Thursday, March 20, 2008

Day 7 - Kensington Palace

It is hard to believe that a week of our vacation has already passed! It has been a very good week, despite the cold, dreary weather! We have seen many historic places, with so much history learned, my head is spinning!

Today's first stop was to the Twining's Shop since they are to be closed the remainder of the weekend for the Easter Holidays. We stocked up on many different varieties. It is too bad I don't like tea! The shop clerk presented me with a fabric banner of the store for the misunderstanding of their opening sign for today. The sign read it was suppose to open at 9 a.m., at which time we were promptly waiting outside the door. Unfortunately he informed me that the store would not open until 9:30 and since we waited, he gave me that special gift. I felt that was extremely nice since we would have waited anyway!

From here we moved on to Kensington Palace the last home of Princess Diana. The small Palace was very beautiful and had a display of the aspects of Diana's life. I find that fascinating since she was not even an "official"member of the royal family upon her death, despite the fact she will always be called the princess. She was a beautiful woman and some of the photos that were displayed were very smart. The gowns that were displayed that she wore were fabulous. The rest of the Palace that was featured included the state rooms once occupied by Queen Victoria prior to her becoming Queen. There were many displays about the royal dress codes, which were very interesting. After we left the Palace, we strolled into the gardens for a very short time and found a bench to eat our "picnic" lunch. That didn't last long as it began to rain on our parade!

We took the tube back to the Trafalgar Square area where we hunted down the Ben Franklin House. We had just missed one tour, so we milled around for 40 minutes while we waited for the next. While we were doing that, we picked up a few trinkets and got our pictures in at Trafalgar Square. The Ben Franklin Tour was a bit disappointing however the house itself was pretty cool to see. Our guide was not used to providing such tours but was forced to since the audio tour was not working. The house had almost been torn down at one point, but thankfully it was saved and has been restored. They had put a huge beam under the building to keep it standing, which caused the floor to bow. Other than that, we didn't learn too much.

After that tour, we headed down the mall to get a good look at Buckingham Palace. The Palace is not open for tours at this time of year, so a few pictures of the front facade is about all we got.

From there we headed back towards our flat, with a stop at the market and the chocolate shop! (Important things!) We hoped to get back in time for the Charles Dickens Museum (which is a few doors down) but it was a bit too late. We relaxed a few minutes before enjoying a nice dinner at the corner pub. Melanie and I had Bangers and Mash (otherwise known as Venison Sausage) and the men both enjoyed the Lamb Burger. It was very good. Maybe one of our better meals!

Tonight we are researching our options for tomorrow. It looks like a Bus Tour is going to win as our first option of the day! Off to buy the tickets....


toners said...

Enjoy the bus tour! Last time we were there, it was one of Jamie's favorite parts of the trip :) The time is flying by!

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