Valued Contributor
Posts: 841
Registered: ‎05-09-2010

@CoffeeNut ...thank you, thank you posting your travelogue.  I am enjoying so very much.  Never made it to London and now with a broken kneecap and an 84th birthday next week doubtful that I ever will.  Continue enjoying your trip ...sounds wonderful.

Honored Contributor
Posts: 14,595
Registered: ‎03-15-2014

@CoffeeNut  I thought I recognized the hotel.  I stayed there years ago, probably in the late 1980's.  At the time it was called the Grosvenor Hotel.  As you said, it's in a great location, right next to Victoria Station (railroad) and so many things in walking distance.  As I view the hotel's website, the inside looks much nicer now.  It was a grand place when I visited and a wonderful experience, but it was badly worn-out.  It needed to be remodelled / spruced-up. 


Thank you for the memory!  I've often wondered about that place.

Trusted Contributor
Posts: 1,304
Registered: ‎03-13-2010

I look forward to following your London trip.


I was there several years ago chaperoning a high school trip of 44 students.  We stayed at a dorm during our stay. 


I remember as we walked thru the Carnaby Street area thinking the Beatles may have walked the same side of the street!Woman Very Happy


Have a wonderful time!

Trusted Contributor
Posts: 1,290
Registered: ‎03-15-2010

@ValuSkr    Your memory is correct.  It used to be the Grosvenor.  We have stayed at this particular hotel for close to 15 years each time we visited London.  Under the previous owners it was looking tired but the new owners completely refreshed and it is once again grand.  I'll post some lobby pics at the end of the trip report so you can see. 

Valued Contributor
Posts: 603
Registered: ‎07-30-2019

@CoffeeNut ...  PBS had a wonderful series on Selfridge's which I thoroughly enjoyed.  I believe you can watch it now on Netflix.  The originator was actually American but opened his first department store in London.  The story of opening the first department store I found fascinating.  The first large windows to stroll by and see wares available inside, first to actually have dresses in several sizes you could buy "off the rack" ...  it was wonderful.  

Trusted Contributor
Posts: 1,290
Registered: ‎03-15-2010

Day 2:   We woke up refreshed but a bit sore from all the walking yesterday.  We took some ibuprofen and had breakfast at the hotel.  I had booked tickets for Kensington Palace for 10am but you have an hour window in case of delays.  We made our way to The Underground also known as The Tube (subway) and got off the exit closest to the palace.   Their subway system is very efficient, clean and easy to navigate.  We made it with plenty of time to spare.




This was Queen Victoria's childhood home.  To the very left you see the State Apartments.   Those line all the way to back of the palace.   Princess Diana lived in one of those sections towards the back.   William and Kate and their kids lived in another section and so did Harry when  single and for a bit when he got married.  Of course they have all moved out of this property.   So when Diana passed away and you saw all those mounds of flowers.  This was the gate.  The state apartments are highly guarded and off limits to the public so these gates were the closest people could get to pay tribute.    But the palace behind the gate is where our tour begins.   

We spent a couple hours inside doing the self guided tour. The top 4 windows on the right was Victoria's bedroom and playroom.  I stood up there looking out the windows like she would have done.    It was interesting to see some of her childhood toys, dollhouse and drawings she had done. I didn't get any pictures inside.  I was too enthralled with all the history.  

There is a small cafe right behind the palace and I had made reservations for afternoon tea.   There is a long list of teas you can choose from.  I opted for Chai and hubby chose Earl Grey.   The tea was brought out first.   Then after  it had time to steep the tray of delicious goodness arrived.




Bottom was savory, middle is scones and top was pastries.



I had tried to get a pic of the backside of the palace but hubby rolled his eyes and sighed as I was taking too long and got him mid reach 




You can buy the china they use in their gift shop. I got the teacup and saucer as a momento. 

After tea we went and walked around the park that encompasses the palace (Hyde Park)


The Albert Memorial 




Across the street is Royal Albert Hall.  




We walked all around the area looking at the artitecture.  I thought this was pretty.  



Time slipped away and it was way past dinner time.  We found a fish n chips shop and had just as it says.   It was absolutely delicious.    




We headed back to the hotel and got to bed early.  For tomorrow we have to get up early to catch the Eurostar (high speed train) for a day trip to Paris to see the Eiffel Tower.   Stay tuned for day 3.  

Trusted Contributor
Posts: 1,290
Registered: ‎03-15-2010

Day 3 Paris:  We got up super early to be at St Pancras station by 630am to meet our tour guide for our day trip to Paris.  I had booked this fully guided tour a month ago and thought this would be a stress free way of visiting and it was.  There ended up being 40 of us.  We cleared immigration and boarded the Eurostar (high speed train) for the 2 hour ride to Paris.   We cruised along at up to 180mph, went under the English Channel, and the ride was so smooth.  Before you knew it we were in Paris.   


We all boarded the bus and headed towards the Eiffel Tower.  These were some of the sights along the way.




The hotel were Princess Diana was staying and left from  the night of her death.  






Opera House


Then we pulled up to this magnificent beauty





Then we made our way up the tower








Lunch was included at the restaurant on this same level. 







After lunch we made our way down to the river across from the tower for an hour long river cruise. 





Section of the Louvre Museum


We went under some of the most ornate bridges. After the cruise we were given some free time to explore.   Before we knew it we were back on the bus headed back to the station for the train ride to London.  It was a long but wonderful day.  Left London at 8am and got back at 1030pm.  By the time we got back to the hotel we fell fast asleep.  Tomorrow is exploring St Paul's Catherdral.  

Trusted Contributor
Posts: 1,228
Registered: ‎03-09-2010

How much fun and how wonderful of you to post all of this! Please continue! Have the best time!

Esteemed Contributor
Posts: 5,264
Registered: ‎03-12-2010

Re: Trip Report—London

[ Edited ]

I haven't been paying attention - did they mention how the repairs are going on Notre Dame?  I thought I heard they were almost done, but don't know where I heard that! 

Also, do you recall what this was?




I originally thought was a hard boiled egg (the white part), but the yellowish part looks like custard!  So I have no idea!  😊

Honored Contributor
Posts: 13,235
Registered: ‎03-09-2010


What a wonderful tour of London and Paris! I can feel like I am there.

Your pictures are so good along with your descriptions!

I'm sure you could write a travel book!

Thanks for this-so enjoyable to go along with you! 

"If you walk the footsteps of a stranger, you'll learn things you never knew. Can you sing with all the voices of the mountains? can you paint with all the colors of the wind?"