Monday, August 06, 2012

Monday Muse: Armchair Backpacker (#2) - England!

Hey there! This is Hilda speaking. This is the second post of Armchair Backpacker project. For those of you who have no idea what it is, Armchair Backpacker is an event where bloggers from all around the world doing guest post every Monday about daily lives in their country. Just like a backpacker, we'll explore the world they live in! You can learn about all of that here. :)

I'm proudly announcing you the next country in our list is...

Yay yay yay! Today we are visiting England, the city of guys with cutest accent ever in the world! OMG I love you 1D! Some of my favorite authors are from UK, and this awesome country also has the most brilliant bloggers ever! 

Our tour today is focused on Leicester, a city in England where my amazing blogger friend Jasprit lives. Enjoy lovelies!! :)

The bookie in action

Hello my name is Jasprit and I’m a book blogger based in the U.K., I’m co-blogger of the Readers Den and have been blogging for about four months. These last four months I’ve had so much fun blogging, I’ve discovered some great new reads, blogs and lovely bloggers such as Hilda. Hilda is one of the sweetest people I know; quite quickly her blog has become one of my favourites. So when Hilda asked me to do a feature for her Armchair Backpacker. I was super excited, I love having a peek into the life of other bloggers, especially when they have awesome bookish events to share. I actually feel like one of those celebrities off MTV cribs giving you a tour of my place hah! Instead of focusing on the entire U.K., (if I did I think that my post would go on for the entire week,) I’m going to give you a tour of the city where I live, Leicester, so you know if you totally want to visit me one day *hint hint* these are the places we would hang.

Places /events /festivals

Two of the most popular attractions that you should totally go visit here are the Curve Theatre or De Montfort Hall. They offer brilliant entertainment and performances all year round, but do tend to add extra shows especially when the kids are off for the summer.

The Curve Theatre is a beautiful building which opened on the 4th of December 2008 by HRH the Queen. It has performances for all the family, performances which can be seen over the summer include; Oliver, Finding Neverland- the musical, Rapunzel and a sing-a long Rocky Horror picture show. You can take a 360° virtual tour of the Curve theatre here.

De Montfort Hall also offers a wide variety of entertainment features. There's always something on show to tickle your taste buds. De Montfort Hall has been an entertainment venue established since 1913. Upcoming summer performances include stand up comedians Jack Dee, Jimmy Carr and artist Paloma Faith, the Musical Grease, but if you’re looking for something different they have a performance for Swan Lake performed by the Russian State ballet and orchestra of Siberia.


The Museums also tend to provide a lot more activities over the summer, to try and get kids more involved. Also the fact Museums offer free admissions provides another incentive to go. There are several museums in Leicester, but the two of the most popular are New Walk Museum and art gallery and the Jewry Wall Museum.

New walk museum and art gallery has “been having nationally and internationally recognised exhibitions and collections including Picasso ceramics, The Attenborough Collection and internationally renowned collection of Germany expression art”. They have awesome activities over the summer which are sure to keep the kids entertained whilst you can browse around the art gallery which features works from the 16-19 century, or the dinosaur gallery.

The Jewry wall museum
Is largely known for focusing on Roman history, not only does it offer a guts, gore and gladiator event over the summer where you can take part in combat and craft activities. But it also features one of “Leicester’s most famous land marks; The Jewry wall” which was part of the Romans towns public baths!

National space centre
This is actually one of the places I still need to go and visit, when I went on to their website the other day, I couldn’t believe, some of the events they had planned! Such as Movie Mania, this is a day where the centre offers a wide range of workshops where you can learn how to create movie make-up (we used to do this all the time when I was younger with Vaseline and ketchup!) and some of the greatest characters from films will be round too such as captain Jack Sparrow, Iron man, Ghost busters, and Storm troopers. The centre also plans to have live coverage of the mars science lab landing from NASA. They also have the Sir Patrick Moore planetarium which takes you on a 360° journey through the solar system and a 42m high rocket tower where you can see real moon rock!

Leicester Tigers
Most of you probably know by now that I’m a massive rugby fan. The best thing about living in Leicester is that we are proud to have one of the most successful clubs in English rugby; the Leicester tigers. They have won back to back premiership titles and are multiple time European champions. I love going to watch them play as the atmosphere is always amazing and each time I come back I always have a huge buzz. They also have the best players too. I was lucky to go to Tigers signing recently unfortunately my favourite players weren’t there, but I still got to meet some great players. I am a short person anyway so standing next to a huge rugby player made me feel like more of a hobbit. I can’t wait for the new season to kick off on August 25th; I’m still contemplating about buying a season ticket.


I’ve decided to combine this into one, as our main shopping centre, was recently extended. The Highcross Shopping Centre actually feels like an American mall now every time I step into it has over 100 stores and a Showcase Cinema de Lux.

So you don’t really need to go anywhere else, (I just tend to stick to the book store). But you can plan a whole day, where you can shop until you drop at stores like John Lewis, Next and Debenhams, then may be grab a bite to eat or a coffee at Starbucks or make a meal of it at Nando’s or Yo Sushi! You can always end your day by checking out a film, the pretty shiny Showcase building isn’t hard to miss. You can enjoy a movie in comfort with gorgeous reclining leather seats or try out the director’s lounge.

