England Trip Recap (Part I)

Now that I’ve been home for two weeks, I feel like I’m finally rested enough to tackle writing this series of monster-posts. (I’m basically just going until WordPress yells at me for having too many pictures, so this SHOULD only take a few posts, but we’ll see.)

SO. ENGLAND. We (and by “we” I mean my mom, brother, me, and some members of my high school theatre company) were in England for a week, towards the end of June–mostly in London, but also Oxford, Statford-upon-Avon, Warwick, the Cotswolds, and Cambridge. It was my first time in Europe (I’ve previously been to Canada and Costa Rica–and let’s face it, only one of those truly counts), so this trip was super exciting for me.


Day 1

IMG_0310Excuse the blurriness. I took this while walking, and I’m barely coordinated enough to do that even when NOT attempting to snap a photo.

We flew overnight from the ‘States to England, arriving at London Heathrow Airport far too early in the morning. We spent the day touring the city, both by walking and bus, and we saw some cool sights.

IMG_0312Five minutes out of the airport, and we were already getting bombarded with Chicago advertisements. At least it wasn’t Pure Michigan, but seriously. You can’t go anywhere without America’s obnoxiousness repeatedly smacking you in the face. (Who am I kidding. I secretly love our obnoxiousness.)

IMG_0325My first purchase in the UK was a bag of Turkish Delight. Because Narnia.

IMG_0366Trafalgar Square

IMG_0357First glimpse of Big Ben, from Trafalgar Square.

IMG_0409This is the view from the doorway of our London hotel room. We fit three people in here for three days. It was kind of more than a little bit crazy.


Day 2

We continued with our general touring of the city the second day, with another bus tour. Then we got some free time, and in the evening we went to see a West End show.

IMG_0439This is apparently one of the biggest book stores in the world. I didn’t get a chance to go inside (bus tour, y’know), but LOOK HOW MANY FLOORS THERE ARE!

IMG_0441This year’s a big anniversary for the Queen, and they had these little banners hanging up all over the place.

IMG_0443I took this picture during the bus tour, but The 39 Steps is the West End show we saw. We sat front row for it, and it was absolutely AMAZING. I highly recommend it if you’re in London and looking for a play to see.

IMG_0445The cars, in general, are a lot more compact over there than they are here in the US. Look how cute this taxi is!

IMG_0538Changing of the Guard at Buckingham Palace.

IMG_0456A lot of London was cleaned up after the Blitz, but they left other parts damaged to remind everyone of what happened. This was a church that had been hit by shells.

IMG_0464We visited a lot of churches on our trip. This was probably the coolest–St. Paul’s Cathedral.

IMG_0540Big Ben! (Fun fact: “Big Ben” is actually just the bell in the clock tower. The tower itself has been named the “Elizabeth Tower” since 2012, after simply being known as the “Clock Tour” for the 150+ years since its completion.)

IMG_0541During our free time, we rode the London Eye.

I’m terrified of Ferris wheels, but this one was really cool (and not scary in the least), because you’re actually completely enclosed in a “pod” where you can sit or walk around during the ride.

[During our free time on Day 2, my mom and I also went to Kings Cross Station to take a picture at Platform Nine and Three Quarters, but I unfortunately don’t have access to any of those pictures right now. Sorry! I’ll try to add a picture when I get the chance.]


Day 3

Our last day in London for this stint of the trip, we spent the day touring the Globe Theatre (and seeing The Taming of the Shrew there in the evening, as groundlings), making fun of the art at the Tate Modern, and dodging rain storms at the Tower of London.

IMG_0587Why hello there, Place-Shakespeare-Was-First-Performed. It’s nice to meet you, too!

IMG_0606During our tour, they were working on the set for the next production to go through the Globe. Hint: You’re not supposed to say its name in a theatre.


… Aaaand that’s where it’s cutting me off today! I was hoping I’d at least get through the end of Day 3, since that would cover our London stuff, but nope. Come back in a couple days for the rest of Day 3, along with (hopefully) a couple other days’ recaps!