Being a country girl, London has always remained a novelty for me. Full of endless things to do, terrific food and incredible sights I love the opportunities and experiences London offers. Yet, visiting little and often has always been my approach, as I don’t want the magic that London holds over me to fade away. Whenever I visit I always try and cram in as much as I possibly can, but there are always three things that I will absolutely do time and time again.
Warning, they all involve food.
Visit a food market
The number one reason why I visit London is for the food. London is chock full of amazing restaurants, but my favourite way to experience what London has to offer is by visiting a food market. So far I have managed to visit Borough, Camden and Maltby but every day of the week there is incredible street food to be had all across the city.
When I visit a food market I always make sure I am there as early as possible, usually before 11am, to ensure I can wander around, sample things and pick where I want to eat without the crowds. The great thing about Borough, Camden and Maltby is that they are all in fantastic locations, so you can grab your food and have a wander around and find a picturesque spot to eat. When we last visited Borough we picked up loads of great food and had some alfresco dining while walking along South Bank – the perfect view for a spot of lunch!
Wander around Soho + China Town
If I am only in London for a short amount of time, I make sure I visit Soho and stroll down to China Town without exception. Based just off of Oxford Street, Soho has an abundance of amazing bakeries, bars and restaurants and due to its central location, it is a great spot for meeting up with friends.
My favourite places in Soho include Pizza Pilgrims, Hummus Bros, The Hummingbird Bakery, Crumbs and Dollies (get their brownies they are amazing!), Bread Ahead (salted caramel doughnut anyone!?) and Cahoots Cocktail Bar, but there are quite literally hundreds of bakeries, restaurants and bars that I am yet to even scratch the surface of.
China Town is also within Soho, so if I want something quick I’ll just grab steamed bun. At only £2.50 it’s a quick, cheap option for lunch and I often follow that up with a little custard fishy that my friend introduced me too. You can get those from the China Town Bakery, where they will cook them for you fresh. You can also get the infamous Bubble Waffle from China Town, but I haven’t actually had one of those yet – the queue always being *ridiculously* long. Perhaps on my next visit!
Discover a new neighbourhood
Guys, I don’t mean to alarm you but London is huge. I only ever go for a weekend, so trying to see and do everything on my list is just near impossible. So whenever I am in the city, I go through my list of places and pick one new neighbourhood to have an explore of. The decision is usually based on where I want to eat (not always, but yeah pretty much).
Last week while in London I took myself around Notting Hill where I spent the morning wandering around the colourful houses and drinking chai lattes in funky coffee shops. But in the past, other areas I have enjoyed exploring include Regents Park, Alexandra Palace (go in the summer, ride on the swans and feed the ducks; it is wonderful), and Marleybone where the famous Daunt Books is.
I’ve pretty much explored most of Central, so next on my list includes both north and south, with Hampstead Heath and Kentish Town being high on my list along with Kew Gardens, Richmond Park and Brixton on my go to list as well. By picking one new place on each visit, it makes it a lot more fun and I don’t try and rush around darting here, there and everywhere.
So, there we have my top three things that I always do whenever I am in London. Is there anywhere I should add on my list for next time?
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