Sunday, 24 April 2011

London Aquarium, London Dungeons and a walk along the River Thames

For yesterday we had combined tickets to London Aquarium and London Dungeons. I looked up how to get there and then we took the tube to the aquarium. We had priority entrance tickets and got to skip most of the queue, but still we had to queue a lot inside. There was a really big fuss about the shark tank that in the end wasn't that fantastic. There was the standard underwater tunnel in the tank with sharks and rays and a pair of sea turtles. It was really really short but that was the best of the aquarium. I was kind of disappointed. Although it was nice and I had a good time it wasn't as great as the one in Seoul, which was ginormous and had pretty much every kind of sea animal there is.

The first thing we did after exiting the aquarium was to find Wagamama at the South Bank and once again have some Japanese food. The Japanese really know their food and everything is delicious. After lunch we started to look for the dungeons. On the map they had looked quite close, but it was actually really far. We got a nice walk along the South Bank, from Westminster Bridge to London Bridge. It was beautiful weather and we passed St. Paul's cathedral and the area we had walked around in the day before.

On our way to the dungeons we saw a ship. Like an old 16th century ship. It turned out to be a reconstruction of Sir Francis Drake's galleon. Francis Drake was a pirate and privateer under Elizabeth I and he gave her so much money that she knighted him. I wanted to go aboard and still I didn't. If it hadn't been a reconstruction but the real thing from the 16th century I wouldn't have hesitated.

But we were in a hurry. At 4pm we finally arrived at the dungeons and started queueing to get inside. We didn't have priority entrance to the dungeons. 45 minutes later we got in and had our picture taking; me holding an axe over Love's neck ^^

Then the tour started. The actors were great and it wasn't really scary. I felt a little uneasy, but not scared. So we passed through the Crypt, the Labyrinth of Lost Souls and the Plague, and then we got to the Great Fire of London. That was the first interesting moment. We were all standing in a room where they had a film going with some of the actors acting out the horrors of the night when all of medieval London burned down, caused by a spark from the local bakery. Over 300 houses. By the end of the film there was smoke coming from the door we were supposed to continue through.

After that came the Surgeon, telling us of how many surgeons gave in to grave robbery to learn anatomy. Here the actress picked one from the audience to assist her. After going through lobotomy and blood letting on him she came to amputation. The whole room went dark and we were sprayed with something wet (only water) while a recorded man's voice screamed :P That was a lot of fun. The Torture room had a very fun actress who left us laughing. We entered the Judgement which had us laugh even more as the presenter of the case was a very young and happy girl and the judge was a complete drunkard. Here they had three people from the audience being judged for different crimes.

We continued through the Madhouse in Bedlam and then got on our first ride; a boat ride to Hell. After which we ended up visiting Mrs Lovett and Sweeney Todd and then we arrived at the new show of 2011; Jack the Ripper. This was the scariest moment ever. The actors repeatedly told the women to cover their necks and throats and stay close to a man. We were invited into a bar by an actor who told us that it was the 10th anniversary of Jack the Ripper's murders. No one knew where he went and everyone was scared he'd come back. There was a fictional storm while we where there and the lights went out. When thunder lighted up the bar we saw a cloaked figure with a top hat slicing for the closest woman.

A little shaky we continued to the next room where a film, similar to the one of the Great Fire of London, told us of Jack the Ripper. It depicted his murders in detail and showed us old 19th century pictrues of the victims. Beneath the screen was a reconstruction of the final victim and everything he had done to her. That was horrid and gross.

Next room was Bloody Mary the Queen. The daughter of Henry VIII who convicted loads of people of heresy and hanged them. We were all judged as heretics and sent to the gallows. This was the second ride. We all sat down and had the protectors down. Then we were hoist up into the air were there were dolls who did the ceremonial judging and then the hangman moved and we were dropped to the floor. It was a very small free fall kind of ride but it was fun. That's where it all ended.

When we got out the time was 6.30pm and we decided to return home. It was raining and it was a really nice change from all the sun. No cameras were allowed in the dungeons.

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