London – Ups & Downs

On the morning of our third full day in London we packed up our cases ready to check out of our accommodation.  Our hosts kindly agreed to hold them for the day while we were out and about.

This is the entrance to where we stayed.  It is a studio apartment attached to a basement flat in Bayswater.  A great location and only about ten minutes walk to Paddington Station.

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Our first stop was to be a visit to the Sherlock Holmes Museum.  This was the queue when we arrived at 221B Baker Street at about 10am.  We could not believe our eyes.

122 blogI discovered that you had to buy your tickets at the gift shop and then wait in line to get in so that was what we did.  After moving barely 10 feet in half an hour we could see that it was going to take hours to reach the head of the queue and neither of us were that desperate to spend so much of our precious time there.  I attempted to get a refund but was only able to get a credit for the gift shop so bought a souvenir teatowel as well as a heavy fabric shopping bag.  I discovered that the queue is regularly 3 hours long on all weekends, school holidays, through the summer and at Christmas-time!

We then moved on to the next part of the plan for our day – a tour of Lord’s cricket ground.

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We were lucky to arrive just as a tour was about to start.  We spent a very interesting 1.5 hours in a small group with a knowledgeable and articulate guide.

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The pavilion is a magnificent building.

It was a relatively short walk fr9om Lord’s to Abbey Road and the iconic zebra crossing outside the Abbey Road studios.

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This is a busy road, yet there were plenty of crazy people trying to replicate the photo on the cover of the Beatles’ album, Abbey Road.

We bought some lunch and then had a change of pace as we sat and ate it overlooking the lake in Regent’s Gardens.

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We then caught the train to Camden with a plan to catch a canal boat back along Regent’s Canal to Little Venice near Paddington Station.  This was not particularly successful as Camden was crowded with masses of people at the markets which did not seem to be particularly appealing to us and we could not locate the canal boats nor a departure point.

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After a short stroll along the canal towpath we gave up and caught the train back to the station closest to Buckingham Palace.

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We can now say we have seen Buckingham Palace but I did not find it all that fascinating.  The building is quite ugly compared to many of the buildings we have seen so far.

Our final stop for the day was near the back of the Palace where we saw Wellington Arch and several memorials, including this fairly recent Australian one.

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We made our way back to Paddington, had dinner at an Indian restaurant, collected our bags and made our way to Euston Station where we boarded the Caledonian Sleeper for our overnight train trip to Fort William in the highlands of Scotland.

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