the hoofindex - rewind to the previous trip (belfast and northern ireland) - fast forward to the following trip (the start of the road home - alicante)

 

With our time rapidly running out in London we dedicated a few weekends to seeing the final few sights that we hadn't made it to yet, or revisiting some of our favourites.

 

Always one for shopping, the Hoof'ess made us dedicate almost an entire day to visiting markets. This one is Portobello Road in Notting Hill and we also went back to Camden (which is actually pretty cool and always good for some entertainment)

 

We also went to Borough Markets and were surprised that we had never made it there before. The Hoof'ess has had a craving for scallops since we arrived in the UK (which is very odd since she hardly ever ate them back in NZ), and we had heard that Borough Markets was one of the best places to get them. We had to wait in a queue (the Brits love to queue!) for over 15 minutes but they were worth it!

We also enjoyed a wander along the South Bank, past Shakespears Globe (which we didn't go into as it seems a bit silly to visit a recreation of something that never actually stood on this site)

But we did visit a great exhibition on the world's largest cities at the Tate Modern. Here is the Hoof'ess on the balcony of the Tate with St Paul's and Millennium Bridge behind her.

 

These two signs on the doors at Selfridges on Oxford Street took the Hoof'ess' fancy and she is thinking that the second one should become her life motto.

 

A weekend of sun in this terrible, terrible English summer (the worst summer since records began in 1766 just for the record!) and we decided to use this opportunity to take our bikes into London and bike along Regents Canal and also visit the zoo while we were there. Its amazing that such a scenic and serene area is right in the middle of London. (we only got offered drugs by a dodgy guy on the side of the canal once...and that was just out of Camden!)

 

There were pretty canal boats along the length of the canal and people were even living on them right here in London!

 

The area after Regents Park is know as Little Venice. Having seen the real thing we weren't entirely convinced but it was pretty nonetheless.

 

Sunday and the sun held out for us so we headed for the Thames, this time to do a river cruise to see the sights and head out to the Thames Barrier.

 

The Thames Barrier was pretty cool...looked very space age and performs a useful task of keeping London safe from floods.

Thames Barrier, The O2 (formerly the Millennium Dome, but rebranded to try and get rid of the negative PR from its previous failure) and Canary Wharf in the back ground. On the way back to London we actually stopped at Canary Wharf to have a look around and it was actually refreshing to be surrounded by the tall, modern buildings that we are not used to seeing in the UK.

 

We also stopped off at Greenwich...thats the observatory way, way, way in the distance behind us where mean time is measured from.

 

Our last weekend in London. Unfortunately the sun didn't come out to play but the Hoof'ess insisted on yet another trip to St James Park to feed the squirrels. On this visit the squirrels certainly weren't shy in coming forward, especially this one! He actually tapped the Hoof'ess on her back before climbing up over her handbag and onto her knee. The Hoof'ess is really going to miss this cheap entertainment ....wonder if we can bring a pet squirrel home to NZ with us?

 

Time for cheesy tourist photos. I am pretty sure that the London council have placed these phoneboxes around Westminster just so the tourists can take photos of them ....never actually seen them used by anyone to make a phone call (or change into their superhero outfit).

 

And goodbye to Big Ben and goodbye to London, we have loved our time here and are sure that we will be back at some stage.

 

So then it was the start of the long road home... starting in english summer holiday central, Alicante.