It took me some time to settle down in the new place. I was very happy that the place we moved to is just one hour travel to London.
When I was a child, I grew up hearing rhymes like “London Bridge is falling down” etc., and I always wondered how the city of London looks like.
The moment I landed in Manchester, I started comparing it with London, whether it looks similar to Manchester and so on. I wanted to go and see London even more. But one way or the other, my plans to visit London always got postponed.
After shifting to the new place, my husband surprised me by telling that this weekend we are off to London. I was so excited and my happiness knew no bounds.
It was a dream come true moment for me.
The day of our trip started with a disappointing note; a lot of trains to London were canceled. We were supposed to go by 9 am train but since it was canceled, we had to catch the train scheduled for 10 am and we got it, thank god.
We took a train from Northampton to London Euston.
While I was sitting in the train, I saw a man running beside the moving train on the platform, professing his love for his girlfriend, seated besides us, while she was capturing the moment on her mobile. It felt so romantic, and it was the same wonderful feeling that I had for the Journey which awaited me.
I enjoyed watching the beautiful green farms, houses, horses and sheeps as we zoomed by, and after about one hour I could see the historic arch of the Wembley Stadium afar as we neared London.
When I reached London, I had a deja vu of the time when I used to stay in Mumbai. London was not like Manchester or Liverpool at all. It buzzes with people, it’s crowded, with people having no time to stand and stare.
After reaching Euston by overground train, we headed to the Underground Station, which is conveniently below the National Rail stations. I got the London Tube oyster card which can be used on public transport for an unlimited period. One just have to top it up.
We took Victoria Line Tube and got off at Victoria Street.
When we came out of Victoria Street Station, we were welcomed by rains. As it usually happens on our trips. This time it was with a difference, it rained throughout the day.
As we walked towards Westminster Abbey, we saw Victoria Palace and shopping areas along the way.
An impressive cathedral close to Victoria Station, on the way to Westminster Abbey.
Loved the double Decker buses and the old telephone booths installed in every street and the tourists were taking pictures inside the booth.
I enjoyed the Westminster Abbey overall, but it is so crowded that you have no place to stand, admire and photograph it. Just remember to look around and enjoy the beauty. There is so much history and beauty in this place that I recommend going here.
There was a renovation work going on currently at the Big Ben, hence it was draped in construction materials. Surely missed watching it in full glory this time.
The London eye is a good way of knowing how big the City of London is. There was a long queue for the London Eye tickets, even on such a rainy and gloomy day; but they were very well organized. Once inside the London Eye capsule, we had a fantastic view of London. I wish they had a narrator who narrated what we’re looking at; first-time visitors like me don’t really know what we were looking at besides the obvious (e.g Parliament and Big Ben).
Birdseye view of London City
Lovely Poem “Upon Westminster Bridge”by William Wordsworth.
We went to Great Britain Fish and Chips restaurant, which is just beside the London Eye, for a quick lunch. As expected the restaurant is mostly full with hungry tourists, but they give a quick service, which makes it easier to get lunch without wasting too much time. It reminded me of a restaurant in Thane, where the owner impatiently glowers over the diners checking who is finishing up, before he can ask the next lot of hungry diners to occupy the tables. Not friendly but I guess it’s efficient. They serve not only fish and chips but burgers and sausages too. Good place to be for a quick bite when in a hurry to see other places, except that the tables were very close to each other and we were literally bumping elbows with another family, who probably were from Italy, sitting next to us.
After lunch, we had a beautiful stroll around the city with shopping areas, central hall, museums, cathedral and we slowly made our way towards St. James park.
St.James park is the oldest Royal Park in London. It was fun to hand feed the squirrels, who are bold enough to take food out of your hand.
There were beautiful floral displays, ponds, birds and trees in the city centre on the way to Buckingham palace. It is worth walking from Westminster to Buckingham Palace.
Buckingham Palace is absolutely stunning. The intricate detail on the huge gates was gorgeous and worthy of numerous photos. Due to rain, there were no guard changing ceremony. The Victoria statue in the center of the roundabout is a great place with a wide angle lens to get a picture of the entire front of the palace.
We then proceeded to the Green Street Underground station to catch tube from Jubilee line to proceed to London Bridge Station.
Had a glimpse of the famous Borough Market, an amazing food market dating back to the 13th century. My husband says that it reminded him of street eateries in Bentick street of Calcutta.
As we walked further, we saw the iconic tower bridge. I gazed at it in awe and wonder. Walked across it, and kept gazing back which is an unforgettable experience. Couldn’t believe it that this is the same bridge that I’ve seen on television and movies where many romantic films songs have been pictured.
We were planning to go further with our trip but have to wrap up the journey as our feet were tired. We have walked the whole rainy day without being able to sit anywhere because everything was soaked.
We then took the Northern Tube line back to Euston to catch our Overground train to Northampton. I felt so fulfilled after seeing London. I could not thank my Husband enough for this dream visit.
Awaiting our next trip to London to explore even more places, as surely in London there are so many more to see…