Madame Tussauds London… A must visit!

As you enter here..

As you enter here..

Madame Tussauds London is a museum and tourist attraction located in Central London, housed in the former London Planetarium. It is known for recreating life size wax models of celebrities. Set up by wax sculptor Marie Tussaud on Marylebone Road in 1884 it is the first Madame Tussauds. Madame Tussauds has branches in 9 cities; Amsterdam, Bangkok, Berlin, Hong Kong, Shanghai, New York, Las Vegas, Hollywood, Washington, Vienna and Blackpool.

I have known about this place for a long time as it has been featured in numerous travel shows, write up and online reviews. Anyway, since we were at London, we made sure we visit it. We came on a weekday via Tube (very easy) and we came very early, hoping it will be less crowded but it was otherwise. There were loads of people who came by tour buses. The queue for normal tickets was not too long. Those people who came via tour bus came through another entrance which is a good thing!

Me with the King of Pop!

Me with the King of Pop! You will be missed!

My heart melts away with Julia Roberts...

My heart melts away with Julia Roberts…

Me and my foster family hehe

Me and my foster family. I wish!

 

We had visited Madame Tussauds in Hong Kong so we did skip quite a few statues. When we were here, it was crowded with tourists who came by buses. So you need lots of patient in taking picture with the statues as some of them tend to cut the queue and tend to pose too long to take one picture.  My advice is to have a good camera with good low light picture capability as it will save you lots of time. I feel they should have more staff on the ground to ensure smooth foot traffic within the museum as some of the tourists tend to cut queue and some of them comes in big group so taking photo for each of them takes a loonnnggg time!

Bond.. James Bond. I thought he was way shorter but apparently not.

Bond.. James Bond. I thought he was way shorter but apparently not.

Mahduri Dixit.. isnt she hot!

Mahduri Dixit.. isnt she hot!

:)

🙂

The wax statues are made almost identical to the actual person. The work is very fine and very real. You can take picture with nearly ‘everyone’ famous in the world! If you have not been to any Mdm Tussauds then visiting the one in London is a good place to go as there are many statues, one of the most collections I think. There is a 4d cinema which plays a short movie which you can enjoy for free. Overall enjoyed it and it was impressive. A must do in London!

Where at: Marylebone Road, London NW1 5LR. Operation hours: 9.30am – 5.30pm(last admission).

Visited in June 2012. 

 

Harrods London… Unforgettable!

We don’t have Harrods back at Kuala Lumpur! Well actually we do, a Harrods Café to be exact which is located in KLCC mall. That is nothing to be compared to the Harrods store in London.

Coming from South East Asia where going to malls are deemed common but wait till you come over here, this is the mother of all malls!

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It’s a classic looking building however you will be impressed with the interior of this place. The decoration and furniture looks expensive (I am sure they are!). Generally the products here are quite expensive as mostly luxurious brands.

I did buy few items from here as they were on offer. To get some branded merchandise on offer is like a bonus. I bought a Hugo Boss men’s wallet and 3 perfumes which was offer. We also bought few Harrods merchandise, cosmetic pouch, IPhone casing, and Harrods bear. We did buy some chocolates and snacks from the food area.

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Staffs are generally attentive and very professional. Was assisted by an Indian lady for my tax return and she was courteous and friendly.

Even if you don’t plan to shop here, do come over to visit. You will like it. Please dress up appropriately as the guard do screen through. Generally for men, try not to wear slippers or come with ‘back packer’ style clothing (no offense here). Basically a neat appearance and proper clothing.

Visited in 2012.

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M&M’s World London… A colourful experience for M&M lovers!

We were at Leicester Square for some window shopping and also to visit my favorite Mark & Spenser outlet here. We decided to drop by to M&M’s World since we have some time.

It’s a 4 floor outlet and as everyone says, you can find all the colours, flavours and packaging of M&Ms. You can also mix and match your M&M and weight them before paying at the counter. Also, there are so many other merchandise for sale such as t-shirt, cap, soft toys, clock, watch, mugs, key chain, pillow, men’s boxer shorts, umbrella, M&M dispenser, etc. Some of the product are expensive but then again it would be as you won’t be able to find it elsewhere. We did get few stuff here; off course variety of chocolates, t-shirts and key chains.

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While inside, you should take the opportunity to snap few photos of the giant M&Ms on display, which is quite cool. Well, do stop over here if you are a fan of M&Ms even if you don’t plan to buy anything.

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Where its at: 1 Swiss Court, Leicester Square, London, WC2H 6AP

Visited in 2012

Hard Rock Cafe London Rocks!

I am a fan of Hard Rock Cafe and their merchandise for many years now. I mainly buy their clothing merchandise which to me has pretty good quality. To me, i feels like I carry a part of the city I traveled to with me.

Since I was travelling to UK, France and Netherlands, I made a point to stop at all the Hard Rock Cafes available in the region of my travel. After doing some tourist stuffs, we went to HRC London for lunch. We were seated almost immediately. I can’t recall our server’s name (a young local girl) but she was very warm and friendly. We ordered and food came pretty fast. As usual, the food presentation, portion and serving are standard worldwide, which is why I love HRC.  Friendly service, good portion of food, standard quality everywhere, cool environment. After our lunch, we headed to the Rock shop for our shopping!

Here are some facts about HRC.

‘The first Hard Rock Cafe opened on 14 June 1971, in Piccadilly, London, United Kingdom under the ownership of young Americans Peter Morton and Isaac Tigrett. Hard Rock initially had an eclectic decor but it later started to display memorabilia. Hard Rock has amassed one of the largest collections of rock and roll memorabilia in the world. The chain began to expand worldwide in 1982 with locations in (among others) Toronto, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Chicago, Paris and Berlin Hard Rock Cafe locations in the United States vary from smaller, more tourist driven markets (Biloxi, Destin, Gatlinburg, Key West, etc.) to large metropolises (Houston, Philadelphia, New York, Chicago, Boston, Washington DC, etc.). Hard Rock Cafe typically does not franchise cafe locations in the United States. All US cafes are corporate owned and operated, except for cafes in Tampa and Four Winds casino’.

