London For The First Time
Today for the Travels Column, I’m gonna tell you about a short trip I did last November with my friend Flavia.
At the end of the summer Flavia and I were wondering about going somewhere in the fall but we didn’t want to spend too much money.
London was the perfect destination: it is served by Ryan Air, in the fall leaves are all colored, I had never been there before and she was already in love with London.
We were doubtful only about the hostels and the cost of living.
We booked our flight one month and a half before leaving and the hostel only 2/3 weeks before. We found several hostels cheap enough but we chose The Warlus Waterloo even if it is not the cheapest one because it’s very close to the metro station “Lamberth North” and if we wanted to walk it’s near by Westminster Abbey, London Eye and Big Bang Tower. If you are thinking about going to London for the first time this is the best hostel you can book because it’s simple to find and you have the chance of walking through the streets of a very nice area. Moreover, the hostel is upon an unique pub. Just few further information about it: it’s clean enough, every room has personal lockers, free use of the kitchen and of the wireless.
We spent our first UK day accommodating in the hostel and looking for Maurizio, a friend of us who arrived the day before and he would have stayed a couple of months. After finding him and taking a look around Westminster Area, all together we went to dinner in a Chinese restaurant in Leicester Square where we found an all-you-can-eat buffet at 9 pounds. After no long we faint in the hostels’ beds.
DAY 2: We walked since the early morning and we saw the House Of Parliament, Westminster Abbey (remember to do not enter if you want a low cost trip because it’s very expensive the entrance fee), Buckingham Palace, Green and St. James’ Park and then Harrods (You can look on the map how much we walked to see all this). For lunch, Hyde Park Corner is perfect! Many little restaurants are here, most of all there is “Pret-A-Manger” (actually you can find it everywhere) a restaurant chain that sells cheap healthy food, and it is such a pretty area, very relaxing. I noticed that people there were frenetic 24/7, they’re always darting one way or another, so it’s pretty difficult to find a quiet place.
The afternoon Flavia and I visited the British Museum but none of the pieces was British. A lot of ancient Greek ruins but it’s a must-see of London (free entrance).
Maurizio, Flavia and I spent the evening in Soho, Piccadilly Circus and Trocadero that offer a lot of night life. And remember cinema is not an ordinary proposal but musical theater is.
DAY 3: November, 5th. Reaching the London Bridge by subway, we spend there the morning and we also visited the National Gallery. I loved the NG but just like the British Museum there are few national paintings. Worth it anyway. We had lunch in Trafalgar Square and we shortly had a look to Covent Garden (for those who love shopping it’s the perfect place to stop) before coming back to the hostel, changing clothes and going up on London Eye during the celebration of Guy Fawkes Night, with fireworks. Then, we headed for Camden Town (another very good place to do some hipster and grunge shopping). Must-do in Camden Town besides shopping: eating fish and chips of course!
We ended up our third day cruising in Baker Street (just for real shopping lovers).
The last day we slowed down. We were tired and we decided to see only Notting Hill Gate for brunch and Baker Street until the moment of leaving by bus. Then, we spent the whole night in the airport and we came back to Italy. It has been such a good experience! I will come back someday because there are still many things I’d like to see.
Here it is the map and the subway map we used during our trip. You can see that I circled the most popular attractions (but I didn’t see all of them).