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A rather OCD itinerary for comment and suggestion

Saratoga Springs, NY
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A rather OCD itinerary for comment and suggestion

Ok, I admit it. I'm a little neurotic. But I like to have things written out so I'm not terribly confused in the moment. I don't stick to things like they are law, and I do let my family shake things up in the moment if we don't feel like doing what's on the list. Soooo, that being said, if you are not faint of heart, please feel free to comment on my itinerary, which will be in the post below because it's long. Yes, I'm a bit bonkers.

Saratoga Springs, NY
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1. Re: A rather OCD itinerary for comment and suggestion

Tuesday, arrive Heathrow. Get Oyster cards for family – I didn't pre-order youth card for Aidan.

Getting to hotel

tripadvisor.com/ShowTopic-g186338-i17-k54756…

Take the Piccadilly Line to Hammersmith, walk the few feet to the adjacent platform, then District Line to Westminster. Leave by the Bridge Street exit and walk across Westminster Bridge.

Get quick lunch, and get a cell phone at a car warehouse store. Both lunch and phone are at Victoria Place shopping center, on the corner of Buckingham Palace Road and Eccleston Bridge/Belgrave road. Take a taxi (about 10 mins), or take bus 211 (stop is near Westminster Bridge). Then walk one block south on Buckingham Palace Road to Victoria Coach Station for our bus tour which starts at ________(1:30? Need to confirm)pm.

After tour, find dinner somewhere and if we’re up to it, roam the area near London Eye or covent garden. Or do Abbey Road photo shoot. Take the Jubilee line northwest to St John’s Wood (9 minute ride). There is a beatles shop at/near the tube station. Walk one long block southwest to the Abbey Road zebra crossing.

Wednesday morning:

Hampton Court Palace. Opens 10am. Buy train tickets at Waterloo for 2for1 offer. South West Trains run services direct from London Waterloo to Hampton Court. Palace is a 200 metre walk across the bridge Aim to leave HCP on 1:24 train if we want to make it to Tower of London today.

Waterloo to Hampton Court Monday-Saturday – xx12 and xx42 -- ride takes 35 min – aim for 942 train to save 20GBP Zone 1-6 paper travelcard is cheapest

Hampton Court to Waterloo Monday-Saturday - xx24 and xx54 – ride takes 35 min

Wednesday Afternoon

The Tower of London is open until 5:30pm and they suggest 3 hours for a visit. From Waterloo, take Northern line to Embankment, transfer to Circle Line to Tower Hill. 2for 1 offer. If we don’t have time for Tower, go to British Museum instead – Waterloo station, northern line to Tottenham Court Road. They are also open until 5:30. Or go to National Portrait Gallery, room 9 to see Sir Samuel Garth

Wednesday evening: Curry or Fish & Chips – perhaps wander around Covent Garden. Abbey Road? Take Jubilee line to

Thursday: Tour of Stonehenge & Bath with English Bus tours. Meet at Kennington underground station (about five minutes south on Northern line from Waterloo) Exit the station and turn left. You will see The English Bus waiting 10 metres from the exit on Braganza Street here. Departure time is 8:45. Be there 8:35.

Thursday night: If we have time, visit National Portrait Gallery. Or check out Embankment walk.

Friday morning:

Check out of hotel by 6:45 am. Walk to Westminster tube, take Jubilee to next stop/Green Park – transfer to Picadilly line to KingsX/StPancras. (or walk to Waterloo, take Bakerloo to Picadilly Circus and xfer to Picadilly line - or take northern to Leicester Square, transfer to Picadilly)

Departure at Eurostar at 8:31 – so should be at St Pancras by 7:30.

Sunday evening: Arrive ST Pancras 4:39pm. Take Picadilly line to Russell Square to hotel.

6:30pm tickets to Henry V at Shakespeare’s Globe. Consider a taxi, if Aidan is tired. Or scenic bus route: Take a bus (59, 68, 168, 188) from Southampton Row to the Aldwych. Walk around the curve of the road about a minute to the Royal Courts of Justice (stop L) and take the 15 towards Blackwall. Alight at St Paul's Churchyard and walk across the Millennium Bridge to the theatre. tfl.gov.uk/tfl/…russellsquare-2222.pdf The spider map is well out of date, stop F no longer exists. Use stop B or the stop at Theobald's Road, on the nearside of the junction. The stop near Holborn station has moved a fair bit along Kingsway because of building works. tfl.gov.uk/tfl/…aldwychquad-11500.pdf tfl.gov.uk/tfl/gettingaround/maps/buses/pdf/… If you don't see taxis near the theatre after the performance, walk back across the Millennium Bridge as there should be plenty of them along Cannon Street Pizza express if we have time, pret a manger or the like if we do not.

Monday morning: British Museum (walk from hotel) or Tower of London.

