October 2017 Jump to London 2015 postings. Jump to London 2016 postings.
Our Virgin train leaves Edinburgh Waverley station at 8:30 a.m. There will be a few stops along the route and estimated time of arrival at London King’s Cross station is 12.50 p.m. Our ticket cost £25 as we’ve booked way in advanced, otherwise expect to pay more than £100. Better to fly then.
A short stop at Berwick-upon-Tweed.
Newcastle was also one of the other stops.
York was a busy station with lots of passengers getting on.
Outside York, you’ll pass by this power plant on your right. If I’m not mistaken, it’s located in Eggborough.
Although along the journey there was an 8 minute delay getting into some of the stations, we eventually arrived King’s Cross only a couple of minutes late.
King’s Cross London train station.
Fellow passengers getting off the train at King’s Cross.
Bicycles parked just off the platform inside the station.
The train head looks a little tired and aged but it got us from Edinburgh to London safely and almost on time.
Our accommodation in London will be at Point A Hotels, Praed Street, Paddington. This hotel was formally Tune Paddington when we stayed last year. We found the hotel’s location to be very convenient. Just in-front of this hotel, behind a row of shop lots is Paddington Basin where you’ll find Merchant Square. This is the spot where the movie Jason Bourne was shot.
Previously Tune Paddington, now under new management known as Point A Hotels.
After lunch, we headed to Merchant Square, in Paddington basin. Naturally we’ve been here last year (2016) and we can see there are some ‘upgrade’ project that’s been done. Notably is the ‘Pocket Park’, a 730 sq metre floating park in the basin that provides green space on the water for the public to enjoy and mooring spots for canal boats
Merchant Square, Paddington Basin.
Pathway leading to the ‘Pocket Park’ a small 730 sq metre floating green.
Further down, canal boat moored by the canal.
Something that wasn’t here in 2016. Free canal tour by water taxi from Paddington Basin to Bishop’s Bridge.
A clip from the movie Jason Bourne. Credit : movietrip.me
Photo taken from the spot Malcolm Smith (above) waiting for Bourne at Merchant Square. View towards St Mary’s Hospital in the background.
A short walk from Merchant Square we boarded a bus at Edgware Road and got off at St John’s Wood a few stops up. Across the road from the bus stop, you’ll find Clifton Court flats. These flats were built in the traditional black & white colonial design. We are here just to photograph these buildings and to pass our time for the evening.
The colonial styled, black & white designed flats.
Clifton Court is at the junction of St John’s Wood & Maida Vale.
The Clifton Court is quite a stretch.
Another view of the flat.
Having taken enough photographs of the Clifton Court, we headed back to Edgware Road. Before heading back to our hotel, we strolled along Cabbell Street starting just besides the Edgware Road (Circle & District) tube station. Hyde Park mansions is located on this street and the red-brown coloured facade is nice to photograph.
Back during my primary school days, The Beatles were creating a storm with their music and hair-do, and I naturally became a fan. So in London, we took the opportunity to check-out the London Beatles Store at Baker street. It is London’s first and only Beatles Shop totally devoted to everything Beatles. It’s open daily from 10am – 6.30pm. You’ll find new and original 60’s Beatles memorabilia, T-shirts, posters, records, mugs, books, plus autographs among others. Depending on what you’re looking for, prices ranges from a couple of pounds right up to a couple of hundreds.
London Beatles Store frontage.
Member of Sgt Peppers Lonely Hearts Club.
T-shirts of everything Beatles.
Abbey Road crossing T-shirts.
T-shirts for children.
More T-shirts designs to choose from.
Racks of mugs and road name stickers.
John Lennon legendary styled glasses for £70.
After browsing the store, we headed to Abbey Road studios where it all started for The Beatles. London Beatles Store provided a pamphlet on how to get there. You can take bus no. 139/189 from Gloucester Place bus stop nearby and it will take you to Abbey Road bus stop right in-front of ‘Abbey Road Shop’ beside the studio. At this shop, you can obtain more Beatles memorabilia. The famous Abbey Road crossing is here too but expect small groups taking pictures while they cross the road imitating how The Beatles did it decades ago.
Pamphlets provided by London Beatles Store. Thanks for showing the way to Abbey Road.
