No rain in site.......we head to the parks. We walked from our Piccadilly Circus hotel to Buckingham Palace. A leaisurely stroll until we got a few blocks away and then one starts to realize that this is a MASS thing. Like Masses of people, all wanting to see the same thing. I don't care what the guidebooks say about an hour early, you'd have to be 2 hours early on this day to be close to the gates. We decided to skirt around the back side of Victoria's Fountain and see where the parade makes it way down the street toward the palace. We had a great view from there and enjoyed all the guards marching in, the band music and the horses coming right by us.
It was such a lovely day that we stayed outside and walked clear through Hyde Park / Kensington Park. We happened upon the statue of Peter Pan, erected to honor J.M. Barrie as he was a nearby resident and often wrote about this park in his stories.
There was also a Peter Pan themed playground that kept the kids adventuring for several hours while Todd and I enjoyed the people watching from a bench.
Next stop, Notting Hill. The Portobella Market is something I have always wanted to see.
This is us in front of the travel bookstore featured in the movie, Notting Hill, one of our favorites!
And of course, what day would be complete without a jaunt through Harrod's dept store?
Well, It's not an April Fool's Joke, we landed in London on April 1st to blue sunny skies and lots of preparations for the Royal wedding at the end of the month.
We planned this stop in London as a family trip on our way to Ethiopia, where we will be finalizing our adoption of a little boy named Kibru.
London was fantastic with kids. It's clean, very easy to get around walking or by taxi or double decker. We highly recommend it for all ages. We tried to gear our days around what the kids would enjoy most so we spent an ample amount of time in parks and not many hours in museums. We figured when they return later in life, they can see more of that. Museums will always be there.
This is one museum that we did enter, it was the Churchill War Rooms, built and occupied during WWII. They had headsets for each of us to hear the sounds, speeches, and narration of stories from the underground rooms. It was really fascinating for everyone. We haven't studied WWII yet in our scope of history but they enjoyed it and I can imagine these rooms and tour will come to mind when we do get to it in the curriculum.
Enough time underground, back to outside, where it's Spring!
Beautiful shot of Big Ben against the blue sky. Big Ben is actually the name of the bell inside the tower, not the Tower itself, FYI.
The novelty of squeezing into a phone booth, right in front of Big Ben.
We walked from our hotel through two parks, past Parliament and across the river Thames to catch a ride on the London Eye. Great views of city from up there and it gave us a good introduction to the lay of land.