No words can describe our newfound love for London. It has found a new home at the top of our Favorite Cities list, but before we get to that, let’s rewind to 9AM, Sunday morning.
We’re pretty sure England wanted us to love it. We had beautiful weather during our 4 day stay, which is pretty unheard of. A few clouds in the morning, but they usually cleared up and let us enjoy all that the country has to offer. Our lovely hosts treated us to a breakfast of croissants and fruit, drove us to the train station, and helped us navigate the ticket machines. A quick 40 minutes later, we were there.
Now, if you haven’t realized already, we don’t really make detailed plans when we travel. We take more of the “just wander around” approach, which has proved to be foolproof. With that method in mind, we exited Waterloo Station and almost immediately hit the Thames and took a stroll along The Queen’s Walk on London’s South Bank.
Margot and Ellen had mentioned that the Realfood Festival was held near Waterloo Station and yep, there it was! Right along with a Streets of Spain festival (perhaps put there to get us ready for our next stop?!)
Turn the corner and what do we find? The South Bank street park in all its graffiti glory.
Around the next corner? The freaking London Eye.
Not to mention Parliament is right across the river. (Told you our no-plan plan was foolproof!)
We crossed the Thames and walked in the general direction of Parliament, stumbling upon Whitehall Gardens, where some journaling catch-up happened.
We hit up Parliament & Big Ben just long enough to snap this selfie — the swarm of tourists was a bit too much for us.
It was approaching lunchtime, so we ditched the tourist spots, found the nearest free wifi, and hopped on the tube to Nando’s in South Kensington, which was at the top of Abi’s Restaurants to Hit Up in London list. It did not disappoint.
We may have enjoyed this lunch so much that we went there two more times in our three weeks. Oops. So much for diversifying food choices! #noregrets
Also, South Kensington happens to be an amazing(ly rich) neighborhood, and we wouldn’t mind living there once we find our wealthy European husbands (damn, we really should have mingled with those grad students in Dublin…)
The neighborhood was chock full of small, locked gardens that we mega-creeped on. All our attempts to convince the people on the street that yes we did live here and we just happened to forget our keys so you should probably let us in, failed.
A few minutes of walking later and we were smack dab at the Central Park of London: Hyde Park!
And thus concluded day one in London. We were pretty much pooped from hours soaking up awesomeness, so we grabbed a train back to Guildford – just in time for some of Ellen’s homemade lentil soup and corn bread. We relaxed after dinner in the family room, playing some Monopoly, catching up on the latest episode of the Graham Norton Show, and introducing Alexa to her new favorite comedian, Russell Howard. Another lovely evening in England, we must say.
-Abi & Alexa