Friday, June 17, 2011

London - Day 2

Hello from the south of England! Hope you are all well and not missing us :P

Day 2 in London we did a lot of sightseeing, to take advantage of our London pass.

Gaffa practicing being a Guitar Hero

First stop was the Design Museum. It was quite small but there were some pretty cool exhibits. Reminded me of Art Express exhibit that they do in Sydney. Gaffa got carried away with the PRO guitar hero….

at the top of St. Paul's Cathedral

Next we went to St. Paul’s Cathedral. This was the first cathedral/church we visited and it was amazing! There was about 500+ stairs to the top viewing area, but it was well worth it. The architecture inside was just spectacular. We sat down and just looked up and stared….

St. Paul's Cathedral

It was now time for lunch. We walked through Hyde Park and found a carousel and thought it would be fun to go for a ride first. There were 2 horses next to each other called Marcus and Harry, which are the names of Gaffa’s nephew and brother-in-law. 

Riding Marcus and Harry

Then we headed to the Orangery for High Tea. We were lucky, as it just started raining. The afternoon tea consisted of sandwiches, a massive scone, and a couple of sweets – a lemon tart and a chocolate cake. Everything was so fresh and very filling. The scone came with real clotted cream and yummy jam. With the London Pass we got a deal for 25GBP for the two of us for High Tea.

The Orangery
High Tea - yum yum

Next we went into Kensington Palace. The rooms in the palace were transformed into the Enchanted Palace, to show the 7 princesses that lived in the palace. Each room told the story of a princess. We weren’t allowed to take photos inside, which was a shame, since it was pretty cool being inside the palace where all these princesses lived and grew up like Princess Diana, Mary, Victoria…

The garden at Kensington Palace

Afterwards we walked through the rest of Hyde Park and down to Royal Albert Hall. We waited for the next tour, which I highly recommend. You get taken through to the main performance hall, and they were rehearsing for Strictly Gershwin which opened the next night. It was absolutely amazing to watch. We sat and watched it in the box that was owned by Earl Spencer – Princess Diana’s brother. We also went past the Queen’s box, which gets the best sound in the whole hall. The Queen also has her own entrance, and a private entertaining area, where she meets all the performers from the show. Gaffa and I sat down on the seats, but we weren’t supposed to. The guide made a joke that they were only for Queens. LOL. 

Royal Albert Hall

Next we went to Buckingham Palace. The changing of the guard’s is on every day at 11.30am which we missed. We saw the Queen’s guard’s (the Grenadiers – the soldier’s with the big black furry hats!) walking from Buckingham Palace towards Horseguard’s Parade so we decided to follow them and march beside them – I even got a photo with them! Gaffa had an interesting conversation with one of the guards while walking through Green Park. They are really highly regarded soldiers that spend a lot of time defending Queen and country overseas, some with multiple tours in Afghanistan, Iraq, Bosnia and Serbia, which is why they have all those shiny medals. They also must have unblemished military records to serve the Queen at Buckingham Palace. Very interesting conversation indeed. 

The gates to Buckingham Palace
The guards marching out

Dinner time next! We walked back through the park to the Hard Rock CafĂ©. The London Pass gave us a free chocolate sundae with every main meal that we ordered. We got a table quickly as the counter seats that look into the kitchen were free. Gaffa had one of their famous burgers and I had a pork sandwich. Food was nice and fairly well priced. The free dessert and some coktails topped off our dinner. We then went to the merchandise store and did a tour of the vault which housed guitars and memorabilia of the great musicians.

At Hard Rock Cafe, London

It wasn’t entirely dark outside yet so we wandered to Wellington Arch to get some photos at dusk. 

Wellington Arch

Another long day touring around London! Back to the hostel we went and crashed into bed straight away. 

1 comment:

  1. Those pictures are beautiful!!! Especially the first one.. A very good destination too......
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