also a fantastic place to explore so I've begun to write up reports of places that are easy to reach by public transport. And when they are not that easy to reach I'll offer some tips on how to get there.

See www.nicolabaird.com for info about the seven books I've written, a link to my other blog on thrifty, creative childcare (homemadekids.wordpress.com) or to contact me.

Thursday, 28 June 2007

Experimenting with life

Nicola, Pete, Lola and Nell want to travel the world with a difference. We hope to get a taste of many countries without adding to climate change (with needless emissions from aeroplanes) or having to waste hours of holiday time in airport terminals. We hope our adventures inspire you to take a Grand Tour of your neighbourhood. This post is from Nicola

Our first mission in Newcastle is to go to Chinatown and eat all that we can at one of the 60-dish, all day buffets on offer. After guzzling noodles, seaweed, egg fu yung, stir fried veg, bean sprouts and chips (!) there's a downpour so we decide to cancel the trip along the Quay, and then over Newcastle's fab millennium bridge to the Baltic art gallery. Instead we go to Life - a newish science show, very near the station, that is an absolute cracker. Here science is push and pull, repeat what you did, ask questions, try on, try out. Before the two talks given by young blokes in red aertex shirts (just like the ones staff wear at Woolies, see pic above) on the difference between humans and chimpanzees & stars in the night sky we have enough time to:

  • find out that Karachi traffic police are likely to go deaf because the city is SO noisy

  • stand under a heat lamp and feel the desert burn

  • try and harpoon a seal

  • brush dirt and stones off a skeleton

  • walk like a gorrilla (with big gorrilla gloves)

  • design a human and then watch it walk (mine lay down defeated by its pelvis)
The only drawback was that it was an expensive entry (#22 for a family) and the machine that ages you (as if I need one, that's what a mirror is for isn't it?) wasn't operating. Still, thanks to our famine-feeding at Lau's Buffet King we don't need any dinner money...

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