A Welshman and a Scotsman Walk into an English Cafe

It seems the land of my fathers is not the only land worth discovering. Apparently, there are other places on this island other than Wales. Sheep aren’t the only animal, valley is not the only accent and… dare I say it… slate is not the most beautiful material.

The highlight of my trip to Liverpool was Liverpool Cathedral, which is the largest Cathedral in the UK. As soon as I stepped inside, I felt like a pea in a pan. I was instantly overwhelmed by how intricate, intimidating and, most of all, beautiful this place was.

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Inside Liverpool Cathedral.

It’s a clump of sandstone that was delivered by angles from heaven and crafted by the hand of God himself. The design, however, was by a man called Giles Gilbert Scott. He was only 21 when he designed this masterpiece! I suddenly feel like an under-achiever.

Another sandstone design that’s worth admiring is Lime Street Railway Station. As much as I like the style that old-brick stations have, it’s nice when a city complete bends the rules and goes completely modern with their train stations. This station is also overwhelming, due to how big and busy it is.

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Inside Lime Street Railway Station.

Before I continue, I’ve realised I haven’t explained the title or header image. On the left is my good friend, and fellow coffee addict, Lachlan, who also likes to discover new places. As for the title, well he’s Scottish and I’m Welsh, and we keep meeting up in England to drink coffee, eat cake and make fun of hipster. Oh, and to look around the place.

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Left: Lachlan’s feet. Right: my feet.

As we headed down to Royal Albert Docks, it becomes obvious how Liverpool has done well to preserve old buildings. However, there are many concrete and glass buildings too. It’s confusing and a shame to see that cities are becoming more and more lifeless, like London. But that’s a blog post for another day.

The docks are just lovely. So so lovely. Instead of knocking this part down, it has been renovated into a food court. It’s a little world of its own. So many welcoming restaurants to choose from, all with unique character and cuisine.

There are also shops selling clothing, accessories, souvenirs, local art, The Beatles memorabilia and fudge. There’s also a cinema and a museum. This is in one fairly small space. Boat rides along the River Mersey? You betcha!

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Love locks on the chain fences at Royal Albert Docks.

So is it worth going? Damn right it is! I spent 8 hours travelling there and back on a train, yet I’d do it again tomorrow if I wasn’t at work.

Liverpool, like Manchester, can’t be discovered in a day. It’s just too big. It’s like bread pudding: it’s dense. Liverpool fits as much as it can into itself, while still feeling like an open, relaxed space for us visitors to dawdling and discover.

If you like days out discovering towns and cities, put Liverpool on your list. While you’re at it, put Manchester Piccadilly on there too; it’s nearby. Both cities are a mix of old and new when it comes to architecture, which makes them interesting and unique to discover. And most importantly, both cities have a lot for visitors to see and do.

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