Bookish attractions

I had to end this post with a section dedicated to bookish attractions. Leicester has over 20 libraries, I usually visit my local library, but there’s also a library close by to where I work, so I can always decide which library I want my particular request sent to. My library has also recently started loaning e-books; the great thing about this so far is that a lot of the e-books available have been recent releases! 

Waterstones is my favourite books store. I could spend hours in there browsing the books. The staff are a friendly bunch and are always willing to help out with brilliant book recommendations. The awesome thing about this book store is that it’s so close by to work, so whenever I’ve had a stressful day, need a quick pick me or just feel like going on a book splurge I usually just pop in and it always seems to make me tons better.

This is the section you would normally find me in, where all the awesome YA books are shelved.

Final Note

So there you have it, that’s my tour of Leicester wrapped up. There are so many awesome places to check out. So please come and visit soon. I’ll promise to definitely hang out in the book store all day! Thanks to the lovely Hilda for letting me share Leicester with you!


Oh my gosh, don't we just love Jasprit and her gorgeous city?? ;) Jasprit is super amazing and I wish I could find time to visit her and other amazing bloggers in UK! Sure I'm not the only person in the earth who fancy the ancient-bit-creepy-yet-gorgeous museums, right? And rugby! I always want to watch live rugby match. I mean, I swear I would look like Frodo next to the huge rugby player!!

Now go go go follow Jasprit and Rachel's fabulous blog! The Reader's Den has very lovely design and both of them have such beautiful ways with words! Check out their blog here. :)

And that's our touch down tour in UK! Did any of you spot any cute Brit boys in sight? I still have hope for to meet them, you know! ;)

Here's a map to mark our journey!

Keep calm and grip your seat belt, because our next destination is US! Yay, nice meeting you, US-ers! ♥ (is that even a word? er... just pretend it is)


  1. Oh gosh! Next is US! I'm super excited who it will be. I would love to see more people living in the US like me! Maybe someone from New York cause I would love to see the sites there, but I haven't been there. Pooh! Anyways, have fun vacationing with your friend, Hilda! Nice breaks are way you need, sometime. ;)

  2. Yay, I'm from the UK! Awesome post, loved the pictures! And can't believe it's US next time, it's going to be amazing!

    Hope you're having a nice time away, Hilda. :) xxx

  3. I'm from UK as well! I'm looking forward to the US post.

    Thanks for sharing! :)

  4. I was reading and thinking how I'd love to go see Rapunzel at The Curve Theatre with my kiddo (we're in the Rapunzel phase now anyway, hah) and then I got to the food and shopping part and I thought, NOW we're getting to the good parts. I was mostly excited about the food, though.
    You shouldn't have made it sound so good, Jasprit! I might just come visit for real. :)
    I love that you're doing this, Hilda. It's a fantastic idea.

  5. Another place to add to my list of travel destinations! I've watched so many English shows that make reference to Waterstone's and can't wait to check it out!

  6. :) I love this post!!!!! I really want to check out Waterstone's someday, I already heard about it, but now that I seen what it looks like inside and heard about its friendly workers, I defiantly want to check it out! Also, the Jewry wall museum, I love roman history, check that out too.
    Thanks for the wonderful recommendations Jasprit! :) I'm also really short so i get feeling like a "hobbit" near tall people.
    Have a fun vacation Hilda! I love the word US-ers!

  7. Your post turned out amazing Jasprit! I've always wanted to visit the UK but you just tempted me more. You're fortunate to have such lovely theaters close to you. Watersone's looks like a fabulous bookstore and I totally agree, going to a bookstore it a wonderful de-stresser. You don't look like a hobbit next to that player! You look cute! He's definitely some eye candy, lucky! :)

  8. Oooh, I don't think I've ever been to Leister! Personally I'm not a rugby fan, but having the Lesiter Tigers there would be awesome for those who are [like you!]. Water stones is so awesome.❤ I love individual bookshops, too, but there aren't any near me. ):

    Omg, Hilda, you're a Directioner? YAYYYYY! Me too!!! Haha, hope you're having an awesome time on holiday! Thanks to you both for this wonderful post. (:

  9. ENGLAAAAAAND! I have always wanted to visit the UK, but this, in the meantime, is awesome! Thanks so much for sharing all these lovely photos and a (virtual) tour with us, Jasprit!

    and loool, Hilda XD 1D's awesome!

  10. This is so fab! One of my dreams is to visit a bookstore in the UK. I came SO CLOSE YET SO FAR last year.

  11. Eeep! England is one of the countries I dream of going to. Seeing all those place makes me want to go there now, as in now. I could rob a bank right now and book a flight! LOL! Fab post, Hilda and Jasprit! :)

  12. I'm really, really jealous at the bookish attractions <3 We just don't have a lot of YA shelves over here (and sometimes when we have, only in Dutch and I want them in English ^^) I LOVE England and English accents. I visited England one time before and I'm already planning on going soon :D

  13. I love how you sneak One Direction into all of your posts! Hehe ;) I have always wanted to go to the UK (London in particular) so I really enjoyed this tour of Leicester. The teen section of that bookstore looks heavenly! I could definitely spend all day in there! =)


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