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Trafalgar Square Sights

Old Jun 17th, 2005, 11:50 AM
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Trafalgar Square Sights

I can't seem to find a lot of info about the square? Can someone tell me what's there? (Offices/Shops/Restaurants) Can I take a walk through or should I spend time?
Canuck_girl24 is offline  
Old Jun 17th, 2005, 11:56 AM
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It's a cement square with benches around it and Nelson's Column towering over it - some kind of sculpted fountain or such below but nothing else on the square - yet it's great people-watching as folks climb over the base of Nelson's column and endless parades of German schoolkids frolick around it. The National Gallery is on the north side of the square but is not part of the square. And pigeons - a gaggle of pigeons and folks selling pigeon feed - Mayor 'Red' Ken has rehabbed the square - officials wanted to get rid of the foul birds but public protest has left them alone and thriving. Few years ago pigeon nappers were doing the job and the birds it was thought were ending up as pigeon pie. For most a quick glance at the square will suffice. A busy tube station is underneath. The square is also a focal point for demonstrations and there are often festivals of some time going on - another new policy of 'Red' Ken to revitalize the area.
PalQ is offline  
Old Jun 17th, 2005, 12:17 PM
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All about the square and the events in it at

webcam at
PatrickLondon is offline  
Old Jun 17th, 2005, 12:24 PM
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Thanks for the info...sounds like I should keep a hat handy with all of the pigeons around!
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Old Jun 17th, 2005, 12:35 PM
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There's a cafeteria in the crypt of St. Martin-in-the-Fields where you can get reasonably priced and surprisingly decent lunch or dinner. The church also offers evening concerts and (I think) free afternoon concerts. If you like classical music, it's a very enjoyable and economical place to go for the evening.


Happy travels,

Indygirl2 is offline  
Old Jun 17th, 2005, 12:37 PM
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And you walk right over tombstones in the floor in the church cafeteria. Sacrilege?? Great atmosphere reasonable good food.
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Old Jun 17th, 2005, 01:59 PM
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I think PalQ makes Trafalgar Square sound rather dull but it's actually quite interesting. In addition to the afore-mentioned Nelsons Column and fountain, there are also the famous lion statues - the young and limber can climb up on them (at their own risk!), those of us not so young or limber have to settle for having our photo taken next to one. Also the places immediately around the square makes it a destination of interest - the National Gallery, the National Portrait Gallery, St. Martin in the Fields Church (worth a visit even if you don't visit the Cafe in the Crypt and it's large gift shop). There's supposed to be a marker at TS where all distances from London are measured but I couldn't find it. Plus it's a convenient starting point for many other places of interest in central London that are within easy walking sitance - I highly recommedd checking out to plan your excursion. On one of my visits - 1999 I believe - they were chasing away all the pigeons with the use of a couple trained hawks, but in a later visit there seemed to be a pigeon segregation area off to one side.
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Old Jun 17th, 2005, 02:51 PM
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We really enjoyed staying just off the Square. Seems as though there is always something going on. As mentioned, it's great for people watching.

While we were there, one day there was an anti-Blair/Bush demonstration and parade with speeches. Another day there was a guy training a falcon. Another evening, there was wonderful performance art with people dressed in huge balloon figures (sort of like 12' tall Pillsbury doughboys without the hat) and a hot-air type balloon that floated up, flattened out and floated back down. Of course, we happened upon all these things because we were staying right there and walked through the Square to go most places.
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Old Jun 17th, 2005, 02:53 PM
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It must be a while since PalQ visited Trafalgar Square. There are no seed sellers and feeding of the pigeons is a no-no. There are trained falcons to control the pigeons and they are very much reduced. The redesign of the square eliminated the road in front of the National Gallery so it is now an integral part of the square.

A search on Google will give you much info and lead you to the webcams.
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Old Jun 17th, 2005, 03:29 PM
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The cafe at the top of the National Portrait Gallery has a nice view of the Square. (Entrance to the NPG is free.)
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Old Jun 17th, 2005, 03:55 PM
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as mentioned, the top floor restaurant at the National Portrait Gallery is great. But there is also a good restaurant in the modern Sainsbury wing of the National Gallery (a totally different place from the National Portrait Gallery) that has very good views across the whole square.
janis is offline  
Old Jun 17th, 2005, 04:06 PM
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The Texas Embassy (fairly good Tex-Mex food) occupies the space where the offices of the White Star Line were in 1912.

On April 15 and the days following, anxious friends and relatives of those who sailed on R.M.S. Titanic came here to read the lists of survivors.
Robespierre is offline  
Old Jun 17th, 2005, 04:30 PM
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I'll say it's great people watching!! When I was there last year a young boy and girl were standing near the statue oblivous to the world and all but having sex right there. Hands were everywhere!!!
Ah. to be young again
John is offline  
Old Jun 17th, 2005, 05:52 PM
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Given your screen name this may be of interest. Canada House, the Canadian High Commision, occupies a prominant spot on Trafalgar Square. You will know it by the flags of the provinces and territories that fly from it. With your back to the National Gallery look to the right.
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Old Jun 18th, 2005, 05:30 AM
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No pigeons in trafalgar square? I'm not doubting that but i think pigeons belong in the square!
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Old Jun 18th, 2005, 05:51 AM
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I must say that I'm with Ken on this one.
Pigeons are a messy nuisance and damage buildings.
There are still enough in London to feed birds of prey including the peregrines on Westminster University.
I just wish that a Venetian equivalent (Ken il Rosso?) would get rid of the pesky ones in St. Marks
Old Jun 19th, 2005, 11:00 AM
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Gavin-thanks for the heads-up about Canada House. I'll keep an eye out for it. The square isn't a high priority, but now I know there is something to see.
Canuck_girl24 is offline  
Old Jun 22nd, 2005, 06:11 AM
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I didn't see this website posted:

If you click on "Heritage Trail", you will get a map that shows where all of the monuments/buildings are and a little description of each of them.
gardeniapatti is offline  
Old Jun 22nd, 2005, 06:18 AM
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For lots of amusement, stand on the top of the steps of the National Gallery which gives you a good spot for observing the reactions from people who get "dropped on" by all the pigeons.
Patrick is offline  
Old Jun 22nd, 2005, 06:26 AM
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Here's a good webcam of the square!
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