Summer holidays in Europe are all the rage. College backpackers, intergenerational excursions, couples doing the London-Paris circuit, and all sorts of travelers annually head to one of the most cosmopolitan and international cities in the world. Hopping the Atlantic gets you world-famous fish and chips, a pint at the pub, a photo with a beefeater, and if you’re lucky, an audience with the Queen.
Have you been? Would you go back? The husband lived in London for a while and loved every minute. In our countless adventures, we hopped a weekend flight to Scotland, grabbed a train ride down to Bath, ate our weight in cheese at Borough Market, and hung at the cottages in The Cotswolds. There’s constant conversation about the weather, fierce passion for football (the world’s game), and some of the best Indian food outside of India. With all the inevitable hubbub around the latest royal wedding or newest addition to the royal family – you’re bound to surf the web and click on the next available ticket. Whether it’s your first trip or your fortieth, London never disappoints.
Care for a Spot of Tea?
Whether snacking on pastries, staying cool while sipping lemon squash, enjoying the view from atop the London Eye, or taking in a show at in the West End, spending time in London is always a good idea. Brave the crowds to glimpse the changing of the guard at Buckingham Palace, honor your inner geographer while standing where time starts at The Observatory in Greenwich, tick off a bucket list item with a day trip to Stonehenge, treat the theatre guru in you with a visit to Shakespeare’s Grave in Stratford-Upon-Avon, or get your ghoulish grin on at the London Dungeons. What’s a trip to London without tea? Experience high tea in elegant fashion by enjoying an afternoon ‘MarTEAni’ at DUKES LONDON in St. James Mayfair – a world-renowned destination for martini connoisseurs. And of course, there’s always time for tea and stylish shopping at Harrods or Selfridges, or for hitting the markets at Portobello for all things awesome.
London is Open
One of my favorite moments was getting my muggle magic and mystery on at the Harry Potter Studio Tour. We didn’t even need our wands, spells or potions to open door after door filled with magical scenes from the movies. Before we left, words from the epic books reminded visitors that like London, ‘Hogwarts will always be there to welcome you home’. The Mayor, Sadiq Khan officially launched the #londonisopen campaign about being a Londoner and what makes ‘London, London’. Go explore and add your story to the masses.
Fun Tourist Spots
With heaps of adventure around every corner, in this European hotspot, there’s something for everyone. Sports fans can tour iconic grounds like Wembley Stadium, Lords Cricket Ground, or the All England Tennis Club at Wimbledon. Set your sights on Big Ben, Buckingham Palace, and Westminster Abbey, and post your best #selfie for your all of your social media crew to see. Satiate your inner tourist at Piccadilly Circus and Leicester Square, then grab a drink at Covent Garden’s famed Punch and Judy’s. Get your history and art on at countless museums like The British Museum and Tate Modern, or find your spirit animal at the London Zoo. Whether you board a train at Paddington, Kings Cross, or St. Pancras station, or travel like a local on the Tube (you can even pre-order your very own Oyster Card), you’re bound to find your own way to be a Londoner.
Favorite pastry shop: West Cornwall Pasty Shop
Husband’s favorite snack at Borough Market: Salt Beef Roll
24hr spot to grab a full English Breakfast: Balans
Must see magical tour: Harry Potter Studio Tour
Oldest fish and chip shop in London: Rock and Sole Plaice in Covent Garden (featured on Diners, Drive-ins and Dives)
Husband’s tip for an ode to cricket: take a tour of Lord’s Cricket Ground – home of the Marylebone Cricket Club
Fun night out: taking in a show in London’s West End
Husband’s favorite noodle shop: Taiwonmein Noodle House
My favorite noodle shop: Wagamamas (yasai yaki soba)
Cool surrounding towns to explore: Oxford, Cambridge, Brighton
Fun experience: sleeping on the Sunborn Yacht (Hotel)
Cool spots to wander: Southbank, Brick Lane, Oxford/Regent Street, St. Christopher’s Square, St. Katherine’s Docks
Fun markets around the region: Portobello, Greenwich, Borough, Camden
Additional spots to put on your list: Tower of London, Cutty Sark, Tower Bridge, St. Paul’s Cathedral, The Old Globe