Monday, 30 May 2016

Exploring London; The Tower of London & Borough Market

The banks of the Thames

Somehow we timed it perfectly and saw the changing of the guard.

Classic Trafalgar Square Snap

I love travelling and my inner Dora comes out quite often as I'm sure some of you who have read some of my other posts will know. However none such a trip has been planned with such spontaneity as the couple of days I have just spent in the South of England. Sitting in the library one day in the middle of a long days revision in exam week I was watching the Snapchat stories of some  of my friends who had already finished and was envious of all their carefree Summer snaps. One friend was in London, and I turned to my friend Sarah (hi Sarah) and began to babble about how much I loved London at New Year and just couldn't wait to go back one day. Sarah, also being the spontaneous Dora type just turned round and said, "well I'm getting the train home down to London, why don't you just come with me?" I really did not need much convincing and with that, a train was booked down and a bus back up to Glasgow and that was that.

I have to say, that as it was my second trip I was slightly nervous that it wouldn't quite live up to the magical image I had built in my head from my experiences at New Year. However I would maybe go as far to say that it was just as magical and exciting the second time around if not a little more!
We began our day early and decided that we would head to the Tower of London so we could actually say that we 'did' something with the day. As the Tower of London features so heavily in some of my favourite historical periods I was so so excited to finally go and see it. We ordered our tickets on the two for one offer which you can access here.. We students have to be thrifty and this is an excellent way to save money when you are wanting to visit attractions as the cost can  so easily pile up. In wouldn't even say you have to be particularly interested in history to visit the Tower as they have so many different exhibitions ranging from the history of the buildings to some medical reenactments  to of course, the crown jewels which were absolutely stunning. Although we did not go on a tour ourselves, from what we could hear the Yeomen's tours were funny and incredibly interesting. The cafe in the Tower is lovely and clean with large wooden canteen style tables. It is also very reasonably priced - I think my sandwich was only £3.25 and the bread was lovely and thick and the filling tasted fresh.

After we left the Tower we went for a wander and somehow stumbled across Borough Market beside the Southwark Cathedral just along from Tower Bridge. What a little gem of a market! It was mostly undercover and the smells from each of the little food stalls were incredible. There really was something for everyone, from traditional German wurst to alcoholic cheese to fresh Turkish delight and more. We indulged ourselves in a large chunk of fudge, I went for clotted cream and Sarah for chocolate which we sat and ate beside the Thames.

The rest of the day was spent blissfully wandering around; we ventured to St. Paula Cathedral (going in is definitely on the list for next time) and to Covent Garden where we had a lovely leisurely dinner in Browns.

London and I are most definitely entering into a blossoming relationship. As a stark contrast to the quiet bubble of St. Andrews I am equally captivated by the hustle and bustle of the city. The mix of incredible history with utter symbols of modernity like the Shard or any of the beautiful glass buildings which adorn the banks of the Thames make the city so interesting and I can't wait to explore it more soon!

Me & Sarah beside Tower Bridge


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