Hi from Kentucky!
What! I know. I feel like we’ve hardly been home this summer – it’s crazy. (By the time school starts again, we’ll have spent more than a month of the summer NOT at home. Haha. Bjorn and I are here at Fort Knox for some more of his army training. It’s always nice when I get to come along. Of course, my days are a lot more low-key than his are, but I’m definitely going to be keeping myself busy!
I’m writing this from the Starbucks at Fort Knox. If you follow me on Instagram, then you’ve already seen my excitement upon learning there’s a Starbucks just a 1 minute drive from our army lodging! 🙂 I’m excited to get to spend time here putting together more Europe posts, and reading up on photography. 🙂
Speaking of Europe posts, check them out if you haven’t caught up yet:
Buckingham Palace + Changing the Guard Ceremony
Tower of London, Westminster Abbey, + Shakespeare’s Globe
Why You Should Use Airbnb When You Travel
The British Museum
Our Detailed 2-Week Europe Itinerary
Eek! London was our first stop in Europe, but we’ve got Paris and other towns in France and in Belgium to talk about as well! Keep an eye out for those posts!
Let’s talk about St. Paul’s in London today. It was one of my very favorite places on our trip!
St. Paul’s is an Anglican cathedral and is absolutely huge. We walked almost all the way around it to get to the door for tourists. 🙂
St. Paul’s has been through a lot over the years (centuries, literally). It was rebuilt after the Great Fire of London and took on a new architectural look/design. Later on, a volunteer group of citizens called the St. Paul’s Watch kept a lookout for anything that may destroy the cathedral and protected it from starting on fire during the Blitz in WWII. There were so many interesting stories and facts we got to hear during our 90 minute tour – it was definitely worth the admission fee!
Below, you’ll see a lot of bird’s eye view type photos. That’s because we actually got to climb up the outside of the cathedral to look out over London! It was unforgettable. I just love experiences like that. And it’s not like we had to pay for a helicopter tour or anything. 😉 However, we did need to climb HUNDREDS of stairs in semi-claustrophobic settings to get up there.
But it was incredibly worth it! We got to see some pretty unique and stunning views of London from above.
We had first climbed almost 300 stairs to get up to the Whispering Gallery (which was inside the cathedral, running around the inside of the dome). The Whispering Gallery indoors had already felt like a staggering height, as we gazed down at tiny people INSIDE the sanctuary.
All of the above photos were taken from the level of The Stone Gallery, though, which you can reach with about 400 stairs. The Stone Gallery runs around the outside of the cathedral…
But that’s not it! We continued the climb and, 528 steps up, is the Golden Gallery! The Golden Gallery goes around the top part of the dome and was unbelievably high up! At one point, there was a tiny window in the floor (surrounded by all the iron spiral stairs) where we could creep over and peek straight down (WAY down, down, down) to see the floor of the sanctuary.
So below are a couple snapshots from the Golden Gallery level!
(The balcony was a bit less roomy than the level below – and I started dealing with a bit of a fear of heights, haha! But despite it being so high up, I couldn’t help but totally love it!)
Inside, we also got to see where Horatio Nelson and the Duke of Wellington are buried!
All in all, I was blown away by our time at St. Paul’s in London and I would return to tour it again in an instant!
What high-up monuments have you been to??