Beach Vacation

Once a while, we need to de-stress ourselves from work therefore planning a beach vacation will be a good idea. But the worst part of planning for beach vacation can be quite a task to decide for the destination to have your holidays. As you may know that there are many locations all over the world you can go like exploring those beaches in Hawaii or just having a relax sport in golf. Well, here will be some of the recommendation that maybe able to help you to decide where you want to have your relaxing holidays.

First choice will be the Hawaii resort where you can make use of your frequent flyer mileage for a good use and be on the island of Hawaii to enjoy the beach vacation. At the resort beach, you will be able to relax or swim in the ocean and have a game of golf and even to indulge yourself in one of those relaxing spa treatments to de-stress from work. You can indeed enjoy one of the best weather in the world in Hawaii thus making this to be one of your best selection to enjoy a relaxing beach holidays.

Or you can opt to go to Georgia beach and have a relaxing golf sport at the same time. It is one of the popular are in the East Coast, Cloister at the Sea Island in Georgia where it does provide you with 54 holes in championship golf with sandy beaches and a variety of stuffs you can be involved with.

Another recommendation will be the Oahu beach holidays resort for relaxing. You can book the hotel at Kahala Mandarin Oriental and you will be surprised with the kind of treatment you will be pampered like you never experience before. Over there, you can enjoy yourself with a good spa, learn how to scuba dive in class lessons or even go for a great swim with some dolphins. The location of this resort is conveniently within 15 minutes distance from Honolulu and Waikiki beach and you will definitely enjoy your moment.

A nice holidays vacation can also be going to the Virgin Islands. This is also one of the tourist’s spot in vacation destination as you simply can help yourself to enjoy those blue waters and sandy beaches. You can stay at either the Ritz Carlton or St. Thomas resorts which will give you the best offer as luxury hotels during your stay in Virgin Islands for a much more relaxing beach vacation.

Have you heard of the Half Moon Bay in California? It is just located in a distance of 30 minutes drive from San Francisco and at the Ritz Carlton Half Moon Bay will be one of the best place you can have a quick beach holidays away from those hectic normal busy work life in the city. Yet you can have a choice to go to the luxury Beach Resort in Bermuda which will be only 2 hours away from the New York City. At Bermuda, this will be a great place to have a quisk and yet ideal holidays away from the East Coast area. At Ariel Sands resort, it offers you with 47 guest rooms that serves gourmet food while you enjoy those breathtaking views in the hotel.

You might want to enjoy some form of romantic vacation, then the choice of seclusion in Jasmica will just fit in your idea. At this place, it has unique rooms with a great splendid views of the Caribbean which includes gourmet cuisine with amazing beaches you can enjoy. At the Caves resort in Jamaica will simply provide you with the type of beach holidays mood that you have never experience before in your life. Some other people might prefer the Lakeside Resort in Georgia that will be close to Altanta Georgia as the Lake Lanier Islands provides a splendid golf course for all those golf lovers as well as a waterpark that comes with several water rides, slides and alot of the water attractions to allow everyone to enjoy their moments of vacation.

Lastly will be having your family vacation in Hawaii at the Kona Village Resort where it offers you will a numerous vacation options of activities which include snorkeling, kayaking, sailing, volleyball game, tennis, fishing, scuba diving, glass bottom boat tours as well as many other entertainment and food that covers your holidays vacation needs.


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Sailing In A Yacht

If you love the sea then you might want to consider to charter an adventure in sailing for vacation that can bring you to any places in the world you dearly desire as the destination. But the bottom line will be that you will have to fork out a great deal of money to pay for the crews plus meals and fuel to sail in the sea. Nevertheless, you can start saving up money to have the holidays in sailing or you can buy a yacht instead. Then the only thing you need to know will be how to navigate and control the yacht while sailing in the seven sea.

The best option to have your own yacht will be that you can be ready for any trip that you wish to have a sailing holidays at anytime you desire to do so. This means that you do not need to contact a travel agency for making the reservation offline or online as you have your own yacht waiting at the dock just for you to come aboard. For every trip you wish to travel, you will just require to buy food and fuel that can bring you for a round trip back to your port of original.

