The Tower(s) of London

King's Cross/St. Pancras station
King’s Cross/St. Pancras station

Spent 3.5 days in London last week. If you are thinking that doesn’t sound like a long time, you’re right. Though unintentionally I stumbled upon the best means of international travel. Deprive yourself of sleep before you go, then stay up once you get there and you’ll be fine. The two nights before I left I got about 4 hours sleep each night and the little girl seated next to me on the redeye saw to it that I didn’t get much more sleep on the plane… but I digress.

I landed at Heathrow at 8am and was at my desk at work by noon. I came by way of King’s Cross station and saw the Harry Potter photo op set up outside. While it was tempting to take a photo with the luggage cart half in, half out of the wall at the false “Platform 9 3/4” I was turned off by the fact that it wasn’t inside the station. So I skipped it.

After work my fellow coworkers from the States asked if I wanted to join them on their walk around town. We headed past St Pancras station, the building is beautiful. It looks like they’ve also turned it into a hotel. We took the Tube to London Bridge and walked over to the Tower Bridge. On our way we passed a Firehouse and this gargoyle door that I liked so much I had to stop and take a photo.

Knock Knock
Knock Knock

 

London is a strange combination of ancient and modern. This all glass building reflected an all stone building next to it that was probably 200+ years it’s senior.

Old meets New in London
Old meets New in London

 

The bridge was quite stunning, I must have taken 50 photos of it. From further away the blue cable looked like ribbons. As I got closer it began to look like carnival lights.

Tower Bridge, London
Tower Bridge, London

 

From the bridge there are some great views of the city on either side of the Thames River. The most remarkable building on the skyline is called “the Gherkin.” It’s an appropriate name for the giant pickle shaped building. As those of you who know how I feel about pickles can attest, I am not fond of them in the slightest. However this building was still quite a site.

The Gherkin from the Tower Bridge
The Gherkin from the Tower Bridge

 

We then wandered over to the Tower of London. While it was closed, like everything else in town after 6pm, it still looked pretty spectacular from the outside. We only felt a couple of drops of rain on us during our walk but the rainbow that appeared afterwards was well worth it. It looked from our vantage point like the pot of gold was nestled at the top of one of the round tower buildings.

Tower gold at the end of the rainbow
Tower gold at the end of the rainbow

 

Another example of old snuggled up to new was the view of the City Hall building from the Tower. It’s the building in this photo that looks like a giant golf ball. Harry Potter fans will also note that this is the building where the humans watch the Death Eater clouds come out of the sky and fly across the Thames at the beginning of the 6th movie (Half Blood Prince).

Tower of London and City Hall (Golf Ball)
Tower of London and City Hall (Golf Ball)

 

From there we wandered off to find something to eat. Our journey took us to St Catherine’s docks… where poor people park their toy boats. (HA) There wasn’t a ship parked there worth less than 7 figures, and I can’t imagine how much it costs to dock there.

St Catherine's Dock
St Catherine's Dock

 

After dinner there were a couple more (blurry) photos of both towers. Then back to the underground to end my journey with a face plant into my hotel bed. I got a solid 10 hours sleep and when I woke up it was time for work and felt like it should be morning. No sign of jet lag.

Tower Bridge and Tower of London

This post only contains highlights, for the rest of the photos from this trip click here. Or browse below

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