A Taste of the British Museum

What awesome free things have you discovered in your travels?

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When I saw images of the mesmerizing ceiling of the British Museum, I knew I had to visit if for no other reason. I was thrilled to learn that admission is completely free! (perfect for the budget traveler!)

 

Aside from breathtaking architecture, the exhibits therein can suck hours from your day (in a good way!). We wandered the vast halls of exhibits, marveling at Japanese armor, African artifacts, and Egyptian mummies. We even stepped through time as we took a physical tour through the history of clocks and watches (and I attempted to thoroughly analyze the workings of each – side effect of being an engineer!).

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Unfortunately, we didn’t realize it closed so early. After only about half an hour of entering, we were quickly ushered out. We were disappointed we couldn’t see more (and we might have moved a bit faster had we known time was so short). But as long as it remains free to enter, we’ll certainly return the next time we’re in town!

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6 Things We Missed in London and What We Did Instead

We spent five days in London and could see quite a few things in that time. However, there were plenty of things we didn’t get to do while we were there. Some were because they were too expensive while a few others we didn’t even know about. It is such a large city, so it is impossible to do it all. London is a perfect blend of old architecture and vibrant culture. With a few days, you can get a good feel for the city and see many of its highlights.

We took a bus to London from Belgium and went through the channel tunnel which was an exciting adventure. The bus was loaded on a train and then we rode through the tunnel under the water. That was awesome! Once we arrived in London, the bustling city greeted us with double-decker buses and rain. The rain didn’t stop us from getting out to see as much as we could, but we still couldn’t do everything because the city has so much to offer. Here are 6 things we didn’t get to do while in London and what we did instead.

Inside Flixbus on Channel Tunnel Train

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A Taste of the House of Minalima

What quirky attraction have you just stumbled upon?

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As we were walking along an alley in the city of London, we noticed an odd shop packed full of Harry Potter paraphernalia, The House of Minalima. However, when we were
invited in by the storekeeper, he told us the upper floors house a vast collection of original artwork, concept designs, and props from the films (including *the* Marauder’s Map). And the best part: it’s entirely free! (London is really great about offering many cultural and educational experiences free to the public.)

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A Taste of Westminster Abbey

Which landmark do you think of first when you picture London?

Westminster Abbey is one of the popular destinations for visitors of London. With gothic architecture similar to what we found at the Cologne Cathedral, it has so many intriguing details to admire.

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A Taste of the Change of Guard

What ritual or tradition have you witnessed overseas?

London’s changing of the guard is an occasion of much pomp and show (this is England, after all!), but we love the tradition! We wanted to catch it while we were in town, because, why not?

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A Taste of the Prime Meridian

What famous “divider” have you visited? The equator? The Great Divide? The Panama Canal?

While in London, we couldn’t see ourselves so close without actually hopping the river to visit Greenwich, the official home of the Prime Meridian. After a long day of Shoreditch, Leadenhall, St. Dunstan’s, and the Garden at 120, we debated even going – but I’m glad we did!

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A Taste of the Garden at 120

What’s your favorite spot in London?

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Being in London for so long, we found lots of spots to love! One of our favorites was atop the lesser known The Garden at 120. It’s free, like its sister, the Sky Garden, but it’s far less popular (and less crowded!). It also had a small coffee kiosk when we went, so we could sip on a drink while we soaked up the view.

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A Taste of St. Dunstan in the East

Where are your favorite ruins?

St. Dunstan in the East is a beautiful church that was demolished during The Blitz of WWII. Instead of rebuilding, the shell was converted into a free outdoor garden. The church had already been through the Great Fire of London and structural challenges from the heavy nave roof. A garden seems like a great use for a structure that doesn’t seem destined for longevity.

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A Taste of Leadenhall Market

Which pet would you bring with you to Hogwarts?

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You might recognize Leadenhall Market from Harry Potter. It was used as one of the filming locations for Diagon Alley. However, that’s not the only reason we were drawn to this beautiful covered market.

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A Taste of Shoreditch

Where have you found the best street art?

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Shoreditch was one of our favorite neighborhoods in the city of London. We spent an entire morning exploring its many streets and admiring the vast array of street art.

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