A Historical Walk Through London
You haven’t ticked off a city until you’ve experienced its nightlife. Watching a big city like London gradually turn dark and darker into the night is a beautiful journey of time and light. At dusk, the city of London and its natural world seamlessly merge into one.
So how about you take a historical evening walk and touch some nice areas in London central? Let’s take this journey, it’s an 18km walk (22500 steps) and starts just before dusk. Consider us your tour guide.
The walk starts on the Millennium bridge watching from afar the famous Saint Paul church. On the bridge, watch the scenic city across the River Thames with the skyscrapers gradually lighting up against the darkening skies, and outlining an ideal vision of the urban landscape.
People walking down the bridge, a cyclist riding down, and as you approach the old Saint Paul, the sun slowly goes down and tilts towards the night.
The bridge which was opened in 2000 gives a perfect frame and facade to St Paul’s Church. Prince Charles and Princess Diana, 30 years ago, walked down the aisle of Saint Paul with more than a thousand spectators waiting outside to see the Royal couple.
The church built in 1675 was the tallest building in London until 1967. This lead-covered dome shape church sits on Ludgate Hill, the highest point in London city.
The iconic Millennium bridge has been featured in many London-based films, including “Harry Potter” (during which the Millennium Bridge collapses after a Death Eater attack), and the 2014 film “Guardians of the Galaxy”.
It’s getting dark. A fifteen-minute walk northwest from Saint Paul takes you to the historic Borough Market. During the evenings, you find a lot of pubs and restaurants around the market. This is an excellent time to get your dinner or cool off and have a pint.
The Borough Market is one of London’s oldest and largest market. It was built around the 12th century, most of the buildings from the 18th century still stand till date. Rest and have your dinner. What a historical dinner you’ve just had.
Remember to make a brief stop on your way to the Market at the Clink prison museum, built upon the original site of the Clink Prison which dates back to 1144, arguably making it the oldest prison of England.
Next stop is London bridge. This is about 6 minutes walk from the Borough market. As you join other onlookers and mentally rehearse the nursery school rhyme of London bridge falling down, you get lost again into history. Why does the song say London bridge is falling and who is the fair lady?
During the London city fire of 1897, the London bridge served a vital role in fire control. It was one of the significant structures that prevented the fire from crossing over to the other side of London.
The origin of this rhyme is quite ambiguous. Many historians date the rhyme back to the middle ages or beyond, but the fact remains that the song became popular in the mid-18th century, when the lyrics were first printed in the form we know today.
Over the Thames, adjacent to the London Bridge is the Tower Bridge, which most times is confused by many tourists as the London Bridge.
The tower bridge, built in 1894, is at its prettiest at night, glowing in the dark and reflecting beautifully into the River Thames. Just below the tower bridge, a few metres away, is the London Eye, a wheel which illuminates in blue at night.
You can see it rotating slowly with a single revolution taking around 20-30 minutes; time flies so fast here as there is more than enough to see around and a pub to take another quick drink from the walk as you must be exhausted now.
London never sleeps, it’s a few minutes to midnight and everywhere is still bubbling and people moving around. About four minutes away from the Golden Jubilee Bridges is the Trafalgar square.
Every Nigerian who has a relative visiting London has a picture of such person feeding birds or sitting down with a pool of pigeons in the background.
The name “Trafalgar” is a Spanish word of Arabic origin and signifies the location of the British naval victory in the Napoleonic Battle of Trafalgar.
It’s being a beautiful evening, innit?