Today is our last day in London and the last day of our Study Abroad adventure. It was especially sunny with the highest temperature we have had so far, a whopping 75 degrees. We started our day by taking the Tube to Green Park. From there, we headed to Covent Gardens, looking at the high end shops in the St. James area along the way. We arrived at Covent Gardens where our tour guide, Lewis, let us try some of the local tea time treats. We were then free to explore London until our dinner meet up time. Our group decided to explore Covent Gardens, a covered area with many shops. We took our time shopping in the Jubilee Market. The market is similar to a flea market with stalls filled with trinkets, antiques, and collectibles.
After some time spent shopping, we took the Tube to Piccadilly Circus so we could walk to St. James church. In their courtyard was a food festival with many ethnic food stalls. As soon as we had eaten our fill we stopped at the local bookstore before continuing to the London Eye. We stood in line for 15 minutes before stepping into the viewing decks. It took about 30 minutes to come full circle. The view was spectacular with the sun shining on everything below. When we completed our ride we took our time to sit in the park below the Eye, wanting to soak up the beautiful weather on the last day of our trip.
We walked to Westminster Abbey before continuing to Buckingham Palace. As we were lounging on the lawn, one of our people (who had gone to get more pictures of the Palace) saw the Queen as she was being driven home in her motor-carriage. We took the Tube to dinner and experienced the crowded atmosphere of rush hour. We were treated to fish and chips at Admiral's and celebrated the birthday of one of our group members. After taking the Tube back to the hotel, all three school groups gathered together to share what we learned and our favorite memories on the trip, as well as thank Lewis for the amazing job he did to ensure we had an excellent time. While we are sad that our adventure has come to a close, we know that the memories that we have gained on this trip will last us a lifetime.
Tomorrow will be an exceptionally long day, as we head for London's Heathrow Airport at 5 am, before boarding our plane for the 8 hour flight to Chicago and another hour plane ride back to La Crosse.
Written by Janessa Kuderer and Kayla Brooks