I meant to show you more pictures of Covent Garden, but before we got there on Day 5 of our trip to London in July, 2014, we went for an early morning walk from our hotel at The Trafalgar Hilton, situated right there in Trafalgar Square – so convenient! First we went across the road to Trafalgar Square to see the Blue Hen and the fountains – why not wake up to a hen in Central London? There’s nothing like it!
The National Gallery is a very impressive art museum, and it’s located bang in the middle of Trafalgar Square.
Look at this, you get Nelson’s Column, the lions, Big Ben and London Buses all in view! Oh, how I love London!
Here I am in Trafalgar Square in front of the Blue Hen.
What a fabulous place to take a walk, but then again – it’s nice to be walking anywhere in London.
Right there at Trafalgar Square is a beautiful church – St. Martin In The Fields. I’m not sure how it got this name as I don’t see any fields around – but I’m sure there’s a reason to the name. However, it is a beautiful church.
So, now…..we have made it across the Square to this beautiful church – St. Martin In The Fields.
This is not the main part of it, rather the pictures above show you what it looks like – I am including the one below because it is unusual to have such a structure – I do believe it’s the Crypt – and think it houses a cafe. Since it’s surrounded by such gorgeous architecture, I had to throw in this picture too.
I went inside this beautiful church. How I love to go into churches!
I saw quite a bit of the service, and joined in singing some of the hymns. It reminded me of my childhood when we used to sing hymns at my school – as part of our assemblies – most mornings in northern England.
Anyway, I still have more pictures from Day 5, and guess what? The next day is the last day of London before we headed up north to where my family lives. Still, I have many more pictures to share. Until then.
Day Three in London on July 25, 2014 started off in the Trafalgar Square area. I already showed you some pictures in my previous post Big Ben, Westminster Abbey and St. Margaret’s Church, however, I didn’t want to bore you with too many pictures along the way to Westminster, so now I can bore you in this post…..excuse my dry humor!
So let’s continue the journey! This is very close to our hotel in Trafalgar Square, and is on the corner of Whitehall and Charing Cross
Just a bit of London for you, with some Londoner’s of course!
Looking back at the Trafalgar Square area
55 Whitehall – Sherlock stood atop here in the “Empty Hearse”, so did James Bond 007 in “Skyfall”. This building now houses the Department for Energy and Climate Change
Talking of Sherlock, here’s a pub named after him and that is close by to Great Scotland Yard.
It is on the junction of Whitehall and Great Scotland Yard, which is pictured below
Some of my pictures are quite self-explanatory, so I won’t write the same info above them as the info is captioned on the picture. This building is right next to 55 Whitehall – it is the Ministry of Defence
And this picture will show you both 55 Whitehall and the Ministry of Defence in the same shot, as well The Clarence (restaurant)
Want to see the Duke of Cambridge (not the present one mind you) up closer?
I bet you didn’t know Whitehall was such an interesting place. It’s the area that houses a lot of the government departments and ministries, and of course the terrific Horse Guards Parade, which is a parade ground used for royal parades and ceremonies.
Please beware – the horses may kick or bite you!
This is the Old Admiralty Building at Horse Guards Parade
Wow, now they are all taking a picture of what I took a picture of before – the Ministry of Defence Building (sorry, I am spelling it the British way, Word Press wants me to put an “s” instead of a “c” in “Defence”, but right now I want to stick to the way I used to spell it while growing up in the UK).
I meant to share more pictures of Big Ben, St. Margaret’s Church, and Westminster Abbey, but I will have to share them with you the post after the next one.
London calls, and I’d love to come running, but sadness befalls me now as I can’t obey. Too bad. Well, I’ll just have to write about the rest of my day – Day Two in London which was July 24, 2014 – just over a month ago – and really my first full day. London has a power over me, I just went there, but I would like to be back there already….oh, well. Guess I’ll just have to be content looking back at my pictures.
Here is a picture taken at Trafalgar Square close by to our hotel
This man seems to fit right in this picture, I don’t think he was the one who vandalized the phone booth with graffiti though, I hope not!
Just a recap, we headed for Buckingham Palace through Green Park (pictures show in my post Enchanting London) and this is before we did that
Why would I not want to see the Ritz?
That night we ate in Chinatown, which is close to Leicester Square. Normally, I would have opted for Indian food as it is really great in England – where they are not afraid to add the spice, or for English food which is also superb, but my sister who we met up with this evening wanted to try Chinese food, and I’m so glad that we went to this restaurant – the Hong Kong Buffet – I will always remember how delicious the food was.
Do you know the food was extremely delicious at the Hong Kong Buffet? It was a good price too – only £9.95 per person, compared to what I paid one of the days in a restaurant in Covent Garden.
