As write this, London burns at the mercy of horrible rioters. Sorry, no sympathy from me! (So you’ve burned your neighborhood down and now you have a brand-new telly you’ve nicked. Congrats?)
I cannot think of a better time to thumb my nose at these thugs and celebrate my favourite city:
The Tudor connections are many…
- Westminster Abbey, where you can see the tombs of Henry VII, Edward VI, Mary I, and Elizabeth I.
- The Tower of London, where Elizabeth I was imprisoned, Anne Boleyn and Katherine Howard were executed and are buried, and Lady Jane Grey may be immortalized in graffiti, among lots of other Tudor history
- Hampton Court Palace, my fave Tudor place!
- The Globe Theatre, although it’s a rebuild of the original theater, is a treasure. The exhibition is described here. The ceiling above the stage (“the Heavens”) is gorgeous, as are the wrought-iron gates at the entrance, in front of which I stand here.
But there’s plenty of non-Tudor London to enjoy as well…
- I’m a big fan of the Natural History Museum (and it’s free!); I especially love their dinosaur exhibits. Rawwrr!
- The Sir John Soane Museum is the most interesting crowded collection of art and “stuff” you will ever visit
- The view from St. Paul’s is simply wonderful. I am enjoying it here.
- The church garden of St. Dunstan in the East is charming.
- The Tate Modern is just fab!
- This may be unpopular but I love eating at the Texas Embassy, near Trafalgar Square. It’s a dependable Tex-Mex menu with decent prices and a fun atmosphere.
- The wonderful National Portrait Gallery is also near Trafalgar Square.
- I hear there’s a charming little residence just off Constitution Hill, but I prefer the Victoria Memorial right in front of said residence.
- There are so many things to love about London in this print by Linzie Hunter
- If you are on Twitter and can only follow one Londoner, make it Laura Porter, the knowledgable and dedicated About.com guide to the City
- There are pages and pages of quotes about the City here
- Here’s a clickable map of places with “hidden London” gems
- Lately I’m reading London: A Biography by Peter Ackroyd. I also like London in the Footsteps of the Famous by Nicholas Best, 360º London by Nick Wood, and Frommer’s Irreverent Guide to London by Baillet and Fitzgerald.
- This page offers London recs from Sir Michael Caine, Arlene Phillips, Heather Small, Tom Aikens, and other famous names
- Please never refer toTower Bridge as “London Bridge.” That’s a different bridge. Thanks. =)
Keep London (and other affected areas such as Birmingham, Liverpool, Manchester, and Bristol) in your thoughts and prayers during the current abuses. Updates continue to be posted via video and text on the BBC news website.