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Wednesday, 12 August 2015

London wall - our visit to the oldest part of London

Mike and I visited the City of London last Saturday. It is the oldest part of London. Until the medieval time, this small part was London. People also call it Square Mile, due to the size. The Romans built a defence wall around it. 

First we decided to see Barbican centre. It is Brutalist architecture. All surrounding apartments are also made in concrete. The problem of concrete is that it is very difficult to clean it. Grime grows on grime.  When I tweeted these photos, a New Yoker commented 'Pretty!'. I had to tell him that they are the prettiest of the whole building! Careful composition and angles made them look pretty! :D

Then we walked toward Museum of London. On the way, we found this charming building. A lady on Twitter told me it is Ironmongers' guild hall. And another lady told me the lizard like animals are salamanders! Then I remember that salamander are related with fire. 

Ironmongers' guildhall


The museum had more to see than we thought. We saw bones of woolly rhinos, lions and hippos. We only got half way around to the Middle ages. We will come back for the rest. 

Despite numerous visits to London, neither we had seen London wall before. 

London wall remains. The first one in this site was built by the Romans.

There is High walk along where the city wall used to be.  After the museum, we saw a film crew. Cameraman is lying down on the ground. I thought he looks funny, so I was going to take a photo. Then look! 


The lightman was charming! He smiled and showed V sign. If you happen to read this blog, here is the moment you overshined the model with your charm!

Then we found this tower. Magic of London. Old and new things are side by side. Even so, we were curious why it is there in the middle of the road. We found out at home; it was Christopher Wren's church tower. The rest was damaged by the blitz during WWII. I loved it. It has a kind of Narnia lamp post feel to it!  

After we came down from the high walk , we were heading to the Guildhall. Then we saw this. Romans? 

It turned out that the square in front of Guildhall was having gladiator show! We we unable to enter the building. 

The dirty looking church on the left is another Wren. 

As we lost the destination, we wandered around the area. There were lots of nice looking bars, but they are all closed. Then we walked to the back of the Bank of England.  

We walked to see the front. They were cleaning the stones.

Next to it was Royal Exchange. There was apparently wedding reception. They were taking a wedding photo.  

We peeked Threadneedle and Lombard streets where our brokers and pension fund managers work. I have been always curious mainly because of the name!  

We had a good day! Next time we will walk along the Roman city wall with a map!

And if you wonder, of course, we came back with Le Pain Quotidien pastries and Godiva's truffles! (And we ate two pastries each on that day, too!) 

Almond croissant for me, and praline Danish for Mike

They are gone!


  1. what an interesting day you had, even if not the one you had planned... nothing like a chocolate to finish off with :)

    1. It was so exciting to find an area we have never been to. Canterbury has older things, but seeing the City wall next to modern buildings in the middle of London is amazing! Oh, yes! Anytime we go to London, we just bring the best back. The joy of the big city! : )

  2. Will look out for some of this on my next trip . V interesting

    1. It was a discovery to us! I think you will enjoy it. Next time we might go on a weekday to see hustle and bustle of the area and to check on a nice bar or two! :D

  3. This post is full of things I never even knew existed in London! I actually have vague plans to go there with this one friend of mine… we've been saying maybe this Fall. I'm not sure we'll actually get to go, but if so I will keep this post in mind!

    I love that church tower! It's probably a huge waste the rest of the building got destroyed, but just the tower by itself has a pretty magical atmosphere indeed:)

    1. Like most people, we have visited the National gallery, V&A, Tates, Portrait gallery, British museum so many times, and thought we had seen all! :D

      We will definietly visit there again, with an old map in hand, and check on a few bars! :D