Friday, November 15, 2013

From New York to London Part 2

                                                 Before Contiki: From New York to London Part 2

And now to continue my journey from Camden to Highgate. . . .

The jet lag was starting to kick in as I was getting progressively lost, so I doggedly hailed a cab, which took me the rest of the way (surprisingly I wasn't too far) to Highgate Cemetery. I ended up purchasing tickets for a guided tour of the west portion, the older part of the cemetery and a ticket for the self-guided east cemetery of whom those notable persons interred included Karl Marx and Anna Mahler.

The East Cemetery

West Cemetery

The older side of the cemetery, is only accessed through a guided tour and is something I highly recommend as it is both incredibly informative and the ticket price is very modest and the proceeds go towards maintaining and restoring the cemetery. 

So after my fantastic tour through Highgate Cemetery I attempted to make way to the London Eye, but surprise surprise I got horribly lost once more and none of the public buses I found were going where I needed them to. I was about ready to crash and have a melt down when I found Cafe Bel, the alluring cappuccino sign brought me in, but the shop's owner Kamari told me that they were closed, however right after telling me so, he invited me and even made me a cappuccino free of charge. We chatted for a bit, he let me use his wi-fi password and even offered to share his spaghetti dinner with me. Kamari saved my day. Shortly after my caffeinated recharge I figured out how to get where I was going.

Now the London Eye is on the pricey side, kind of on par with the price of most touristy attractions, I'd equate it to going to see the Empire State Building. With your base ticket purchase you get a cool little 3-D show, a quick wait in line then you're on your pod, with a whole bunch of other people. It's a slow go around (approximately 30 minutes) so I'd recommend relaxing for a bit and taking it in before going photo crazy and snapping away. Each pod is equipped with a tablet that lets you know what exactly you're looking at and gives you a bit of information as well. I should also add that there is free wi-fi around London Eye as well so you can take a photo and share it with friends back home free of charge.

Crossing off the three things I wanted to do most while in London, I found the nearest tube stop and made my way back to Imperial Hotel at Russell Square to get ready for my day in Bath and the Contiki meet up at the Royal Nation hotel later in the evening.

The next post will feature my day in the city of Bath.

Click to see more photos of Highgate Cemetery and the London Eye.

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