london calling.

I have a special edition of 10 on Tuesday today… it’s actually thirteen on Tuesday! Even better! Leave a shout-out to my amazing guest blogger, Chelsea. She is sharing some of her must-do things while in London. And since I know you love her posts, don’t forget to check out her other post, all about her trip to Chicago.

In my opinion, the last minute trips are the best trips!  In March, my husband and I found a phenomenal deal on flights to London.  We would have been stupid to pass them up!  London is such a great city.  We were blessed with amazing, rain-free weather! (Shocking, I know!)  With just a few weeks to plan, we made a list of the top sights that we wanted to hit in just 4 short days.  And surprisingly enough, we did them all… and more!  Here are a few of the highlights of our trip.  Enjoy!

1. London Eye
A must see and do.  The London Eye lets you climb above the city and the views above the city are amazing on a clear day.  I definitely recommend purchasing tickets online beforehand.  You pass up the long lines by walking straight up to a kiosk instead.  Even better?  You get a discount when you purchase tickets online.  It’s a win, win situation folks.  Get the Flexi Standard ticket.  It’s perfect for those who don’t know what time they will be visiting the Eye on a certain day.  Side note: sunset is a gorgeous time to ride the Eye.

2. Big Ben & Westminster Abbey
Right down the road from the Eye lays these other famous attractions in London.  Big Ben is beautiful lit up at night.  Westminster Abbey is a must. One regret is that we didn’t enter Westminster Abbey.  Our busy schedule just didn’t allow it.  There is always next time though!

3. Tower Bridge

Another famous landmark in London, you’ll great some great pictures of Tower Bridge. Do walk across the bridge!  Don’t pay to take the elevator ride up to the top.  It’s not worth the money.  It’s enclosed at the top and difficult to see out of the small windows.  Time permitting, and if you don’t mind waiting in a long line, go inside the Tower of London to see the crown jewels.

4. Shakespeare’s Globe to Millennium Bridge to St. Paul Cathedral
A nice walk along (and across) the Thames River.  Take a few pictures of Shakespeare’s Globe and then head west.  You can’t miss the ultra modern Millennium Bridge.  It’s a pedestrian-only bridge that is sure to wow you.  Take the bridge across the Thames and keep walking straight.  You’ll walk right into St. Paul’s Cathedral, another wow factor in London.

5. Chelsea
I’m a bit obsessed because it’s my namesake but Chelsea is one of the coolest areas in London!  Chic and sophisticated, Chelsea has tons of shops and restaurants.  I went a little crazy with the picture taking in Chelsea (for obvious reasons)!  If anyone likes the shop Anthropologie, go to the one in Chelsea.  I was in heaven.

6.  Harrods
Walking distance from Chelsea, is… drum roll please… Harrods.  *Cue angels singing*  I understand that I can’t afford anything in this store, but seriously it’s heavenly.  You’re in a whole different world when you walk into Harrods.  Make sure you check out one of the Harrods memorabilia stores.  You can get yourself a cute magnet or bag with Harrods written on it.

7. Windsor
An adorable town situated just a train ride from the big city.  It’s a great place to visit for a few hours.  We didn’t get a chance to go inside Windsor Castle because the line was so long, but you’ll still get some great pictures outside the castle.

8. Mind the Gap
You must ride the Tube while in London… and say “mind the gap” with a British accent while you’re at the station!  Before you buy a Tube ticket, look into getting an Oyster card to use during your trip.  You’ll save money that way!

9. Platform 9 ¾
I’ll admit it.  I’m a twenty six year old Harry Potter fan.  I’ve read all the books and seen all the movies.  If you are a fan like me, take the Tube to King’s Cross Station.  It’s a bit tricky to find, but you can see a re-creation of Platform 9 ¾.  Very cool for us Harry Potter fans!

10. Fish & Chips
When in Rome… One of your must-dos in London is to eat fish & chips.  It’s usually served with mashed peas, which is interesting to say the least!  We found a great place for fish & chips called the Mermaid’s Tail just because they had a gluten free option for me!

11. Hyde Park & St. James Park
Three words: Seriously beautiful flowers.  Spend a few hours strolling around each park, taking in the beauty.  Serg and I rented a row boat in Hyde Park for an hour.  He made me do all the work!  (Kidding!)  St. James Park is even more beautiful, if you can imagine it.

12. Buckingham Palace  
If you want to see the Changing of the Guards make sure you get to Buckingham Palace extra early.  Thousands show up to see the event.

13. Take a picture with a red telephone booth.  
It’s a must when you’re in London!  It’s as simple as that!  Oh, and you must ride the big red city bus, too!  You can use your Oyster card on the bus, too!

Now, obviously, this doesn’t even come close to all of the things to see and do in London!  Have you been to London?  What things are must-sees on your list?

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