Hello fellow travelers, here is a breakdown of my families latest trip to Europe.
We left Los Angeles on Thursday Sept. 29, arriving at Gatwick Airport at 2pm the following day. After getting through customs and collecting our tickets for the train, not the Gatwick Express, we ending up arriving in London and our apartment at 4:30pm. We used Airbnb for all of our stays, just as we did the last time, but we decided to stay in a different location (Notting Hill) this time while in London. The first day all we did was go to the market and grab things for breakfast and to make lunches. Afterward, my daughters and wife wanted to stay at the apartment and relax.
Oct 1. Our first official day, we had to change our plans because it was raining so instead of going to Portabello Market, we went to the Natural History Museum and the Victoria and Albert Museum. I was a bit disappointed with the Natural History Museum, finding it not as exciting as other Natural History Museums I've visited but the V&A was amazing. Everyone in my family loved that museum. Then we ended up going for afternoon tea at the Hilton Paddington which was nice. It wasn't anything super amazing but the food and deserts where good and it filled us up. Afterward, we took a break at the apartment. We then went to Harris for some shopping before heading to our first walking tour with London Walks, which was the ghost of old London. It was a very fun tour, not scary, and our tour guide was really good and very interactive.
Oct 2. On Sunday, we started our day with a walk through Hyde Park picking up some paintings and enjoying the Palace and gardens, but didn't enter the Palace. We then headed to the National Gallery where we spent about 2 hours before heading to Covent Garden for some shopping and lunch. Afterwards, we walked around Soho and Chinatown for awhile before going to Camden Lock Market. Both my wife and I enjoyed this market a lot more than Covent, which felt more touristy and Camden seemed like it had a lot more locals. After grabbing some more food and a few nicknacks, we headed back to the apartment for some rest before another night tour with London Walks. This time it was the Jack the Ripper walk which was very informative.
Oct 3. Monday we ended up doing a day tour at Windsor Castle. This was the 2nd time going but the first time going on our own. The first time we went was with a tour group so we had very little time to enjoy the castle. This time, we really got to see and do everything which made my wife very happy since she was a little upset the last time that we didn't get to see everything. Afterwards, we had dinner at one of the local pubs and made our way back to London.
Oct 4. Tuesday we started our day at St. Paul's, then we made our way across the Millennium Bridge and did Rick's South Bank walk. We had a late lunch at Borough Market and finished up the walk at the Tower of London. We had taken a tour of the Tower before so we this time we just enjoyed it from the outside. Then we headed back to the apartment for a break before going to the London Eye for some great views at night of London. Then it was time to get ready for our next stop, York.