River Thames

Yesterday, it rained all day, so we looked for things to do indoors. First, we took the bus to the National Gallery. It was fairly crowded with people seeking shelter from the rain (there is no entrance fee), so it took us a little time to locate the part of the collection that we wanted to see: the Impressionists. We’re glad we did. The Gallery has a wonderful collection that includes paintings by Monet, Sisley, Pissarro, Manet, Renoir, Cézanne and Degas, and the Post-Impressionists, Seurat, Toulouse-Lautrec, Van Gogh and Gauguin, among others. Dale especially enjoyed the Sisley paintings; I liked the Monet. Unfortunately, photography is not allowed inside, so we can’t share with you any of what we saw.

After the National Gallery, we walked the upper-end shopping street, Regent Street:

Also during the course of the day, we visited the booksellers street and Foyle’s, supposedly Europe’s biggest bookstore, and tried, but failed, to get into the Blues Bar.

Eventually, we boarded the bus again (not this one, but a similar one):

…which took us back over London Bridge…

…and, ultimately, to Tower Bridge, where we got off and walked along the River Thames to the ferry landing.

We hope to get back to visit the Tower of London today, but yesterday we had to be satisfied with strolling along its exterior.

The Tower of London is not just a tower; it’s actually a complete castle or, more accurately, a royal palace. The picture above is just one small part of the wall, as is the picture below. I liked the juxtaposition of the modern rocket-shaped office tower in the dip of the wall in this photo.

We ended the daylight hours with a ferry ride on the River Thames from the Tower of London back to the Houses of Parliament.

Along the way, we passed this gigantic ferris wheel on the south bank of the Thames which is officially known as the London Eye. The commentator on the ferry called it the London Eyesore, and I have to agree with him.

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