We fancied a London adventure this weekend, so we hopped on a train to London Bridge (12 minutes!), and went for a wander.
It was Open House weekend, where hundreds of buildings and places open their doors to the public. When looking online at list of participating places, we found ourselves spoilt for choice and got a bit flummoxed by the options.
So, we set off with no plans save for the hope that our wander might see us stumbling upon a few extra things as part of the Open House London festivities, and we weren’t disappointed.
Our first stop was the Blood Swept Lands and Seas of Red poppy installation at the Tower of London.
More and more ceramic poppies are being added to the installation each day, until the number totals 888,246 – the number of British military fatalities during the war. It’s a very poignant tribute to mark the centenary, and something that I’ve been wanting to visit since it began in August.
(If you are into World War One history, another centenary commemoration well worth visiting is Fields of Battle, Lands of Peace, which is a street gallery exhibition in St James’s Park, depicting the battlefields as they are today – and it was put together by my Aunt and Uncle!).
We followed the river along to St Katherine’s Docks, which is great for a potter, with its cafes and picturesque setting.
Continuing on towards Wapping, there are pedestrianised stretches of the river with high walls and no cars – perfect to let toddlers loose for a run around.
We came upon the Hermitage Community Moorings , which were open for us to go down and have a look, yay!
Wondering through Wapping in search of a pub, we came across the Captain Kidd and had a drink overlooking the Thames.
At Wapping Station we hopped on a bus that would drop us directly under the Gherkin. And from there we conducted our own little walking tour of the city’s high rises – the cheese grater, the walkie talkie…and Dada’s office. All buildings that Arlo is obsessed with, but had yet to see up close.
Then it was back over the bridge to look up at the Shard (for the millionth time) and get our train home from London Bridge station.
I really love exploring London with the children. It’s like a giant playground, there is always something interesting to see or do, and a lot of it is completely free of charge. Bar our travel and our drinks at the pub, we spent nothing on our day out, and this walking route was about as child and buggy-friendly as London goes.