Day One / London: King's Cross & National Gallery (Trafalgar Square)

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Day One in London: King's Cross & The National Gallery (Trafalgar Square)

Here is the first of the many London's posts! Well, well - sense the excitement. You can probably tell I love London a lot more than Paris, but.. they do have their own unique character that are appealing in different ways. London is definitely much more easy to navigate because everyone speaks English and all the signboards are in English too. That made it so much less taxing on the brains which are already on overdrive trying to get the coordinates right.
Itinerary for Day One in London

1. King's Cross & The National Gallery
2. Borough Market
3. Cutty Sark (Greenwich)

Day One in London: King's Cross & The National Gallery (Trafalgar Square)

Tracing back our steps a little.. we woke up at an ungodly hour of four-thirty in the morning because our Eurostar train was due to reach at seven-thirteen. Do not be late, they leave on-the-dot. The summer mornings of Paris are brringly-cold, dark and a little creepy so I snapped the last bits of this lovely city with my rickety-looking S2. Grafitti can be found everywhere but I haven't had the chance to take proper pictures of them yet so here are some that I saw at Republique station - 'Fuck the system, and live a dream'. We don't see that in Singapore because anyone doing that would be caught in a jiffy, but it makes our city seems so prim and boring (though perceptively safer).

Day One in London: King's Cross & The National Gallery (Trafalgar Square)
Day One in London: King's Cross & The National Gallery (Trafalgar Square)

Most of the train ride was just all black and underground, probably because I was staring at the back of my eyelids. We reached London in slightly over an hour - it was amazingly fast even though I wished I could catch a few more winks. Puffy eyes alert!
Important notes for the travelers

Upon reaching London, we quickly learnt the city's Underground tube system and worked out the mathematics to get the Day Travelcard at 8.90 pounds for each Adult. You can use them on bus, Tube, tram, DLR, London Overground and most National Rail services within London - which is perfect as we didn't have much time to lose.

Day One in London: King's Cross & The National Gallery (Trafalgar Square)
Day One in London: King's Cross & The National Gallery (Trafalgar Square)
Day One in London: King's Cross & The National Gallery (Trafalgar Square)

We wouldn't be passing by King's Cross Station anymore so a little small detour to pay pilgrimage to the world-famous Hogwarts portal is a must! No photography is allowed inside the shop and they are really strict about it, so I can't sneak a picture as much as my skills go. The Harry Potter-themed shop has an entire section dedicated to wands, robes and merchandise that I found to be overpriced (expectedly so).
Day One in London: King's Cross & The National Gallery (Trafalgar Square)
Day One in London: King's Cross & The National Gallery (Trafalgar Square)
Day One in London: King's Cross & The National Gallery (Trafalgar Square)
Day One in London: King's Cross & The National Gallery (Trafalgar Square)
To our horror, you don't get the real deal anymore because the nine-and-three-quarter platform is sealed off after renovations. You have to be a real passenger (ie. with train tickets) to access the original platform. In replacement, they have this extremely touristy wall fixture for all to pretend to be magically-inclined. Check out that queue. Ain't nobody got the time for that so we just made do with this: 
Day One in London: King's Cross & The National Gallery (Trafalgar Square)

It's a wonder why I didn't fall flat on my face because I didn't expect the handle bar to go down and unlocking the brake mechanism but yes, skills. 

Day One in London: King's Cross & The National Gallery (Trafalgar Square)
Day One in London: King's Cross & The National Gallery (Trafalgar Square)
Day One in London: King's Cross & The National Gallery (Trafalgar Square)
Day One in London: King's Cross & The National Gallery (Trafalgar Square)
Day One in London: King's Cross & The National Gallery (Trafalgar Square)
Day One in London: King's Cross & The National Gallery (Trafalgar Square)
Day One in London: King's Cross & The National Gallery (Trafalgar Square)
Day One in London: King's Cross & The National Gallery (Trafalgar Square)
Day One in London: King's Cross & The National Gallery (Trafalgar Square)
Day One in London: King's Cross & The National Gallery (Trafalgar Square)
There was all the luggage-settling-down at our hotel before floundering about into the city again around noon! We headed for the Trafalgar Square which was buzzing with so much activity even in the mid-blazing-afternoon. It feels extraordinary to just be part of the crowd! There were plenty of levitating men around as Yodas, but it probably wouldn't as exciting for people who already know how the trick works. Well it's best you don't, so you will enjoy it more!  
Day One in London: King's Cross & The National Gallery (Trafalgar Square)
Day One in London: King's Cross & The National Gallery (Trafalgar Square)
Day One in London: King's Cross & The National Gallery (Trafalgar Square)

The National Gallery is the highlight of Trafalgar Square, and one of the iconic landmarks of London. Founded by parliamentary purchase in 1824, this acclaimed museum's collection includes over 2,300 paintings with a nucleus of 38 pictures assembled by John Julius Angerstein. Most of their paintings are in the style of Impressionism and/or altarpieces depicting verses from the Bible. They do not permit photography of the paintings inside.
The museum is organized into different wings according to the time era of paintings (West: 1500-1600, North: 1600-1700, East: 1700-1900). It was a little overwhelming and tiring due to the sheer size of the museum and my preference to go through them slowly in each room! It was seriously very huge and my legs were protesting after that! There are more than enough to keep you occupied for a few hours. Grab a museum floorplan map and set up a strategic clockwise/anti-clockwise direction of walking to prevent getting lost.
Important notes for the travelers
- Entrance fees to The National Gallery: Free
- Opening hours for The National Gallery: 10am to 6pm (Mon to Thu, Sat & Sun), 10am to 9pm (Fri)
- If you're into museums and paintings, allow yourself at least two hours at The National Gallery.


With our unlimited daypass, we took a bus to check out River Thames (which we later passed by multiple times)! There was much more freedom to navigate around London as we hopped onto and off buses like they were free. London also felt a lot more upbeat, joyous and safe - relative to Paris. 
Day One in London: King's Cross & The National Gallery (Trafalgar Square)


My favourite building in all of London is The Gherkin (which I didn't go, because it is a commercial building) which was featured prominently in Alexander Koshelkov, god of Photoshop's, work on London Underwater! The feeling of seeing The Gherkin in real metal sent my heart reeling in excitement... even if it is just a fleeting moment through the window of a London bus. At this point, I digress and note that London buses are very similar to Singapore's buses.Well, ending off with my first photo with River Thames... and the camera is obviously more interested in the sights than my face. Till the next time, you'll find me at Borough Market (and fooood!).
Day One in London: King's Cross & The National Gallery (Trafalgar Square)

Itinerary for Day One in London

1. King's Cross & The National Gallery
2. Borough Market
3. Cutty Sark (Greenwich)

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I share interesting episodes in life revolving around food, lifestyle, travel and inspirational ideas. If you would like to stay in touch, follow me on my Instagram on @spherepiece and Facebook page!

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4 comments

  1. Oh wow, what an amazing opportunity to visit London. I have always wished to visit London but have yet to get the chance and with a 8 months old, I don't think we will be travelling there any time soon. You took some really gorgeous pictures and thank you for sharing it. It's lovely to see the place through your lens and maybe one day I will get the opportunity to see it in person.

    Shireen | Reflection of Sanity

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  2. Good blog, and good suggestions

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