Having your own yacht has its own financial benefits since when you are not in use of it, you have the option to rent it to anyone who wants to have their sailing holidays at the price you want. This will be your additional revenue for owning the yacht provided you maintain it in a good condition.

If you are conducting a business on board the yacht, it will be ideal case for registering it as a place for business since you will have it as tax deductible. In order to understand further with regards of the matter of tax deduction, you need to get in touch with your tax advisor about it. We do know that it can be a financial benefit to own your personal yacht since you can also make it to be your second home to stay. The condition will be that you have your own berth to alongside with a permanent gallery with toilet under the requirement set by the IRS.

Should you be unable to purchase your own personal yacht, you do have an option to be fractional boat ownership that simply means you can do whatever you want with the yacht at certain period of the year. So, with this type of ownership, it allows you to plan your vacation with your family whenever you want during that period of the year.

Having this type of ownership will be great since it will be owned by a group of people to share the cost of owning the yacht that included its maintenance, insurance coverage, moorage, fuel, repair costs and equipment onboard.

In order to be able to sail your own yacht, you will need to complete a boating safety course including the safety orientation conducted by the organisation. Unless you have already acquired the certification to sail a yacht and have all the necessary knowledge of how to use the equipment that includes charting, compass and GPS that comes in with the yacht. If not, you can actually join in the boat club which means you do not own any boat. The advantage of being a member of the club, you will be entitled to have up to 4 advanced reservations in any of the given time to have access to powerboats or sailboats that can be up to 30 feet in length to be used by you. This means that the club will bear all the cost of expenses like maintenance, storage, cleaning and insurance coverage.

All over the world, there will be many of such clubs and you can easily choose any of them to join. Some of these clubs do offer boating classes who want to learn for fun or as a sport. Of course we do understand that having a sailing holidays will be truly better with you owning a yacht since the only task will be just steering it over the dock and having the necessary gears onboard and eventually sailing away towards the sunset for a nice fun vacation.

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Thailand holiday vacation

Arrived in Bangkok and managed to drag our luggage all the way to our hotel that we booked numerous times in our vacation over those years. It seemed to be one of our best choice in selection for our vacation as we loved the environment and convenient location as well as the good services they provided during our stay.

View in hotel room
Fridge available
Shower
Bathroom
Terminal 21

After we checked in our hotel, we went to Terminal 21 to have our meals. It was very convenient to walk to Terminal 21 from the hotel as it was just around 5 minutes stroll.

Pad Thai
Pad Thai

We ordered two different version of Pad Thai to try and turned out to be very tasty and nice. For all our trips in Thailand, we would ordered this particular dish as it was much tastier than those places we can get in Singapore. Somehow the taste is much better when you are getting it from Thailand itself. Maybe the seasoning they used for Thai people is different from those we get in Singapore.

Christmas Tree

We were there in late November 2019 and we could see that the streets were already filled with Christmas decoration.

Street view
Mango sticky rice

Another dessert that we would never miss will be the Mango Sticky Rice. It is always the delight to taste the freshly cut mango with the sticky rice. Though we tried making our own mango sticky rice here in Singapore, we still loved to get our mouth filled with it when we are in Thailand. It is something that we will never miss to try during all our visits in Bangkok.

Latte coffee
Salad
Eggs with bread
Eggs bacon and bread
Rice bacon and egg
Yogurt

It was time for our breakfast and we ordered a few items just to get ourselves ready to shop for the rest of our day today. Overall our breakfast was pretty nice.

Erawan Shrine

Our first visit to start off our day was the Erawan Shrine.

Layout of the area

A quick look at the layout of the area we would be exploring after our visit to Erawan Shrine.

Amarin Hotel

Here we passed by Amarin before reaching Erawan Shrine.

Photo shoot

A quick stop for photo shoot.

Erawan Shrine

We finally reached Erawan Shrine and everyone was making their prayers.

Erawan Shrine
Erawan Shrine
Erawan Shrine
Erawan Shrine
Erawan Shrine
Erawan Shrine
Erawan Shrine

After finishing our prayers at Erawan Shrine, we proceeded to go for our lunch at the MK restaurant.

