It is best known for Nelson's Column, which stands in the center guarded by four lion statues. The Column commemorates Admiral Horatio Nelson, who died at the Battle of Trafalgar in 1805.
In 2011, consultants for the Greater London Authority reported that tourists climbing onto the backs of the lions have caused considerable damage and
Okay, okay. Full disclosure time. I really wanted to hop on the lion's back...but once I crawled up there, I kinda got scared of the height. Which is odd, as I've never been afraid of heights. TJ, meanwhile, hoped right on. And he IS afraid of heights. Go figure. Anyway, I still wanted a photo, so he was nice enough to come down to paw level for to take a pic with his wussy husband. I'm so lame.
|A Wheatfield, with Cypresses, 1889|
Vincent Van Gogh (1853-1890)
Anwarul skipped out of work early/took an extended lunch break to join us at Buckingham Palace.
Buckingham Palace is one of the most readily recognized buildings in the world. Like the Houses of Parliament, it stands as an international symbol of London and the United Kingdom as a whole.
During the summer and early fall, when the Palace is not being used in its official capacity, visitors are able to tour the State Rooms. These rooms are furnished with some of the greatest treasures from the Royal Collection - paintings by Rembrandt, Rubens, and and Canaletto; sculpture by Canova; and some of the finest examples of English and French furniture in the world.
The Royal Mews is one of the finest workings stables in existence and a living part of Britain's heritage. The Mews is responsible for all road travel arrangements for The Queen and members of the Royal Family, and is home to the Royal Collection of historic coaches and carriages.
We found ourselves at the museum at a time of day in which the camera battery was dying (shame on me) but it served well in forcing me to stop and enjoy what I was seeing. Here are but a few examples of my favorite exhibit pieces.
That concludes London proper, but we have one final stop before this post's conclusion. I am including it here because A) It was mentioned above; B) It was the final location on this vacation that I have previously been to, so why not wrap up with a clean break?; and C) That green man above giving you some serious side-eye is no way to say goodbye.
The Queen is officially in residence at Windsor twice a year: at Easter, and again in June, when the annual Garter Service is held in St. George's Chapel. The Castle is used as an alternative to Buckingham Palace for ceremonial visits by foreign heads of state. As stated above, The Queen (and The Duke of Edinburgh) spend most of their private weekends at Windsor.
Annnnndddd, that's a wrap for London (and Windsor!). Tune in next time, when we set our sights on roller coasters, mysterious rock formations, and even more palaces.