My London Top Five

Ok Boys and Girls.  I’m back to entertain you with my favorites from London. (If you’re allergic to long posts or you’re a London expert, you’re dismissed.  ;-)  )  This was SweetiePie’s first trip to London, but I’ve been there on other trips.  Each trip has different favorites.

One. Cathedrals.

SweetiePie and I loved visiting the Abbey ruins in Scotland, so it was fun to see one that wasn’t ruined. Westminster Abbey is the cream of the crop and it’s always a favorite.


We also went to St. Paul’s Cathedral.


We climbed the 528 stairs to the top, which, for reasons I’ll explain later wasn’t as easy as it should have been.


The views were worth it though. A 360-degree view of London. We looked out…


and down. Very fun!


Two. Buntings.

What a fabulous time to visit London!  She was dressed in her finest and it was so fun to see buntings at every turn.


There were Union Jack buntings and Olympic buntings.


We even found a fun little knitted bunting while we were shopping.


Three. The London Eye.

The first time I saw The Eye, I REALLY didn’t like it.  I felt like it ruined London’s historical skyline.


But I’ve come around.  I’ve warmed up to it and now it’s one of those iconic structures that says you’re in London.


This was my first ride on The Eye and it was really fun.


Besides, it looks cool at night.


So, I’ve embraced The Eye. Not sure that will ever happen with the Shard though. Not really a fan.


Four. The Gardens at Hampton Court Palace.

SweetiePie and I LOVED Hampton Court Palace. In spite of the fact that we lost each other for almost 2 hours, which was a little nerve-wracking.


My favorite part was the gardens. There were a ton of different gardens — I’ll spare you all the pictures and show you two of my favorites.


You couldn’t walk around in this one below.  Look, but don’t touch.


Unfortunately, a few days later, I realized I missed one of the big reasons I wanted to go to Hampton Court Palace. The Royal School of Needlework! If only I’d checked my notes that morning! I didn’t even see any signs. Have any of you ever been there? Is it actually in the Palace? Ah well, just another reason I have to go back, right?

Five. Portobello Road.

I had designated our last day in London as a shopping day. And luckily, it was a Saturday. We tried out Camden Market first but we didn’t stay around very long — not really our thing. Then we decided to see if Portobello Road was any better. We LOVED it! We had so much fun snooping around all the antique booths. It was really crowded though, so I didn’t drag my big camera out — these are iphone shots.  (This picture below was at the beginning of the long shopping street — not as crowded here.)


Naturally, we had to see if Hugh was in the vicinity.


And happily, there was a Hummingbird Bakery. Can’t pass up a cupcake!


Whew! Now you can breathe a big sigh of relief. We’re done with the travelogue. Thanks for indulging me!

Oh wait, I do have one day to tell you about that didn’t go exactly as planned. Maybe next time — and with a little reward for your time.

37 Thoughts on “My London Top Five

  1. Such a wonderful trip. Those buntings are pretty awesome. I loved those photos!

  2. Whew, great pictures! We visit London every other year to spend time with my husband’s family. I just love it, I think it is a great country and city.

  3. Thanks for an early morning virtual trip through London, the place to be, but I’ve never been there. Shame on me!

  4. Your photo of St Paul’s is magnificent! I think myself and a whole lot of other Londoners felt the same about The Eye, and like you, I now absolutely love what it adds to our city. I’ve not seen The Shard close-up, only from a road near my house, where it pokes up into your view suddenly and then disappears again!

  5. London looks so wonderful, although I wouldnt be climbing all those stairs (scared of heights). It sounds as though the antique shops were lots of fun!

  6. I wouldn’t be climbing all those steps either! Well done, Anna!

    Your photos are gorgeous. Thanks for showing us your view of London. :o)

  7. oooh the bunting! I love bunting! xxx

  8. Love your pics from London. Makes me think I need to go and see my sister again! I’m happy you had a great trip! But there’s one thing…you should have come to Norway when you were so close! :-)

  9. Oh what a lovely trip. It so makes me want to return! WE went about 8 years ago. I loved all the places you visited and I really did enjoy the eye and glad you did also.
    At the Abbey my then 12 year old daughter said, is this place full of dead people?? too funny.
    Lovely photos – thanks for the tour of you fabulous trip.

  10. Looks like such a fun trip. Thanks for sharing it with us! I dont’ think I would be brave enough to ride on The Eye!!

