London’s Southbank on a Sunny Day

After an eight-hour flight, I arrived in London a little tired and smelly but very excited. My check-in time was still hours away and I didn’t want to sit in a crowded lobby. Besides, it was beautiful outside. Everything was sun-kissed orange and perfect t-shirt weather. So I took a bird bath, laced up my sneakers, and set out for the day. I only had to walk a few blocks and turn a few corners before  I saw this gem poking through the scenery.

Can you spot the London Eye?

Can you spot the London Eye?

Thinking the London Eye would be centered in the midst of attractions, I followed the skyline until I found myself standing in its shadow. Luckily, I was right.  Westminster Palace and Big Ben was on my left.

Westminster Palace and Big Ben

Westminster Palace and Big Ben

And to the right, just beyond the Eye, was Southbank. The Ferris Wheel’s £30 was too expensive for me , but the free walk down the Southbank, with its views of the Thames, museums, and eclectic crowds were perfect. In less than an hour I saw Tower Bridge, crossed the Millennium Bridge , and took a last-minute tour when I found myself at Shakespeare’s Globe Theater. I happened to visit on a press day, so I wasn’t allowed to take pictures . The tour was also shortened , so while I didn’t feel like I got my money’s worth that day, I imagine the full experience is probably worthwhile.  I did get to see some snazzy costumes and miniature reconstructions at the Exhibition Center , though.

View down the Thames River

View down the Thames River

The crowd heading towards the Millennium Bridge

The crowd heading towards the Millennium Bridge

Cute houses next to the Globe

Cute houses next to the Globe

Shakespeare's Globe-in mini form

Shakespeare’s Globe-in mini form

Describe in one word...Fierce

Describe in one word…Fierce

I would have worn this to prom

I would have worn this to prom

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

If you’re interested, the Tate Museum is just a few steps away. Try to remember to visit before the flight home( Not that I did this) .

On the way back to the hostel, I passed the famous skate park and the Southbank Book Market. It’s probably no surprise that I spent the better part of an hour browsing the long tables full of books. I didn’t buy anything but they had some interesting titles  and beautiful antique maps for sell.

The skate park from a distance

The empty skate park from a distance

Book Market

Book Market

Book Market

Book Market

Lots and lots of maps

Lots and lots of maps

After a few hours of viewing the street performers , browsing the quaint stalls, and admiring London from up high , I went back to my hostel exhausted but happy with my afternoon. I wouldn’t have wanted  to spend my sunny first day in London anywhere else.

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3 thoughts on “London’s Southbank on a Sunny Day

  1. You saw so much in your first day! I haven’t been on the London Eye either, must save up and do that one day. . .! Hope you enjoy the rest of your visit 🙂 x

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