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Tuesday, May 10, 2011

The Clink

I tend to go for the unusual - it's what makes life interesting. I'll go to a place where the temperature is 30 below just to see some snow sculptures. I'll opt to spend a weekend at a quiet monastery instead of at a luxury hotel. I'll even seek out fake train platforms - why not. So when I heard about this hostel in London, I had to stay there.

Clink78 was originally a courthouse, with a few holding cells in the basement. They've converted it into a hostel & you can still stay in the holding cells if you really want to. I chose to stay in one of the dorms instead, which cost me 85 pounds for four nights (about US $140). The word "clink" apparently comes from the original jailhouse in London located on Clink Street, where it is now a museum

The hostel still maintains some of the features of the original building, including the original layout of the courtroom, complete with plaques denoting the witness stand & the prosecutor's table. If you're feeling authoritative, you can sit in the judge's chair to check your email.

All the major tourist attractions are within walking distance of Clink78, & the hostel is just a five minute walk to Kings Cross station, where you can pick up the London Underground or a train to destinations beyond. There's even a travel shop in the hostel where you can book bike tours of the city or a day trip to Stonehenge.

One of the days I was there, I hooked up with one of my dorm mates & we walked all around the city being tourists together. It was really nice to have a travel buddy for the day, which I would have missed out on had I stayed in a hotel.

Internet cafe
Dorm room

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