MK restaurant
MK restaurant
MK restaurant
MK restaurant

This time at the MK Restaurant, the food overall was just okay unlike the last time we were here. Somehow the food wasn’t as nice as we had previously experience. Wondering why…

We continued shopping at Terminal 21.

Terminal 21
Terminal 21
Terminal 21
Terminal 21
Terminal 21
Wat Mangkon

We took the MRT to Wat Mangkon.

Wat Mangkon
Wat Mangkon
Wat Mangkon
Wat Mangkon

Took a break and had ice-cream.

Eating ice-cream
Chatuchak Park

Our next stop was to Chatuchak Park.

Buddha
Entry wristband
Children’s Discovery Museum

We dropped by the Children’s Discovery Museum to visit.

Children’s Discovery Museum
Children’s Discovery Museum
Children’s Discovery Museum
Children’s Discovery Museum
Children’s Discovery Museum
Children’s Discovery Museum
Children’s Discovery Museum
Children’s Discovery Museum
Children’s Discovery Museum
Children’s Discovery Museum
Children’s Discovery Museum
Children’s Discovery Museum
MixT Chatuchak Food Court

We went to MixT Chatuchak Food Court to have our meals.

MixT Chatuchak Food Court
MixT Chatuchak Food Court
MixT Chatuchak Food Court
MixT Chatuchak Food Court
MixT Chatuchak Food Court
MixT Chatuchak Food Court

Our trip lasted for 7 days as there were lots of shopping to buy stuffs as well as tasting different types of Thai food. There were lots of photo taking and we believe that you too will be able to enjoy yourself when you visit Thailand. We had lots of fun while having our vacation and also kind of relaxing as we were not in tight schedule since we were doing our own free and easy travel vacation unlike tour packages.

Of course if you book tour packages, you can covered more attraction sites but it would rather be kind of tight schedule. We loved to be travelling free and easy as we could control our timing as where we wish to visit without the stress.

Here are some more photographs before we end our trip in Bangkok. Unfortunately we cannot upload all since we took more than hundreds of photos during this trip.

MixT Chatuchak
Icon Siam
Icon Siam
Icon Siam

Hope you will also enjoy your trip to Thailand as we did.

Holidays in Thailand Bangkok

Taking a break from the hectic life of working and enjoy a week vacation in Thailand – Bangkok. Set off on a Sunday to Changi Airport Terminal 1 in the morning. We took our time as we had 3 hours ahead of our flight so we spent a while admiring what was there at the airport. Our flight was slightly delayed as the plane just landed in Singapore airport and it took about an hour for them to clear the passengers and cleaning up before we were allowed to go onboard.

Food onboard Thai Airways

We boarded Thai Airways for our flight to Thailand. It had been awhile since we took Thai Airways but to our surprise that the food provided onboard for seafood and muslim meals weren’t nice. In the past, we had better meals than this. Guess it is no longer true for present time. Both of our flight from Singapore to Thailand and Thailand back to Singapore were similar and it tasted horrible. The appearance looked good but not for the taste though.

Finally we had arrived in Bangkok and checked into our hotel. Here were snapshot of the Queen size bed including the shower and wash basin. This place is where I stay for all my years of travelling in Bangkok. It is pleasant and nice including the services provided by the hotel staffs.

Went to Terminal 21 to enjoy a simple meal of Pad Thai with 2 different types of noodle servings. Frankly, it was much better than those we had tasted in Singapore in comparison.

Here was one of the tallest Christmas Tree we saw while walking passed the roadside.

Whenever we are in Thailand, there is one thing we surely help ourselves will be the Mango Sticky Rice. It is our favorite food that will never be missed when travelling to Thailand.

We took a trip to CentralWorld as well as to visit the Erawan Shrine for prayers.

We arrived at the Erawan Shrine and made our prayers.

Next favorite place to eat would be the MK Steamboat meal.

Had a nice dinner at MK steamboat. It is still as nice as the last time we came to Bangkok. Recommended to try at least once if you are in Thailand.

Had ice-cream in the New Chinatown area.

Had fun at Children’s Discovery Museum. Took quite a lot of photographs but only showing some in this blog though.

Went to MiXT Chatuchak where we had our lunch.

