During our trip to London we stayed at Marine’s, a friend of ours, who lived in the popular neighborhood of Bermondsey, just a 10 minutes walk from the London Bridge. On our first day in town, we followed her advice and explored the surroundings on the way to the Tower of London. The neighborhood is very nice and its brick buildings architecture gives the impression of having gone back in time and exploring the 19th century London. After randomly wandering the streets, we passed under the Design Museum on Shad Thames to find ourselves finally on the banks of the Thames with the London Bridge on our left!
The view from the deck was beautiful and despite the horde of tourists taking hundreds of selfies, it was very nice to take a few minutes to admire the landscape. Immediately after the bridge, on the left, is the Tower of London, a fortress dating back to the Middle Ages where kings used to live. It’s quite weird to see this imposing medieval building mingle with modern skyscrapers offering a rather striking contrast. On the front yard of the fortress, thousands of red tulips were displayed in memory of the fallen soldiers during World War I, beautiful! Visiting the park sure made a big hole in our travel budget, but we have absolutely no regret and we highly recommend to visit it!
All kinds of attractions and organized tours are offered to discover the lifestyle of the time. We tried to tag along with a visit with one of the famous Beefeaters who had lots of unusual and bloody anecdotes to tell about the Tower but there were too many people and we couldn’t hear much. Remember to take the tour from the start! We were comforted by visiting the Torture Chamber close to the Bloody Tower, quite crazy! We were quite disappointed by the reconstruction of the Coronation announced in the flyer. We imagined a huge ceremony with many costumed actors and everything but it was in fact a reconstruction of a preparation for the coronation. Basically, we saw the prince pacing up and down in a room where he rehearsed the course of his future coronation with his servants, boring! We would have also liked to attend the Ceremony of the Keys, a hundreds of years old ceremony where you’re able to follow the Chief of the Yeoman Warders and his military escort closing the Tower of London. We did not quite anticipate enough but it looks very interesting! On the other hand, the Crown Jewels did not disappoint!! The ban on pictures unfortunately doesn’t allow us to show you the extent of what we have seen, but let us say that you will be amazed by the costumes, crowns, scepters and regalias! Special mention to this huge solid gold cup of about 1.20m tall and with the capacity of 144 bottles of wine !! Imagine the beast !! You should plan about a half-day to tour the attractions!
We’re passionate travel bloggers, always pacing the world looking for its most beautiful jewels. Culture, gastronomy, landscapes and encounters, you’ll find all of this on our blog and much more!