Last Sunday I went on a walk around London. Sounds like the norm right, I mean I do that all the time. Well this time it was a bit different as my sister and I were making the most of the London Walk that we were given for our birthday. Yes said birthday was over five months ago, but this is actually one of the first weekends that the two of us could actually both make! London Walks is a great company with numerous walks each week all over London and the UK. You can even head to Bath or Cambridge with them.
Well Fi and I decided on the Famous Square Mile Walk which takes you all through the City of London. We met our guide at 10:30 outside Monument Tube station and then spent two hours wandering through the winding roads of the historic area. Obviously we started with The Monument which was built to commemorate the lives lost during The Great Fire of London. It is now surrounded by buildings but originally it would have been the first thing that anyone crossing the river into the City of London would have seen – how amazing is that?
please excuse the awful picture, I swear I took one of the top half, but god knows where it is!
From there we walked down to the river and heard all about the original single bridge crossing the Thames. Next we visited lots and lots of Christopher Wren churches – he was in charge of rebuilding the city fyi! My favourite was St Dunstan’s which no longer has a roof and instead has a garden inside it, with the church walls and spire around it. I wish I worked near here as I would certainly be heading to this garden on my lunch breaks.
There was also a stop at the Black Death plague pits and then we headed through to Leadenhall Market – used as the entrance to Diagon Alley in the Harry Potter films apparently. It’s seems absolutely crazy but this whole area is closed on Sunday’s so it’s eerily quiet. No one lives around here anymore, it’s just office buildings now.
The next stop on our walk was past the narrow alleyways and old pubs, we saw the church that was probably the inspiration to Charles Dicken’s Christmas Carol and then we wandered along the old banking streets towards the Bank of England.
Our final stop was the Guildhall. Is it bad that I didn’t even realise that this place even existed? I guess this is the exact reason why I did the walk afterall! This is where the Mayor of the City (not Boris, the other one) is chosen and where he works. It has a stunning courtyard with the outline of the Roman ampitheatre that was discovered underneath it. I must admit I was a bit in love with the flooring! There’s also an art gallery that you can visit too.
I hope you’ve enjoyed my quick tour of the walk we did. We learnt so many interesting things about this part of the city although I’ve decided not to share them here as I don’t want to ruin it, should you ever do it yourself. You definitely should by the way. It was such a fabulous birthday present and I’m definitely going to join another walk some time soon.