Comparing the Pad Thai from MiXT Chatuchak with Terminal 21, I still preferred the one in Terminal 21 as it tasted better.

Another huge Christmas celebration display.

Had our meals at the Central World.

Will have to stop here as I am going for lunch. Will update more soon. Hope you can also enjoy yourself if travelling to Thailand.

Jewel Of Singapore

Went to the Jewel of Singapore at Changi Airport Terminal 1 and surprisingly there were a huge turnout. Here are some photographs taken onsite. Enjoy these views as we had at the place!

Ball of Orchid Flower – Symbol of Singapore
Marvel At The World's Tallest Indoor Waterfall
Marvel At The World’s Tallest Indoor Waterfall
Marvel At The World's Tallest Indoor Waterfall
Marvel At The World’s Tallest Indoor Waterfall
Shiseido Forest Valley West Trail
Shiseido Forest Valley West Trail
Crystal Clouds
South Gateway Garden – Iconic Changi Airport Control Tower
Jewel’s North Gateway Garden
Shimmer Like Stars To Create A Mesmerising Kaleidoscope
Shiseido Forest Valley – Walking trail
Panoramic View Of Jewel
Beautiful display of flowers

Greenwich Village

Today we will spend a day taken at a leisurely pace to enjoy the beautiful views and wander around a museum.

Breakfast options:

  • Food purchased the night before
  • Macdonalds
  • Sushi from Wasabi
  • Doorstep

From Hotel to Cutty Sark for Maritime Greenwich DLR Station:

  • Total travel time is about 1 hour 2 mins.
  • From Hotel walk about 3 mins, 0.2 miles to Hammersmith Broadway
  • Take the District Upminster to Cannon Street Underground Station
  • Total travel time is about 27 mins (14 stops)
  • 11th Stop: Temple, 12th Stop: Blackfriars, 13th Stop: Mansion House
  • Alight at Cannon Street Underground Station and walk 4 mins to Bank Station DLR
  • Take the DLR Lewisham to Cutty Sark for Maritime Greenwich DLR Station
  • Total travel time is about 18 mins (10 stops)
  • 7th Stop: Crossharbour, 8th Stop: Mudchute DLR Station, 9th Stop: Island Gardens

We will visit the following:

  1. Cutty Sark
  2. Greenwich Market
  3. Greenwich Park (2 hours)
  4. Royal Observatory (2 hours 30 mins)
  5. National Maritime Museum, Free (2 hours )
  6. The Queen’s House
  7. The Painted Hall
  8. The Trafalgar

Stop 1 – Cutty Sark
Continue on with the river behind us, heading up Greenwich Church Street. From here turn left onto Turnpin Lane, boasting many fine houses dating back to the early 1800’s, into Greenwich Market

Stop 2 – Greenwich Market
Exit the market onto Nelson Road and turn left along King William Walk. Enter Greenwich Park and walk up the hill.

Stop 3 – Greenwich Park
Continue up the hill toward The Royal Observatory

Stop 4 – The Royal Observatory

  • Stand at the centre of world time and space, on the prime meridian of the globe. The Meridian line crosses the Observatory courtyard (entrance fee) and it also crosses Greenwich Park. We can see the line up close for free by going through the small gate to the right of the clock and the examples of British Weights and Measures on the wall next to the Observatory.
  • Trivia: To help people synchronize their clocks to Greenwich Mean Time, the Astronomer Royal in 1833, John Pond, had the time ball installed on top of the observatory. The ball drops daily at 1:00pm all year-round – so get our mobile phones and our watches ready!

Stop 5 – National Maritime Museum

Leave the Observatory and head back down the hill. Follow the marked paths and signs toward the National Maritime Museum

  • One of the highlights is the actual jacket that Nelson wore during the Battle of Trafalgar (allow for 2 hours).

Walk along the marked path towards The Queen’s House

Stop 6 – The Queen’s House

From here walk towards the river and turn right onto Romney Road. Then make a left onto Park Row and walk all the way down to The Painted Hall
Stop 7 – The Painted Hall

We can take part in their guided tours of the space or download their self-guided tour http://www.ornc.org/assets/images/shared/ORNC_PH_leaflet_(ENG).pdf

Stop 8 – The Trafalgar
We could also have a look around the Old Royal Naval College (http://www.londondrum.com/cityguide/old-royal-naval-college.php). Don’t miss the famous Painted Hall and Chapel (allow for 60 mins).

