Friday, September 23, 2011

All Aboard!

It turns out we weren't the only ones going to see the queen. If this is what watching the changing of the guard is like in the off season I would hate to be there when it was busy.

After Buckingham Palace we walked through St. James Park to the Churchill War Rooms. This ended up being my favourite tourist attraction in London! It was fascinating to snake our way through the underground space that comprised the Cabinet War Rooms during World War 2. History literally oozed out of the walls as different audio clips played, and the personal audio guides we were issued when we started the tour were excellent. To see where the decisions that eventually led to Hitler's defeat were actually made brought this period of history to life. If you visit London I highly recommend adding this to your list of things to see.

The British Museum was next on our list. Before I left Karsten's recommendation for The three days I was going to be in London was to spend 2 1/2 days at the British Museum and do everything else in the other half day. Now I see what he meant. There is so much to see at the British Museum I think you could spend a month there and not scratch the surface. The inset picture is the Rosetta Stone, perhaps the most famous item within the walls of the museum.

We then took a taxi to King's Cross Railway Station in search of Platform 9 3/4. When I told the taxi driver that was where we were headed he informed us that if we went Into the station we would find all the platforms there. Clearly he was a Muggle.

I am almost embarrassed to admit this next part, but we went back to Jamie Oliver's restaurant again. Oh my. Wild boar sausages might be my new favourite food!

We closed out the day with a concert. The London Bach Singers were performing at St. Martins in the Field Church, and tickets were very reasonably priced. We ended up sitting in a box next to a lady from Scotland who - get this - has never heard of the place where we are going walking. This makes me nervous. Plus, the minute you mention to anyone here you are going to Scotland to hike they get this particular look on their face, often followed with some comment about how they hope you have appropriate clothing. Again, it's rather unsettling. Oh well. There's no turning back now!


  1. My son Tom and girlfriend Wendy are camping and hiking in Scotland this coming week ... who knows, your paths may cross! Oh, and I'd take issue with Karsten ... 1 1/2 days for the British Museum, a day for the V&A, and 1/2 a day for everything else ;D

  2. The War Rooms was my favorite visit in London. Worth every pound.

  3. So glad you're having a good time!

    Whenever I get around to visiting the UK, I'll know what itinerary to follow!

  4. I love the war rooms! A few years ago, we were at a meeting in Edinburgh, took the train to London and had tomato soup for Thanksgiving dinner at the canteen in the Churchill war rooms! Probably the most memorable Thanksgiving of my life. And it made me really Thankful, too.....

    Barbara M.

  5. I love visiting historical sites--much to my kids dismay. I get a reverential feeling knowing that I'm standing in a spot that's historically significant. I know every spot has a history (I'd love to have a pair of glasses I could set to a certain date and see what happened in that space on that date), but knowing what happened there makes it so special. But I probably shouldn;t have taken my kids to Bloody Lane (Antietam).

    I think I would have gone back to Oliver's again too--there was still lots to explore on the menu.

    Good luck in Scotland. =)