Mon 25 Jun 12 - Thu 31 May 12
On Tuesday morning, I arrived in London, England. Once I got off the plane, it was raining, as I expected, but that did not matter because this was my first stop on my much-anticipated trip around the world. Ever since I was a little girl, London had always interested me so much and I wanted to visit, and I was so happy that I was finally there! First thing, I stopped off at my hotel, the Space Apart Hotel, a furnished studio apartment with a kitchen, living space and luxury bathroom, as well as free internet and a LCD/plasma TV. I am staying at this hotel for 3 nights, and the cost is $562 CAD.
After stopping off at my hotel, I wanted to see as much of the city as I could, so instead of going around the city by myself, I joined a bike tour. The tour that I went on was the Breakaway Bike Tour - Grand London. For only £20 or $32 CAD, I got to see many of the famous landmarks in London. The first stop we made was Buckingham palace, where we watched that changing of the guards. The changing of the guards was so cool to see, I loved watching the traditional British military display. After watching the changing of the guards, we went to the London Eye and it was AMAZING! The London Eye is basically a huge ferris wheel, and when you're in it, you can see the whole city from a different perspective. You can see Buckingham palace, big Ben, the parliament building and many other landmarks. Seeing the city from so high up was an amazing experience and I am so glad I got to see it! I also got to see Big Ben, one of the biggest clocks in the world, Westminster Abbey, home to many royal wedding, including Prince William and Kate’s, and St. Paul’s Cathedral, an impressive cathedral built in the 1600's. On the Tour, we also visited the houses of parliament, Downing Street, Trafalgar square, the covenant garden, Millennium Bridge and many other sites. The bike tour was a fun and different way to sight see and I am glad that I got to see everything that I did!
On Wednesday morning, I made my way to the Warner Brothers Studio Tour, which is a behind the scenes tour of the making of harry potter. As a huge fan of harry potter for more than 10 years, this was something that I had to do while in London and I was very excited! Although admission was kind of expensive, £28.00 or about $45 CAD, it was worth the money. On the tour, you can visit real sets from the harry potter movies, like the great hall, Dumbledore’s office, diagon alley, the Gryffindor common room and many other memorable sets. The Studio also has many props, including the nimbus 2000 and Hagrid's motorcycle, among others. It was such an amazing experience to see all the things that I’ve read about and seen in the movies in real life, it was as if I was actually at Hogwarts, living in harry potters world.
After this, I headed to the tower of London, a more traditional site in London. For only £20.90 or $33.50 CAD, I see some amazing artifacts from the British monarchy and British history. The Tower of London is a historical tower that holds the crown jewels, the prison cell of Sir Walter Raleigh, and the Chapel of St. John and the Royal Armories. It was so interesting to see so much history in one place
Yesterday, I decided to visit the natural history museum, a world famous museum. Admission was free, but I would have been willing to pay a lot to visit this museum, there was so much to see! The dinosaur exhibit was amazing; it was both fun and informative. Some of the other exhibits include animals, insects, birds and human biology. The animal collection is amazing and so many species were represented in this museum. One room even had the world’s biggest animals, there were elephants, giraffes, hippos and whales, and it was quite spectacular! There is also an area about natural forces and the earth, as well as their Darwin Centre and the Wildlife Garden. The Natural History museum was an amazing place to go, with so much to see, my only problem with it was that I did not get to see everything that I wanted.
I spent my last evening in London is the St. James Park, the oldest royal park in London. The park was so beautiful, with amazing flowers and trees that are so colourful and the statues are lovely. The lake, the main feature of the park is so beautiful and is home to ducks, geese, swans and pelicans, as well as a multitude of fish. At the park, I sat down on one of the benches for a while where I just appreciated the beauty of the oar, and then I followed one of the walking paths and there was so much more to see! I even fed a squirrel, which is something that I would have never done, but all the locals were doing it and it seemed like such an amazing experience. The park is located in the heart of the city, but it is so open and natural that you forget you're in the city. From the park, you can see Westminster Abbey and Buckingham Palace. The park was so beautiful; I would definitely go back if I had the chance.
Today I am leaving London, and it is a bittersweet moment because I hate to leave the city, but I am so excited for my next stop, the Swiss Alps!
easyJet LGW 7:10a → ZRH 9:55a 1h 45m nonstop
total cost: $764.5