In the fall of 2011, my parents and I set out on a whirlwind European adventure. We each took a backpack stuffed to the brim for our 8 day trip across three very popular cities - London, Paris, and Rome. This was a pretty impressive feat for us. We really owe a special thanks to our Paris hostess, Mary, for the suggestion. It truly made traveling from place to place so much easier!
We began our journey on an evening flight out of JFK in New York on October 12. Upon our 7am arrival at London's Heathrow, we survived customs and made our way to the tube. The ride was super long, but we finally made it to our hotel near the King's Cross station.
The hotel was great....very spacious with a friendly staff. After we got settled into our room, we headed to our first stop of the trip - the Globe Theater. We went on a very interesting tour there. They were doing some repairs to the stage area during our visit though.
Next up was the London Bridge experience, which was one we all wished we had skipped out on. It was basically a haunted house. If only we had known! After being scared senseless there, we headed over to the Tower of London. The bridge is gorgeous and made for some great pictures. We caught a portion of a tour at the Tower and explored a bit on our own.
Then we took a ride down the Thames on a boat cruise. Dad wanted a picture with the London Bridge. Good thing it didn't fall down when we were cruising under it!
The boat cruise ended at the London Eye. We intended to take a ride on it that evening, but it was closed for a private event. We decided we had probably done enough for one day and headed back to our hotel instead. We stopped in a nearby pub - McGlynn's - for fish and chips. Oddly enough, they served it with a side of peas...who knew?
The next morning, we had an interesting breakfast at the hotel. Dad learned that bacon didn't mean the same thing in England as it did in America. After that adventure, we headed off to visit St. Paul's Cathedral. It has a stunning exterior!
We stumbled across a phone booth as we headed back toward the London Eye for a twirl in the sky. There was a little fair going on there where I couldn't resist an elegantly decorated British cupcake.
The London Eye was fun. Our map told us exactly what we were seeing in each direction. We saw Cleopatra's Needle, Charing Cross Station, Big Ben and the Houses of Parliment, and even the arch over Wembley Stadium. It was fun relaxing in our little pod and taking lots of photos.
We took a quick lunch break at McDonald's after the London Eye. Dad really enjoyed it!
We also saw a HUGE penguin statue outside a nearby aquarium. I love penguins so I just had to stop for a picture!
We got an up close look at Big Ben before heading over to Westminster Abbey...just before it closed :( We were crushed. Luckily, there was an evensong service so we stuck around for it. It was much different than anything I had ever attended, but it was interesting.
That night, we made our way through the British Museum. The Rosetta Stone and Elgin Marbles were two highlights. Mom loved the mummy exhibit, too!
After another round of fish and chips, we briefly looked around Piccadilly Circus before heading back to our hotel for the night.
We needed lots of rest because we would be departing for the second leg of our journey in the morning! Check back next week to see our adventures in Paris...
Linking up with Helene today!