Liverpool and Chester

Some time ago we went to Liverpool, and Karianne asked me to write the blog post about that. I've been putting that off for a bit, but figured it was about time to actually get it done now.

We had decided to stay in a small place somewhat outside Liverpool, called Runcorn. Found the hotel quite easily. Same chain as when we went to Cardiff. They seem to be based outside town centres, but are reasonable hotels with ok rooms and wifi.

The first day, we went into Liverpool and down to the docks. Parking was easy to find, and cheap. The docs were beautiful, except for a big road going alongside. After crossing said road, we passed a big yellow duckmarine, which are DUKWs, a type of World War II era amphibious transport, basically a waterproofed truck with a boat welded on and a propeller added. The yellow ones are painted bright yellow, this of course being a play on the yellow submarine Beatles song.

We started by going through the Beatles museum, having their early life stories retold and saw some of their early instruments before moving on to their trip to Germany and later the Cavern club and becoming famous. All in all quite interesting, even if it was somewhat expensive.

Afterwards, we picked up tickets for the next duckmarine trip and found some drinks to wait us over until lunch. On the way in, I'd spotted a brewpub and declared lunch to be there. The duckmarine was manned by two crazy men, going about the city, telling stories about the various buildings. We had a splashdown and went for a small cruise on the various docks before returning to dry ground.

We went to lunch at the Baltic Fleet brewpub. Their food was good, their beer was better. I had one of their smoked porters, which was really pleasant. Afterwards, we were getting somewhat tired, but decided to see at least one of the two cathedrals in the city, so we headed up for the Anglican Liverpool cathedral. In a way, it felt quite different to other cathedral's we've been in. I don't know if it was the height, the layout or something else, but I enjoyed walking around, taking pictures.

Visiting churches and cathedrals for a non-believer is always slightly odd. I enjoy the art and all those bits, but I don't parttake in the worship/belief bits. At the same time, I want to show respect to the people who do believe and not end up disturbing them or causing offence.

After the church visit, we just went back to the hotel for a small nap and then first out to a grasslands area on the other side of the river for a walk around there with Odin. Afterwards, we started looking for food and both of us wanted pizza. We finally ended up in a small fast-food joint and had some decent-ish pizza after going across the bridge to Liverpool once more. While we'd both enjoyed the view, it was beginning to be enough now.

The day after we went to Chester. That is, we first went to Chester Zoo. As Odin was in the car, we parked under a tree and went to make sure he was fine a couple of times during the visit. We saw quite a few animals of various kinds, most of them seemed to have at least adequate space and weren't too unhappy. Lots of zoos are like that. Not great, but not crap either.

Afterwards, we went to Chester and wandered around a bit. Looked at the cathedral from the outside, Karianne found a milk shake shop (which was just good, not great, apparently). Then we went to see Chester Fort, which was closed, before heading off to the amphitheatre. They are doing a fair bit of reconstruction work there to make it work as a modern amphitheatre. It will be interesting to see what it looks like and how it works when it's finished.

All in all, a short, but interesting trip.