“To walk alone in London is the greatest rest” – Virginia Woolf. Day 68 and 69
Google has become my friend today as I set myself up on the couch and research all that London has to offer. With Josh on an afternoon shift, I take this time to write a list of all the sights I’m going to see over the next few weeks whiles Josh is at work. If anyone tells you that you cannot explore London on a budget, don’t believe them! Over the next few weeks I’m going to show you some of the popular tourist destinations and then some not so popular off the beaten track destinations. For more details checkout websites like Timeout London for 101 free things to do in London.
Armed with a list a mile long, I head out for my first official day of exploring. Stop number one, the Museum of London. This museum explores the history of London and the people within it. It’s located in north east London and is absolutely free, unless you want to explore specialist exhibitions on throughout the year. When first entering, you realise how different museums are in London than the other places we have been. Pops of colour are everywhere which makes reading the facts much more interesting. There is also a section on how the sections of the museum were created with the help of school children from all over London. This I find very intriguing and I feel proud that museums are encouraging people of all ages to visit and learn, I wish I had a better interest when I was younger.
The exhibitions and collections start at London before London, taking you forward through Roman London, Medieval London, the Black Death and the Great Fire until you end at London as we know it today. One section I fell in love with is the Victorian Walk where you feel transported through time to the late 18th / early 19th century streets of London. You can stop in at the local cafe, sit at the bar of the pub or just wander down the cobblestone streets peering into the windows of many shops and stores.
From the museum I head down to the Barbican, an arts and conference venue. This is an astonishing venue where you can find a range of events including the opera, conferences, free concerts, theatre and cinemas. You could spend all day wandering through the building, I choose to enter the library and spend the rainy afternoon looking through historic articles, books, magazines and a number of other resources available. After a few hours it’s time to head on home. I walk back to the underground through the barbican walkways, bridges that cross the busy streets below where you can access office buildings, cafés and boutique stores. You also get an amazing view of the courtyard of the Barbican and the pool that fills it. This pool is not for swimming, instead it adds colour to the brick Barbican and is filled with a walkway surrounded by plants and a water feature down the far end. I recommended everybody go and check out the Barbican, but be sure to look up what events are happening whilst you are in London.
Virginia Woolf once said “to walk alone in London is the greatest rest.” I could not agree more.
Jess and Josh