All posts tagged “london

natural history museum at christmas
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Meandering Around Grey London Town

I don’t often find myself in the capital with time to spare. Usually trips to London are to do something, to see something, or generally to rush about without so much time as to stop and catch a breath. It was for this reason that I didn’t used to like London very much; I never took kindly to the fast pace of everything, I was very much settled in my Bristolian ways, thank-you-very-much.

I’ve had a bit of a change of heart of late. I’m not sure if it’s because Bristol is becoming a bit of a mini-London in itself, but I’ve begun to tolerate the capital a far lot more than I used to. So when, after my gift wrapping masterclass on Saturday, I found myself in London with a few hours to kill, I was a little bewildered. What to do with my new-found freedom?! I had a travelcard burning a hole in my pocket, which I wasn’t about to let go to waste.

santa-con-london-2
santa-con-london

After the workshop, myself and Alice stopped off at itsu for a bit to eat (another London chain making its way to Bristol!) and were surprised by thousands of people walking down Camden High Street dressed as Father Christmas, as ya do! We soon found ourselves in the midst of this crowd trying to get to the tube station, where a chatty tube chap told us that this is a Christmas tradition in ol’ London town; it’s a massive festive pub crawl which ends up getting pretty messy by the end of the day. Note to self: come and join in next year.

After saying farewell to Alice at Piccadilly Circus, I decided to take myself to the Natural History Museum for a spot of nerding out. I always get a bit emosh walking up to that stunning Victorian facade, and it looked particularly beautiful this grey Saturday afternoon, decked out in festive glory with an ice rink and carousel outside.

natural history museum at christmas

Unfortunately for me, the queue was bloody massive (obviously – it was a Saturday two weeks before Christmas) so I decided to call it a day, and starting making my way to Paddington through Hyde Park, stopping off to say hi to Albert first.

royal albert hall
prince albert memorial
hyde park in winter
albert memorial from hyde park

Soon I was safely stowed on a train bound for Bristol after a teeny tiny adventure in a minute portion of the capital. I’m more than aware that there’s plenty I need to see (cereal cafe, for example, plus numerous exhibitions) but I just didn’t have time to do it all that day! Until next time, London. Keep being massive and intimidating.

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My Dream London Trip

Ahh, London.

We don’t often visit the capital because Tom, being of the Northern persuasion, is genetically opposed to London in any and every capacity. Being a Southerner, I have nothing against London, but I have to admit that just being in a city any larger than Bristol makes me nervous, so we don’t often travel south east that often. Having said that, there’s a few things going on in the capital over the next few months which I am dying to pop back and see, plus I’ve got a few pals there, so I’ve chalked up an itinerary for my dream trip to the Big Smoke.

london skyline

Where I would stay
I know, there’s a million and one places to stay in London, but if money were no object, I would most definitely stay in the amazing Rosewood hotel. A luxury abode accessed by a secret Edwardian courtyard just a hop, skip and a jump from Covent Garden? Sign me up! Sure, it’s a bit more than I’d usually pay, but it looks absolutely gorgeous, and if you’re going to do it once then do it well.

What I would see
No doubt about it – I would head straight to the Science Museum first to scope out the cosmonaut exhibition that’s on at the moment, because I’m a bit of a fan of spacey things, and y’all know the Russians did it best. Plus there’s an exhibition by one of my favourite photographers, Alec Soth, on at the moment. WIN-WIN. From there I’d probably pop in to the Natural History Museum to say hi to the dinosaur one last time before it pops off, and if I’m there during the week then I’ll have to make a trip to the museum at the Royal College of Surgeons. I’d love to give those skeletons and pickled organs another visit – call me weird, but I think it’s interesting!

Where I would eat
I know it’s become a bit of a hipster cliche, but I’ve been dying to go to the Cereal Killer cafe. Just the thought of peanut butter cereal smothered in custard milk is enough to get my stomach rumbling! I’d stop off there for breakkie and make a beeline to Ambriento for some lunchtime tacos, cos I do love my Mexican food. Dinner would have to be pizza somewhere, and Homeslice looks like it fits the bill perfectly!

How I would travel
By Boris bike, duh! They look like amazing fun, but I’d probably be wise to stick to cycle paths through parks and the like, cos I don’t want to get squished. When I’m not pootling along dodging the traffic on my little bike, then I might give a duck tour a go!

London folk – any recommendations for a non-native to see during a day-and-night trip?

This post is all my own written content, but contains affiliate links.

Image credits: Pixabay, @sciencemuseum, @cerealkillercafe