London – Day 6

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I’m back with another London post! This was our second to last day in London, and we still had so many places and attractions to check off our list. Everyone says you can’t do everything in London on your first visit, and I totally took that as a challenge, but as much as I hate to admit it, they’re totally right. London is one of those cities that it probably doesn’t matter how many times you visit, you’ll never be able to see everything there is to see. But that’s also what makes it such a fun place to visit!

We got up early to make sure we got to St. Paul’s Cathedral before the major rush of tourists. And finally we did the right thing! We arrived not long after it opened – tickets to St. Paul’s includes an audio guide (which is lovely), entry to the cathedral floor, crypt, and the three gallery domes (lots of steps, including winding ones, so be prepared for that). The Whispering Gallery is currently closed, and according to their website, it likely will be through December of 2019.

These photos don’t do justice to how beautiful the cathedral really is. It’s lovely to sit and take in the intricate designs. I think that’s what impresses me the most when looking at these historic buildings – I find it absolutely amazing that people hundreds of years ago could create such delicate details without the type of technology we have.

We waited in line a bit for access to the galleries. They’ll warn you that there are over 500 steps to the top, and it’s honestly an intense workout…I was definitely out of breath by the time we got to the top. But the view of London from the top was worth it!

The Shard, which we visited the day before, in the distance.

Black Jumpsuit | White T-shirt, old (similar) | Cargo Jacket, old (similar) | Straw Crossbody

I’m not sure that I could’ve piled anything else around my neck or on my body 🙂 But if you’re visiting St. Paul’s, the audio guide, like most of the guides in London, was extremely informative. Also, the jumpsuit I have on is one of the best purchases I’ve ever made! It’s great for comfy sightseeing and walking (minus the whole bathroom fiasco that comes with jumpsuits…). I had purchased this in March, but it’s back in stock (a link is in the above caption) and it now comes in gray and camo (which I also may have purchased).

From St. Paul’s, we made the long trek to Buckingham Palace. Again. We checked the website this time to make sure the Changing of the Guard was happening…and y’all, we for real waited again for nothing to happen. John finally asked an officer if anything was going on and she let us know that it wasn’t until 4 that day. We couldn’t believe it!

We were getting a big hungry at this point, and John wanted to visit another pub, so we stopped in at Buckingham Arms.

The kitchen wasn’t open until noon, so we grabbed drinks (mine was not good…I asked for the Beefeater Blood Orange gin and tonic, but it wasn’t the same drink I had from another pub, unfortunately) and a little sausage pastry to share.

For a meal, John ordered the bangers and mash. I wasn’t super hungry, so I chose the honey and wholegrain mustard sausages from the snacks menu which were pretty delicious!

Westminster Abbey was next on our itinerary because they close a bit earlier than other tourist sights (this was also included with our London Pass). We were prepared for a crowd, and we did, in fact, wait in a pretty long line to get in. Pictures aren’t allowed inside the Abbey, so I don’t have anything to share beyond the exterior. But trust me, if you’re visiting London, the Abbey is a place you need to visit. It. Is. Gorgeous. And like most of London, there’s so much history inside!

After Westminster…you guessed it! Back to Buckingham! And FINALLY we saw something! I don’t think this was the normal Changing of the Guard, but at least we got to see something.

Since we were still in the Westminster area, we decided to take advantage of the boat ride included in our London Pass. This boat was taking us from Westminster Pier to Tower Pier. This is another activity that I wouldn’t have paid for without it being covered in our pass. It was an enjoyable way to see London, but it took so long to unload and load passengers, and it really wasn’t a long ride.

Also included with the London Pass was a discount on a Jack the Ripper walking tour, so after our boat ride we had some time to kill before meeting up with our guide and group. When we disembarked at Tower Pier, we walked along the river for a bit. One thing I recommend is to take some time to just walk in London. We didn’t really do that, and I think we missed out on relaxing and just seeing.

And if you’re in this area, you should totally make reservations at Coppa Club because it is SO CUTE. We didn’t get to hang out or eat there, so I can’t comment on the quality of their food, but they have the most adorable terrace with “surfer shacks” (or igloos in the winter). Ideal for the perfect Instagram picture.

Instead, we walked to the hip little area at St. Katherine Docks, which was yet another cute place that I would’ve enjoyed spending more time.

John chose Strada for a snack and a drink. We split a flatbread and a bowl of zucchini (and as I’m writing this, I realize what a weird combo that is 😂). My favorite was the lemon spritz – limoncello, Prosecco, and limonata – an absolutely perfect summer drink!

To cap off the day, we met up with our walking tour guide and learned a bit about Jack the Ripper and his history with the city. This was another enjoyable activity which led us to a part of London that we hadn’t explored yet.

Below is part of the original Roman Wall that surrounded the City of London dating back to the 2nd or 3rd century! In addition to seeing some of the sights that are related to Jack the Ripper, our guide also explained the numerous theories about who Jack the Ripper really was. It was definitely an interesting and dark tour, especially for only £8!

If you’ve been to London, what were your favorite parts of St. Paul’s Cathedral, Buckingham Palace, or Westminster Abbey? If you’re planning to visit London, are these sights on your must-do list? As always, let me know in the comments! I love hearing about other people’s trips and experiences!

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