England Summer 2013, Part 4 – London


The kids wanted a really big day out.  So what bigger is there than to take them to London.

We’ve actually done this pretty much every year – Natural History Museum, Tower of London, Science Museum, etc.

This time though – Aquarium, London Dungeons, Trafalgar Square and Buckingham Palace.First up, we had to actually get upto London.  Which means going on the train.  The kids don’t often get to do that, so they were pretty excited 🙂

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Of course, only 40 minutes later, the kids were starving, busting for the toilet and bored!  They’re little darlings..grrr.

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I hate London stations – the toilets charge 30p per person.  Thats totally ridiculous.  I understand there are a lot of people and they need to pay for cleaners and whathaveyou, but 30p per person.  Bugger that – I paid 30p for me and the kids ducked under the barrier.   Later on, I didn’t even bother for myself and sent the kids in together!

Once they were happy again, we fuelled up and walked down to St James Park to have a little picnic lunch.  Being a nosey people watcher, that bit was a highlight for me!  Henry and Ella scoffed their terribly unhealthy lunch and went off to chase squirrels.

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We walked down through St James Park, down Birdcage Walk towards Parliament Square, Westminster Abbey and The Houses of Parliament.

There were so many tourists it was like an invasion – crawling over everything like ants – I’ve never seen anything quite like it.

We had a little tourist moment ourselves, getting some traditional photos of the Houses of Parliament and Big Ben and the London Eye.

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The Aquarium – SeaLife Centre – was very cool.  We had a little wait in the queue to get in, and once I’d gotten over the shock at the cost, we had a great time.  The vast shark tank was a particular highlight.   When you first get in, you have to walk over it.  Scared of walking on glass and over sharks?  Then I suggest you ask about an alternative way in!!

The kids loved it and had a great time exploring and pointing out sharks and Nemo fish etc.

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Then we made a bit of a mistake.  Having already purchased tickets for the London Dungeon, we went off to get in only to discover there was a 2 hour queue.  Holy cow!   I didn’t want to waste the ridiculous amount of money we’d already spent and the kids were ‘happy’ to wait to get in.

So we queued.  And waited and waited.

And then it rained.

I got very wet, as did most people.

Eventually we got in and it was pretty good, but about 1/2 way round Henry decided he’d had enough and we asked to get out, which the very helpful staff duly obliged.  It’s all interactive in there with each room having actors from the various historical scenes that were being depicted, from Tower of London torture chambers to Sweeny Todd’s barber shop.  Given how few people could move through the place, it’s not surprising that there was a 2 hour wait.  I can’t help think they have misjudged the design a little, given how popular it is.

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Eventually, we got out and led a pale Henry into the light and in search of a drink.

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The view down the Thames from Hungerford Bridge.  London Eye, Houses of Parliament and Big Ben – nice view.

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We wandered up to Trafalgar Square in search of a cafe

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The modern conversation.

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After a quick drink, we walked under Admiralty Arch and up The Mall towards Buckingham Palace.

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We stopped off outside Buck House for a little nosey at Liz’s Pad before going back to the station and home again.  We must have walked about 5 miles that day and the kids were worn out and very glad to be heading home.

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2 Comments on “England Summer 2013, Part 4 – London

  1. *Loving* your posts Charlie! Making me very very “homesick” though, though that’s not hard at the moment considering the other half is extremely homesick at the moment too!

    I simply love London, I love how you can get lost in it, I love how you be so different that you’d stand out anywhere else but in London, you just seem to blend right in and no one really pays you any attention – I love that, surrounded by people but yet anonymous at the same time.

    And English train stations – there’s no real comparisons with the Mandurah line stations now is there?

    x

    Like

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