If you haven’t already had a spot of lunch, then we recommend walking into the historic town centre. Greenwich (http://www.londondrum.com/cityguide/greenwich.php) is a World Heritage Site that dates back hundreds of years, and there are plenty of old pubs in Greenwich.

When you’ve got some energy back, take a stroll up the hill in Greenwich Park (http://www.londondrum.com/cityguide/greenwich-park.php), for some fantastic views of the London skyline. Then check out the Royal Observatory (http://www.londondrum.com/cityguide/royal-observatory.php). The museum covers everything from time-keeping to astronomy, and there is a large planetarium on site with several shows a day (allow for 3 hours in total).

After dinner, slowly walk back to hotel to rest and recharge for next day activities.

National Maritime Museum (Free)

Opening Hours:  10:00am to 5:00pm (Mon-Sun); Last entry 30 mins before closing

Visiting hours are subject to change

Address:  Romney Road, Greenwich SE10 9NF

Tel:  Work 0208 312 6565

Ticket cost:  Adults free entry

Time required:  A typical visit to National Maritime Museum lasts 1½-2 hours (approx)

Web:  rmg.co.uk (http://www.rmg.co.uk/national-maritime-museum)

Buses:  129, 177, 180, 188, 199, 386

London bus fares (http://www.londondrum/transport/bus-fares-ticket-prices.php)

Trains:  Cutty Sark (http://www.londondrum.com/transport/trains.php?station=cutty-sark) DLR

The closest train station to National Maritime Museum is Cutty Sark (http://www.londondrum.com/transport/train-station.php?near=nationalmaritimemuseum)

London underground fares (http://www.londondrum/transport/train-fares-ticket-prices.php)

Some of the photographs taken in London.

Museums, Harrods, Hyde Park and Kensington Gardens

Day At The Museums, Harrods, Hyde Park and Kensington Gardens
Plan route:

  1. Victoria and Albert Museum (1 – 2 hours)
  2. Natural History Museum (2 – 3 hours)
  3. Science Museum (2 – 3 hours)
  4. Option A: Hyde Park and Kensington Gardens (1 hour 30 mins each) (Optional depending on time)
  5. Option B: Harrods
  6. Option C:

Breakfast options:

  • Food purchased the night before
  • Macdonalds
  • Sushi from Wasabi
  • Doorstep
    From Hotel to Victoria and Albert Museum:
  • Total travel time is about 19 mins.
  • From Hotel walk about 7 mins, 0.3 miles to Hammersmith Station
  • Take the Piccadilly Cockfosters from Hammersmith to South Kensington Station
  • Total travel time is about 8 mins (4 stops)
  • 1st Stop – Barons Court Station; 2nd Stop – Earl’s Court, 3rd Stop – Gloucester Road, 4th Stop – South Kensington
  • Alight at South Kensington Station
  • From South Kensington Station Walk about 4 min , 0.2 miles to Victoria and Albert Museum.

Victoria and Albert Museum

  • Estimated time to spend: 1 to 2 hours or less.

Lunch options:
Option A: At any of the cafes or
Option B: Bring our own food to be eaten at dedicated picnic areas in the Museum: the Picnic Terrace on Level -1, and outside Wonderlab: The Statoil Gallery on Level 3.
Natural History Museum

  • Estimated time to spend: 2 to 3 hours or more

Must See:

  • “Dippy” a 32 meter long replica of a Diplodocus Carnegii skeleton
  • In the Large Mammals Hall you can see the skeleton and model of a blue whale which is 25 meters long.
  • Another giant is Archie, an 8 meter long giant squid caught off the Falkland Islands in 2004.
  • The Treasures in the Cadogan Gallery is a collection of 22 of the most unusual exhibits in the museum like the fossils of dinosaur teeth; the Emperor Penguin Egg which was brought back from the Antarctic by Captain Scott; a first edition of Darwin’s On the Origin of Species and the intricately carved 17th century Hans Sloan’s Pautilus Shell.

