Sunday, December 3, 2017

Windsor Castle

Windsor Castle
Elaine really wanted to visit Windsor Castle and I'm SO glad we did. A short, easy train ride from Paddington Station and we entered a royal world. The Castle ended up being one of my favorite parts of our trip! Entry included a security check much like that at airports. The very charming lady explained "we have a Queen to protect, you know!" I added "but you're much nicer than those TSA agents at the airport."

Round Tower protects the Middle Ward
We walked past the Round Tower and into the Middle Ward of the Castle which holds the Royal Apartments. The Middle Ward is where the Queen lives and entertains when she is in residence. it is also the part of the Castle that burned in the fire of 1992.
The North Terrace
 We approached the Royal Apartments via the North Terrace which offers lovely views of the valley that surrounds the Castle. No photos allowed inside unfortunately. It's absolutely stunning; you must visit to fully appreciate both the beauty and the history of this place. The Queen was in residence here the week of her 70th wedding anniversary hosting a gala event. Luckily we didn't visit that day as the Castle was closed.
St. George's Chapel
And here's yet another Royal connection. As announced last week, this is the place where Prince Harry and Meghan Markle will marry next May. Again, no photos allowed inside, but it is stunning. As the Mother Church of the Order of the Garter, it is filled with heraldic symbols...banners, coats of arms, plaques, etc. It's been the place of many royal weddings, funerals and interments. A few of its most famous royal 'residents' include Henry VIII, Jane Seymour, Edward IV, and Henry VI.
Goodbye from Windsor Castle and a truly Royal day!

Saturday, December 2, 2017

Royal Connections

Kensington Palace
It's hard to miss royal connections in London. Royal history is everywhere as is current royal presence. After a walk through Kensington Gardens, Elaine and I visited Kensington Palace, current home of the Duke and Duchess of Windsor. And as I found out during Monday's news announcement of Prince Harry's engagement to Meghan Markle, the future home of this vibrant young royal couple. They will live in Nottingham Cottage located on the Palace grounds.
The Palace is lovely and has a nice display of vintage clothing...
I can't even imagine wearing this dress. No wonder ladies had to pass through doors sideways! And how did they ever sit down or worse yet...use the loo?

The exhibit of some of Princess Diana's clothes and sketches of her wardrobe pieces was both fascinating and poignant. She was a never-to-be-forgotten princess.

Stay tuned for another royal connection in my next blog post.