There are many perks to living in London, pubs on nearly every corner, the public transport making it so easy to get around, always something to do any time and day of the week, cheap booze from the off licence and the ease of going to a neighbouring country for a day trip (and taking said cheap booze with you for the journey there), and then being home in time to sleep in your own bed at the end of the long fun-filled day.
An early start required naps on the Eurostar (we got tickets on sale which worked out cheaper to go for just a day-it was only 1 hour 20 minutes each way after all). We arrived in to Lille, a city in Northern France and made a bee line for Starbucks to get large coffees to get us awake and ready to go. We ambled through the centre of Old Town to a park on the otherwise of Lille from the train station that was home to a zoo. I came across animals I’d never seen or heard of before but also old familiars from Australia too. We watched a rhino chase after a zebra, Lemurs soaking up some sun and little kids get overly excited, in French, over animals doing very little.
It wasn’t long before we decided it was time for lunch. With the sun shinning it was agreed a picnic lunch would be the best. After eventually finding a supermarket, the shopping basket was loaded up with cheese, ham, wine, crackers and a meter long baguette and then it was all spread out on a bench by a canal, right in the sun. Eating until bursting point (couldn’t be helped when the food was so yum), we sat in the sun, chatting until we decided it was a good idea to go for a wander in to the town square to walk off the food baby.
It’s become a thing to find a belfry for us to climb so we can take in views over the rooftops of which ever city/town we’re exploring. Lille was no different and we discovered, thanks to google, that there was one on the outskirts of the old town. Approximately 400 stairs to the top and we could see all over Lille. Just down the road we discovered a smaller version of Paris’s Arc de Triomphe. The sun was starting to get low which signalled that our day in Lille was coming to an end so we made our way back to the big train station to wait for the Eurostar back to London.
Lille is small and only really needed the one day to get the feel for the French city. We were exhausted by the end and slept on the Eurostar back to London with plans to be lazy and stay in bed binging Netflix the following day.