To See:
Earth Galleries: Rocks and minerals

  • Look out for the genuine pieces of moon rock and fossils – which our ancestors believed to be the weapons of Zeus
  • Models of volcanoes erupting and tectonic simulators let you experience the sensations first-hand, and there’s also a mock-up of a Japanese supermarket during the 1995 Kobe earthquake, so you can feel the ground shivering and shaking as the power is unleashed.

Earth’s Treasury, where you can see real sapphires, diamonds, rocks and minerals… plus some lowly grains of sand
Science Museum

  • Estimated time to spend: 2 to 3 hours or more

Depending on time, we have 2 options:
Option 1 – Visit Hyde Park and Kensington Gardens
Option 2 – Shopping at Harrods
Option 1: Walk to Royal Albert Hall
Option 2: Take Bus 360 from South Kensington Museums (Stop K) to Royal Albert Hall (Stop RC). 3 mins non stop

Walk AROUND the Royal Albert Hall to the back, where you will see a wonderful statue of Prince Albert himself.
Royal Albert Hall – Take pix of The figure of Albert and The inscription that runs around the top of the Hall.
It’s free to simply walk around the entirety of the outside.

Albert Memorial – photo op

Kensington Palace (Paid), Kensington Gardens (Free) – look for the partially hidden statue of Peter Pan which is here as a reminder to the Boy who never grew up
Serpentine Galleries, Princess Diana Memorial Fountain
The Serpentine

Speaker’s Corner
Marble Arch
Go for Dinner nearby, if still not tired may do some shopping in Oxford Street.
To Buy from Harrods:

  • Harrods English Butterscotch Biscuits (Cookies) Price: £7.95
  • Harrods Coffee in an Exclusive Tin Price: £10.95

If time permits we may visit Harrods – the world’s most famous department store. You’ll find it a short walk down the Brompton Road (allow for 1 hour shopping time, or more if you use the restaurant).

May also visit nearby shops – Top Shop, Zara, Sainsbury’s Local
Dinner will be at nearby places.

  1. Leto
    https://letocaffe.co.uk/menus/
  2. McDonalds, Brompton Road
  3. Pizza Express
  4. Hawksmoor Knightsbridge
    2 Courses £25.00, 3 Courses £28.00 (Available for reservations made Monday – Thursday 12-6.30pm and Friday – Saturday 12.00-6.30pm, 10pm – 10.30pm)
    To try – sticky toffee pudding, dessert with chocolate and salted caramel https://thehawksmoor.com/locations/knightsbridge/food/lunch-dinner/

From Harrods to Hotel:

  • Total travel time is about 22 mins.
  • From Hotel walk about 5 mins, 0.2 miles to Knightsbridge Station
    Take the Piccadilly Heathrow Terminal 4 from Knightsbridge Station to Hammersmith Station
  • Total travel time is about 11 mins (5 stops)

From Hammersmith Station Walk about 6 min , 0.3 miles to Hotel.
After a satisfying steak dinner and shopping, slowly walk back to hotel to rest and recharge for next day activities.

Victoria & Albert Museum[FREE]

Opening Hours:  Sat-Thu 10:00am – 5:45 pm, Fri 10:00am – 10:00pm

Address:  Cromwell Rd., South Kensington, London

Tel:  020 7942-2000

The V&A Museum holds the world’s largest collection of decorative arts and design objects! Some of the over 4.5million pieces include music instruments or statues, relating to fashion or history, as well as a rotating collection of fantastic exhibitions. Our personal favourite, the “Britain” gallery with artefacts relating to the history of Britain includes an entire Jacobean room that has been rebuilt inside the Museum.

Science Museum [FREE]

Opening Hours:  10:00am – 6:00pm

Address:  Exhibition Rd., South Kensington, London

Tel:  0870 870-4868

A family favourite, this museum offers a lot of hands-on exhibitions, creating an awesome interactive experience. From the world’s oldest steam locomotive, the first jet engine, and even an IMAX theatre showing science and nature documentaries, there is a lot to see here.

