Even though November is apparently the wettest month in London we were hopeful of some fine weather as we had a few outdoor activities on our ‘to do’ list for this trip. Top of that list was a cruise down the Thames to Greenwich and then some time to explore the attractions in the area.
The forecast for yesterday looked reasonably optimistic so we packed our lunch and set off. The weather turned out to be better than I could have dared to hope.
A short train trip to Embankment station brought us to directly opposite the pier for the Thames clippers.
Leaving the Tower Bridge in our wake as we headed east.
A half-hour cruise and we arrived at Greenwich, home to the Royal Observatory and the prime meridian, the National Maritime Museum, the Old Naval College, the Queen’s House and the restored tea-clipper, Cutty Sark. It was clear that we could not do all of these justice so we chose to visit those things that were of greatest interest to us.
Our first glimpse of the Royal Observatory.
The first stop was the Royal Observatory which is positioned atop a substantial hill. We discovered that there was a discount admission ticket which covered both this and the Cutty Sark.
There are magnificent views to be had from the elevated position.
Some of the interior of Flamsteed House, designed by Christopher Wren and named for the first Astronomer Royal, John Flamsteed.
The Queen’s House, seen in the centre of the view from the Royal Observatory, is 400 years old and has been used for many purposes as well as being derelict at times. It has now been fully restored and is now a repository for many historical artworks, including the Armarda portrait which has recently undergone extensive conservation work.
We also saw this magnificent painted ceiling in one of the rooms.
Whilst the maritime museum would have been interesting, we decided to forgo it in favour of touring the Cutty Sark.
Unlike many other vessels which are open to the public, the Cutty Sark is no longer afloat but has been raised and suspended which makes the hull entirely visible and accessible.
Of course, someone has to steer the vessel.
An interesting collection of figureheads, including Florence Nightingale and Abraham Lincoln.