I think the Tower of London has a fair stab at being my favorite site of the whole trip. I had a really good time at this not-so-"optional tour."

Here was my first site of the castle.
The backside of the castle, with clouds darkening the walls

Side walls of the fortress.
We walked our way around the side of the castle toward the gate.

Stephanie waves to the camera. (Photo Courtesy of Julianna Parker)
This was most people's reaction. "Hey, we're here!"

Katie and Stephanie show off their tickets to get into the Tower of London. (Photo Courtesy of Julianna Parker)
After some discussion, we got ticket sales worked out and proceeded to the entrance.

Here you can see Julianna with the entrance bridge and gate to her right
(Photo Courtesy of Julianna Parker)

At the gate we joined a group of people listening to a Yeoman Warder, or to use the slang, a Beefeater. Back in the day these people had charge of the castle and protected it from all harm. Now they still live on the premises and have served in the British Armed Forces, but they mostly function as tour guides.
The Tour Guide spies me sneaking in a picture of him as he speaks to the crowd.
Pretty funny ones, too.

Here you see Julianna with the noble Yeoman Warder. Julianna and the Beefeater (Photo Courtesy of Julianna Parker) Julianna and the Teddy Bear Beefeater (Photo Courtesy of Julianna Parker)
...and with the stuffed animalian facsimile.
Cute though.

Shall we continue the tour?