We love to travel and have adventures. We often have things planned in the diary months in advance, I absolutely love to have things planned out to look forward to. However one thing we are aren’t quite so good at is when we are at home at the weekends we don’t tend to venture out much. Some weekends we just want to be lazy and have PJ days at home, but sometimes we will sit there at the weekend and want to get out (when the cabin fever sets in) but not really know where to go or what to do. I think it’s really common to often feel like places local to you aren’t as exciting as going far away.
Back in the summer last year I worked with Thameslink trains and we went on a lovely day trip to Brighton together (one of my favourite cities in the UK!) so when they contacted me last week to see if we wanted to go on a last minute bank holiday weekend adventure, I jumped at the chance. However we decided that it would be really nice to have a last minute trip somewhere local and explore somewhere close to home that we hadn’t been to before. We checked out Great Northern’s train routes and decided to go to Ely- a little market town that I hadn’t been to since I was child and that Jon had only been to once when his Mum came down for a visit and wanted to see the famous cathedral there. It was close, we had heard it was very pretty, and it seemed like the perfect place to go for the day. More often than not when we travel locally we think the car is the easiest option, but when we saw that it was only 16 minutes service from Cambridge to Ely with Great Northern, we couldn’t believe we hadn’t done it before. Plus it was just £6.00 for us all to travel!
Travelling by train is such an adventure for the girls. They absolutely love it, it makes a simple day out seem much more exciting and both Jon and I said that we need to do it more over the summer. Having had a look at the timetable there are a few different places that we can go to for a spontaneous adventure close to home, so we will definitely be doing it more. It’s often easier than having to worry about parking and other things, plus it just makes it seem that little bit more fun. You can see from all the photos that they were so excited about our last minute adventure…
Eeeek stop growing up so fast girls! I love this photo of them but I think they look so grown up.
Doing the usual train i-spy and seeing how many animals we could spot.
They were so excited to be going by train bless them! What is it about kids and trains? They get more excited by the train than they do going on an airplane.
We arrived in Ely and were pleased to see that the train station was really near the town centre.
I love this one. 🙂
After walking into town our first thing to do was grab some lunch as we were all starving. On recommendation from my vlogging friend Charlie we settled on Wildwood for lunch as she mentioned it had a play area. We hadn’t visited a Wildwood before but we really enjoyed the food and were super impressed with the kids little activity booklets they give you- by far the best kids booklet we have been giving in a restaurant, it kept them entertained so much that we didn’t even use the play area that was the whole reason we had gone there in the first place!
After lunch we went off on an explore of the town. First stop was the cathedral area- we didn’t go inside (although since we wish we had as a few people said on instagram that it is beautiful) but we walked around admiring the gorgeous buildings. We then sat down on the grass beside it and played for ages.
This boy is just growing up so quickly- please slow down time!
What a stunning backdrop for a photo.
Next up on the agenda was a little stop off here to get some fudge- it was so yummy, we had Creme Egg and Smartie flavours.
They love pushing their baby brother which is very sweet, but often results in arguments over who is pushing.
We decided to walk along the river and find a playground to play in, but we stumbled across the annual Eel Festival. Apparently eels were the main export of the town for many years and they have a festival and fun weekend every year as a result. There was live music, lots of food and drink stalls and some fairground rides- we definitely picked a good day to visit. Mads wanted to try her hand at beating the world record for the longest distance to throw an eel (only a stuffed one of course!). At one point they all started doing the eel conga with a massive paper mache eel leading the procession. It was totally random but really good fun.
We found a little stall selling name bracelets so we let the girls buy one each- they were so excited.
After spending a good hour or so wandering around the festival we decided to walk back to the train station along the river. I definitely recommend a little visit to Ely if you are reasonably nearby- it is such a pretty little town and we had such a great time there.
Finally it was time to get the train back home. We honestly had such a lovely day out together, often the most spontaneous ones usually are aren’t they? It’s definitely made us want to plan some closer adventures nearer to home during the summer holidays.
NB: We are working with Great Northern Trains on this post. All thoughts, photos and opinions are entirely my own. Please check my work with us page to see how we work with brands.