Carly in London: Day 10 – August 4

Today was personally one of my favorite days so far in London! Since there was a break from artistic competition, I had a chance to take in some of the London sights with USAG staffers Jill and Kent.

We started off on the Tube toward Westminster, made our way to the street level and literally walked up the stairs to find Big Ben directly in front of us. It was huge! The view was so iconic, and it was a great way to start our day as tourists.

After a few pics, we walked across the Westminster Bridge to the London Eye, and were lucky to find a fairly short queue. We bought our tickets and headed in…the views were amazing! I took pictures from so many different angles and had a chance to really see how sprawling London is, and how amazing all the old architecture is.  This was definitely one site that was at the top of my list!

We then walked over to Westminster Abbey and decided to take the tour. It’s so crazy how big that place is. Honestly, there are so many nooks and crannies, you literally could wander around for hours. While inside, we stumbled across Britain’s oldest door – which seemed a little random, but was a pretty cool thing when you think about the history behind the walls. Plus, it was really cool to be inside the church, because of course I had to see where Kate and William got married while I was here in London!

After the Abbey, we walked over to Buckingham Palace, and I was told since the Great Britain flag was flying high, that means the Queen is home. I mostly just wonder who else lives in that giant castle with her? Of course the gates were all locked and the Royal Guards were stationed at their posts. We took some pictures and continued our walking tour through nearby Green Park.

After a long morning it was time for a break. And while in London, where did we choose to stop for lunch? The original Hard Rock Cafe of course! I didn’t actually know the restaurant began here in London so it was a great story to hear about and then see in person!

While inside, we saw Serena Williams on TV playing in the tennis final, and got to see her edge out Sharapova for the gold medal! Turns out, that was her first ever Olympic gold medal in a singles match, so it wasn’t surprising to see how much celebrating she was doing on court after finishing.

We finished lunch and decided it was time to head back to the hotel. I had such an amazing time today, and am so grateful I had the chance to visit all these amazing landmarks, which I’ve had on my wish list of places to visit for so many years.  I only wish I had been wearing a pedometer to track how far we walked!

It was definitely the ultimate tourist day, but I’m excited to head back to the O2 tomorrow for day one of individual event finals. McKayla is up first for the women on vault and Jake will compete on floor, so it is sure to be an exciting day.

Check out more photos below and I’ll catch up with ya’ll tomorrow!

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