Inside: A review of our visit to Tower Bridge & The Monument
London is practically on our doorstep and yet we rarely make the time to go and explore. There are people living all around the world who have seen more of the sights than we have and that makes me sad.
I pledged to myself at the beginning of the year to make more of an effort, for myself but also as a family, to go into the city more and experience it like a tourist.
We have a trip up The Shard booked for later in the year and I also want to go take a peek inside Buckingham Palace at some point too. But our first visit of the year belongs to two very important landmarks – Tower Bridge and The Monument.
We were invited along to experience them and as Gracie was in the middle of a Fire of London project at school I knew she would love it! My mum has always told me of the time she climbed up the steps of The Monument and so I wanted to do it for myself to see if I too would spin around and around once back at the bottom.
First up was Tower Bridge, which many people confuse with London Bridge – probably just due to the fact that it is in London and the bridge most famous in media. In fact, someone once bought London Bridge thinking it was Tower Bridge. So, the London Bridge you walk across today is the second of its kind – the original being miles away in Arizona, owned by a very disappointed American!
There are great views from way up inside the bridge and the girls, specifically Gracie, enjoyed spotting all of the landmarks they knew.
The most exciting, if not a little stomach churning, was the fact that the bridge has glass floors. It took a very big dose of confidence to get me standing on it for the first time I tell you!
Lying down was slightly easier though and let me tell you, before you think I’m mad, everyone was taking pictures like this! You can just see the murky water above our heads, with the traffic driving along the bridge just behind our backs.
Back down again and we were able to go take a look in the engine room. The girls loved looking at all of the machinery that lifts the bridge up. All so old – it reminded me of our visit up Big Ben a few years ago with all of the old mechanics you find up there too.
Next, we walked along the Thames to enjoy the atmosphere and soak up views from below the bridge. Fun fact, the bridge’s ironworks were originally brown but were painted for the Queen’s Silver Jubilee in 1977! Such an iconic blue now!
Our final destination was The Monument, which actually doesn’t look that tall when you look at it but 311 steps up to the top say otherwise!
Something to bear in mind is the fact that you will be passing other people as they come back down the steps, so make sure your little ones are steady on their feet. Taking a sling for babies would be a must as Mr F’s aching arms will confirm after carrying Wills all the way up!
Fantastic views of the city again, including Tower Bridge in the distance. So many landmarks, all with different histories and stories to tell.
We sent this photo to their Granny to tell her that no, we did not find ourselves spinning as we came back down the 311 stairs!
The whole day was lots of fun and we learned lots more about our city – with plenty for Gracie to tell her classmates about for their topic work!
If you’d like to take a visit up Tower Bridge or The Monument (or both!) then grab your tickets here.
We were invited along to Tower Bridge & The Monument in return for this feature.