Natural History Museum [FREE]

Opening Hours:  10:00am – 5:50pm

Address:  Cromwell Rd., SW7, Southwest London

Tel:  020/7942-5000

The Natural History Museum is filled with fascinating pieces collected from all over the world: extinct animals, and even better a T-Rex dinosaur that moves while you stand in the shadow of the skeleton, a cutting of one of the largest trees in the world, and collections of spiders and butterflies. You can take a walk through the solar system or take a close look at the gemstone collection that rivals the Queen’s!

Royal Albert Hall

One of the most famous concert venues in Europe, the Royal Albert Hall opened to the public in 1871, and quickly became one of the most high-profile musical venues in the country, hosting more than 350 events every year. The Hall is named after its’ founder, Prince Albert (husband to Queen Victoria) who never lived to see the completion of the Hall, having died in 1861. Today the Hall holds various events including concerts, Cirque du Soleil performances, film premieres and the BRIT awards. It is possible to tour the Hall with a paid-for-guided-tour but it’s free to simply walk around the entirety of the outside.

The inscription that runs around the top of the Hall is a dedication that reads: This hall was erected for the advancement of the arts and sciences and works of industry of all nations in fulfilment with the intention of Albert Prince Consort. The site was purchased with the proceeds of the Great Exhibition of the year MDCCCLI. The first stone of the Hall was laid by Her Majesty Queen Victoria on the twentieth day of May MDCCCLXVII and it was opened by Her Majesty the Twenty Ninth of March in the year MDCCCLXXI. Thine O Lord is the greatness and the power and the glory and the victory and the majesty. For all that is in the heaven and in the earth is Thine. The wise and their works are in the hand of God. Glory by to God on high and on earth peace. …whew!

Walk AROUND the Royal Albert Hall to the back, where you will see a wonderful statue of Prince Albert himself. With the statue and the Hall behind you, go down the steps. Turn left onto PRINCE CONSORT RODE. Walk until you come onto EXHIBITION ROAD and turn RIGHT. This road will take you straight to the SCIENCE MUSEUM, THE V&A MUSEUM and THE NATURAL HISTORY MUSEUM.

Albert Memorial

Commissioned by Queen Victoria as a tribute to her late husband, Prince Albert, the Albert Memorial was opened in 1872 by the Queen herself. The Memorial is 176 ft tall (54 m) and was built at a cost of £120,000 – which is the same as over £10 million today! It took ten years to complete the structure, which depicts a seated golden Prince Albert, under a canopy and surrounded by statues that represent the areas of the globe (Asia, Africa, America and Europe) as well as arts and sciences (agriculture, commerce, engineering, and manufacture). To provide a base for the gigantic statue, the gardens here were dug up and filled in with a series of stone and brick arches to support the Memorial, which was then covered up and relayed with grass, leaving no trace of the huge work that was undertaken here.

The figure of Albert is facing your next stop.

Kensington Palace (Paid)

Opening Hours:  Nov-Feb 10:00am – 4:00pm, March-Oct 10:00am – 6:00pm
Address: The Broad Walk, Kensington Gardens, Kensington, London
Tel:  0844/482-7799

Admission: £19
Tube: Queensway, High Street Kensington

Web: www.hrp.org.uk

The side of the Palace facing the pond features a marble statue of Queen Victoria (actually carved by one of her daughters) who was born here on the 29th of May 1819. The Palace was built by King William III and his wife Queen Mary II in the 1680’s and much of the work seen today was completed by noted architect Sir Christopher Wren (who also designed St. Paul’s Cathedral).

In the 1990’s, Kensington Palace became home to Diana, Princess of Wales and her sons on her divorce from Prince Charles and it was here that Diana was living when she was killed in Paris on the 31st of August 1997. Many people will recognise the golden front gates of the Palace as the location for millions of flowers and tributes (reaching over 5ft deep) that were placed here shortly after her death.

On a happier note, it is here at Kensington Palace that the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, William and Kate, live with their son, George (and soon-to-be baby number 2, as of writing). The palace is open to the public, but the quarters of the royal-couple are completely off-limits.

Once you have explored the grounds – or indeed the palace itself – position yourself with your back to the marble statue of Queen Victoria. Turn RIGHT and walk down the path you are standing on (THE BROAD WALK) until you get to the edge of the park. Turn LEFT and walk until you reach the ALBERT MEMORIAL and ROYAL ALBERT HALL.

