Zing! I only went to this city called Hull because my friend Manny from UL just happened to be there for some testing for work, so I thought it would be great to meet up while I could.
Having never heard of it, I wasn't expecting much. But it was pleasantly surprising.
It's located a few hours south of Edinburgh, very close to the North Sea, on the River Humber (you get a million bucks if you've heard of that before). Maybe 100,000 people live there.
Hull was about 95% destroyed during WWII during German air raids, second to only London in quantity of bombs dropped, due to it's close proximity to Germany. So lots of the buildings are relatively new as a result. However, somehow, the city center still has a good chunk of pretty ancient streets and buildings (ancient by US standards). It is divided into the old town and the new town. The old town has lots of narrow, brick lined streets with a very distinct architectural style. A few large cathedrals are there as well (who doesn't love a good Cathedral, gotta thank the Church for always being so filthy rich throughout history and creating nice architecturally interesting tourist sights that still stand today).
The city has a really good Maritime museum which I went to. Hull was the center of the whaling industry for the UK starting in the mid 1700s and lasting until the mid-late 1800s. There was a huge demand in the UK for the oil from whale blubber for oil lamps and preparation of leathers and cloths. The demand peaked in the early 1800s as they whaling fleets sailed all the way up to Greenland to haul in right whales. Thankfully they stopped, but of course now many of these whale populations are nearly extinct. The large fishing fleet from hull was also used in WWII, to do things like sweeping for bombs.
Other than that, the city center was really bustling during the day. At 6pm though, it was completely desolate and all I could find was a Mcdonalds and Pizza Hut open for dinner! I had to subject myself to my first McDonalds meal in 3.5 months. I went with the festive burger....and a mince pie (not a mincemeat pie, just mince).
Manny's first fish and chips. The fish was actually fresh, so he was able to complain about too many bones. In a normal fish and chip shop with crappy fish, there are no bones. And the green stuff is 'mushy peas', which were actually quite good. Though they probably just loaded them up with butter and salt:
Arcade full of small shops:
One of the older streets in Hull:
One of the largest Cathedrals in the UK:
Mmmmmmm Brussel Sprouts, carrots, jacket potato with gravy, and a meat pie. Doesn't get any heartier than that!
Newer street in City Center:
Manny enjoying his first English beefy dish: