Day 2 London was based around a trip (or flight) on the Coca Cola London Eye. We had it booked in advance via a 3 attraction deal.
Our “departure time” was 1130am so we decided to get the earliest off-peak train in to London from Grays and walk from Tower Hill to Westminster. We had pretty much decided that we could use the Underground pretty minimally and do most of our exploring by foot.
The walk from Tower Hill took us across to the South Bank and passed a number of unexpected sites including the monument to the Great Fire of London, the Shard (close by) and The Globe Theatre.
The South Bank was a really unexpected surprise as we hadn’t really thought about the journey but seeing places like the Globe and the Tate Gallery made it a lot more interesting. The whole area between the Globe and Westminster is a real mix of food stalls, music and entertainers. A great place to visit that we pretty much stumbled on accidentally!
Catriona and myself had been on the Eye previously (2014) but this was a brand new experience for the boys. Despite the overcast clouds we had great views of the centre of London and further afield.
After lunch in a nearby Subway we headed off on foot again, across the bridge to Westminster proper, along Horse Guards Road to The Mall before heading for Buckingham Palace (unfortunately no Garden Party for us today).
As the Queen wasn’t in to greet us we decided to try Boris instead and headed for Downing Street via Trafalgar Square
At this stage the rain was coming on and our plan to walk everywhere was starting to show some holes* so we decided to retreat gracefully and return to Tower Hill via the Underground and head back to the apartment a little earlier than planned but with a fully packed day behind us.
*my Garmin showed a daily total of 20,005 steps that evening, equivalent to 16.7km of walking. Too much for any of us in the heat, never mind the boys.