London – five days with two teen boys

Old Jul 31st, 2013, 01:24 PM
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http://golondon.about.com/od/londonw...-Teenagers.htm

Top Things to Do with Teens in London

#1 London Dungeon - I ain't the only one that thinks young teens may love this place more than stuffy museums and # 9 is Madame Tussaud's

BigRuss seems so so far out of touch with real folks and what they like.
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Old Jul 31st, 2013, 01:46 PM
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london buses - IMO one of the best is the no 11 - here's the route:

http://www.tfl.gov.uk/tfl/gettingaro...ps/buses/?r=11

ok it doesn't go to Marble Arch, but if you can get the tube to one of the stops or find yourself at Westminster or Sloane square or even Victoria, you can jump on and have a great and very cheap tour of many of London's most famous sights.

you can use that link to sus out other buses as well.

hope you have a great trip!
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Old Jul 31st, 2013, 01:49 PM
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http://www.sherlock-holmes.co.uk/

Have the kids read some Sherlock Holmes and they may love the newly reopened and renovated Sherlock Holmes Museum!
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Old Jul 31st, 2013, 02:19 PM
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Some new, good ideas! Ceremony of the Keys at sunset – thanks Tabernash2. Many 'ceremonials' in London, I've noticed. Not sure if we'll jostle with crowds at changing of the guard...

London Monument is a good 'un – I think anything that involves climbing is spot on. And with an historical twist... Good price too! And thanks for the heads-up on car showroom, bendigo.

I can see the attraction of London Dungeon. It's a possible. We're not into stuffy museums either, but I think there are some exhibits that would thrill. Not planning to spend endless hours in these. Mme Tussaud's probably not. They wouldn't know half the people, anyway...

Thanks for tip on No. 11 bus, annhig. Sounds great.

Anyone willing to give me a ha'penny's worth on the travel card scenario?!
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Old Jul 31st, 2013, 04:52 PM
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London dungeon is pants- save your $$

The Keys Ceremony is wonderful. But you MUST pre book - follow the instructions on the Tower's website to the tee. Otherwise they will return everything to you and you'll have to start over.

IMO Harrods would not be of any interest to boys the ages of yours.

The changing of the guard is a huge time waster. Involves between 2 and 2.5 hours simply standing in one place. If you arrive later you won't see anything.
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Old Jul 31st, 2013, 05:08 PM
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Regarding the changing of the guard. We went on a London walk that included the changing of the guard and a tour of Westminster Abbey. Don't know if they still do that combo anymore but they still do have a walk that includes the changing of the guard. Look up London walks and they have a schedule of different walks. You won't have to line up hours before to see nothing. They take you to a perfect spot where the guards literally march right in front of you for a perfect picture taking opportunity. You just show up at the tube stop at the designated time of the tour and you learn a little history along the way. We really enjoyed it.
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Old Jul 31st, 2013, 08:40 PM
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I agree -- the Changing of the Guard <i>only</i> if taking London Walks. They have you stand along the Spur Rd near Birdcage Walk. But that is still a 2+ hour commitment -- just not standing right in from of the Palace.
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Old Jul 31st, 2013, 09:49 PM
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'Is pants' - that's a new expression on me! I guess it means awful?

No, I hadn't really planned on changing of the guard, esp. if it takes so long. Better ways to be spending our time. Loathe standing around with lots of other people standing around... I get cranky.

Nice idea with London Walk, though. Muggles walk still top of the organised walk list.

Thanks for suggestions!

Can I assume that I have made an absolutely brilliant decision with travel cards since no one has lambasted me? !
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Old Jul 31st, 2013, 10:17 PM
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Your travelcard plan doesn't sound unreasonable to me. It's all a matter of trade-offs: the 2for1 savings on admissions to attractions vs. some additional inconveniences (getting to Paddington to get your paper travelcard, remembering to bring passport-size photos for the accompanying photocards hunting for a working photobooth, remembering to ask - and pay - for add-on fares where necessary). How those work out depends on your choice of things to see, and on how you value your inconvenience.
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Old Aug 1st, 2013, 03:11 AM
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Thanks, PatrickLondon – I'll bring photos.

