London Day 9 – The last day – Saturday, August 23, 2014

Itinerary: St. Paul’s Cathedral, Tower Bridge, Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park, Tate-to-Tate River Boat.

When we visited St. Paul’s it was on a Sunday and we could not take the tour. There are no tours on Sunday when there are mass services.

Victoria and I took the tour while Stefan and Daniela slept in. We got there right when the cathedral opened at 8:30 am. There are no photos allowed but here is a nice exterior shot.

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Inside there is a World War II Memorial in a chapel. They have a book with the names of the fallen soldiers and each morning they turn a page so every name gets a chance to be displayed.

We also went up to the Whispering Gallery. After climbing 257 steps I was dizzy and out of breath. (There is no elevator.) I had to sit down before I could go into the Whispering Gallery. As much as I wanted to climb higher to see the views of London from the very top, I was physically incapable. (Not to mention we were running out of time. We had plans to meet Stefan and Daniela at 11 am near The Tower of London.)

The Stone Gallery is 376 steps up from ground level, and The Golden Gallery is 528 steps up. I must get into shape so that next time I am in London I can climb to the very top and see the views. Perhaps start from the top and work my way down.

To see the Cathedral floor from the Whispering Gallery was both frightening and incredible. I was too scared to go to the edge so I peaked over from a safe distance back.

Victoria and I tried the whispering trick from opposite ends, but neither of us heard the other one. It does work in Grand Central Station in NYC though.

After meeting up with our friends we walked to Tower Bridge and on the way saw the volunteers installing the handmade ceramic poppies around The Tower of London. They blend in behind the trees because they are also wearing red. I love this photo I took. Great coloring and it mixes old and new (The Shard) buildings.

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London Day 3 – Sunday, August 17, 2014

Itinerary: East London – St. Paul’s Cathedral, St. Bride’s Church, Fleet Street, Blackfriars Bridge, Millennium Bridge, Shakespeare’s Globe, London Bridge, Tower of London, Jack the Ripper tour.

This was such a long, long, long day that I am going to do my best to summarize it as much as possible and just going into the highlights. I planned the day to start at St.Paul’s and by the evening end up at Tower Hill tube for the Jack the Ripper tour.

First there was weekend construction in the Underground and we had to figure out a new route to St.Paul’s Tube station. I really love the huge advertisements they have in the subways. I already saw The Rover and What If in NYC, but if we had more time I would have liked to see what the cinema experience is like in London. I am surprised Daniel’s movie was not titled The F word. I thought it was changed to What If only for the US market?

It’s Harry and Cedric across the hall from each other!

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