This post will be a little bit different than the other ones, just because I really want to share it with you. One of my dreams is to travel the world and even though I haven’t been to a lot of different places so far, I still believe that in the future I’ll visit many of them, not just in Europe. London has a special place in my heart and I’ve always wanted to visit it. In April 2012 I’ve finally got the opportunity to travel to Northern Europe and my long time wish has finally been fullfilled.
On 28th of April, me, my best friend Martina, my parents and parents friends, went on the adventure towards England. In the early hours of the beautiful Saturday we headed to Pula. We went with a personal van, because it was less expensive and we went to Pula, because we had a flight from there to Gatwick airport in London. Our flight was about 1 hour and 15 minutes long and when we finally arrived in London, the weather was pretty much what we expected – cold and rain. But we didn’t care much.
From the airport we were driven into the city by bus and then with the underground to our apartment. First day was just discovering our surroundings and finding little stores and markets. At the evening we also visited Camden Lock with all those colorful buildings.
Real adventure began next day, Sunday, 29th of April. First thing we saw was Greenwich. There is a beautiful park, which I loved, and a lovely path towards the Royal observatory Greenwich. I know it sounds historical and it actually is, but it was definitely one of the best things I’ve ever saw. Besides small museum inside and all the history, I was amused by two things. First, there was this display, which showed, how many days, hours, minutes and seconds were until opening ceremony of the London 2012 Olympic games and as a huge sports fan, I was really happy that I saw it. And the second thing was a prime meridian – ‘line’ which separates east from west. So, I was actually standing on two different places at the same time.
We continued our day in the city, in the Natural history museum, which was interesting to me, but not as much as other things we saw in London. We walked through the center of London, where we saw world-known London eye (but we didn’t go on, because the weather was too bad and we wouldn’t have seen anything), Big Ben and Westminster Abbey. The weather became better while we were wandering through the city, but it was still cloudy and cold. I was most excited about those red telephone booths, mailboxes and taxicabs, that everybody always talk about. And I finally had the opportunity to see all of them by myself, in reality. We continued our walk by Tower of London, which is over 900-years old building, which was prison, royal palace, jewel house, even the zoo and it’s one of the world’s most famous buildings.
The day went on and so did we. We saw the beautiful Tower bridge, which was at that time re-colored to blue and it was really beautiful. Interesting story: when we were walking near the bridge, we met one guy that was selling salted caramel almonds and while we were waiting for them, we were talking to him and he told us that he comes from one of the Balkan countries (I’m not sure if he was Serbian or Bosnian – maybe he was from some other country, I really don’t remember). We were really surprised, because we couldn’t believe that we would met someone ‘known’ in London, but it was an amazing experience. But that was not all for our first official day in London. That afternoon we visited famous Oxford street, which is known especially for shops and markets and food places – literally everything. I was really excited, because I knew that there is M&M’s shop somewhere and I really wanted to find it. Me and Martina separated from the group and went shopping (did you expect anything else?). And here was another funny experience. There are a lot of different small shops, which are owned by Pakistani. When we walked into one of them and looked for some sweaters, one of them started flirting with Martina. He offered her an apartment and he almost married her at that moment. Two other friends of him and I almost died from laughing. This is probably the most memorable moment that I will literally remember for life. Oh, and at the end, unfortunately I didn’t find the M&M’s shop.
Our adventure continued the next day and the first thing we saw was Saint Paul’s cathedral, which was beautiful from the outside as well as from the inside. We also went on the top of it, from where we literally saw the whole London and it was breathtaking. If I hadn’t had the opportunity to see London from the top of the London eye the previous day, I had it the other day from the cathedral. And it was definitely worth walking all those 378 stairs up the dome for that stunning view.
After amazing view from the cathedral, we walked over Millennium bridge to the Shakespear’s globe and then through Green park to Buckingham palace. There was a huge crowd of people and a few minutes later we knew why. It was time for changing the guard and everybody was there to see it. It was quite an interesting experience for me, especially because I’ve never seen it before.
Our next stop was British museum, but it definitely wasn’t my idea. Not that I’m not a history fan, but there were other things I’ve wanted to see. That’s why me and Martina left the museum and went to the Starbucks over the road. It was our first experience with it and besides renaming me to Ticara, it was good.
Our last stop of the day and the whole trip was famous Madame Tussauds, a wax museum of many famous people, such as Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie, the Royal family, Albert Einstein, David and Victoria Beckham, Michael Jackson, Marilyn Monroe, Dalai Lama and many others. I also know that they added a lot of other wax figures in these 4 years, even famous Youtubers. It’s almost unreal, how similar those figures look compared to real people.
Here our trip actually ended. Next day we went back to the Gatwick airport (and yes, we were running on the airplane, because we were late), flew to Pula and drove home. It was short, but sweet. In literally two days, we visited so many beautiful places, saw amazing sights, even met amazing people. I would love to go back some day, because I really love the city, the people, the energy – literally everything. Even though everybody is always in a hurry, my opinion about Londoners is that they are very nice and whenever you need help, they will help you.
You are probably asking yourself, what I’ve remembered the most. Well, besides all funny experiences, especially with Pakistani, “Mind the gap” – everytime we stepped off the train and standing at two places at the same time, I just loved exploring the city and culture with my best friend. Is there anything better than that? I hope I’ll have the opportunity to visit London again, next time for a week or maybe even longer.
Until next time,