Location of London Beatles Store and Gloucester Place bus stop to get to Abbey Road. Click to enlarge.
The Sherlock Holmes Museum just two doors away from London Beatles Store.
This is the bus stand where we got-off the bus coming from Gloucester Place.
Souvenir shop besides Abbey Road studios.
This isn’t the studio, it’s the souvenir shop.
Beatles related souvenirs.
Fridge magnet in the shop.
Pillows and tote bags.
Abbey Road album, one left.
Abbey Road studios, where it all began.
The famous Abbey Road crossing partially closed for road works.
April 2016 Jump to London 2015 postings. Jump to London 2017 postings.
Arrivederci Firenze. We leave Florence and embark on a 2½ hours flight to our next destination, London City Airport (LCY). We had previously been to the observatory deck of the Shard on the 72nd floor and noticed planes making turns around it to start their descend into LCY. We tought this would be a great way to get a magnificent view of London. We booked seats on the right hand side of the plane to get the best view. On City Jet’s Avro RJ85 aircraft, avoid seats nos. 5-10 as your view will be partially obstructed by the jet engines. Seats nos 1-4 would be best as you avoid blurred images caused by the heat trail of the engines.
A short while after taking off from Florence, we were rewarded with fantastic views of the iced-capped Alps against the deep blue sky. Crossing the French coastline later, our plane flew over the White Cliffs of Dover proceeding North. Presumably, at the mouth of River Thames, the plane turned towards central London where it made a final right turn around the Shard and started its final approach into LCY.
White cliffs of Dover and the Dover Ferry Terminal. You’ll still be able to get a glimpse the French coast from inside the plane at this point.
English township from above. The heat trail of the engines blurs the upper portion of the photo.
True to my expectations, we got great views of London from above. The Shard, Monument, Gherkin, Sky Garden, Tower of London, Tower Bridge, HMS Belfast, City Hall were all within clear sight. Leaving central London, we flew pass Canary Wharf, over the O2, Emirates cable car and finally when the Thames Barrier were to our right, the plane was into its short final. What an incredible tour of London within a few minutes. Definitely a photographer’s delight with most of the photo spots captured into a single frame. We’ve purposely chosen to get into London City Airport instead of the other airport just for this. Worth every cent of the €78 ticket.
We know it isn’t an easy landing into LCY as it requires tight turns, bumpy rides and short runway. Anyway, thanks to the pilots for their nerve of steel and the many hours of training they undergo to bring us in safely.
Our plane making a turn around the Shard. HMS Belfast, City Hall and Tower Bridge clearly visible.
London icons. The Monument, Gherkin, Sky Garden, Shard, Tower of London, Tower Bridge and Canary Wharf. All in a single frame ….. nothing beats this.
The O2 and the Emirates cable car right underneath.
Thames barrier close-by to London City Airport.
Our aircraft safely parked in LCY.
Passport control straight ahead.
If you would like to see a cockpit view of an approach into LCY, see it below :
Our chosen mode of transport in London, by convenience is by tube. We’ve calculated our transport expenses will be more than £30. Thus we opted for a 7 day anytime, zones 1-2 Travelcard at £32.40 loaded into an Oyster card. The Oyster card itself cost £5 (refundable). Since we are now in London City Airport which is in zone 3, we need to ‘top-up’ £1.70 to enable us to cross into London zones 1-2. You can get your Oyster card at their counter just after exiting arrival hall to your right just before going up the escalator to the DLR tube station. The counter only accept card payments.
Oyster cards for our tube rides.
Our hotel is in Pread Street, Paddington and we require 2 change of tube lines. 1st change was at Canning Town for the Jubilee line to Baker Street and then onto the Bakerloo line for Edgware station. For our flight home from Heathrow, we’ve purchased advanced tickets for the Heathrow Express @ £8.80. We will be taking the Heathrow Express from the Paddington train station which is about 10 minutes walk from our hotel.
Heathrow Express ticket cost much cheaper when purchased in advanced and even more cheaper when travelling on weekends.
DLR tube map.
London City Airport DLR tube station. Consider the DLR as an extension of the tube line, even the great length of its track is not underground.
Tune Hotels, Paddington. Our accommodation for five nights.
So where is LCY compared to LHR ? Click to enlarge.