You only have 24 hours to spend in London during a layover. What should you do and what should you try to see? There are so many areas and landmarks in London that you certainly can’t see them all. We made a list of things that are iconic to London and a few came to mind, Big Ben, Tower Bridge and of course the famous Tower of London. Add in the British Museum and you can’t get a taste of what London has to offer as well as some of the histories of the massive British Empire.
To get the best of Big Ben and the Tower Bridge we suggest having a coffee and taking a bus or taxi there as early as possible. Some of the best photos of the landmarks are available early in the morning or late in the afternoon. We suggest making it your first stop since this will be a quick stop and then you will have plenty of time to the other places on your day trip.
Next, on our stop is pretty much governed by the weather. If it is warm out, go to the Tower of London first. If it is cool out, wait until the afternoon when it is warmer. Since the weather was cool on our visit, we hit the British Museum first.
British Museum of London
The British Museum is not only one of the largest museums in the world but also one of the oldest founded in 1753. The Museum was founded by Hans Sloane and became available to the public in 1759. It began not only as a Museum for the British but also as the National Library. The Museum is divided into rooms so that each of the antiquities is grouped together. Today we are spending our time in our favorite area the Egyptian Exhibit. You will find ever changing artifacts in this area as the Museum of Cairo and the British Museum are continually loaning items to each other to enhance the exhibits.
There are over eight million artifacts to see. Choose an exhibit or two that interests you most. Spend your time in those areas instead of roaming from room to room. There are 94 such exhibits to choose from as well as an education department to visit. There are works from Egypt, Persia, Americas, Rome and Greece as well as Africa and Asia so there is never a lack of things to see.
The main entrance is on Great Russell Street. The information desk, where you can find information about the museum and its collections is located here. The other entrance is in the north of Montague Square.
TIMES AND COST
The Museum is opened daily from 10:00 am – 5:30 pm.
The Museum is closed on the 24th, 25th and 26th of December and the 1st of January.
Price: The Entrance to the Museum is free for all visitors. There might be a fee for the temporary exhibitions, but this information can be obtained from the information desk. This is one of our top ten bargains of the world.
Tower of London
The Tower of London is one of the most established and most all around protected structures on the planet. After some time, the Tower of London has been utilized to shield England from its adversaries and been used as a royal residence for the regal family. Going to the Tower of London is an unquestionable requirement for any first time London guest. For the individuals who have flown out to London a couple times, it allows you to catch anything you missed the first go-round.
The Tower of London has been cared for by guards known as Beefeaters since its opening in 1078. The Beefeaters deal with the structures inside the Tower of London ensuring that the greater part of the structures are kept safe from gatecrashers. In the beginning, their duty was to watch to guarantee that none of the detainees of the Tower of London would escape. Since their beginning, Beefeaters have been required to take a pledge to the Tower of London, the structures, and the government. In early years the Beefeaters would have performed their obligations in regular clothes, today the corrections officers have significantly more stately clothing.
After some time the Tower of London began to be known for the colossal number of individuals that had been executed there. A couple of the more well-known executions include Anne Boleyn in 1530, which was Henry VIII second spouse. She was decapitated and burned because Henry associated her with infidelity. Sir Walter Raleigh, a traveler to the Americas who lost favor with Elizabeth I, put in twelve years in the tower to be discharged for just two short years before ending up back there again and being executed in 1618. The Tower of London has been the setting for an incredible number of historically significant and world changing events.
The Tower of London is additionally where the royal gems are kept. It is generally unknown as to what the value of all of the gold, silver, and gemstones are in this illustrious collection. Lords and rulers, all through the ages, have worn items from the collection.
Ceremony of the Keys
One of the most established services at the Tower of London, that still survives today, is the Passing of the Keys. The turning over of the keys is the stately bolting up of the tower on London every night. The service has been finished in precisely the same, each and every night for right around seven hundred years. Every night just before 10:00 pm, the central jailer originates from Byward Tower carrying a candle lantern in one hand and the Queen’s Keys in the other hand. He goes to a spot in front of the main tower. A trade begins as the entryways are bolted. The main jailer and sentry play out the well-known event.
“Who comes there?“
“Queen Elizabeth’s Keys.”
“Pass Queen Elizabeth’s Keys. All’s well.”
The Tower of London is a structure loaded with history. A visit to the Tower can be an incredible learning experience for children and adults alike. Every time you visit the Tower you can discover some new information about its history.
The Tower of London is open for visitors practically each day of the year, except for Christmas day, Christmas Eve, Boxing Day, and New Years Day. An entrance fee is charged based on the age of the visitors, and the number of individuals in a tour group. The towers are quite easily accessible through the Tower Slope Tube Station, and also a few transport stations.
A recorded tape in various languages is available. It walks you through all of the historical spots with detailed information and we highly recommend you get this to have a better understanding of what you are seeing on the Tower grounds.
As always, our photos are posted here.