April 25, 2017

"U" is for University

Radcliffe Camera, Reading Room of the Bodleian Library,
University of Oxford

Related Post:
Harry Potter Studio Tour

April 21, 2017

April 20, 2017

April 19, 2017

April 13, 2017

"K" is for Knight Bus

The Knight Bus from Harry Potter & the Chamber of Secrets,
Warner Bros. Studio - The Making of Harry Potter, Leavesden

Related Post:
Harry Potter Studio Tour

April 11, 2017

"I" is for Isis

Sculpture of Isis, Inspired by the Egyptian Goddess of Nature,
Kensington Gardens, London

Related Post:
Kensington Palace & Gardens

April 10, 2017

April 08, 2017

"G" is for Greenwich

Statue of Russian Cosmonaut Yuri Gagarin, the First Human in Space
Royal Observatory, Greenwich

Related Post:
Cruising the Thames to Greenwich

April 06, 2017

April 04, 2017

April 01, 2017

England from A to Z

April's here and with it, the annual A to Z Challenge. I won’t be taking part officially this year but I love trying to come up with a topic for each letter of the alphabet (especially those difficult letters: x, y and z). I’ll take a break from my regular posts and play along with the challenge by sharing a photo from England each day (except Sundays), starting with "A" for Agapanthus.

Agapanthus (or African Lily), Tregnothan Estate, Cornwall

March 27, 2017

London's Royal Parks

It’s been a mild winter but I’m never sorry to see this cold, dark season come to an end. I’m definitely more of a summer person. Now spring has arrived and I can’t wait until leaves fill out the trees and grass sprouts up everywhere in fresh shades of green. Thursday is Take a Walk in the Park Day so I’ll take a look back at a few of London’s Royal Parks, at their summer best of course.

Hyde Park, One of London's Eight Royal Parks

March 20, 2017

The 3 Best Free Views of London

Like many of my fellow travellers, I like to include panoramic views of the places I visit when making my sightseeing plans. Rural vistas can be sweeps of breathtaking scenery while urban views help me get my bearings in an unfamiliar city. Here are my picks for three of the best views of London that won’t cost you a cent.

Soaring – but pricey – views from the London Eye

March 06, 2017

National Maritime Museum, Greenwich

Last fall I did a post about our visit to Greenwich but I didn’t tell you much about the exhibits at the National Maritime Museum, the largest of its kind in the world. Like many of London’s best museums, admission here is free. And the star of the collection is Admiral Horatio Nelson, the man who defeated the French and Spanish fleets in the Battle of Trafalgar and put an end to Napoleon’s plans to invade England.

National Maritime Museum, Greenwich

February 27, 2017

Hampton Court Palace

On my last day in England we travelled out of London to Hampton Court Palace, the setting of much political intrigue. It was the oft-married Tudor king Henry VIII who turned the country house of Thomas Wolseley into a royal residence on the banks of the River Thames. Christopher Wren and ‘Capability’ Brown later left their marks on the site and in 1838 Queen Victoria opened this Historic Royal Palace to the public.

Portrait of King Henry VIII with Prince Edward and Jane Seymour

February 20, 2017

Harry Potter and the Cursed Child

When I started planning my recent trip to England, I wanted to see a play. Then I heard about a new production to premiere in London’s West End, Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, and I registered for priority booking. Advance ticket sales opened in October 2015 and I logged on to find myself about 1,800 in the queue. After waiting two hours for my turn to buy tickets I had problems on the web site and came away empty handed. The first four months of performances sold out in hours.

Harry Potter and the Cursed Child at London's Palace Theatre

February 13, 2017

Sunday Morning on Trafalgar Square

few years ago I saw Van Gogh’s Sunflowers in London’s National Gallery. Thanks to jet lag, the experience was a bit of a blur. But there’s something about this painting that lured me back. Perhaps it’s the expression of cheerful, positive energy from a man better known for a life of emotional turmoil and tragedy.

The National Gallery, Trafalgar Square

February 06, 2017

Harry Potter Studio Tour

My children grew up with the amazing exploits of the boy wizard, Harry Potter, and together we’ve watched all eight films (several times). With a new stage play in London’s West End and five planned Fantastic Beasts films, the magical world created by J.K. Rowling will continue to entertain us for many years to come. I couldn’t miss an opportunity to visit the studio in England where the movies were filmed: Warner Bros. Studio Tour London – The Making of Harry Potter.

January 30, 2017

Kensington Palace & Gardens

This autumn the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge will begin spending more time at Kensington Palace with their two adorable children, Prince George and Princess Charlotte.  The palace was also the birthplace and childhood home of Queen Victoria, and Princess Diana lived here from the time of her marriage to Prince Charles until her untimely death in Paris. Last summer Kensington Palace hosted exhibitions on these two famous residents: Victoria Revealed and Fashion Rules Restyled.

Kensington Palace, London

January 23, 2017

3 of London's Top Museums

One of the big draws for visitors to London is the array of museums and art galleries, many of which offer free admission. It’s impossible to see everything these outstanding institutions have to offer so I spent a day seeking out some highlights at three of the best: the Natural History Museum, the Victoria and Albert Museum and the British Museum.

Model of the Extinct Dodo, Natural History Museum

January 16, 2017

Sister Train to the Orient Express

I wish I could’ve been a passenger on the legendary Orient Express during the golden age of travel. The luxury train service made famous by Agatha Christie’s novel Murder on the Orient Express is once again traversing the countries of Europe but the fare is a little too expensive for me. I experienced the next best thing by booking a trip on her sister train, Belmond British Pullman.

January 04, 2017

World Class London

I don’t do a lot of shopping when I travel but London has some unique shops to explore including Europe’s largest book store, the world’s largest toy store, and the world’s most famous department store. In between visits to these retail giants, I also fit in a nostalgic hour with the world’s greatest rock and roll band, The Rolling Stones.

Harrods Department Store, London