Tuesday, September 19, 2017

London (Day 2)

So in my last post, I mentioned that the night before we didn't get back to the hotel until 11:15pm. I don't think we ended up actually falling asleep until 1am though. As a result we did not wake up until 10:15am. All I can say is that is very late for me to sleep in so it felt weird losing so many hours out of the morning.
Anyway, we had tentatively planned our day and wanted to see Notting Hill, Abbey Road and the London Bridge as the main part of our sightseeing.

We knew the train to Notting Hill was the best option for transportation from where we were, and it really wasn't that long of a ride from our hotel. Maybe twenty minutes at the most.
I was pretty excited when we got off the train and started making our way down Portobello Road. I have seen the movie Notting Hill many times, and it is one of my favorites! So of course I knew a little what to expect, but real life is usually never like the movies. And I will be totally honest, I was a tiny bit disappointed at first.
I mean the market is there of course, and I couldn't help thinking it didn't look like what I expected at all. But that's movies for you.
And the address of William's travel bookshop from the movie was there, but it's now just one of those touristy shops selling knick knacks. The name of the store is still over it though. And from what I have read, the actual interior of the shop from the movie was shot in another location around the corner.
Anyway, once we really started looking around and exploring and took the whole "how it was in the movies" idea out of it, I really started to love it!
I mean there were a lot of people there, but it wasn't overly crowded on a Friday. And if we would have had room in our suitcases or the ability to send things home to the States, I probably would have purchased quite a few things.

We had lunch at a little restaurant called Luna Rosa that served pizza and pasta one street over from Portobello road. The pizza was good, but I wouldn't recommend the salad. Basically just lettuce and a vinaigrette dressing.
While we were eating I looked up another address from the movie Notting Hill.I wanted to find the house with the blue door that William Thacker lives in located "just around the corner" from his bookshop. It's at 280 Westbourne Park Road, which was actually right up the street and around the corner from where we were having lunch.

Looking a little run down, but cool all the same.

Afterwards, we just had fun wandering the neighborhood checking out the colorful, pretty houses lining the streets which is one of the things Notting Hill is famous for.
 (an often used photo found on the internet)

And we were able to get our own picture of the very same street. One of the houses is blue now which I actually like better. And of course - scaffolding. But it was still fun seeing something in person I've only seen on my computer screen till now!

One of my favorite parts of Notting Hill was seeing the little houses that lined the alleys known as Mews. These buildings were originally used as stables where the horses and carriages were kept and are located behind the bigger Victorian and Georgian style houses. Now they are actual homes and I thought they were so pretty and unique.

I loved that blue house. So pretty next to the lovely yellow one.

Just the two of us - Notting Hill, Friday July 28th, 2017
I loved the way some of the streets just curved around with the houses following along.
I'm so glad I didn't let first impressions ruin things. We really enjoyed exploring Notting Hill and I think in part it was because we were exploring together.

By this point we had seen enough though and were ready to move on to Abbey Road. The train ride was a little long so we decided to get a ride through Uber.
The actual studios...

And the famous intersection used in the Beatles album cover! It's a little different now because there are less trees in the background and some crazy zig zag lines painted down the street. But still amazing to be there.
View of the Studios from the intersection.
We had a lot of fun taking photos of each other and making a video of Mike as we crossed over a few times. We did hear the locals aren't thrilled about it, but there were a ton of people also taking photos as they crossed. I thought everyone was pretty good about waiting till traffic had passed.
Just the two of us - Abbey Road, August 28, 2017

Next we took the Underground to the London Bridge. Pretty amazing in person.
Just the two of us - London Bridge, August 28, 2017

After the bridge we took another Uber back to our hotel and decided to go see a play in the West End on our last night there. We debated between Phantom of the Opera and Evita. Since we had seen Phantom twice in the states and never been to a performance of Evita, we decided to give it a try.

Walking back to the hotel after the play though we did pass Her Majesty's Theater where Phantom of the Opera has been playing for ages. We also found a great little bakery called Patisserie Valerie that was open late and bought some little cakes that we brought back to the hotel to eat.

Only two days and nights in London, but we managed to see and do so much!
I know there was so much more we could have experienced, but we hope to return some day with a new bucket list.

Coming up in my next post: Day One - Amsterdam


  1. Sooooooooooooo fun! LOVING all the photos!!! What I wouldn't give to visit Abbey Road!!!!!!!!! :)

  2. Loved your update! We probably aren't going to have time to do Abbey Road but do plan on going to the Beatles store which is very close to the Sherlock Holmes Museum!

  3. So many wonderful places to see. Loving your photos and being along on this trip with you. LOL! <3

  4. Sounds like such an awesome trip :)
    Love the photos and that one of you with the blurry lamp post in the back ground is stunning