  11. Lovely tour through London. One of my favorite cities. I think I could easily live there, only it’s become so expensive lately.

  12. Thank you for that little vacation in my mind. :) I love the knitted bunting! Hope you are enjoying the cool trend in the weather here. I love fall!

  13. Whew, I’m tired, that was a lot walking, I mean reading, just kidding. Fantastic trip. Wow. Did you slip a Union Jack bunting in your bag? So glad you could go!

  14. Wow, Wow, Wow, what an awesome trip you two took.

  15. I really enjoyed your London Top 5. When my daughter and I went, we took the stairs to the tops of St. Paul’s and enjoyed the view, but didn’t do the Eye. We figured we saw enough from St. Paul’s. We didn’t go to Hampton Court Palace so I enjoyed “new to me” pics from there. We really loved the local bakeries in London — especially the almond danish. Those cupcakes look delish!

  16. Great pics….I am curious what went awry….

  17. I see you saved the best picture for last! I hope it tasted as good as it looks.

  18. What a wonderful trip! I hadn’t seen pictures of the Eye at night, they’re spectacular!!!

  19. I’m finally catching up on your late summer trip to the UK. Lovely photos and it sounds like you had a great time!

  20. Your photos are such a tease! They make me want to go even more than I already was wanting to. And the Royal School of Needlework has always captivated my imagination.
    What a glorious trip!

  21. Oh, so amazing! Thanks for sharing…I really have to get there one of these days. My grandmother went about 15 years ago…and I didn’t really understand then…but now I have so much more appreciation and hope to get there!

  22. Oh. My. Heavens. You KNOW I loved this post!! Your photos are WONDERFUL and totally capture London. I’ve climbed to the top of St. Paul’s (my fave catheral) and I loved it. I lived in London before the Eye and all the newish architecture was up (the gerkin, etc.) so it’s all still a little unfamiliar to me, but I’m starting to appreciate the Eye at least.

    Your pictures of Scotland also made me drool (can you tell I’m incredibly behind on any blog reading??) Stunning. I’ll gladly come to dinner and look at more photos! Scotland is one place I would LOVE to go and spend a L O N G time. Thank you for the gorgeous pictures. Made my night. :)

  23. London is my favourite place in the whole world. I couldn’t even begin to say what would be in my top 5 though. It would absolutely include shopping particularly Covent garden and Liberty.

  24. You definitely picked a good year to visit!

  25. I would not have seen London from this height but for your bravery, thank you. The modern architecture is not my cup of tea although The Eye, The Gherkin and The Shard are shown in the modern-day Sherlock which I love.

  26. Some of your favorites are my favorites too. I’m very intrigued by the Eye. One of these days, we’ll go…for now, I’ll have to travel vicariously through your pics:)

  27. I loved reading about your trip and WOW Anna, your picture of St. Paul’s is just… picture perfect! I would hang that on my wall!

  28. Hmm, well, London is not my favourite place in the world (by quite a long way) but I’m glad you had fun. Losing Sweetiepie, though – very careless. (Or did she lose you…?)

  29. Great pics and top 5. Couple of places we haven’t been – might have to go back! Thanks so much for sharing.

  30. What an awesome trip. Looks like you two had such a great time. Glad your back and happy you had fun.

  31. London is only an hour away from me and reading your post I am desperate to visit again! How is it that it takes a tourist to realize the beauty that is immediately under one’s nose!

  32. Two daughters lived in London…I’ve never visited. First trip cancelled due to Icelandic volcano. Second, due to Olympic construction and confusion. Daughter4 said to wait and visit later. Is it Later yet? Looks like I need to get some suggestions in advance. I know…let’s go to Needlwork School.

  33. Wow Anna…..amazing pictures!! You have a great eye…so many beautiful sights to see, and you know I love those buntings!!! Someday…think this needs to go on my bucket list. Thanks for taking us along on your wonderful trip.

  34. Great photos. Isn’t London a most amazing city!! I love it vibe. Clarice

  35. Considering I will never go to England (I am afraid of flying big time) I am glad you put up this travelogue.

  36. Gheez! I was cold just walking along in print. Once of the things I want to do before I’m too old to hike is take a walking vacation in Ireland.
    Your photos are an inspiration to me.

  37. I’ll have to live vicariously through your posts. I love the photos. the cathedrals are amazing. And beautiful. Love it all.

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