We have returned from our wonderful 2 week trip to London & Paris so now its time for a trip report. Let me just say we had a fantastic time, lots of great food & memories made to last a lifetime.
Our Air France plane left Detroit Metro at 10:10pm for an overnight flight to Heathrow, London. I tried to sleep on the plane, even took an Ambien to help me sleep, but I probably dozed for about an hour all together. Just too much jet engine noise on a plane for me to sleep plus its hard to get comfortable in Economy class! The Ambien made me a little sick to my stomach too so I had to deal with that for about 2 hours of the flight. But we landed safely at 11:05 am London time & since I had already purchased Oyster cards, we were ready to get our luggage, go through customs & hit the Tube for central London. Next stop, Holborn...
We rented an apartment on Boswell Street which is about 3 or 4 blocks from Holborn Tube but the lady we rented from couldn't meet us until she got out of work so we had about 2.5 hours so we lugged our bags to Princess Louise pub where we spent an enjoyable time chatting with the barmaid Mimi. She recommended an ale for my husband & a flavored cider for me. We hung out at the bar for about an hour then went upstairs & split an order of Bangers & Mash for a late lunch. It was delish. Finally it was time to meet our apartment owner so we walked the short walk to Boswell St. Waited about 15 or 20 minutes more & finally were able to check into the apartment. It was exactly as pictured on the Home Away website & after a short explanation of how everything worked, we were one our own. We walked to the Sainsbury's Local and got a few groceries & some beverages then came back to the apartment to put everything away & relax on the balcony with a beverage. We ate dinner in our apartment that evening & went to bed since we were both pretty exhausted by then.
Our First Impressions of London -
Busy! People everywhere - in a big hurry and most don't seem too friendly.
Kind of old & dirty but some of the old buildings are very pretty.
Love how there are pubs all over. That should make finding food simpler.
Our First impressions of our apartment -
Very nice inside. The outside is older & kind of dirty looking. Appliances don't work the same as at home.
Day 2 in London we went to the Tower of London. I had purchased tickets in advance so no waiting. We saw the Crown Jewels first (beautiful doesn't quite describe them fully) then spent about 2 hours walking through the other buildings. We then walked across Tower Bridge and to Borough Market. By then it was lunch time so we looked around at all the wonderful goodies & settled on pasties, one chicken and one pork, plus an ale and a wine spritzer. Everything was delicous. We walked around a bit more, checking out the huge wheels of cheese, the pastries, etc then walked across London Bridge to St Pauls where we took the tour and finished by walking up to the Whispering Gallery. It was lovely. We then walked across Millennium Bridge and spent a little time in Tate Modern. I was disappointed in that. I thought there would be more art than there was. At that point, we were ready to head back to the apartment & find somewhere for supper. First we had a drink at The Queens Larder near our apartment & then went to a pub also near our apartment called The Lamb and split an order of fish & chips. It was delicious. We love London so far!
Day 3 is our day trip with London Walks to Bath. We met our guide Richard at Paddington Station at 9am. We enjoyed the 1.5 train ride to Bath (it was our first ever train ride) then we did a 2 hour guided walk through the city with Richard explaining architecture & history. It was very interesting. We took a break for lunch (Richard suggested several restaurants & we chose The Crystal Palace Pub where we had ales and a ham & cheese sandwich with a salad. It was good!