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The Tower of London. Dating from Roman times , indeed part of the Roman Walls are visible immediately outside the entrance to the nearby Tube Station. The Tower itself dates from the time of William The Conqueror. Castle, Prison, Royal Mint, one time Zoo and still home of the Crown Jewels. Be dazzled by The Imperial State Crown, set with the 530 carat Culinan I, one of the largest cut diamonds in the World.
The White Tower where Anne Boleyn, the 2nd of Henry VIII's wives was imprisoned and then beheaded by sword on 19th May 1536. The Bloody Tower, dating from 1225. Where Walter Ralegh and his wife were incarcerated from 1603 to 1616, Ralegh was executed here on 29th October 1618. Climb the steps of the Beauchamp Tower, housing yet more important prisoners. The intricate detail of the stone carvings on the walls, carved by the prisoners, to help while away the years of incarceration are most sobering. Explore the the Royal Armouries on display in the White Tower, the mounted horsemen are so grand.
Take an hour long guided tour led by a red tunic'd Beefeater.
(More properly Yeoman Warders). Except if inclement weather.
Have your photograph taken standing beside a beefeater. Don't forget to ask their permission first-
it is rarely refused.
At night see the locking up during the Ceremony of the Keys. Advance Ticket Only.
View Traitors Gate from the footpath alongside the Thames.
Wondering what those large black birds are? They are the Tower's most famous inhabitants- the Ravens.
Legend has it should they leave then the Monarchy will be no more.
They do have their wings clipped as a precaution.
Not only do these 8 very well cared for birds have their own Ravenmaster,
but are given monthly health checks by a vet.
Ravens mate for life, and often breed. In the year 2000 'Hardy' had spent over 25th years at the Tower.
Walk the Walls Walk the defensive walls, with great views along the River Thames, looking over the Moat, drained and backfilled in the 1830's but for 500 years a vital part of the Castles defences.. Some stairs and passageways are narrow or steep.
Nearest tube- Tower Hill. Closed Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, Boxing and New Years Days. Recorded Guides Also available. Wear sensible shoes.
Tips for visiting the Tower of London. One of the Top Ten London Attractions. Arrive early in the morning when queues for the Jewel House will be least. (When we were there one mid November weekday at 10am we were the only two visitors in the Jewel House.) Expect the Tower to be very busy at Half Term, public and school holidays. Do not forget to make time for the informative guided tour which is included in the admission price.
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