A few weeks ago my eldest daughter and I went to London for the day. The plan was to see as much of London as possible, in one day, and this is what we got up to…..
We took the train from Bournemouth to London Waterloo in the morning. The train is always the best choice for travelling to London as the journey is comfortable, quick and Waterloo is a great place for starting your journey either on foot, or if you want to use the London Underground.On arrival we walked to the London Eye on the Southbank of the river Thames. As you can see we had a glorious sunny day for our trip. We then wandered amongst the crowds and Southbank street entertainers. There is plenty to see walking along London’s Southbank, with views across the river and ever changing architectural styles of buildings. Restaurants and cafes are in abundance catering for all tastes. The book stall under Waterloo Bridge is very quaint, and you will pass the Oxo Tower which has a lovely restaurant for evening dinner and nightime views across the London. Blackfriars Bridge is very ornate and there is a subway where the walls are decorate with murals telling the story of the bridge’s construction.
It’s always worth checking the exhibitions on at the Tate Modern prior to your visit. The Tate Modern houses contemporary art from around the world and is housed in the former Bankside Power Station on the banks of the Thames. The awe-inspiring Turbine Hall runs the length of the entire building and you can see amazing work for free by artists such as Cézanne, Bonnard, Matisse, Picasso, Rothko, Dalí, Pollock, Warhol and Bourgeois.
Next we crossed the Thames at the Millenium Bridge and headed to St Paul’s Cathedral where we had a snack and drink on the steps of St Paul’s in the warm sunshine. The cathedral is open to visitors if you want to have a look around.Our next stop was the Barbican Centre which is not only interesting to visit for its harsh architecture, but its exhibitions too. I always make a point of visiting the Barbican’s art exhibitions because I quite simply enjoy them so much. Currently running is Magnificent Obsessions: The Artist as Collector.While walking around London means you can see so much, it is also quite necessary to visit the Underground so we jumped on the tube and headed to Covent Garden for a complete change of scenery.There’s so much to see at Covent Garden by simply walking around the shops and Apple Market and taking the opportunity to stock up on Laduree macarons.Our next stop was Chinatown for Dim Sum. En route we wandered through London’s West end spotting the billboards to well known and long running shows.Dim sum custard balls. They look like large magical round eggs and are probably one of the most unusual yet delicious things we have ever eaten. No description could do them justice, but they are warm, sweet, cakey and very tasty.
Wandering along Shaftesbury Avenue took us to Piccadilly Circus and Regent Street’s shops, where you can find Liberty of London. Probably my favourite despartment store, but as we were visiting Harrods this time, we gave it a miss.Our next stop before a coffee break was Trafalgar Square. Also home to the National Portrait Gallery, as well as Nelson’s Column, the infamous lions and the current plinth sculpture, the skeleton horse.The Royal Horse Guards and Horse Guard Parade were next. We then took a walk through St James’ Park and then on to the Mall towards Buckingham Palace.
Our final destination – Harrods. The department store absolutely full of everything you never knew you needed or wanted. Great fun to explore, especially as I really enjoy window displays and merchandise displays. Everything always looks so pretty and neat.By now it was early evening and we were absolutely shattered, so we jumped on the tube from Harrods to Westminster where we saw Big Ben and the Houses of Parliament before returning to our train and going home.Perhaps you would like to give this one day London itinerary a go. It essentially follows a circular loop around central London where you will see so much, but be prepared to spend the next day doing very little as you will be very tired x