Archive | September, 2011

Buckingham Palace Open Day

18 Sep

KT is one of my longest school friends and yesterday she came to visit. She lives in Cheltenham but often comes to London to be a tourist. It’s thanks to her that I’ve done some of the key landmarks – the aquarium, the dungeons, Winter Wonderland! And yesterday we added another to our list – Buckingham Palace.

I’d not realised when booking the tickets that THE dress of the year was going to be on show, so when we got there and discovered thast Kate Middleton’s wedding dress was part of the tour it was an added bonus. There was also an exhibition of Faberge, which was to die for.

We started off looking around the State Rooms, all gilded and decorated floor to ceiling with impressive paintings, hangings, and artefacts. We saw The Quadrant – did you know the Palace used to be a horse shoe and the front section was a later addition to provide extra accommodation?  and the Throne Room then we were channelled (it was busy) through the Faberge exhibit with all its glittering diamonds and coloured jewels and into The Ballroom to admire Kate’s dress, veil and tiara. We even got to see the original wedding cake complete with first cut! An unexpected bonus.

We often rate our tourist trips on the quality of the gift shop. KT was disappointed to find the pencils and key rings (which she collects) were for Windsor Palace but, that’s  minor let down on what was a great experience and definitely one worth doing when the rooms reopen next summer. Next year’s temporary exhibit, in my mind, will be even better – over 200 years worth of The Queens diamonds. Sure to be stunning!