Monday afternoon – do whatever we didn’t get to earlier, and/or go shopping. Maybe Marks & Spencer on Oxford Street. National Portrait Gallery, if didn’t get to it. dinner at The Lamb (pub) at 94 lamb’s Conduit St – walk north on Southhampton Row to Guilford St, then about 4 blocks east or so to Lamb’s Conduit St. Historic pub, highly recommended.

Monday, 9:30pm, Ceremony of the Keys at the Tower of London. Holborn station – red Central Line towards Heinault/Epping. Get off at Liverpool Street Station and transfer to Circle Line towards Embankment. Get off at Tower Hill. (15 minutes ish) OR take Russell Square tube to KingsX and transfer to Circle Line.

Tuesday morning

Take Picadilly line back to Heathrow. Will take 1 hour by tube, bus or whatever method we choose. Flight leaves at 12:30 so need to be at Heathrow by 9:30 at the latest. So get on Tube before 8am.

Edited: 12 August 2012, 05:36
Saratoga Springs, NY
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2. Re: A rather OCD itinerary for comment and suggestion

ah yes, I put a couple of things in twice, in case I didn't have time for them the first time. If I put something in more than once, it's something I wanted to make sure we got to at some point.

My mom is a HUGE Beatles fan, and she would just go bonkers for a photo of her grandson crossing Abbey Road and in front of the Studio there.

I was named after Sir Samuel Garth, and as ancestors go, I'm pretty proud of him. So that's why that's there a few times.

Stanley, Falkland...
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3. Re: A rather OCD itinerary for comment and suggestion

I think you are being ambitious trying to see HCP and the Tower on the same day, and 2 hours for HCP is not nearly enough.

You are wasting so much time travelling that day. Do them on separate days.

Saratoga Springs, NY
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4. Re: A rather OCD itinerary for comment and suggestion

Thanks, yes, it will depend on my 11 year old. If he is over (bored/tired) being at Hampton Court Palace early enough to make the 1pm train, we'll do that. If he is enjoying himself, we'll stay longer and then go to the British Museum. I fear he won't have much stamina at the British Museum, if it's at all as daunting as the NY Metropolitan. His max there is about 1.5 to 2 hours.

Edited: 12 August 2012, 05:48
Stanley, Falkland...
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5. Re: A rather OCD itinerary for comment and suggestion

Does your son want to go to HCP (or Stonehenge or Bath)? I think it might be simpler finding something in London that he's enjoy.

The train to and from Hampton Court is fairly dull. Maybe better waiting till he is older.

Saratoga Springs, NY
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6. Re: A rather OCD itinerary for comment and suggestion

Hampton Court Palace is one of the few things I don't want to miss. I'm really into the Tudors. Aidan enjoys a bit of Tudor history. He loved seeing Henry VIII's armour at the NY Metropolitan and he is hoping to see more at HCP. But I fear my dear son is a wee bit delicate and does tire easily. He also really loves train rides, and being Americans, we don't get to ride trains very often.

He's also excited to see Stonehenge and the Roman ruins at Bath. He really likes Roman and Egyptian things.

Edited: 12 August 2012, 05:54
Stanley, Falkland...
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7. Re: A rather OCD itinerary for comment and suggestion

The armour's at the Tower. Enjoy the train.

www.seat61.com is a great site

Portland, Oregon
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8. Re: A rather OCD itinerary for comment and suggestion

I remember Tracie's earlier post about Hampton Court and the Tower (and 2 for 1) and my advice was also to do them on separate days. Of course it's their call, but my advice holds.

For fish and chips, there's a very nice genuine fish'n chip place on Waterloo Bridge Road very near your hotel, called Fish-CoTeque. It may not be what you had in mind re Covent Garden (Rock and Sole Place?) but I had a very tasty haddock, chips and peas there on my last visit. Fish-Coteque has more of a (US style) diner feel about it.

Nijmegen...
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9. Re: A rather OCD itinerary for comment and suggestion

Re your son in HCP, he can dress up in a robe from the visitor centre, and he might like to check out the maze. Also the kitchens are huge and when I was there they had a fire going

Ossett, United...
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10. Re: A rather OCD itinerary for comment and suggestion

I don't enough (yet) about London to comment on the content of your itinerary but the OCD-ness of it seems fine to me!

I make a grid in MS Word, 3 sections per day for morning, afternoon and evening. I type in:

Where I'm going

What transport I'm taking, not just the number or the line but also the terminus

What I'm wearing

Where (ish) and when (ish) I'll take meal breaks.

I need the termini, because I have no sense of direction, and if I didn't know I needed the bus going to Willesden Garage, I'd spend hours trying to work out which direction to take.

I need the clothes, because I try to travel as light as possible, so like to plan out the maximum number of combinations from the minimum number of clothes.

I know my way is anathema to many - but if I let myself just wander, I'd dribble the time away. This way, I make great use of my time, I try to use buses where I can, so I see lots of fantastic sights/sites in passing - and if I do come across anything 'off menu' that I just can't miss, then of course I go and sample it!

Have a great trip!