As I stepped out of the airport the cold air licked my legs. This is not a place for shorts I thought to myself. Summer in London was nothing like the summer in the US and this destination, our last of three, was about 40 degrees colder. I’m just glad that at least I was the one who had checked the weather and packed jeans, unlike my unfortunate, tropical dressed family.
It was eight in the morning and we only had one and a half days to explore London, England’s finest attractions. So we freshened up, bought tickets to the Tube (London’s Underground) and headed into the capital with only a few hours of sleep and a map. We were ready for an adventure.
But first we needed to figure out which stop to get off at.
We had no idea where to go so we asked a group of Scottish people on the train. They were so kind and very helpful, even though they didn’t know exactly where to go either. They too were visitors and going back home from just seeing the Queen. Yes that’s right, we were sharing a train with people who were at an event that the Queen of England had attended. Anyways, without them we wouldn’t have gotten off at Westminster Station which was no more than a two minute walk to the London eye. But most remarkable was that Big Ben was right in our faces as soon as we got off the station. The first thing that popped into my head was “Wow… that’s a lot bigger than the pictures! There’s a reason why they call it Big Ben.”
After taking about a gazillion pictures with the two massive structures we got on The Big Bus hop on-hop off tour. I was actually on a real red double decker bus! The tour took us to the Ministry of Defense, Parliament, Buckingham Palace and everywhere else you could think of in London.
One of the stops the bus had taken us to was Trafalgar Square. There was a big festival called West End Live and it was absolutely amazing. There were Broadway singers, acrobats and giveaways, but the best part of it was that it was free. We saw Buckingham Palace and her majesty’s guards (and yes they did move!) The beautiful intricacy of the gates, sculptures and palace itself could take your breath away.
The tour bus also included several guided walks and being a major Harry Potter fan I had to do the Harry Potter film sightseeing walk. This walk led us through scenes of Harry Potter and where J.K Rowling’s inspirations came from. Ultimately, Piccadilly Circus won’t be just a busy square in the middle of London to me, but it will be where the famous three actors of Harry Potter walked about.
When making plans don’t forget to squeeze in a day of NO PLANS. Because sometimes things can be appreciated more when no one knew it was going to happen in the first place. My London Adventure was unforgettable; I only wish that I had more than one and a half days to continue it.
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