ALL ABOARD FOR FESTIVE FARE
PRAWNS, mangoes and aerosol snow are all perfectly nice ways to celebrate the holiday season down under but a Christmas trip to Britain adds a whole new dimension to the festivities.
Orient-Express is serving a special Christmas menu on lunch or dinner journeys on Northern Belle between London and Edinburgh until December 22. It’s not entirely traditional — lobster bisque and a three-bird roast rather than turkey accompanying the cranberry sauce— but there are brussels sprouts (very big in Britain at Christmas despite virtually no one actually enjoying them) and a proper pud with champagne to round out the meal.
Travellers who want more from their train trip than great food with an ever-changing view could opt for a slightly longer day trip on Northern Belle to a destination such as Chester, Canterbury or Salisbury.
Special journeys during December offer visitors brunch, the chance to attend a carol recital at the historic cathedral of their chosen city and a five-course dinner with wine and champagne on the return trip to London. Prices start at £260 ($613) .
Those with more time should consider visiting a Christmas market, which are held across Britain from late November, many of them smelling wonderfully of roasting chestnuts, mulled wine and sage-filled local sausages.
Edinburgh has at least three Christmas markets: one German-style, another with a highland village theme and a more traditional event. The city also offers a number of concerts and carol services as well as a ceilidh. Carly Chynoweth