We went to London to visit with family and as part of a larger Eurotrip (which included Italy! more on that soon). I’ve been to London a few times before but it was S’s first trip to jolly ol’ England.
Things we did:
- Drank tea. Obvi. (with pinkies at the appropriate elevation)
- Saw The Taming of Shrew at The Globe Theatre (!!!)
- Walked across London Bridge many times (it is not falling down. fyi)
- Toured the Tower of London (beefeater tour = delightful)
- Ate dim sum overlooking Kensington Gardens
- Toured Kensington Palace
- Pretended we were posh at Chiltern Firehouse (my interior design crush; I want my life to look like the inside of that place)
- Nibbled our way through Borough Market
I’m a huge anglophile – Jane Austen, Shakespeare, royal family, scones and clotted cream, Benedict Cumberbatch…below are highlights from our trip and my top tips for visiting.
Top London tips
-Brush up on some history. The British monarchy has been around for centuries and while not all of that history is pretty, it is significant. Check out the Tower of London and go on a tour with a Yeoman Warder a.k.a. a beefeater. Beefeaters are members of the Sovereign’s Body Guard. The guards and their families reside full-time in their special quarters in the Tower. They wear fantastic uniforms and know all the juicy secrets. Murders, kidnappings, torture, imprisonment – the history of the Tower reads like the world’s most insane soap opera.
-Eat ethnic food. The London food scene has evolved a lot over the years and while it’s commonly thought that British food is unimaginative, trust me, it’s not. What defines British food has spread far beyond bangers & mash and now encompasses a fusion of food from all over the world. And it’s GOOD. Indian, Chinese, Malaysian, Nigerian, Latin American – visit Brick Lane, the East End, Borough Market and more.
-View the city from the top. Lots of the skyscrapers along the Thames have great bars and restaurants on the top floor with amazing views. You’ll see the famous Gherkin and view the Tower Bridge from the Shard or the Sky Garden all the for (slightly steep) price of a refreshing cocktail.
-Be weather prepared. London weather is changeable. Overcast seems to be the norm and you might get a brilliant shaft of sunshine one minute or the heavens will open up and rain will pour down in buckets the next.
-Splurge a little and try high tea at one of the many restaurants or hotels that offer menus. You’ll get a delicate pot of tea, bite sized sandwiches and jewel-like pastries in a fancy setting. How posh dahling.
London has a part of my heart. Every time I visit, I see a new side to the city. What is your favorite thing to do there?