Losing Heads & Harrods..

This morning we headed off to Harrods ….   

We had a coffee each for 3 pounds 60 pence – but it was nicely decorated: 

Whilst drinking our coffee we watched a family of five spend my weekly grocery money on ice-cream sundaes.  The sundaes were over 14 pounds each and even the toddler got one!!  Five sundaes @ 14 pounds equals 70 pounds equals over $140 Australian dollars!!  On Ice-cream!!  Yes, I'm sure I looked incredulous!!

I bought some Ginger butter biscuits (6 pounds) just to  get the Harrods tin – now I have to eat them before I leave so the tin is lighter LOL – won't be hard as there are only 6 biscuits in there!

From Harrods we took the tube to London Tower.  When I saw the admission price of 16.50 pounds I wondered how much value I would get from a visit to a place where I could not climb the stairs to the towers. I asked at the Welcome Centre and I am so glad I did.  They were so nice and I got a discounted ticket while my "carer" got in for free (presumably because he was not going to enjoy it while ministering to my every whim).  They gave me an information booklet which showed the number of stairs and whether there were spiral and small doorways and uneven surfaces and a basic difficulty level for each area in the Tower.  I was very impressed. 

I am so pleased I asked because I would have bypassed the Tower experience assuming that it would be too hard and not good value for me.  I was quite prepared to take a few photos from the outside. 

I went into the lowest level of each of the Towers and I saw the Crown Jewels. i could not do the Wall Walk which would've been wonderful but my sheet showed that it was 162 steps.  We did not do the Bloody Tower as it has 55 steps; floors connected by a very naarrow, steep and worn spiral staircase, minimum doorway size 51cm wide, surfacing very worn stone flooring. Each Tower and area was listed with similar descriptions of steps, doorways and surfaces. 

The Jewel House was described as No steps/minimum doorway width 1.02 m.  Surfacing: York stone or wooden blocks both smooth.  The jewels are of course stunning but I was really impressed by the fact that each of the safe doors weighs 2,000 lbs!


Of course a trip to London Tower would not be complete without a couple of photos of London  Tower Bridge which is right there.  It would be wonderful to walk across the bridge but I think that will have to wait for another trip!

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28 responses

  1. Love the pictures in both these entries. How wonderful to experience some of the finer points of London as well as Italy! I couldn't get over the price for the ice cream – that's an expensive treat there.

  2. When I saw the admission price of 16.50 pounds I wondered how much
    value I would get from a visit to a place where I could not climb the
    stairs to the towers. I asked at the Welcome Centre and I am so glad I
    did. Wow! That's great. I wonder if any of the famous tourist attractions in this country do stuff like that….probably not.

  3. Hi Gina – the ice cream sundaes were here in London – but they were in Harrods which is an extremely expensive store. I would just not be able to justify spending that much money on sundaes! It would make me feel sick!

  4. Prices in London are insane! A friend of mine studied there. London has always been the city of her dreams, but she couldn't do much, once she lived there, for the ordinary mortal just. can't. pay. for all the wonderful things you could do and get (if you were a billionaire).Still, London, sigh… Beautiful photos, again!

  5. I don't know – America seems to have a lot of disabled access – but that doesn't mean the prices are cheaper. Certainly the metro system in DC is better equipped for the disabled but then it is not as old as the London system (although to be fair to the London system I have not actually requested help or information).

  6. Thank you Nikki. My son's exchange rate (Australian dollars) to pounds is not very good so every thing looks much worse to him. He would be eating baked beans and bananas if I wasn't here to help feed him. There are many sales on clothing and shoes though – something we did not see in Italy even though they (Italy) are officially in recession.

  7. The Tower is a lovely old building, isn't it, although all the people who lost their heads there probably wouldn't agree. BTW, it's the Tower Bridge. London Bridge is now somewhere in the U.S. Mrs Snowy says the Yanks thought they were buying the Tower Bridge. I don't know how much truth there is in that story, but I'm not one to argue with Mrs Snowy.

  8. Oh – well I will have to go back and edit that! And I'm sure it's wise never to argue with Mrs Snowy! The Tower really is a lovely building – and they have the little videos on its history on the bottom levels so I got to see those. It was frigid there on the water though!1

  9. America seems to have a lot of disabled access – but that doesn't mean the prices are cheaper. Yes, practically everything here has to be handicap accessable. But, of course, over there they wouldn't dream (thank goodness) of renovating an historic structure just to make it accessable. Reducing the price of admission to make up for not being able to see it all strikes me as a much smarter solution. I'm all for making things accessable when it makes sense to do so, but that's a great option for when it doesn't make sense.BTW…got your postcard today. Thanks! 8:-)

  10. Oh, London – I wish I was back there. On my first visit I went to the Tower and walked around outside but didn't go in because the queues looked too long, but I did walk across the Tower Bridge. My situation is the reverse of yours: when I'm in London I'm with my daughter who works there so she has enough money to pay for things that I might not be able to afford.Sounds like you're having a wonderful time even though you did pass up the expensive icecream. (14 pounds for one icecream!!!!)

  11. yes but were will you have a chance to wear the crown jewels in you life to work or for the pretty flowers on the balcony!I learned not to be too proud and to always ask you never know just what alternatives there are! still jealous!

  12. Oooh! You are lucky to have a daughter here. Plenty of reasons to visit and revisit. LOL – I'm still shocked by the price of the sundaes! I just hope they looked at the cost before ordering them!

  13. Yeah – I suppose if you are used to being able bodied (and hope to be again) you don't think about asking what alternatives there might be. It was certainly worth it here. LOL – I would be too afraid to ever wear that many jewels!

  14. Yep – it was dreary and grey and damp and cold. A terrible place to wait to die! Today was 12 celsius and blue skies here – I am the whitest white woman around and I got a touch of sunburn today! (that's sort of embarrassing to admit but then I got sunburnt in San Francisco in the middle of winter once too!).

  15. Thank you Magnifika…. as the trip draws to an end I am more likely to overdo it trying to fit more in. (though I don't want to actually hurt it and put recovery off even more!).

  16. I wonder how things got to be so overpriced here…. we are still having lots of fun but I refuse to spend money unless I can see some value for it. Luckily digital photography is so cheap!

  17. I think the Tower of London is a 2 or 3 day place, we arrived at lunchtime when we went and only managed to do a tour, a look round the chapel and a look round the armoury in the White Tower. Oh and a good look at the ravens!

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