Europe 2008 Trip - London, Day 3

Day 3 (Saturday) was our last full day in London, and the weather started to turn cold and windy. This would be the trend for the next 5 days or so in the UK and western Europe, with a high likelihood of snow in many of those parts. After a quick pastry breakfast and coffee near our Underground stop, we headed down to the Tower of London to explore the castle and take advantage of the free Yeoman / Beefeater tour.

Dave and Lisa outside Tower of London

We arrived early as planned and walked onto the grounds before the crowds started building up (remember, this was the Saturday between Good Friday and Easter) and proceeded directly to the crown jewels. This was probably a good idea as we saw how long the lines must get there when crowded - it was nice to be able to zoom through the switchbacks and get right to the good stuff. Some big diamonds in there, but more impressive was the vast collection of medieval weaponry and armor.

Matthew prepares to steal the crown jewels

Unfortunately Jacob started turning ill that morning and as the time came to depart for our Beatles walking tour, Julie and Jacob opted to stay behind and explore the torture exhibits a bit more then return to our hotel room. Dave, Lisa, Matthew and I then raced across town to try and join the London Walks - Beatles In My Life Walk with guide Richard Porter. I've done London Walks twice - once in 1990 as a pub crawl, and now in 2008, and I highly recommend them for the value and experience. We were very fortunate as we arrived at the station 15 minutes late but caught the group just as they were leaving.

Our Beatles walk tour guide

We saw a number of great sites, though none were visually recognizable to me other than the final stop at Abbey Road Studios. Of course I took the obligatory photograph. Matthew decided to keep his shoes on.

Abbey Road baby!

Our final touring destination of the day was to walk in the Westminster, Buckingham Palace, and Whitehall area to take in some of the famous buildings and pound the pavement a bit.

Statue near Buckingham

The weather was getting very blustery by now so on the Whitehall portion of the walk we stopped into a book store with a nice coffee cafe inside and had some giant cappuccinos and hot chocolates along with a much needed foot rest.

Matthew with the guard

We left Jacob in the room for our dinner Saturday evening with Mikael Sheik (of SpielByWeb fame) and his wife Phyllis. We opted once again for Indian food close to home in Bloomsbury. While the food wasn't as good as the night before, the company was outstanding and we enjoyed catching up and learning more about living in London.

With Mikael and Phyllis

We retired early Saturday night to pack and prepare for our early morning Eurostar ride into Belgium.