Our second day in London dawned bright and clear, with only a slight chill in the air. For London weather, it was absolutely perfect, and I was thrilled that I had planned for our morning to be spent on a walking tour through the city. Per the recommendation of friends and our guidebook, we decided on the company London Walks and chose the This is London – Flash! Bang! Lightening Highlights Tour! to get an overview of the city and see a lot of sites quickly. Here’s an excerpt of the tour description from the website:
And so we come to the rem acu tetigiste moment: everything you want to see in the famous heart of London can be seen on foot in two hours! Seen better. Seen up close. Seen round behind. Because we can go where the buses can’t. Seen better. Guided better. Fraction of the cost. So, hey ho and off we go – off to see all the classic sights in the heart of London. Tick ’em off: the Houses of Parliament, Westminster Abbey, Buckingham Palace, St. James’s Palace, the quintessential Royal Park, classy St. James’s, the Mall, Trafalgar Square, Admiralty Arch, Birdcage Walk, Queen Anne’s Gate, you name it. They’re all here – all the London pearls.
The tour started at the Westminster Abbey tube stop, right across from the Elizabeth Tower, the structure that houses Big Ben (as our guide reminded us, “Ben is not the clock, not the tower, but the bell that tolls the hour“). Thanks to the marvelous efficiency of the London Tube, we arrived 20 minutes early and had plenty of time to walk around a bit and take some pictures.
(Warning: what you are about to experience, some might consider picture overload. If you and your internet connection are up for viewing tons of vacation pictures, please continue after the jump.) Continue reading