Friday, March 1, 2019

Greenwich, England

I take the London Underground to Bank Station, where I transfer to the Docklands Light Railway, which takes me through Canary Wharf and over to the bank of the Thames across from Greenwich.  Greenwich is famous for its maritime history and now has several museums, including the Cutty Sark sailing ship, the National Maritime Museum, the Queen's House art museum, and the Royal Observatory, in addition to the University of Greenwich, the Old Royal Naval College, and the home of Greenwich Mean Time and the Prime Meridien.  I cross the Thames through a tunnel under the river and start my exploration.

 Greenwich across the river

 Crossing under the Thames

The grand buildings and grounds of the Old Royal Naval College are spectacular, although the only building I can enter is the chapel

 Old Royal Naval College

Across the street, the National Maritime Museum holds over two million items related to the history of Britain at sea, including maritime art, cartography, public records, ship models and plans, scientific and navigational instruments, and instruments for time keeping and astronomy.

 National Maritime Museum

Next to the National Maritime Museum, the Queen's House, a former royal residence (for Anne of Denmark, the queen of King James I), focuses on maritime art and the story of royalty in Greenwich.

 Queen's House

 Queen's House art collection

Up the hill from the National Maritime Museum and the Queen's House, the Royal Observatory hosts the Prime Meridian and a display of clocks and astronomical and navigational instruments through the ages.  The Royal Observatory also features a time ball, which falls at 1:00 every day since 1833 for ships and Londoners to set their clocks.

 The Royal Observatory and the time ball

View from the Royal Observatory

 Time measurement through the ages


And, I get to see the Prime Meridien, the location of 0 degrees, 0 minutes, 0 seconds of longitude, dividing the globe into the eastern and western hemispheres.

 Prime Meridien:  one foot in each hemisphere

Walking back to the Docklands Light Railway, I pass the Cutty Sark, a British clipper ship built in 1869, and the quaint streets of commercial Greenwich.

Cutty Sark

 Downtown Greenwich

I've seen a lot today:  history, art, architecture, science, and technology.  But, I think I'll most remember standing on the Prime Meridien.

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