Yesterday was amazing. You know those days that just seem to work out perfectly. You don’t imagine much for them. And suddenly you are wowed beyond what you expected?
Well, yesterday was one of those days.
I’d past the walkie talkie building (20 Fenchurch Street) months ago and discovered that you could visit the roof top for free by booking in advance. So yesterday that is exactly what I did.
Like I said, I wasn’t expecting much. Until I stepped out of the elevator and saw this!
Lush tropical gardens floating on top of the concrete and metal of central London.
The sun sparkled and pushed through the morning fog. London looked beautiful.
The botanical gardens had those intermittent misting jets that made it feel like a rainforest. Outwards the murky Thames dawdled past the Tower Bridge. And the tourists looked down from this heaven.
These skyscrapers of London just look like buildings from below, but from up here they felt like giants standing in solidarity across the sky.
The Gherkin peeped out from beneath the canopy, and across the river the Shard stood tall.
This building also known as the Walkie Talkie was designed by Rafael Viñoly. I attended an excellent lecture of his in April at the Royal Academy in Piccadilly. You can book tickets online, that lecture was £12 and absolutely worth it! Firstly you get to see inside parts of the the RA usually withheld for members and secondly you get to listen to experts on all manner of topics and ask them questions.
I liked his honesty. One of the attendees asked him why he wears 3 pairs of glasses on his head and he admitted that it was a complete affectation – in fairness he did look pretty cool!
Rafael said that this building was worthwhile for this space alone. And I agree.
Apart from the cafe and restaurant it was heavenly. Actually I think you can visit without booking so long as you have a reservation with the cafe or restaurant.
I live about 5 miles south of here and cycled in. It only took me 30 minutes! I used TFL journey planner to map out a cycle friendly route and used this site to find a parking space to lock up my bike – which happened to be right beside the building.
Afterwards I met my cousin for lunch chatted about absolutely everything. I had been encouraging here to go back to university to follow ‘the dream’ and during that lunch decided that maybe I should do the same. In the end we both went to an open day at Birkbeck university to explore our options for further education (random – i know :).
I cycled home in the best of moods and topped it all off with a fabulous yoga stretch at Battersea Yoga studio.
My friend Claire arrived in from Belfast late that night and today we plan on doing more London exploring – more on that later :).
Have a great day!!