That’s my sister going into the restaurant with Chandi – my little girl.
Sorry about the half eaten food, I forgot to take a picture of it before it got to this stage, but better to show you something rather than nothing!
This picture is a little blurry, but I think it shows the atmosphere of Chinatown really well.
This is where we ate on our first night in London (yesterday evening) – I did not want to eat pizza, I can get Pizza Hut in the USA, but my kids wanted it, so I had to give in. Tonight, we walked right by it after our meal in Chinatown.
Right next to Pizza Hut in Leicester Square is Burger King – gladly, we did not go there on this trip, but I’m guilty of taking them there on a previous trip.
Okay, so this picture belonged higher up, but I wanted to put it next to the night-time picture of the same place – the National Gallery in Trafalgar Square. We walked past it many times during our five days there, both morning and night.
My computer is acting really weird right now, and going ever so slow, I guess I have overworked it with all of my pictures in I-Photo and I think I’m running low on memory. Anyway, time to go now and enjoy life here in San Diego! Have a great weekend!
Day 2 in London started off with a nice view from the hotel:
We explored the lobby area
Breakfast was included, and we were allowed one item from the menu as well as the continental breakfast. The menu offerings were English Breakfast, pancakes, waffles, Eggs Benedict and a few other items. Since this was our first full day, we just had to have English Breakfast, which consisted of baked beans, egg, bacon, sausage, grilled tomatoes, and black pudding (which I did not eat as this makes me feel a bit uneasy).
Here’s a view of our table, and then a view of the restaurant
Now to the outside which beckoned me with all its might.
We headed to Charing Cross Station and bought our travel passes – I was told it was best to buy Oyster Cards, that are basically tube and bus passes that you swipe for unlimited travel during a certain period of days. 2 adult Oyster 3 day passes were £60, that contained a £5 refundable deposit per pass – so the net cost was £50, plus £3.60 per day for my son’s travel pass. London certainly is not cheap for getting around or eating out, but it is well worth it. These passes can be used unlimited amounts per day and after you have used £8.60 or so up in a day, it won’t take any more from the balance off your card, so you can keep on taking more rides after you have maxed that amount out, and you won’t pay anything further – the key is to at least use it up to the value of £8.60 in that day. However, I think a single ride is about £2.70 or £3.30 or so, so it makes sense to get the Oyster Pass and you can use it on the red double decker buses (just not the Big Bus sightseeing buses).
Oh, the train is here!
So where to today? I thought we’d just wander around and might as well start off with Buckingham Palace. This involved taking the train to Green Park and then walking through the park to the Palace. We could have walked to Buckingham Palace from our hotel in Trafalgar Square, it would only have been a 12 minute walk or so.
Once we had come out of Green Park station, this is some of what we saw
I had always fancied going into the Ritz Hotel, this is a favorite hotel of the well-off, including celebrities and royalty. Therefore, my curiosity peaked and I could not resist going in.
I can just imagine Princess Diana being welcomed by this employee of the Ritz and then entering the hotel.
Here are some pictures taken in the hotel
Here I am at the Ritz
Last one of the Ritz
Better stay on track and get to Buckingham Palace – so we headed through Green Park. English parks are so beautiful, just how parks are supposed to be – with lakes, ducks, and lots of greenery. The parks in London are some of the best I’ve ever seen. People in London really make use of the parks, and frequent them often.
Here’s my little girl enjoying Green Park
Just a nice building I saw in Green Park
Here is that building again
Here’s an English Bobby (another word for police man) in Green Park
We have arrived at Buckingham Palace, every time I see this place – it feels like the first time, and that is how I feel about most of the places in London, they are special to me time and time again.
There’s me and Chandi with the blooming flowers of the Palace behind us
This memorial just opposite Buckingham Palace is another must-see and very popular with tourists
and yet one more of the Queen Victoria Memorial
Now, I will show you one last photo of Buckingham Palace
As we left Buckingham Palace and walked by one London’s many parks – St. James’s Park – so central, just like Green Park, and Hyde Park. We saw this memorial on the ground – I had to take a picture – I absolutely adored Princess Diana.
We continued on our walk until we got to a tube station that would take us to Westminster, and this is what we saw:
I take way too many pictures, and just think that each picture is unique in it’s own way. I don’t want to tire you with all my pictures of Buckingham Palace, and the Parks, but believe me….I have many more! However, I feel that you can get an insight into life in London – at least with the park pictures, as there are mostly local Londoner’s in the pictures who are on their lunch breaks, and just enjoying the beauty of what is around them. Next post, I will show you some more of what we saw today on Day 2 (which was our first full day in London).