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Hard Rock Cafe London entrance.

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HRC Menu board at the outside of the cafe.

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Cant recall what burger was it called..

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Mac & Cheese wit chicken! Heaven..!

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Interior of HRC London

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Interior of HRC London

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Me at HRC London.. this is hungry face and yet trying to be cool! lol

London Tube : This is what efficiency is all about!

I was in UK London for about 11 days in 2012. I was told to use Tube for travelling as it is very convenient. We travelled from Heathrow to the central city via Tube. Once we reached central London, we got the Oysters card (which is preloaded value) in your card and travelled almost everywhere in London via Tube. You can top it up at any station over the counter which was very easy.

The Tube was mostly on time, well ventilated, clean and efficient. There were 1 or 2 times where the tube had some problem hence delayed but it was notified via announcement in the platform.

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Me at the Nothing Hill tube station.

Lots of people travel using tube so I would highly recommend that you stay on the right (the slow lane) if you are not sure which direction to go to, etc. At times during certain peak hours, you can see lots of people are really rushing to get to their train, to switch train, etc. Just words of precaution, if you are female traveller or perhaps travelling late night, do avoid standing close to any group of people. There were one time we were at Bayswater station and there were a bunch of youngsters (early 20’s) who looked a bit tipsy and were making a little bit noise. They didn’t bother us but we just avoided standing near them. Anyway love the Tube!

 

Big Ben… A must visit icon!

All my life I have known a bit about London by this iconic Big Ben. Some of my friends who had travelled to London, UK had given me key chains, fridge magnets, t-shirts or some souvenirs with Big Ben on it!

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Big Ben

So when I was in London, I was very excited in visiting Big Ben. I have seen it many times online and in travel shows but nothing beats it in seeing with your own eyes. I was one of the first few places on my ‘to visit places’ in London.

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Big Ben

I was amazed on how huge is the parliament house! The building is well maintained and looks really clean despite being so old (as of 2014, it is 156 years old!). I was very excited in snapping as many photos I could while I was there. If you are travelling to London, you must visit Big Ben!

Here are Big Ben Facts, which some of us may not know:

  • The massive bell inside the clock tower, weighs more than 13 tons (13,760 kg)
  • The tower holds the largest four-faced chiming clock in the world and is the third-tallest free-standing clock tower.
  • Each dial is seven metres in diameter
  • The minute hands are 4.2 metres long and weigh about 100kg (including counterweights)
  • The numbers are approximately 60cm long
  • There are 312 pieces of glass in each clock dial
  • A special light above the clock faces is illuminated when parliament is in session
  • Big Ben’s timekeeping is strictly regulated by a stack of coins placed on the huge pendulum.
  • Big Ben has rarely stopped. Even after a bomb destroyed the Commons chamber during the Second World War, the clock tower survived and Big Ben continued to strike the hours.
  • The chimes of Big Ben were first broadcast by the BBC on 31 December 1923, a tradition that continues to this day.
  • The Latin words under the clock face read ‘DOMINE SALVAM FAC REGINAM NOSTRAM VICTORIAM PRIMAM’, which means O Lord, keep safe our Queen Victoria the First
  • In June 2012 the House of Commons announced that the clock tower was to be renamed the Elizabeth Tower in honour of Queen Elizabeth II’s Diamond Jubilee.

Visited in 2012.

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Big Ben

 

 

Camden Market… Come if you have free time!

We came over to Camden Market after reading many reviews online including the ones in TripAdvisor, which is my favourite travel advisory site for now! We were here in the late morning.

Generally it was pretty crowded with mostly tourist. It’s like a flea market (a pretty big market mind you!) which you can find commonly in other part of the world. What do they have here? I noticed a lot of souvenirs, UK / London merchandise, antique stuffs, collectibles, ladies accessories, handbags, shoes, vintage stuffs, food, etc. We spend about an hour over here however didn’t buy anything here. The food section looks pretty interesting however we already had a hearty breakfast near our hotel before travelling here so we skipped that.

I would recommend for you to visit if you have time in London, otherwise you might want to skip. There are other places which you want to consider going if you are on a short trip.

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Camden Market, London

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Camden Market, London

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Camden Market, London

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Camden Market, London

Here is a brief introduction of Camden Markets.

‘The Camden markets are a number of adjoining large retail markets in Camden Town near the Hampstead Road Lock of the Regent’s Canal (popularly referred to as Camden Lock), often collectively named “Camden Market” or “Camden Lock”. Among products sold on the stalls are crafts, clothing, bric-a-brac, and fast food. It is the fourth-most popular visitor attraction in London, attracting approximately 100,000 people each weekend.

A small local foodstuffs market has operated in Inverness Street in Camden Town since the beginning of the 20th century. From 1974 a small weekly crafts market that operated every Sunday near Camden Lock developed into a large complex of markets.The markets, originally temporary stalls only, extended to a mixture of stalls and fixed premises. The traditional Inverness Street market started losing stalls once local supermarkets opened; by mid-2013 all the original stalls had gone, being replaced by stalls similar to those of the other markets, including fast food but not produce.

The markets originally operated on Sundays only, which continues to be the main trading day. Opening later extended to Saturdays for most of the market. A number of traders, mainly those in fixed premises, operate throughout the week, although the weekend remains the peak period’.

http://www.camden-market.org

Visited in 2012.