So here I am again, about to apologise for my lapse in posting. I suppose I should spare you all a hollow ‘sorry’ and just cut to the chase, shouldn’t I?
For the last month we’ve been staying with extraordinarily generous friends and family strewn across the UK. We flew from Dublin to London, and then we traipsed to Watford, to Norwich and up to Scotland. But I’m getting ahead of myself, in London we first stayed with good friends in Shepherd’s Bush and then with my aunt south of the Thames.
Here are 12 things we did (I should mention I’ve been lucky enough to have done most of London’s most touristy hot spots on previous visits);
1 Boogied at the Soul Kitchen in Shoreditch
Let it be known that I abhor the word ‘boogie’, but that is the most accurate way to describe what we did there as part of my friend’s Hens Night. Excellent venue, would recommend!
2 Strolled around Notting Hill (free!)
A veritable feast for one’s Instagram feed.
3 Dined at Egg Break in Notting Hill
I often struggle to find independent cafes of Melbourne’s calibre in London, which seems crazy! Egg Break certainly fits the bill.
4 Strolled past Kensington Palace and through Hyde Park (free!)
Watch out for the feisty fowl in the pound.
5 Walked along the Regent’s Canal to Camden Town (free!)
It feels like you’ve stepped outside London here.
6 Shared a brownie ice cream sandwich at Chin Chin Labs
They use liquid nitrogen to freeze each ice cream as it’s ordered. Delicious!
7 Admired the Elizabeth Tower and the Houses of Parliament (free!)
More commonly known as ‘Big Ben’, which actually refers to the bell inside the clock tower.
8 Took a ‘members only’ peek inside the new Tate Modern Switch House (free-ish!)
Thanks to the membership of a kind relative, Andrew and I got to have a look inside the new Switch House building before it opened to the public.
Parts of the Tate Modern are free.
9 Explored the V&A (free-ish!)
It’s a big call, but I think the Victoria and Albert Museum (the world’s largest for decorative arts and design) is my favourite in London. General entry is free, some exhibitions (such as the Brief History of Underwear!) have an entry fee.
10 Walked through Belgravia (free!)
Walking is pretty much the only free thing in Belgravia; known for its beautiful architecture and exorbitant property prices. One of my favourite areas to look at though.
11 Voted in the Federal Election at Australia House (free? lol)
Carrying out our democratic duties. Fun fact: the Australian High Commission Building (above) was the location for the Gringotts Bank in the Harry Potter movies.
12 Saw a Pitch Perfect-esque performance at the Udderbelly Festival
Gobsmacked are an a cappella singing group (featuring a phenomenal beat boxer) who do a fun performance with all your favourite songs. You can still buy tickets to see them here.
13 BONUS: Got out of London and into the countryside!
Where I enjoyed visiting my Grandmother, this Ploughman’s Lunch and taking a stroll through poppy lined fields.
After London we travelled to Watford, had a lovely time catching up with Andrew’s relatives, then drove up to Norwich.