Great Britain: Magical enough without Harry Potter
Something as simple as a stroll through narrow streets and alleyways is sufficient to make one realise that Great Britain is strikingly different from the various countries around the world. With archaic buildings looming over the numerous people thronging London’s streets, the walls of the city speak of a regal era—an era long gone, but survived through the regal architecture and lifestyle of London.
The British Isles are known for their rich christian heritage, with churches like the St. Paul’s Cathedral and Westminster Abbey. One tends to feel overwhelmed by the fact that the monarchs of the thirteenth century walked these halls and fostered the Renaissance from these rooms. The walls are decorated with beautiful mosaics, and a glance towards the Heavens make one realise that the ceilings are adorned with murals which relate the tales of transient times. Accounts of the life and death of almost every monarch have been preserved and documented in Westminster Abbey. The Abbey is also home to the Coronation Chair, which has served the Kingdom for almost seven hundred years, and still stands strong. Besides its royal heritage, Westminster Abbey is the resting place for a number of literary and scientific masterminds of the Renaissance era.
The guardian ravens of the Tower of London greet every tourist who enters the monument. According to an ancient prophecy, if the ravens were to leave the Tower of London, the British Kingdom would fall. Safe to say, the ravens have been permanent residents of the Tower for quite a while, and are well-guarded. The Tower had also served as the site for scheduled executions and is infamous for being the place where Anne Boleyn met her end. The Tower of London is also home to the globally acclaimed Kohinoor diamond. Needless to say, the security guards of the Tower have their task cut out.
The cobblestone streets of Bath, swamped by row houses, emanate vibes strong enough to win over even the most stringent modernists. Stonehenge is the most popular tourist attraction in this region. The fact that the site was constructed in the pre-historic era as a sundial speaks volumes about the intellect of our ancestors. Besides being an invaluable piece of history, the Stonehenge also signifies an important technological advancement.
The landscape changes drastically from England to Scotland—the plains with dense infrastructure transform into lush highlands. The architecture also undergoes a change to adopt a slightly Gothic style. The city of Glasgow is designed such that the buildings are constructed wall-to-wall—ensuring that the city could accommodate the population spurt due to the Industrial Revolution. The Edinburgh Castle was home to Mary Queen of Scots—one of the most memorable queens of England and mother to King James I, who went on to become the first king of Scotland and England in 1567. It is a colossal stone castle that has been restored and preserved in pristine condition. It overlooks the city of Edinburgh, presenting one with a stunning view of picturesque buildings, rooftops and city squares.
The culture shift from one island to another is very intriguing. Despite the recent political turmoil in the country, it still remains a popular tourist destination. Great Britain’s beauty is almost ironical—because even though it may have been one of the hotbeds of the Industrial and Scientific Revolution, a journey through these islands is nothing short of a magical experience.