London Part 9: The London Dungeon

Day 3 finally arrived (felt like we’d spent at least 10 days instead of only 2). We rose with our alarms, groggy and aching from so much walking the day before, but ready to attack the itinerary in style.

On the to-do list for today: the London Dungeon and then…free time!

First we packed up our rooms and checked out, leaving the luggage in the car. Then it was off to break our fasts at the classy Wetherspoons.

Weatherspoons Internet Image
Wetherspoons interior. Photo credit: The Lad Bible.

For those outside the UK, Wetherspoons is part pub, part sports bar, part diner, and part casino what with all its seizure-inducing slot machines strobing constant light shows. So I say “classy” with sarcasm, but at the same time you get bang for your buck if you’re looking for cheap eats.

Once recharged on our full English breakfasts, we hit the Tube and headed to the thing I’d been looking forward to most all weekend: the London Dungeon.

Ricky’s mum and Tony had already gone and filled us in on what to expect. Basically a haunted house of horrors. Except instead of ghosts and zombies popping out – *dramatic music* – you follow all the historical atrocities in London’s past!! The grimiest of plagues, the cruelest of tortures, the murders moste foul!

So like, history nerd me was basically anticipating heaven.

When we got there, it turned out the London Eye was on the way so we got to see it up close.

2016 London January London Eye Full Wheel small
The London Eye – up close and personal.

We had the bad luck of coming to London literally the one weekend in the year when it was closed for maintenance (which is why we substituted taking the Cable Cars instead for our bird’s eye view of the city), but we still managed to get some pretty impressive sights of the thing itself anyway.

2016 London January London Eye Side Detail small
The London Eye – closed for maintenance.

And it wasn’t just the London Eye that we got impressive sights of. Across the water from where we were the day before, we managed to get some beautiful views of Big Ben and Parliament.

2016 London January Parliament and Big Ben Across Thames small
Big Ben and Parliament across the Thames.

Perhaps to counter our bad luck with the Eye, it’s also noteworthy to say that out of our three days in London, only our third was met with rain. Very lucky indeed considering we were planning on spending the day on indoor activities anyway.

Also noteworthy to say is that right about then, my camera battery died.

This wasn’t really bad luck, as it was expected: I didn’t have any plug adapters between Korean and British sockets to charge the battery (as I bought my camera in Korea). It certainly was disappointing, but at the same time it let me enjoy the experience of going around all the more without the worry of recording anything.

Not that I could have recorded anything in the London Dungeon anyway. You can’t take photos: you can only experience it in the moment (booyeah!).

It was amazing.

So we got our tickets, lined up, and were led into some photo op situations where they take your picture with some props and backdrops (purchaseable at the end of the tour).

2016 London Dungeons Execution
Off with his head! Also we purchased the photos at the end of the tour.
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Caught red handed! Jack the Ripper flees into the night leaving us as the guilty ones…

Then we were led into the dank depths of the past where actors in period appropriate garb led us through the executions of Henry VIII’s wives, the fetid streets of the Black Plague, the shop of Sweeney Todd, the back alleys of Jack the Ripper…

I won’t go into too much detail about the things that happened there because it’s one of those things that you don’t want to know any spoilers if you go. If you’re a bit of a scaredy cat like myself, be comforted in knowing that nothing’s going to reach and and grab you – it’s a wonderfully safe no-contact experience!

But you may get wet.

I will say though that at the end of the tour, you can experience the short drop of the gallows. Aka get on a drop ride where you plummet something like 70 feet (my actual least favourite kind of ride in the world).

Although you can opt out, if you choose to go on you might find yourself looking something like this:

2016 London Dungeons Drop Ride
All dignity maintained at the London Dungeon.

After that leg-wobbler, you exit into a pub where you’re given a complimentary drink (choice of two alcoholic and two non-alcoholic) and then exit into present day London where you’re infinitely grateful you never had to exist contemporaneously with buboes or the threat of being baked into one of Mrs. Lovett’s pies.

Honestly this tour was the best. It was informative, fun, and downright terrifying at times. I’d go again in an instant – and you should too!!

But that’s it for now – our morning adventures were about to give way to our afternoon wanderings, which for the first time on the trip were of our own choosing. (SO MUCH FREEDOM WHAT DO WE DO IT IT??)

Find out next time!

For the complete London adventures, check out the links below!

London Part 1: Cable Cars

London Part 2: The Tower of London

London Part 3: The Tower Bridge

London Part 4: Mulled Wine and End of Day 1, or The Importance of Down-Time

London Part 5: Big Ben, Parliament, and Westminster Abbey

London Part 6: Palaces of Past and Present

London Part 7: Fancy Shopping, Japanese Food, and Geekery

London Part 8: Chilling at the Icebar and Belly Laughs in Greenwich

London Part 9: The London Dungeon

London Part 10: Museums, Tapas, and the End


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