Staycation excursion.

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Yesterday I took a day to head in to the city and check out some of the sites that I haven’t had the chance to explore yet and revisit some that I couldn’t enjoy because I was sick when I first arrived.

First on the list of things to see was the changing of the guard at Buckingham Palace. I’ve seen the palace on TV but walking up the Mall towards it is something to see. I had another goosebumps moment. For some interesting facts about the Palace click here.

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OMG there we soooooooooo many people. One thing that still gets me every time I head out is the sheer number of people there are in this city, the Tube in peak hour just blows my mind and the city center on a weekend, forget about it. The grounds in front of the Palace were covered in tourists all vying for a spot from where they could see the changing of the guard.

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Next time I go or for any of you planning to go, I suggest you get there much earlier. The ceremony is at 11.30am and although we were 45 minutes early there were already no spots left at the front. Pack a breakfast and get there first thing in the morning if you want a good spot. Fortunately there were a lot of short people in front of me and quite a few people left early which allowed me to creep towards the front.

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I was struck yet again by all the people with their phones and cameras and especially by the young children with iPads and smart phones. Many of the people there would have travelled across the world to see the Pomp and ceremony and yet experienced the whole thing through a camera screen. Put the cameras down people!

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Next up was a walk through St James Park and then over to Westminster and The Houses of Parliament. Big Ben on it’s own is impressive but not as big as I was expecting. It wasn’t until I crossed the river and saw the whole complex from the far side of the Thames that it’s full splendor was revealed.

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SONY DSCThen it was up the south bank towards the Tate Britain. The Tate Britain is a collection of British Modern Art and houses some really beautiful work and a few pieces that left me thinking “seriously?” I felt a little ashamed that the thing that intrigued me the most was the spiral staircase just inside the entrance.

So I can cross a few more things off my list this week. Next I am thinking about heading down to Monument and doing the climb to the top and checking out the Poppies at the Tower of London.

 

7 thoughts on “Staycation excursion.

  • August 14, 2014 at 1:32 pm
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    August is one of the busiest months for London, because of all the people holidaying. That said, it seems as though there is no longer a quiet month, not even in the depths of winter!

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  • August 14, 2014 at 2:01 pm
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    Thank you Shannon for sharing these cool pics with us!

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  • August 14, 2014 at 9:52 pm
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    changing the guard is far far less busy at Horse Guards on Whitehall, it’s possible to get touching close to the guard (they’re on horses too). From Buck House walk back down the Mall, do a quick stop off at St James Palace on the left (usually guards there too !). towards the end of the Mall off to the right is Horse Guards square, walk across it and through the arch to see either the Blues and Royals or Life Guards change the guard at 11.00am.

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  • August 15, 2014 at 1:17 am
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    Very cool! Glad you got out and about!

    As for me, despite a total of 4 weeks of holiday in England, I have yet to see any touristy sights except Windsor Castle!

    Peace <3
    Jay

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  • August 16, 2014 at 3:40 am
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    From your pictures Shannon. Looks like you have a beautiful August day in London. Also you your staycation wasn’t so bad. I could handle a staycation like that.

    Have fun exploring London. I wish I was there.

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  • August 19, 2014 at 9:37 pm
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    The Tate has the most amazing collection, and my favorites are the large and masterful portraits done by John Singer Sargent of Asher Wertheimer and (especially) Lord Ribblesdale. The latter, an icon of the Gilded Age/Belle Epoque, has to be the most casually elegant and commanding portrayal of a man I have ever seen. If you didn’t catch these, go back, or at least pull them up on Google images.

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  • August 19, 2014 at 9:44 pm
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    Opps-I just noticed that they apparently transferred Ribblesdale to the National Gallery and left Wertheimer in the Tate.

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