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Loving London!

Updated: May 9, 2023

When I think of London, several things come to mind - The Royals, Big Ben, Black Cabs, Fish & Chips, Red Telephone Booths, and Football, or as Americans would say soccer!

I recently visited London and cannot wait to go back. There is so much to see and discover, as Samuel Johnson so famously said, "When a man is tired of London, he is tired of life; for there is in London all that life can afford.”

What to Do:

I know this will come as no surprise to the readers who know me, but no matter what time of year you visit, checking out the theater in West End should be at the top of your list. There are over 30 shows playing at any given time and they are at the same caliber- if not better than shows on Broadway. Covent Garden- Royal Opera and the many Jazz clubs like Ronnie Scott's are great options as well. I promise whichever you choose, it will make for a memorable evening!

During the day, taking in the infamous sights like Trafalgar Square, Big Ben, Westminster Abbey, London Eye, St. Paul’s Cathedral, and the Tower of London are a must! However, there are several options to get around. A Double Decker Bus, Black Cab, or my favorite the Thames River Cruise can bring you to all the great spots. On a warm day, It is fun to hop on a double decker bus and sit on the upper level to get the lay of the land. Tight on time, hiring a Black Cab to personalize your tour is a great option, but I would definitely recommend returning from Tower of London on a cruise to see the the beautiful city from the water.

For the history buffs, take time to explore Churchill War Rooms- this is a great interactive museum, one of the five branches of the Imperial War Museum. London is home to some of the greatest museums including The Natural History Museum, and The British Museum. For my art lovers- The Victoria and Albert, The New National Portrait Gallery and The Tate for modern art should be on your list.

There are also many famous addresses you might want to visit while in London. The most notable of course is Buckingham Palace for the Changing of The King's Guard, which takes place at 10:45am, not everyday, depending on the season. Soldiers gather at St James's Palace and Wellington Barracks at 10:00am and begin the musical procession. Hoping to see the Prime Minister, head to 1 Downing St. If you are in search of the famous detective Sherlock Holmes then Baker Street is your next stop, but if you are a music fan and willing to venture a bit further out, you can recreate the famous Beatles crossing at Abby Road.

Beyond royals, detectives, and musicians, England loves their football and rugby. Watching a game either in a pub or better yet at a stadium is an exciting way to immerse oneself into the culture. There are seventeen football clubs in London and seven are in the Premier League, so there should be no problem finding a match.

Need a break? When the weather is nice, exploring one of the many parks is a wonderful way to relax and feel like a local. Pack a picnic filled with tea sandwiches and head to Hyde Park, Green Park or St. James’ Park – located in West and Central London, or if you head north you can find Regent’s Park, & the London Zoo. I was there in February and enjoyed several sunny days in the 50's!

Where to Shop:

Take a stroll along one of these numerous streets for great shopping - it's no wonder the series Shopaholic takes place in London. Sloane Street & Oxford Street are filled with hundreds of designer stores. Or you can head to Knightsbridge for the trendiest fashion and explore Harrods - not just great shops, but fabulous food stalls as well. If you are really wanting to splurge, explore Mayfair for exclusive shopping on Bond Street or Savile Row. Don't forget the London Markets. Borough Market is a foodie’s dream located near London Bridge, where you can sample some of the best treats! St. James's is another exclusive area you wont want to miss, especially since this is the home to Fortnum & Mason for Tea and Cookies, and you can't leave London without these essentials.

What to Eat:

England has gotten a bad rap for their food throughout the years. However, I enjoyed everything I ate while in London and love exploring a destination through its cuisine. For those epicurious travelers, London is a multicultural culinary playground with so many great restaurants, 74 of which have Michelin stars. Starting your day with the traditional English breakfast, which can be quite filling, is definitely a must. Afternoon delights consist of Fish & Chips, Bangers & Mash, Meat Pies, and of course the Scotch Egg. High Tea can't be missed, but you might want to forgo dinner depending on what time you sit and if you partake in all the treats! If you do make it to dinner, then I would suggest finding a great Indian restaurant for Chicken Tikka Marsala or depending on the day enjoy the Sunday Roast with Yorkshire Pudding and there is always room for Sticky Toffee Pudding!

Where to Stay:

There are so many great luxury hotels in London and more about to open their doors. Depending on your preference, whether you are looking for a boutique property rich in British charm or prefer something modern and sleek, I can suggest the best fit for you. Let's plan your next trip to London and find your perfect stay!

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