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An Alternative Guide to London
London is a formidable charge. Household-name landmarks pop up at every turn: The London Eye, Piccadilly Circus, Buckingham Palace, Westminster Abbey, Tower Bridge, St Paul’s Cathedral, Parliament, Wembley and the British Museum, to name but several.
Where to begin? Well in London’s case, it helps to see the trees through the forest, as it were, and break the city up into manageable segments. This is all made reasonably effortless of course, with a phenomenal public transit system. With that in mind, consider these worthwhile alternatives in the vast English capital.
Accommodation in London is variable, ranging from luxury, 5-star hotels to snug and comfortable bed & breakfast pubs. Be sure to get the latest on inclusive packages and hotel deals, and ask around for personal recommendations. For more information, try visiting our international travel forum to ask questions and get answers before you book your destination vacation.
In AD 79 the Romans mention meeting the Celtic tribe of Votadinii in an area now known as Edinburgh.
This was about the furthest north the Romans made it, and the Celts were not amused by the Roman antics, and harassed them considerably. The Romans retreated to positions behind Hadrian’s Wall around 211 AD, and left Britain entirely by the year 410.
By the sixth century four kingdoms controlled what is now Scotland, and Duncan I became the first King of a unified Scotland in 1035. King Malcolm III built the castle at Edinburgh before he died in 1093. His son David I built an Abbey at Holyrood, at the other end of the so-called “Royal Mile.” This became the focus of the thriving town of Edinburgh, and Leith nearby became its port to the outside world via the sea. Robert the Bruce granted the city a Royal Charter in 1329, and by the 1500s Edinburgh was the capitol of Scotland.
In fact the entire town was at one time on the hill surrounding the castle on its steep and craggy hill. It wasn’t until the 1700s that the Loch below the castle was filled in and the expanded outward for the first time.
An age of “enlightenment” ensued, lasting through the 1800s when Edinburgh grew into the beautiful city it is today.
The Romans founded London in the year 50 AD, and the city burnt to the ground just ten years later when Queen Boudicca from present-day Norfolk led a major anti-Roman rebellion.
However, the Romans rebuilt, and administered Britain through this capitol city until AD 410. Then the Dark Ages descended on Britain, and London was mainly in ruins for hundreds of years hence. The scattered Roman survivors clung to hordes of old Roman coins lived in hiding until they died from plague or pestilence.