Even though I saw so much yesterday, I couldn’t wait to see more of what London has to offer. Today started with an optional in-depth tour of two places that we saw briefly in previous days, St. Paul’s Cathedral and Westminster Abbey.
St. Paul’s Cathedral was the first stop on the tour. It is still fully functioning but we were able to take a walk through. The architecture was very interesting and different from what I am used to seeing at a cathedral or church. It was designed in an English Baroque style and has very large windows that are not stained glass. The clear windows let a huge amount of light in and make the huge mosaics all around the cathedral really pop with color. We were not allowed to take pictures inside but the exterior is enough to show how worth it it was to see.
We made the short drive over the west side of London to visit Westminster Abbey. It was built in a traditional Gothic style over the course of almost 500 years, which is almost unbelievable. Inside we saw sculptures, amazing architecture and King Edward’s chair which has been used in every royal coronation since 1308! I watched a video of Queen Elizabeth’s coronation yesterday so it was very cool to see this in person while inside the Abbey where she became queen.
After the tour we had some time to relax before heading out to the London Eye. I decided to visit Trafalgar Square. The square is named after the Battle of Trafalgar, which was a victory for Britain over Spain and France.
The square is beautiful with a huge fountain, and sculptures you can walk up to and touch. In the square is the National Gallery, an art museum which is free—like most museums in London. It was a great way to learn about English history through art.
After seeing the great views from Tower Bridge yesterday, I couldn’t wait to see the view a bit further down the river from the London Eye. We watched an introduction movie in the 4D Theatre next to the Eye, which teased some views from the top while blowing bubbles and mist into the air (it was all very relevant, trust me). We had a surprisingly short wait to get on the huge Ferris wheel and the timing was perfect since the sun was just starting to down, making pictures much easier to take.