Day 1. We wanted to see Greenwich, and as the weather was fine, why not go by bus? My husband planned the route which started by us catching the 94 from Notting Hill. Like excited children we climbed the stairs and took the front seats. Hyde Park was on our right for half the journey far as Marble Arch. Arriving in Regent Street, we were not in a rush so decided to have coffee in a very posh looking little restaurant. From outside we could see a sign on the counter that coffees were £2.20 – not bad prices. Having sat down and looked at the menu coffees were nearly £5.00 each. I checked the sign on the bar and spotted ‘take-away prices’ in smaller print! Grrr!
Another bus took us to Elephant and Castle, and then we completed the last leg to Greenwich. With our Oyster cards the complete journey had cost us £4.50 each – less than that cup of coffee!
Greenwich Park boasts a small herb garden which was perfect for somewhere to eat our packed lunch. There were not very many different herbs, but the mint flowers attracted a huge hornet that I hoped was not an agressive Asian one.
Greenwich Park is enormous and the Observatory is on the top of the hill to the south. We wanted to see the International Date Line, but discovered it was in the courtyard of the main building where a ticket needed to be bought. We had seen various free exhibitions and were feeling a little a bit cheated, when we saw people queuing in an alleyway below the courtyard. Ha, ha, the date line had been extended down the wall and across the pathway. We got our picture after all without being forced to pay.
We hadn’t realised that there were so many attractions in Greenwich. The Maritime Museum merited a longer visit, but we wanted to walk under the Thames via the Greenwich tunnel. Passing the Cutty Sark we found a small domed building that looked more like a Victorian public toilet than a tunnel entrance. However, spirals of steps took us down several levels from where we could walk under the Thames to the beautifully named Island Gardens next to the less beautifully named Mudchute Park. The Docklands Light Railway took us through the mass of high-rise and tower blocks of the amazing, new Docklands development.