One of the tricks for me was timing the travel. I left Dallas on Thursday evening, ate my dinner on the plane and took an Advil PM. That allowed me to sleep pretty well until we arrive bright and early on Friday morning. Well it was bright and early in London, still dark and way too early in Dallas.
The first thing I like to do in any large city is take one of the city wide bus tours. You can catch several right from Victoria station. You get on/off privileges for the entire day. I generally ride all the way around once which doesn't take very long. They I go back and stop at the places where I would like to spend more time. Be sure you take a bus with a live guide as opposed to a recorded tour narrative. The live guide will give you much more information than a recording ever could. I was able to take the entire tour and get back to Buckingham for the Changing of the Guard.
While there be sure you check out the gates, statues and gardens in the area. They are truly amazing and not to be missed.
My next stop on day one was the Tower of London.
This place is so full of history and things to see plan on a few hours. I recommend the Yoeman Warder tour. The Yoeman Warders have been guarding the tower for over 500 years. There was so much to see I can't begin to list them all. But, I loved the fact that you can still see carving in the walls from prisoners. It really makes you wonder who was in prison here and for how long.
I guess someone loved Edward, Edna, E??? Don't miss the jewel room. It holds so many amazing things, but they won't let you take photos. I am sure it is a security risk. One thing I found fascinating was the fact that the the Yoeman Warders still live in the ancient housing on the grounds. It was interesting to see their laundry hung to dry on the balconies and think of how many centuries of laundry had been hung in the same place.
That wrapped up my first day. I returned to my great B & B to plan out my attack plan for the next day.