I slept for a few hours on the flight from Saudi Arabia to London, UK and then had a pretty long immigration line to wait in at Heathrow. From there I made my way to the Tube which I took to London Victoria station. I then stored my bags for the day at the Victoria Coach station which ended up being super convenient. By this point, I was so tired but I also really didn’t want to waste a day in London. Who knew how perfect my day would end up being!
After leaving my bags I decided to just walk around the area and head towards Buckingham Palace and then perhaps just walk around the parks. However, as I was walking that way I realized the one major thing in London that I had never done was, in fact, to visit Buckingham Palace! The Palace is only open to tourists pretty much in the summer months and as a result, I was unable to visit during my study abroad in the spring months.
I decided to walk by the ticket office and it just so happened that I was in luck! There were tickets available for that exact time - it was meant to be. I bought my ticket without hesitation and headed inside. You have to go through security of course and once inside you have to turn off your camera and put away your phone. So I don’t have any pictures from inside, but it was as spectacular as you might imagine.
It was really cool to see such important and historic rooms and to learn so much about them. Audio guides can be pretty hit or miss but this was definitely a good one! It was also actually nice that cameras weren’t allowed because you could just take time, enjoy things, and not have to worry about taking pictures or having people taking pictures all around you. I spent a few hours inside and learned so much. It’ll also be cool next time I watch The Crown to be like oh yeah, I’ve seen that room!
After finishing the palace you exit to the Buckingham Palace Gardens in the back. I was able to take pictures here and then stopped for some Buckingham Palace Ice Cream as well! I then walked back towards Victoria Coach station with a few stops along the way. The first was at Marks & Spencer to stock up on my favorite London candy, Percy Pigs Phizzy Pig Tails. I don’t know why but I love them. I then grabbed Shake Shack to go and made my way to get my bag at the coach station before catching my Gatwick Express train to Gatwick Airport from London Victoria station.
It was a really great day in London and I am so glad that in the limited time that I had it worked out so perfect for me to be able to see the one thing left at the top of my touristy things in London list! I was exhausted by this point but had a great trip and am looking forward to heading home for about two weeks before I head out again, next time to Eastern Europe!
49 countries down, 147 to go.
Read about my first day in the United Kingdom here.