Sunday, June 03, 2018

London, Day 2

Today, I took advantage of amazing weather and my proximity to Greenwich, and I took the DLR (docklands light rail) from where I'm staying near Royal Victoria station to Cutty Sark for Maritime Greenwich (that's the full, exhausting name of the stop just on the other side of the Thames). 
I'm quite proud to say that I think I'm getting the hang of the transit system here. But back to the story.

When I arrived, I kind of walked around to get the lay of the land. I decided to step into the National Maritime Museum, not having planned it, but it's free, so I thought I'd just duck in. It was more interesting than I'd thought. Plus, what a gorgeous building!
In the Maritime Museum, they have on display the barge of  Prince Frederick (of Wales), which was launched in 1732 and is covered in gold leaf.
From the museum, I just started wandering, because I saw some gorgeous buildings and realized it was a school. This is a picture of the East Wing (Chapel) of the Old Royal Naval College from the West Wing (King William Court). 
This is the Painted Ceiling which is part of the Painted Hall in the West Wing of the Old Royal Naval College. Actually, this is only one of the vestibules. The main ceiling was under restoration. It was breathtaking. It took almost 20 years, completed in 1726. Read more about it here.
Then I walked to the Queen's House. Again, free and amazing. These "Tulip Stairs" are one of the original features of the Queen’s House. This was the first geometric self-supporting spiral stair in Britain

There was so much art in the Queen's House, but this is a famous painting of Queen Elizabeth I, and the beautiful painted ceiling. There's a great article about the Queen's House you might be interested in reading, if you like history, which I do. Read more here.
See up there at the top of the hill? That's what I saw when I walked out of the Queen's House. That's where I decided to walk next, because that's what tourists do. It's Greenwich Park. On the left is the Royal Observatory. Where the Prime Meridian was discovered. On the right is Flamsteed House which is now a museum.
At the top of the Greenwich Park,  right near the Royal Observatory. 
William Herschel's telescope -- well, what remains of the 40-foot beast, anyway. At the time, this was the largest telescope in the world. It's right near the observatory (and dateline). It was used to discover Uranus.
First used in 1833, this red Time Ball (top of Flamsteed House) was one of the world's earliest public time signals, rising at 12:58pm every day and dropping at 1pm.
By then I was hungry, so I walked back down the hill to Greenwich Market.
Loved it. And loved the passionfruit gelato. 
I loved the street food part of the market. I wanted to try everything. I settled on the Ramen Burger.
Pulled Pork Ramen Burger with a fried egg on it. OMG.
This is the best thing I've eaten in London so far.
Totally not good for you. Totally worth it.
The Cutty Sark, the last remaining "extreme" tea clipper. It was the fastest of its time. At this point, I was really tired from walking ALL day. Plus, there was this awesome music festival going on in Cutty Sark Garden/Square, so I sat and listened to the blues band playing, which was fantastic. And nice and cool, with a breeze coming off the river, nice after a super hot, sunny day.
On my way home, I walked the  Greenwich foot tunnel under the Thames. It was pretty cool - completed in 1902, it has a shorter section due to damage from the war. Anyway, taking that gave me this view of the Old Royal Naval College and the Queen's House from Island Gardens, across the river.  Read about the tunnel here.
Then I walked through another park, got back on DLR and got back to my hotel to drink a ton of water. It was a day filled with all the things I love most: artsy interesting shopping and food, hiking in the sunshine, history and learning, exploring, and live music. I feel amazing. And tired.

1 comment:

Ann Vergunst-Bogaart said...

wish i could be there!!! would love to experience all this