Having just watched the four day celebrations for the Queen's 60th year of her reign and realising that the Olympics is due to start next month, I thought that it may be worth starting a discussion on things to see and do in London for visitors who don't know the city well. I can imagine that there will be many MRI visitors this year, so if we Brits or any knowledgeable overseas London regulars have great recommendations, perhaps we should post or re-post them under an easy to find heading. I plan to add a few over the next couple of weeks ... if you have any, please add to this discussion ... any questions will, of course, be welcome too.,
My first recommendation is a visit to this palace. It was built as a royal home for William and Mary at the end of 17th century. Needless to say, it has been extended and modified significantly since. The latest refurb has just been completed and it is pretty stunning. The palace sits in Kensington Gardens and from the first floor, visitors can get a stunning view across newly reinstated vista to the Round Pond.
A few facts ...
- There are three main areas to tour ... the King's State Apartments / The Queen's State Apartments / Victoria Revealed
- There are two temporary displays ... Diana: Glimpses of a Modern Princess (quite a small exhibition of dresses and photos) / Jubilee - A view from the crowd (Queen Victoria's Diamond Jubilee)
- The gardens are great for a stroll or sitting out in nice weather ... (it is a nice 30 min walk across Kensington Gardens and then Hyde Park to Marble Arch, if you are staying at any of the Mayfair area Marriotts)
- Part of the palace is still occupied by members of the Royal Family ... those parts on not open to the public
- There are two places for food & drink ... a small cafe near the entrance and the Orangery is a great place for lunch
- The first American visitors were Chief Tomo Chachi and members his tribe in 1734 ... they met with George II and were representing the 'new state' of Georgia, named after the king
- The closest Underground stations are Queensway and High Street Kensington
- More information can be found at this site ... www.hrp.org.uk/
London really is a wonderful place to visit!
Like anyplace, pick your time of year carefully. Here are a few of my London favorites. I really enjoy the Pubs! Would enjoy having an ale there someday with you! We could invite Chris and Arkwright to join us, along with any of their friends and families. Enjoy these:
Black Friars Pub!
The Grenadier Pub, by Harrods!
The Tree House, by the Tower of London.
Yes, this is really great of Chris to offer us "Local" advice! He is such a gentleman. His gift of a Pub Guide of GB has been wonderful. He has a USA cross county trip planned and I told him all of us would help him with information as needed!
I just hope we can attract a lot more people from all over to the MI site!