Walking from Marble Arch, which would be the closest station? Marylebone? Victoria?

As for the add-on fares, say, for Watford – do we just front up at a ticket office at any tube station, flash the travel cards and they'll do the figures and issue separate tickets?

Just double checking there's no better option with 1 adult and 2 kids (like maybe kids are free, she said hopefully)?
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Old Aug 1st, 2013, 03:11 AM
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Hi SMM_18,

If you go into the CITY (financial district) I would recommend the BANK OF ENGLAND MUSEUM – free with interactive display and a chance to “lift” a 28 pound solid gold brick – chained and behind glass, of course.

You might also consider the ROYAL MEWS, near Buckingham Palace where the fairy tale coaches used for ceremonial occasions and limousines are on display.

It’s really fun just to walk around the Palace and parks in the area and soak up the atmosphere.
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Old Aug 1st, 2013, 03:16 AM
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Thanks, latedaytraveler!

A gold brick. Brilliant!

And I agree with soaking up the atmosphere. Hopefully plenty of that.
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Old Aug 1st, 2013, 03:55 AM
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http://www.shakespearesglobe.com/

Never too young to learn about Shakespeare and his Globe theatre - reproduced on the spot near where it was - can tour the set and learn all about the Bard. Right by the Tate Modern, in an old power plant Thameside - take em in there too for some avant garde art they may like - something for kids often in there.

http://www.tate.org.uk/visit/tate-modern
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Old Aug 1st, 2013, 06:04 AM
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http://www.vam.ac.uk/

The Victoria & Albert museum has lots of great things kids will be interested in - an eclectic collection to be sure - nearby is the Natural Hisgtory museums and Science museums - all are free and all can have things of interest for adults and kids.
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Old Aug 1st, 2013, 07:06 AM
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http://www.visitlondon.com/things-to...en-attractions

Here are the Top Ten sites in London by numbers of visitors - the Science and Natural Histrory museums and V&a area all located near each other.

Madame Tussaud is the 9th most visited place in London even though it charges an arm and two legs to get in - there must be something folks are willing to pay so much for - I suggest Bigruss just has never been there so can't fathom why folks would pay for what he apparently thinks is just another wax museum - it is far more than that. Keep kids interests in mind as well as those of jaded adults IMO.
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Old Aug 1st, 2013, 07:29 AM
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http://www.fodors.com/community/euro...-teenagers.cfm
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Old Aug 1st, 2013, 07:42 AM
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>>Walking from Marble Arch, which would be the closest station? Marylebone? Victoria?<<

Probably Marylebone, then Paddington, then Victoria, but it depends exactly where near Marble Arch you will be. Marylebone will be the least crowded.

But for any of them it is a long walk; you might prefer to pay for a bus (though you would have to buy a cash ticker before you board):
http://www.tfl.gov.uk/gettingaround/...blearch-a4.pdf
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Old Aug 1st, 2013, 07:42 AM
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I meant ticket, of course.
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Old Aug 1st, 2013, 07:48 AM
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Marylebone would seem to be the shortest walk from Marble Arch area - catch Speakers Corner, close by, if on a Sunday - a London institution that kids can enjoy for a short time.

http://www.speakerscorner.net/

If you are landing at Gatwick then you can buy a paper train ticket into London and back and then use it for 2 for 1 the whole stay - not sure if this works with the Heathrow trains or not - suppose it would - Heathrow Connect being cheaper than the fancy Heathrow Exspress.
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Old Aug 1st, 2013, 08:00 AM
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IMO Harrods would not be of any interest to boys the ages of yours.>

Janis have you ever seen Harrods' extravagant Egyptian Staircase that is so lavishly decorated with Egyptian motifs that it will delight any age and especially kids that age but I guess you have not seen it and only consider Harrods another department store?

http://golondon.about.com/od/recomme...ircase-Top.htm
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