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Westminster Abbey ... will my teenager be interested?

Toronto
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Westminster Abbey ... will my teenager be interested?

Will be in London for a week with 14 yr old daughter.

I'd love to visit Westminster Abbey ... but I'm not sure how bored she might be. Particularly since it would probably involve the 1.5 hr verger tour.

We were actually in London for a couple of days a few years ago. We went to Tower of London then, and she was not that enthralled (not even with the Beefeater Tour) -- even though I thought it was fabulous! Of course, we had just arrived and were very jet lagged that day. We actually have a picture of me sitting on a bench at Tower of London with a child on either side of me fast asleep with their heads on my shoulder.

Anyway, I'd love to go to both St. Paul's (climb to the top) and Westminster this time round ... but there are so many things to do in London and I want to plan our time well to find things we'll both enjoy.

Any words of advice?

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Maryland
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1. Re: Westminster Abbey ... will my teenager be interested?

Well, I've always been enthralled by Westminster Abbey, even as a kid and teenager, but then I wasn't a typical teenager. If she's at all interested in royalty then she might find it interesting. If not, have her bring a book and there's plenty of places she can sit and read while you do the tour. You shouldn't miss it, it's amazing!

winnipeg
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2. Re: Westminster Abbey ... will my teenager be interested?

I understand your concern VC but I say do the tour of Westminster

Abbey.

Many years ago I visited Westminster Abbey with my parents

( I was 13 ) and at one point during the tour we stopped in one area

and the tour guide was explaining something and I looked down to

the ground where I was standing and lo and behold I was standing

on one of the King Henry's remains ( there was an inlaid stone with

the info engraved on it ). I jumped because I couldn't believe my

eyes and also because I thought it wasn't proper to stand on that

particular spot!

Anyhow, visiting the Abbey all those years ago made a huge

impression on me and really made British history come alive!

I'll be taking my teenage daughter to Westminster Abbey this

summer when we visit London and I hope that she enjoys it.

Of course I plan on taking her to TopShop at Oxford Circus for

shopping too!!!

USA
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3. Re: Westminster Abbey ... will my teenager be interested?

It is hard to be enthralled by anything when you tired enough to fall asleep on a bench. This trip will go better.

I have to think that even the most recalcitrant teenager will find something to enjoy about Westminster Abbey. Certainly something will tie in with her schooling; perhaps the royal connections, poets' corner, the Unknown Warrior, or the Battle of Britain window.

My daughter had chosen to do a report on Elizabeth I. She enjoyed finding connections to Elizabeth at London sights, even asking a few questions of the guides. As parents, we hope for this kind of experience, but my kids were also fascinated by the different soft drinks, TV shows, and freakily dressed people.

Stanley, Falkland...
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4. Re: Westminster Abbey ... will my teenager be interested?

Would it help if you told her that all the Harry Potter films were filmed there? There's probably a plaque to that effect somewhere.....

Is she too young to remember Princess Di? Married in St Paul's and seen off in Westminster Abbey. Its coming up for the 10 th anniversary - there's bound to be some events to remind us.

You could always "bribe" her with a trip to London Dungeon in return for letting you see the churches...

Long Island, NY
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5. Re: Westminster Abbey ... will my teenager be interested?

VeryConfused, I'm sorry to report that my 14-year-old daughter was quite bored by Westminster Abbey. (We just returned from our first trip to London.) She has no interest in history and after we got about halfway through it, she opted to sit by herself while the rest of us finished touring.

And you know what? That was just fine by me. She loved the contemporary aspects of London, and we rewarded her putting up with the historical sites by letting her spend a morning shopping at Topshop in Oxford Circus. That worked.

North Carolina
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6. Re: Westminster Abbey ... will my teenager be interested?

Hello, I took both my teens to London (albeit one at a time). One had just graduated from HS, but was not really interested in ANYTHING at the time and the other was in college and she'd just broken up with her boyfriend and not in a good place. The interesting thing is they both still talk about that place. They've been back more than once and even taken their spouses there, so it did leave a lasting impression...even though they were sometimes a little "hard to take" on the trip!!!

I see your daughter is much younger than mine were when they went but that doesn't necessarily mean anything. Mine were suffering all sorts of angst when they went and maybe your daughter won't be in that kind of place, so she could be very open to the whole experience. Like I said, mine got much more out of it than I ever imagined!!

Elizabeth

Scotland, United...
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for South Ayrshire, Glasgow
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7. Re: Westminster Abbey ... will my teenager be interested?

We managed to arrive too late for the verger tour on our visit to Westminster Abbey, but went in and wandered around ourselves instead. While my teen found it moderately interesting, but without the verger in tow it was not as good as it could have been, as the whole place it packed full of history and there are very few plaques to explain what things are.

The occasional point of interest is explained by a plague, but given that they charge so much to go in I think they could offer a little more in the way of information, albeit in subtle form.

When at one point we caught up briefly with the verger tour that we had missed, I found what he had to say captivating, making me even more sorry we had arrived late! My teen would have enjoyed the tour, which was conducted with enthusiasm and wry humour, though she managed to content herself with taking numerous photos outside the building and a sneaky few in the cloisters.

We saved ourselves some money by printing out the 2 for 1 vouchers on the national rail website www.daysoutguide.co.uk which is used in conjunction with a rail ticket, though they didn't look at our rail ticket.

I would say give it a go - there is so much there that one and a half hours will whizz by.

Stanley, Falkland...
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8. Re: Westminster Abbey ... will my teenager be interested?

<<<< The occasional point of interest is explained by a plague >>>>

Note to visitors - plague is quite common in parts of England. Make sure you get your vaccinations before you arrive! And don't feed the black rats....

USA
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9. Re: Westminster Abbey ... will my teenager be interested?

Take a guide book with you if do not do a verger tour. I know that Michelin and Rick Steves have excellent descriptions of the abbey. I would hope that other guidebooks would. I could not tell a nave from an ambulatory without a guidebook or a guide.

Did I also get a little trifold handout with my admission?

Hampshire, United...
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10. Re: Westminster Abbey ... will my teenager be interested?

naughty, naughty, peter :-)

My then 12 year old son enjoyed Westminster Abbey much more than I thought he would. We got a children's trail sheet for him to follow. Kept him engaged for ages.