London is a huge city and there is so much to explore, I feel we will never be bored living so close. On Saturday we spent the day there, shopping and going to museums. It was great because almost all of the museums are free. Also, we have all the time in the world to explore London, so we weren’t concerned with trying to squeeze everything into one day. I’m not even sure you could do London in one day.
First we went to Portobello Road and walked through the antiques section of the market. Everything was pretty pricey, but it was fun just to see what they had. And they did have some pretty amazing things if you’re into antiques. We have been looking for a tea set, but haven’t been able to find a full set with a teapot at a reasonable price.
We chose to go to the British museum next because it is one of the oldest, largest, and finest museums in the world. Our favorite exhibits were the ones about actual British history like the Iron Age in Britain and Roman Britain. However, the museum is more well known for having artifacts from many cultures worldwide and especially objects like the Rosetta Stone on display.
In terms of ancient Greek artifacts, the British Museum probably has more than they should. They have many important pieces from the Parthenon as well as pieces from other buildings of the Acropolis in Athens. Of course they were cool to see, but we weren’t sure why we were seeing them in England…not Greece.
What we really wanted to see while we were in London was Buckingham Palace, but in order to see the State Rooms we’ll have to wait until August because that is when they open next. So instead, we went to Kensington Palace. The outside really wasn’t much to look at and the gardens were pretty brown considering it is February, but the inside was nice. The picture above is the Queen’s garden entrance which is not open to the public (one of the perks of using a wheelchair temporarily!).
Kensington Palace became a royal residence in 1689 when it was purchased by William III and Mary II. They are the only monarchs in British history to reign together, as husband and wife. Here we saw the King and Queen’s State Apartments, along with an exhibit about Victoria and a fashion exhibit featuring dresses from Her Majesty the Queen, Princess Margaret, and Diana.
The Orangery at Kensington Palace was a lovely place to have afternoon tea because the atmosphere is so bright and airy. The sandwiches were the best with the addition of the coronation chicken. The desserts were pretty good too. I’d never had a macaron before, but I am officially in love. I can’t believe I’ve been missing out on this goodness all this time!