Last Day in England: Hampton Court

We took the train to Hampton Court palace today. When we got off the train, I noticed that the town looked kind of ghetto. We made our way to the palace, and checked in, and we bought a guide book, when we purchased the tickets. I was so excited. There she was the tudor rose!
Image may contain: sky and outdoor Image may contain: sky and outdoor
When you first enter into the courtyard of the Palace, it is like entering into a different time. It looks like a scene from a movie,  hidden corridors, tower, so many windows and rooms.
  
The Great Hall was my favorite, this is where Henry VIII entertained his guest, with his wives and they ate, sang, and danced.
 

The dinner table where the King and his Queen would sit and eat, so cool!  
My second most favorite element of the palace was the ceiling in Jane Seymour’s room:

This is the privy closet, where Katherine Parr and Henry VIII were married:
 There is so much talk about King Henry VIII being this womanizer guy, and he gets so much bad rap, but I always have been a fan of his. I saw this quote on one of the walls, and I thought that is so true about him. He wanted virtue, glory, and immortality.  Upon the death of Henry the VIII Tudor version of the palace was pretty much destroyed by King William the III. The reconstruction was never finished, so the palace is now a combination of Tudor and Baroque style.  King George II was the last monarch to reside in Hampton court. As soon as you come across the Queen’s Stairs, you enter into the 18th Baroque life.

 
The great fountain (Below) is the view from the Queen’s bedroom. The Baroque half of Hampton Court was intended to mimic Versailles.

 
I could live here it was so beautiful.
Last,  but not least the magical and gorgeous Tudor gardens!
 


It really hit me, when we were in Hampton Court, that this was it. This was the last attraction on the books for our trip to Europe. Tomorrow, we had to head back to the states. I am so not looking forward to going home. I am already anxious to come back to Europe, especially France.
 On the train back to Westminster, Park Plaza. We were so tired and so hot after this day. When we got back to the hotel. We took a very long nap, and then got ready to head to dinner. We wanted to find one more traditional English pub. When we asked the concierge, he told us to go to Sherlock Holmes, or to Prince Albert’s pub. Both were a bit of a walk, but we didn’t realize how far a bit of a walk was. We decided on Sherlock Holmes. It took us a little while to find it, and some of the areas, were really shady that we were walking through, but eventually we found it.

  
We have been so blessed on this trip to see all that we wanted to see. I am so grateful for all of our blessings. We did not want to go back to the States.

Tower of London, Tower Bridge, & Rain Delay

This morning, we woke up early got showered, got dressed, and then went downstairs to have breakfast. After breakfast, we went back to our room, and packed up our book bags, grabbed our umbrellas and we were out the door to the metro station. We took the metro to the Tower of London. When we got off the metro, you walked through a tunnel and I saw this image of Anne Boelyn in the tunnel:
Image may contain: one or more people
As soon as we saw the tower, Image may contain: sky and outdoorI had a feeling that came over me like no other. It felt like an eerie feeling, like some bad things went down here. I was so nervous. I didn’t know what to expect.
When we entered into the courtyard of the palace, there were guards in period costumes, who kept everything in order. They were not pleasant, and didn’t like to help you, or give you any history. They kept it very simple and straightforward.

The first part of the tower, we entered was the Medieval part of the, also known as St. Thomas’ tower. This is where King Edward the 1st stayed when he would visit the tower.Image may contain: table and indoor Image may contain: indoor
This is where Henry the VI died on May 21st 1471:
Image may contain: indoorAfter the Medieval Tower, if you follow the map, it takes you to Lanthorn tower, this where they kept artifacts of Courtly life, from King Edward the 1st’s reign. After Lanthorn tower, you enter Salt Tower, and this was probably the most chilling of all. People carved their hands into the wall before they died.

No automatic alt text available.No automatic alt text available.
After you leave Salt Tower, you enter Broad Arrow, this is  Image may contain: sky and outdoor
where the guards would protect the palace from being infiltrated by peasants, and the enemy. Look at that view of tower bridge!
Image may contain: bridge, sky and outdoor

One thing, Drew and I did, but I do not have pictures of, because they were not allowed was the Queen’s Crown Jewels. The building that houses the crowned jewels a guarded by British Military Guards. After we saw the crowned Jewels, I was standing in front of the Waterloo Barracks (those green tanks)  When, all of the sudden, I heard “Make Way!” It was so loud in my right ear. I jumped a bit, and then moved out of the way. Another set, of guards was coming to relieve the guards, that were standing there. Drew said, “That is probably the only man, that you are going to let tell you what to do.” I laughed, because it is true!

No automatic alt text available.

After the crowned jewels, we went to “Lower Wakefield Tower.” Supposedly, there are only 23 documented cases of torture in the tower. England wasn’t big on Torture I guess, but the methods they used were so creepy; Scavenger’s Daughter:
No automatic alt text available.No automatic alt text available.
The Rack:                                                                          Manacles
No automatic alt text available.   No automatic alt text available.

All these methods look painful, and I would certainly tell them the truth, and all I knew, if I was being tortured like this. One thing that really gave me the creeps the most was seeing Traitors Gate. This is where Anne Boleyn entered:
No automatic alt text available.         Image may contain: outdoor
Lastly, we saw the final resting place of Anne Boleyn, and the others who were executed by hanging. While they were waiting to be hung, they had to stay in Beauchamp tower.
Image may contain: pool, table and water   No automatic alt text available.

This was such a cool experience and awesome to see, but very creepy and very eerie. After we left the Tower, we went to go see Tower Bridge. We got to climb up to the top and go across to the other pillar, of the bridge, you could see the water below our feet!
   Image may contain: one or more people and shoes
Due to a rain delay, we stopped for Fish and Chips to wait out the rain:
Image may contain: Danielle Hornyak, smiling, sitting, eating, drink and food
After we finished our fish and chips, we made our way back out again. It was still pretty windy and rainy. We thought lets just go back to the hotel for a nap and dry off, and try to see the Millennium Bridge tomorrow. I felt bad. He really wanted to see the Millennium Bridge.
Once we got off the metro, at Westminster station, we saw these amazing cupcakes, they were gourmet.  We had to get some for a snack and dessert later. They were from Lola’s Cupcakes: Pomegranate Apple Blossom, Vanilla, and I can’t remember the two Drew picked out. When we got back to the hotel, I made us some tea, and we one cupcake each, and then got showered, and then took a nap.
Image may contain: foodWhen we got dressed and wandered around Westminster Pier, and decided to have a beer on Thames:
Image may contain: outdoor and water  Image may contain: Danielle Hornyak, smiling, sky and outdoor Image may contain: Andrew Hornyak, smiling, standing and outdoor
After our beer, we wandered back to our hotel, we had another busy day ahead of us tomorrow.