Picture Yourself in a Town on a River: Liverpool

After a month of educational weekend trips, I jumped at the opportunity to get out of dodge for a long weekend in early November. This trip was especially exciting because I was flying to Liverpool, England to meet my incredible Dad!

My flight was early on a Saturday morning, but I was in Liverpool before I knew it. After some intense questioning from Border Control, I apparently convinced England that I had no plans to wreak havoc and was able to leave the airport to meet up with my dad. Lucky for me, it was just a walk across the street to the airport hotel.

Once I got settled into the hotel room, we were off to explore Liverpool. Getting to downtown Liverpool proved to be quite the experience all weekend. My brave father decided to rent a stick shift car for the weekend, making for an interesting time of driving on the left side of the road, while driving stick left handed. While he did a great job (I mean, we’re still here after all), I’d be okay with never doing that again.

We eventually found our way to downtown Liverpool though and got to explore the dock after parking in an impossibly small parking spot. The waterfront was my favorite area by far. Although I think that is true for me for pretty much every city I’ve visited so far. We spent the next couple of hours getting a feel for the area before grabbing dinner and retiring for the night.

Liverpool waterfront
Liverpool waterfront

The next morning we headed back downtown towards the waterfront, this time for our hop-on-hop-off bus tour. We obviously sat on the top of the double decker bus because where else would you sit on a double decker bus?

Soon we’re off navigating through Liverpool’s narrow streets. Architecture from several eras fill our panoramic views as modern buildings somehow seamlessly blend with early 20th century buildings.

After driving by the first handful of stops we chose to get off at the Liverpool Cathedral, a monstrous building that took 70 years to build.

Driving past the Liverpool Cathedral.
Driving past the Liverpool Cathedral.

Besides usually being architecturally beautiful, I love that European churches almost always have viewing terraces. Luckily for me, the Liverpool Cathedral also had a viewing terrace. So I obviously dragged my dad up to the top via two elevator rides and 100+ steps.

The final bit of steps leading to the viewing terrace.
The final bit of steps leading to the viewing terrace.

The view was 100% worth every step. From the very top of the Cathedral we could see for miles all around Liverpool.

View of Liverpool and its waterfront from the viewing terrace.
View of Liverpool and its waterfront from the viewing terrace.

After catching our breaths and enjoying the beautiful views, we headed back to the ground floor of the Cathedral. The interior of the building was almost as pretty as the views it provided.

Instead of picking the bus back up in front of the church we instead walked over to a local pub called the “Philharmonic.” As we stepped into the building, Beatles music instantly came on over the speakers while our eyes adjusted to the most beautifully decorated bar. I think my dad was actually in heaven.

Sign for the Philharmonic.
Sign for the Philharmonic.

Both the food and the drinks here were incredible. If I ever make it back to Liverpool, this is definitely the first place I would go as soon as I got off the plane.

After finishing out the bus tour, we ended our afternoon at “The Beatles Story,” an entire museum devoted to the history of The Beatles. Fun Fact: The Beatles are from Liverpool.

The fifth, lesser known, Beatle.
The fifth, lesser known, Beatle.

Despite how much my dad loves The Beatles, I really did not know a whole lot about their history. The museum did a great job of incorporating audio clips and different visual displays to take you from the band’s small beginnings to their world renowned fame.

By the time we left the museum the sun was setting, so we grabbed a quick dinner and headed back to the hotel for the night.

Sun setting over the waterfront.
Sun setting over the waterfront.

The next morning we went straight back to downtown Liverpool, this time to do some exploring on foot. One of our first stops is the Walker Art Gallery. While it may seem small at first glance, the gallery seems to go on forever with works of art ranging from months to hundreds of years old.

Sculpture Room
Sculpture Room

One of the great things about Liverpool is that it is full of free museums. We spent all morning hopping from museum to museum, soaking in all the art, science, and history Liverpool had to offer. While we went to a few museums, the Walker Art Gallery was without a doubt our favorite.

By the time we finished museum hopping, mid-day exhaustion began to hit so we took a pit stop for tea time (my favorite time!). At little cafe in Liverpool One, Dad and I enjoyed a pleasant creme tea and scones and discussed all of the interesting sites we saw over the past day and a half.

Tea Time!
Tea Time!

Before heading back to the hotel for our final night in Liverpool, there was only one place left for us to go: Mathew Street.

Situated in the basement of a building on Mathew Street is the Cavern Club. The Beatles played here hundreds of times for their devoted fans. While the original Cavern Club was shut down in 1973, its new location across the street was built to look just like the original club did when the Beatles played there.

Inside the club we grabbed a couple of drinks and enjoyed the performer’s rendition of John Lennon songs. It was incredibly difficult to try and envision what this place (or I guess technically a place just like this) looked like when it was packed to the brim with screaming teenage girls. I think I would prefer the smaller crowd that was present tonight.

Dad with a statue of John Lennon on Mathew Street.
Dad with a statue of John Lennon on Mathew Street.

Soon we’re headed back to the hotel and I can’t believe the weekend is already over. I had such a wonderful time hanging out with my dad and exploring Liverpool. I am definitely lucky to have a father who is willing to travel halfway across the world to hang out with me for the weekend.

2014-11-08 18.42.59

This weekend away with my dad made me realize how much I can’t wait to see my family back in the states again and just how lucky I am to have such a wonderful family.

But for now, it’s back to Wroclaw for more class and other European adventures.

KCO

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