When London Calls. . .

London, England is definitely in my top ten on my travel bucket list.  The sights, history and attractions of that city make it almost irresistible.  Seeing Big Ben and those iconic red telephone booths in pictures doesn't do it for me.  I want to be able to see them for myself, not through a screen.  London has to be one of those places that you could stay for months and not fully discover everything that it has to offer.  Museums, parks, historic landmarks, architecture, and of course, the royalty are just the surface layer of London.

When (because someday, I will!) I go to London, there are a few things on my must-see and do list.  

  • The London Bridge: One of the first things that comes to mind when I think London is the London Bridge.  Yes, I know that the original is in Arizona, but a trip to London cannot be complete without seeing the bridge, even if it isn't the famous one from the nursery rhyme.  

  • Red Telephone Booth: Taking a picture in one of these classics is a must. Where else in the entire world are red telephone booths as famous as they are in London? Due to cell phone usage, the number of telephone booths around the UK have decreased from 51,000 to only 11,000.  Even so, out of that number, the majority do not work.  It would still be cool to stand in one though, even if I can't make a call.

  • The London Eye: Catching a view of all of London from high above in this 135 meter ferris wheel seems like an experience that cannot be replicated.  Considering that the wheel moves at .6 miles per hour and every rotation takes 30 minutes, there will be plenty of time to see everything from a bird's eye view.
  • Buckingham Palace: It's every little girl's dream to be a princess one day. Although that childhood wish isn't going to become a reality unless Prince Charming suddenly swoops in out of nowhere, gliding up the Grand Staircase will be as close as I ever get.   
  • Double-decker Bus: Almost as iconic as those red telephone booths, a double-decker bus is a must-do London experience.  Riding on the top level with the wind blowing in my face is the image that comes to my mind when I think of this.  Although, most of the open-deck busses are tour busses, so I may just have to take a tour.  
  • Madame Tussauds: Being completely honest, a museum full of wax figures with dead, lifeless eyes that follow you everywhere doesn't exactly appeal to me.  Again though, it's one of those things that you just have to do in London.  Who knows, maybe I'll end up having to be dragged away from the Will and Kate exhibit! 
  • Big Ben: Why are there so many iconic things in London? Everywhere you turn, there's more! Big Ben is the most recognizable London icon - forget the phone booths and that one bridge! Just to read the time on that oversized clock would be an item checked off my bucket list. To hear it strike the hour would be even better.  
  • Afternoon Tea: Admittedly, I'm not a big tea fan.  If you added about ten cups of sugar to it, then maybe I would consider a taste.  However,  having tea in London is an entirely different story than choking it down at my house.  London tea comes with scones, jam, cakes and cream.  I think I could  put up with the tea just for all of that.  
  • Abbey Road: The Beatles were here - what other reasons do you need? Getting my own picture on that widely photographed crosswalk is definitely something that I wouldn't pass up if I had the opportunity.  There is a camera monitoring the crosswalk that streams live to the Internet 24/7. That's creepy.  Really creepy.  However, if I ever do this, I'll let you all know and you can proceed to watch me cross from behind your computer screen.  Maybe I'll wave to you.  
  • The Tube: The closest thing I've ever done to travel in a subway system is to ride the People Mover in Detroit.  That's a story that deserves its own post, right there.  Anyway, the Tube seems more everyday life than touristy to me.  I like "doing as the Romans do" or in this case, as the Londoners do, because you get to see the city away from all of the tourist traps, you get to see the city as it really is.
  • St. Paul's Cathedral & Westminister Abbey: I've always had a thing for old, gorgeous buildings.  How they were built and their history always fascinates me.  I could sit and stare at all the fine details for hours on end. Okay, maybe not hours, but for a while.  St. Paul's Cathedral and Westminister Abbey are no different.  Their rich histories and intricate architecture makes them true wonders.  Not to mention that each have hosted their own royal weddings! 
  • Warner Bros. Studios - The Making of Harry Potter:  I have definitely saved the best for last.   Anyone who knows me knows that my love of Harry Potter extends far, far, far beyond my love for almost anything else.  My accreditations include owning all the books and movies (and reading/watching them multiple times over and over), knowing just about everything there is to know and crying when the last book came out because I knew there wouldn't be any more.  It's that kind of love, folks.  Seeing the magic behind the magic would absolutely be a dream come true.  I don't think any wonder of the world would be able to compare. 

So now that you know all that I'm going to do when I set off for London (hopefully within the next two decades!), I'm thinking that I'm going to need a travel buddy.  Who's in?

*Please Note: None of these pictures are mine, (obviously, as I've never been to London as described in this post right above), and I take no credit for them whatsoever. 

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