Kensington Gardens (Free)
Visit Duration: 1 hour, 30 mins

Opening Hours:  6:00am – -dusk
Address:  Kensington, London

Tube: High Street Kensington, Lancaster Gate, Queensway, South Kensington Web:

Phone Number: 030 0061-2000

www.royalparks.gov.uk

1.2 KM, 15 minutes walking from Hyde Park

The lovely Kensington Gardens which border with the Hyde Park well deserves a spot in any trip itinerary to London. Like the Hyde Park, the Kensington Gardens was also a royal garden and was later opened for the public. The Garden is somewhat more quiet than Hyde Park and less crowded. This piece of greenery is a perfect location for a stroll or picnic under the shades of the lovely trees.

Kensington Gardens’ most noteworthy view is the Kensington Palace which was the birthplace of the Queen Victoria and was the former residence of the Late Princess Diana.

While in the park, look for the partially hidden statue of Peter Pan which is here as a reminder to the Boy who never grew up. It was also the garden which was where the shooting of the film “Finding Neverland” featuring Johnny Depp as the famous J.M. Barrie had taken place. The park has been the location for many other films such as  Bridget Jones Diary, Edge of Reason, Wimbledon and many others.

Apart from being a film favorite location, Kensington Gardens is a nature lover’s perfect park. You will find swans swimming in the lakes and the beautiful Italian fountain garden in the midst of the garden. Kensington Garden is considered to be more formal than the Hyde Park as it is only open during the day. This garden is an excellent place for joggers, morning walkers and cyclists. On a fine day, you will even find many sunbathing or enjoying a picnic.

Serpentine Galleries Here are two contemporary art galleries, located a short walk from one another. Both museums are free and have a constantly-changing schedule of various pieces and exhibitions, both inside and outside their buildings. The original Serpentine Gallery was established in 1970 and has held works by people like Andy Warhol, Gustav Metzger, Jeff Koons, Man Ray, etc.  Read our post on free London museums and galleries.

The second gallery was opened in 2013 and is located inside a former gunpowder store from 1805.

Continue walking through the park in a north western direction. You will soon come to the Round Bond, and just beyond this pond is KENSINGTON PALACE.

The Serpentine

Created by Queen Caroline of Ansbach, wife to King George II in 1730, this beautiful recreational lake has a surface area of 16.2 hectares and marks the boundary between Hyde Park and Kensington Garden. The Serpentine today is visited by the public who come here to feed birds, take pleasure boats along the water, or even swim in the summer months. During the London Olympics, the Serpentine was the venue for the men and women’s triathlon and marathon swimming events. Think about grabbing a drink at the cafe here and enjoy your walk along the water!

Keep heading west along the water until you get to CARRIAGE DRIVE, which will allow you to cross the water. Turn LEFT onto the bridge, then make a RIGHT when you see the SERPENTINE GALLERIES.

Speaker’s Corner

This north-easy point of Hyde Park has been a popular place for public speaking since the 1800’s. Any member of the public can speak here, however, police can intervene if the speech is said to be “unlawful” or “profane.” Today, most speakers here are preaching on religious and political matters, both topics having actually caused riots to break out here in decades gone past. Notable Speaker’s Corner orators include Vladmir Lenin, George Orwell, and Karl Marx, just to name a few.

Follow one of the paths through Hyde Park – keeping an eye on posted maps as you go to keep you in a southwest direction. Soon you will come to THE SERPENTINE.

Marble Arch

Built in 1827 by esteemed architect Sir John Nash (who also laid out Regent’s Street), the Marble Arch was originally supposed to be an entrance to Buckingham Palace, and it was first placed outside the Palace when it was constructed – where the famous balcony at the East Front of the Palace is today. In 1851, Buckingham Palace was expanded and the arch was moved to its current location. Traditionally, only members of the Royal Family and the Royal Horse Artillery are allowed to pass under the Arch!

Leave the Marble Arch Roundabout and into the park. Cross over CUMBERLAND GATE and come to the corner of HYDE PARK. As soon as you enter, you will be standing at SPEAKERS CORNER.

Here are some photographs taken in London.