Time for a little throwback post. I’m taking you back to May 2018, when I went on a little trip to London. I’m generally a huge fan of British culture, so that week spent in London was among the best times of my life. Let’s relive these memories together!
After leaving the plane I actually had to wait almost two hours to see the outside world. The airport train station was… well, inside the airport. Almost an hour later, a switch to another train at Victoria Station and then – finally, after a 30-minute ride – I could get outside.
One of the first things I saw was the typical small English town view which I absolutely love. A row of small, adorable houses, all with bay windows and at least a bit of brown brick showing. I can’t explain why, but this vibe is one of the main things that attract me to the UK. And the most incredible thing – this charming little place is only a 30-minute train ride from the centre of London! Yet no skyscrapers on the horizon, just the little houses and loads of parks. Stunning!
Moving on to actual London… no London trip can be complete without visiting Buckingham Palace. Although my invitation for afternoon tea from Her Majesty must have got lost somewhere in post. What a bummer!
Walking around London I came across this view. No iconic landmarks in there, but this photo couldn’t be much more British. Phone box? Check. Union Jack? Check. Double decker red bus? Check. The only things we’re missing would probably be tea and some rain (though it was cold that day, despite the blue skies!).
Speaking of iconic landmarks, ladies and gentleman – The London Eye. Absolutely massive (just compare it with the boat parked beside it!). I decided against taking a ride that time (a combination of not the best, foggish weather paired with an enormous queue) but it’s something I will definitely do in the future, just for the experience.
Thames, though. Not the most impressive, clear colour of the water .
A 180-degree turn and there we have the Palace of Westminster (Parliament headquarters). Partly covered with scaffolding (totally forgot about the Big Ben being renovated until I saw it 😦 ). Still waiting to have a chance to see it in full glory!
Another iconic place, St Paul’s Cathedral. Although, for some reason, nowhere near as occupied as Tower Bridge or Westminster area. It was quite shocking actually to see how very few people were around the cathedral – almost entirely empty streets! On a beautiful, warm, sunny Sunday afternoon, when thousands of tourists were strolling along Thames. Does anyone know why this area seems abandoned?
One of my favourite places to visit was Natural History Museum. The building is absolutely stunning! As a great fan of Harry Potter, I couldn’t help the feeling of a Hogwart’s vibe this place gave me. And it’s just as amazing inside. I was a little sad though with the fact that Dippy (the famous skeleton of a dinosaur that used to hang in the main hall of the Museum) had already been moved out, but the blue whale was incredible too.
Overall, I’m truly in love with London museums. Beside Natural History Museum I had a chance to visit Science Museum and British Museum. Honestly, you’d need to spend at least a few days in each of them to be able to see and read everything. It’s something I will definitely do on weekends once I’ve moved there.
British Museum, as mentioned, was absolutely huge. Enormous. I knew it would be big, but I never thought it would be that big! I spent quite a few hours there but I feel like I’ve only scratched the surface. I picked a few exhibitions that attracted me the most, as it was impossible to visit every single one. The mummies in Ancient Egypt section were incredible! I remember watching that old film, the Mummy, as a child – I loved it! The exhibition brought back a lot of memories.
And look at the ceiling in the British Museum. I wasn’t able to capture it well, but that glass & metal structure spreads over a massive area!
Science Museum was also great, but in this one it’s particularly important to read the labels if you want to understand what it is that you’re looking at. But at least a few items looked familiar!
Oh hi there! Baker’s Street 221B, anyone? Alphe, who doesn’t generally like films or series all that much, happens to actually love Sherlock Holmes (the BBC series, not the film). I loved how even the souvenir shop was full of that Sherlock vibe and the cashier seemed like the poshest, most gentleman of all British gentlemen I have, or will ever see.
Walk a few steps away from Sherlock’s headquarters and you’ll find a lovely little doughnut shop. I was starving at that point so it came like a blessing. Lemon meringue doughnut – 10/10 would eat again!
Back to iconic landmarks – Tower of London and Tower Bridge. Pretty unusual sight to see in the centre of a huge city, but interesting nonetheless.
One of my favourite things in London is… the underground. Seriously. I was so impressed by how fluent public transport in London is! You enter a station without checking any kind of timetables and the train comes in 2-3 minutes. Incredible! If any Londoners ever complain about the tube… just visit Eastern Europe and you’ll see what bad public transport really looks like .
Food! I couldn’t write this post without mentioning some of the most iconic English food – full English breakfast. I absolutely loved it! I tried to recreate it a couple times at home but it wasn’t the same. I’ve no idea what kind of sausages they were, but I’m sure I’ve never eaten anything similar in my country.
The bottom photo was taken at the airport, on the day I was going home. It was probably the most expensive breakfast I’ve had in my life ;D . But it was so, so good! The best possible thing to finish the holiday with.
This trip has also taught me one thing – drinking tea with milk. I’d never done it before, I’d shiver on just the thought of it… and now I willingly drink my English Breakfast tea with milk, every day!
Now what’s one thing a Potterhead has to do while in London? Visit King’s Cross, of course! Platform 9 ¾, to be specific. Which is nowhere near platforms 9 and 10, it’s just a small area in the main hall.
I couldn’t take a better photo of the trolley sticking out of the wall, the place was surrounded by a crowd of people queuing to take a photo there… a massively overpriced one. I would have maybe queued and paid too, but I was running late that day.
A few random photos for the end, first: more of famous places, Trafalgar and Piccadilly.
And a few not so famous random places: a very British street (actually, most of the streets in the centre were full of British flags) and a charming store with cute flowers around the entrance.
To sum up – if there’s anything this trip did, it made me fall even deeper in love with London and England as a whole. I miss this place each day and I can’t wait to move there. It almost feels silly that my biggest goal in life at this point is to simply move to the place I love so much, but it is what it is.