London-Day 12

Normally when we are on vacation my husband and I like to get fairly early starts but that changed with our last two full days in London. We were both tired and trying to shake off our colds before our long plane ride back to Los Angeles. So on the eleventh day of our trip we decided to sleep until we woke up or until 9 am, whichever came first. This was a good thing because when I woke up that morning I did feel better. I wasn’t over my cold but I was moving in the right direction.

As always we ate breakfast, showered and headed out for the day. Our destination for the day was the Kew Gardens on the edge of London. Everything about Kew Gardens was wonderful, including the little neighborhood we had to walk though before we entered the gardens.


When we entered Kew Gardens we took some pictures.


We then checked out the Palm House.


Since we live in Los Angeles seeing palm trees is not big deal but obviously seeing palm trees in London is special. What I liked about the  Palm House was that it was nice and warm. Also you could climb stairs and be high above the palm trees, which was pretty remarkable.


After we exited the Palm House we began to make our way around the rest of the gardens.


It was such a nice day. We were really lucky to have such great weather while we were in London, especially with our colds. I would not want to have battled the colds we had during horrible rain storms.

The area of the Kew Gardens we saw right after the Palm House was based on gardens in Asia. From a distance we could see a Chinese Pagota. It looked really cool.


Unfortunately, when we finally got to the Pagoda we were disappointed to find it was under renovations and the bottom half was covered in scaffolding.


Oh well. Right next to the Pagoda were some beautiful Japanese Gardens.


Our next stop at Kew Gardens was really cool but also a bit intimidating for my husband. It was called the Treetop Walkway.


The views from the top of the Treetop Walkway were absolutely amazing.


However, the height was also really intense. My husband was terrified but he still did it.


I was proud of him. When I looked down even I was a little intimidated by the height.

After making our way down from the Treetop Walkway we wondered around the amazing gardens. There was just so much beauty to see at Kew Gardens that it was the perfect way to spend  a day when  you are trying to not expand too much energy.


I hadn’t realized that Kew Gardens are right next to the River Thames but I found it really exciting to see a new part of the River that I hadn’t seen before.


After walking around for a bit longer we took a break for a late lunch.

As much as I wanted to be well I was pretty tired. We had walked around a lot and that combined with my cold had me dragging. Thankfully, our lunch gave me a good boost of energy to keep going.

Our next stop was the Kew Palace.


This is a fairly small royal palace but it is notable because it is where King George III went to battle his madness. As an American we are taught that King George III was an awful tyrant that the American colonists had no choice but to break away from. Visiting Kew Palace and listening to the audio guide gave me a new perspective on King George III. He was not a perfect ruler but in reality he was a man of his time and he really wasn’t as bad as many of the other monarchs that ruled over the United Kingdom both before and after him. I also felt sorry for him learning about how he struggled with mental illness in a time when mental illness was not understood. I enjoyed our time inside of Kew Palace for that alone, not to mention getting to see where he and his family lived.


The small gardens behind the Kew Palace were very lovely. One interesting fact about the small gardens behind the Kew Palace is that they included plants that were used to try to treat the madness of King George III.


We next made our way toward the next major attraction of Kew Gardens called the Hive. It is designed to look like a giant beehive. It is impressive from a distance.


It is also amazing from inside.


We next came upon the Alpine House but unfortunately it was closed since it was almost time for the Kew Gardens themselves to close.


We began to make our way towards the exit but enjoyed the beautiful sights along the way.


We made sure to give ourselves enough time to stop by the gift shop. I have been lucky enough to visit many beautiful botanical gardens in my life but I think Kew Gardens is my favorite of all of them. I would gladly go there again in the future if I am able to return to London.


When we left we got back on the tube and headed back to our hotel. For dinner that night we wanted to try out a pub right by our hotel but we couldn’t get a table because it was full of people watching a soccer game. So we decided to have dinner at the restaurant under our hotel one last time. Once again our food was excellent. I had French Onion Soup.


I followed that up with a fantastic salad.


When we went to bed we were both feel very frustrated with our colds. We were sad that our vacation was nearly over. But we were also grateful for the lovely day we had enjoyed at Kew Gardens.

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Here is a description:

Justin Gomez and his sister, Terri, have never been close. Separated by nine years and distant in adulthood, Justin and Terri have little in common, except for the love of her three children. In the days before they embark on a road trip to visit the father that once abandoned them and their now deceased mother, both Terri and Justin are dealing with unexpected changes in their lives. Justin surprisingly realizes he might want more than a series of one night stands after a first date goes unexpectedly well. After a lifetime of being a strong type A personality, Terri is forced to confront the reality of the end of her marriage. As they hit the road, with Terri’s children in tow, they find themselves forced to rely on and confide in each other following a devastating event. Confronted with memories from the past and challenges from the present, Terri and Justin must dig deep and unearth the truth about themselves and their parents in order to build a new family based on their love for each other.


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