Monday, September 5, 2011

London details

Looking at my itinerary, I kept getting fooled that I had one extra day in London, but I was bookkeeping my first airplane travel day against London. So really I only had 4 days, not 5. And with one of them taken up by a full-day trip to Stonehenge, I needed another day. I was able to steal one from my time in Amsterdam; after reading the guidebook for that city, I found that I had given myself one too many days there. Overall, though, I did pretty well with my original rough cut back in March.

So, here's my detailed itinerary for London.

Day 1, Sun 9/18
  • 0925 arrive in London
  • 1115-1215 Westminster to Greenwich cruise on City Cruises
  • 1215-1500 Greenwich markets, Royal Observatory
  • 1600-1830 Westminster Walk: Big Ben, the Houses of Parliament, Westminster Abbey, Buckingham Palace, Royal Park, St. James's Palace, Trafalgar Square, Admiralty Arch
  • 1830-1930 London Eye at sunset, followed by Jubilee Walk on Southwark & dinner
Day 2, Mon 9/19
Day 3, Tue 9/20
Day 4, Wed 9/21
Day 5, Thu 9/22
Day 6, Fri 9/23
  • 0802-1117 Eurostar train to Paris
The only thing that I couldn't fit in was a side trip to Windsor Castle. I've got Greenwich first thing when I get in because it's Sunday and I'm trying to hit some of the weekend-only markets there. The Stonehenge tour is only offered on Tuesdays, they've got us on a train there. And I end up Thursday with a day of strolling, shopping, and people-watching before heading to Paris the next day.

Several of these require reservations, or allow tickets to be bought ahead of time. Haven't done any of that yet.


  1. Wow - you are packing a lot in. Will you have time to put your bags somewhere before your first tours on Sunday? Won't you be completely and utterly jetlagged?
    If I am working on Wednesday, and you are going to be at Tower of London you might like to stroll across Tower Bridge and have lunch with me perhaps since my office is just on the other side of the river. The bridge itself is pretty awesome too. You've a lot of Buck House stuff going on there. I guess that is a touristy thing to do, but not perhaps something I'd bother with myself. Are you going to say hello to Apollo 10 in the Science Museum? Or check out the cool architecture of the Natural History Museum? Both free and frankly wonderful.

    Where does your Stonehenge Tour get in to? Remember to leave enough time to actually *get* to the Globe theatre!

    Given the time you have, I might opt for a trip to the seaside town of Brighton for the day and go to the Royal Pavillion (a sight to behold) rather than Stonehenge, because it's less travelling time, I can give you better tips down there and it's a cool place.

  2. I know I'm packing a lot in, but that's the only way I can see and do the majority of what I want. Not sure yet about what I'm doing with my suitcase on the first day, but if nothing else I can leave them with the left bags at Greenwich.

    I've got the Buckingham stuff on the list since that's something I didn't see last time I was there. And I'm a tourist, I have to do the touristy stuff!

    I'll try to pop in to the Science Museum on Thursday when I'm on the west side of town.

    The Stonehenge tour I have above goes through Waterloo Station, but there's another one that someone pointed out to me that does Stonehenge, Bath, and Windsor out of Victoria Station, but returns at 8pm. I'd have to shift the Globe ("Much Ado About Nothing" is playing) to Thursday night then.

  3. Awesome. Though jet lag is going to wipe you out at some point. Good thing you'll be out walking. That will help.

  4. In addition to trying to sleep shift next week (maybe sleep at midnight, up at 5am), I'll be taking an Ambien for the plane ride, to minimize the jet lag (in theory). I'm afraid that if I try to take a nap, I'll sleep too long. In Australia, which admittedly has worse jet lag from here, I took a nap around 3 pm and woke up at 11pm.