Preparation is everything!

When it comes to traveling, I do various amounts of preparation, depending on where I go, who I go with, how much time I have and if I have been there before.

In my experience, when I just go and don't have at least a short list of things to do or places to go, I might not enjoy my trip as much.
For example, the first time I went to Beirut I had organized a rather tight schedule of dance classes to take and places to go - it was a bit hectic at times but I had a blast.
Another time I went back thinking that since I already knew the place it would automatically be great - but there were several moments when I was just sitting in my hotel room, not sure what to do next and I felt a little lost.

Well, going back to London after 12 years I knew that I needed a plan - the city is so big and there are so many things to do! And so little time to do them all.... Partly because of the 6 days on this trip, we will be spending 2,5 days in Cardiff.
I think I have never been so obsessed with travel preparations as I was on this trip. But I it will be worth it! And I really enjoy doing the planning, it's like putting together a puzzle

One way to decide what you are going to do is having a theme. Ours is simple: It's a fan trip! Including an exhibition of James Bond's cars and other vehicles at the Film Museum (my boyfriend's idea of course), going to see the Mouse Trap (I am a long time fan of Agatha Christie!), Madame Tussaud's (they have a Bollywood section now...) and as the crowning attraction the Doctor Who Experience in Cardiff. And those are just a few things!

Here's what those 6 days look like in my agenda:
Not all of the things are fixed. For example for Thursday I noted some suggestions for free attractions within walking distance of the Museum of London.
Because yes, London is EXPENSIVE! And after having booked a lot of the entry tickets in advance I decided that we should take advantage of the fact that there are several museums you can visit for free.
And I didn't want to waste hours of our precious time riding the Underground - so I chose them all in the same area.

For Cardiff we have a rather loose plan. The Doctor Who Experience on Friday morning and a Ghost Walk (pre-booked) on Saturday night. We'll see about the rest, since Cardiff is rather compact and seems easy to get around. I also read that it's a great place for shopping ;-) That's what these large blue fields are for...

You might recall the time I wrote about the Art of Packing. This time it was a lot easier to put my stuff together because there is not beach in sight and no need for any dance equipment.

But I still did most of it in advance - meaning I was 90 % done on Saturday and we are leaving on Wednesday. Because I knew that after the weekend I simply wouldn't have enough time to do it right.
Packing in a hurry is not my thing! Especially not if I want to limit the clothes and accessories that I bring along.

And this time the color of choice is..... Purple!
Note that the left compartment is empty. There's potential for shopping... :-)

Anyway, feeling well prepared and excited, let's go!