Sep 19, 2018

March Madness

by Bronwyn Jameson

Next March, I am off to the UK for a short visit. I am joining a sister-in-law after she finishes a freeze-her-butt-off tour to see the Northern Lights. She opines that England should be balmy by comparison. I remain unconvinced.

Despite the probability of dismal weather, I quickly put ip my hand as travelling companion. “Pick me, pick me!” Firstly, I’m an extreme Anglophile. I’ll take any visit I can justify. As for justification: I thought I’d spend the rest of my trip in London visiting my one grandchild. Oh, and her parents.

But, as happens most every time I plan a big trip, things have changed. Son, daughter-in-law and grand-daughter are in the throes of moving back to Australia. I will be visiting them in Sydney instead of London, next month instead of in six months’ time. Super-duper happy about this turn of events, don’t get me wrong, and I am in the process of changing my plans for March.

So. I now have a week on my hands and too many enticing options. I would love to settle on just one.
My priorities:

  • I would prefer somewhere within a few hours’ travel of London. I don’t want to waste a whole day travelling to and fro. 
  • Somewhere I’d feel comfortable travelling alone. 
  • Somewhere I don’t need a car (I love road trips, but not solo.) 
My short list currently looks like this:

Cornwall or a similarly wild coastal county (which is probably miserably wet in March.) I picture myself curled up with a blankie and my laptop, making use of the bucolic atmosphere to outline a story or three. Drinking tea and devouring scones with clotted cream. And later, fish and chips and a half of ale down the pub.

Paris. I am drawn by the idea of wandering the city, but my imagination is filled with light and sunshine and stylish shoes. Not short bleak days and ugg boots. I do not want to break up with the City of Light over the weather; I have loved her for too long. On the other hand, I could spend many long grey days in the Louvre and Musee d’Orsay without jostling with unbearable crowds.

Cote d’Azur. The south of France is high on my bucket list but not my husband’s. So this is an opportunity BUT would I be able to do it justice? I want to visit hilltop villages and sip cocktails in Monte Carlo and stroll around ALL the seaside resorts. I would need a car, right? And more time.

Somewhere in Spain. This option is gathering impetus after strong recommendations from my sister and my son. March temperatures in Seville are double what I could expect in Cornwall or Paris. Barcelona and Nice (as an example from south of France) are halfway between. I need to research harder because right now all I’m thinking is Sunshine! Tapas!

Do you have any further additions for my list? 

Where would you choose to spend a European vacation in March?



  1. WOW the choices you have, lucky you I have never travelled to Europe but there are a couple places I would love to go to is the Scottish Highlands and The Isle of Wight :)

    I hope you have a fabulous time

    Have Fun

    1. Both brilliant choices, Helen, although I'm thinking perhaps not in March...? I will have to further investigate to be sure about how cold it might actually be up north. Because the Scottish Highlands would be wonderful.

  2. Cornwall sounds great! But I lived down that way for a while so I might be biased :-)
    Spain would certainly be warmer.
    Other option, Amalfi coast.....

    1. I did not know that you lived in Cornwall, Amy. How lucky were you?! Amalfi Coast was on my first list but unfortunately the ferries and a lot of businesses close for the winter so that put me off. Sunny Spain is enticing.

  3. What a gorgeous dilemma to have, Bron! Most of my European trips have happened in Jan/Feb as that's when Mr Douglas can get the time off work. And while it's certainly cold, I love that we don't have to battle huge crowds. :-)

    I'm leaning towards your Spanish option, though the south of France sounds divine. But a week in a big city full of culture and life -- how could you lose? :-)

    1. I know, right? So. Many. Wonderful. Options. And I am most heartened by your comment re the crowds. I really hate huge crowds and try to avoid the high seasons although our preferred time would be April and Sept/Oct. Early March is just that little bit on the winter side of spring.

  4. Bron, I think the South of France is considered a good winter escape from England! But from my memories of living in the UK, March can be quite lovely and not crowded with tourists.

    1. Thank you, Kandy. I love hearing from experienced folk, who've not only travelled but lived overseas. I have still not made up my mind. So. Difficult.