London in 24

you've got a few options... 

my parents are not big travelers. So when my sweet fiance (mr. pope) coerced them into visiting Paris for my 30th birthday, I was SHOCKED to say the least. After spending a few days in my current city, I decided to take them on a day trip to London. They'd never been to Europe in their lives, so we wanted to pack as much in as possible. SO, we hopped on a train and were gone for a mere 24 hours TOTAL.

I am a huge fan of London and have some very favorite spots... so while I couldn't take them everywhere, I think we did our best with seeing the top attractions and historical spots. Also, we used The Tube to take us everywhere... so not only did it let us escape the traffic in London, it's MUCH cheaper than the pricey taxi rides in the city. Let's go:

Morning: The Changing of the Guard at Buckingham Palace. If you're there in the winter, make sure to check the schedule! It only happens every other day. And be sure to get there early for a good spot - otherwise you'll just be standing in the middle of hundreds of strangers while pissed off.

Changing of the guard at Buckingham Palace

Buckingham Palace Gates

The Queen's house

Lunch: Fish and chips of course! I've had one too many food poisoning experiences from a divey London pub (read: one experience period), so in lieu of doing that and ruining the trip, we went to a slightly more upscale pub with to-die-for fish & chips! We had lunch at Marquis Cornwallis and then checked into our hotel (which we found for a deal/steal on Priceline). 

photo borrowed from their site :)

Afternoon: Pick a park - any park! London is rife with amazing green spaces. My personal favorite is Hyde Park. It reminds me a bit of a New York one. It's gorgeous, but not quite as manicured as other London parks. Have a wander!

Hyde Park

The sunken garden at Kensington Palace


a friend

Early evening: Westminster Abbey, Parliament, + Big Ben. If you go at dusk, you get to see them with all of the fantastic lighting (which I think makes them that much more whimsical)

Parliament + Big Ben

Westminster Abbey

Winston & Ben (Mr. Churchill has a lovely statue near by)

Evening: The Tower of London. Hurry though! I think the last admission is 6pm (check the site). This is one of my favorite places... as creepy as that sounds. Stop for an English cider afterwards to reward your touristy success so far! The Hung, Drawn, & Quartered is near by. 

Tower Bridge

Dinner: Shepherd's Pie at The Windmill. UH-MAZING.

Shepherd's Pie deliciousness

Finally: have a nightcap in a London lounge. Be sure to ask for a double... they are light on the pour. Now go to bed! Aren't you exhausted?!

So, while we didn't have time to hit my favorite museum (Tate Modern), I think they were pretty satisfied with their condensed London trip. Who knows, maybe I even sparked a travel bug within them.