Click here for Days 9-10.
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Day 11: April 30, 2011
It was time to explore London again. We got up bright and early and had our usual heavy breakfast (with rice of course!) courtesy of my brother and sister-in-law.
Waiting for our cab to the train station

It was a Saturday and many tube stations were closed. So we got off somewhere near the river and walked.

Cleopatra’s needle along the river Thames 

Under one of the bridges – not sure which one this was

We decided to check out the Tower of London first. It is a castle along the north bank of the river Thames and was built in 1078 – long before the Philippines was first discovered by the Spanish explorers.

One of the bedrooms inside the castle

A throne
The Tower Bridge viewed from the castle walls

I have no idea what was so funny!
Exploring the walls of the castle

One of the recent installations on the wall

Checking out the ancient weapons

This part of the wall is under restoration work

Trying on the more modern military gear

One of the more interesting exhibits is the medieval armors. It was fascinating to see them live as we are only accustomed to seeing these in movies.

This is King Henry VIII’s armor.
Can someone explain this?

Here’s a closer look. Seriously, what’s the point?

This looks foreign – like a Japanese armor

The owner of this gear looks shorter than the average British soldier.
I find this a bit creepy.
 

Here’s a scale model of the castle.

The sword is taller than Ariel!

St. John’s Chapel inside the White Tower

More armors

A dragon made of metal 

Weapons

At the souvenir shop – Again, why?

One popular attraction inside the castle is the Crown Jewels exhibit.They are the greatest working collection of Crown Jewels in the world and priceless symbols of British monarchy. Photography is prohibited in this section so there are no photos to share, but trust me, they are magnificent!

After exploring the castle, we proceeded to the Tower Bridge which is just a few minutes walk away.

Couple Pic with the famous landmark in the background

One more for the scrapbook

Contrary to popular belief, this is NOT the London Bridge.  The bridge is both a suspension bridge similar to San Francisco’s Golden Gate Bridge, and a bascule bridge which is a moveable bridge with a counterweight that continuously balances the span, or “leaf,” throughout the entire upward swing in providing clearance for boat traffic (thanks to Wikipedia for the definition of the Bascule Bridge). In layman’s terms, this bridge opens up in the middle to let tall water vessels pass through. 

London as seen through the tower bridge

The view on the other side

Crossing the bridge

After crossing the bridge from the tower, we went out and walked to the entrance of the engine room.

Walking to the entrance to the engine room

A Coke machine inside the engine room

The Engine Room

Tools

Bikers

Under the bridge

This is the center of the bridge, that opens up to let water vessels pass through.
Can you see the river below?

Then it was time to go to our next destination, but not without posing for a few more photos.

Our next destination is the Apollo Victoria Theater for a WICKED evening! We took a short cab ride to take us to the nearest open Tube Station.

This was inside one of London’s famed black cabs

Then we took the tube to the station nearest the Apollo Victoria Theater.

Inside the tube

We arrived early so we took a few shots first before having a quick meal at Burger King. The theater was packed with people. So glad we were able to secure tickets.

At the theater entrance

The stage – taken before the show started

The show ended around 9pm. We really enjoyed it! I was hoping we’ll get to watch a few more musicals while we were in London but the schedules and ticket availability did not work out so this was the only one we saw.

Days 12-13: May 1-2

By the time we got home after watching Wicked, my dysmenorrhea has started. Needless to say, I just stayed at home the following day while Ariel and my in-laws went out in the afternoon for a quick shopping.

By Monday afternoon, I was feeling much better and I got to join the others for a quick trip to the town center for another shopping trip.

No photos on these two days. Come to think of it, this minor bout with dysmenorrhea was a blessing in disguise. Since we arrived in London, we’ve been up and about every single day so I was thankful for the chance to rest.

Click here for Day 14.

Written by Alby Laran

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