4 hours on a train.
18 dogs (including my beloved dachshund)
7 cups of tea.
61, 330 steps.
London, you are wonderful.
*This post will be very long and very photo heavy with plenty of recommendations!
Day One: Checking In + Exploring
We arrived in London at 2pm on Wednesday and after a short walk from Euston Station, we checked in to the Travelodge at Covent Garden. We stayed here last December and really loved how central the location was and £97 for two nights, it was a good deal.
There are two buildings; the main one on Drury Lane and another which is just around the corner. Both are secure which plenty of assistance on request and if you have a late afternoon or evening train, you can leave your bags with them and give a donation to charity. In December 2016, it was MacMillan and this time around, it was for the British Heart Foundation.
As soon as we checked in and freshened up a little, we were back amongst the hustle and bustle of Covent Garden before quickly arriving on Shaftesbury Avenue.
If you know me well, you’ll know that Harry Potter is my biggest obsession.. So, you can probably imagine my excitement when I discovered that right in front of our eyes was the Harry Potter and the Cursed Child theatre. It’s safe to say that a few squeals escaped my mouth and I gripped the Mr’s hand rather tightly.
Leicester Square is a part of London which I’ve never visited before and if I’m being completely honest, I was a little bit underwhelmed by it all. It was busy, there were a lot of lights but as we walked around, I remember thinking, “is this it?”
We had a quick look in M&M World which smelt so strongly of chocolate (absolute heaven, as you can imagine) before heading to O’Neills for a cheap, but cheerful dinner. I knew that from working with them in the past that it would be delicious and once again, they didn’t disappoint. After dinner, we walked to Liberty, which is a place that I always love to see; from the grandness of outside, the beautiful flowers to the extraordinary products inside.
The first few hours in London were all about gathering our bearings, having a wander around and figuring out where to spend our next two days.
Day Two: Breakfast in Covent Garden, Natural History Museum + Aladdin
Our first full day began with an Instagram location which I’ve never been able to find but due to the Mr having a good sense of direction, we discovered Neal’s Yard in no time. I took a few photos while nobody was around (a blogger’s dream) and I was amazed by how colourful it is.
When we were in London last time, the Mr took me to a little restaurant called Crusting Pipe and it served the most delicious Eggs Benedict. We were desperate to have them again, but when we arrived, we were told that they were no longer on the menu. Despite the slight disappointment, we decided to stay and try something else on the menu; I went for the Portobello mushrooms on toast with a poached, free range egg and oh my, it was incredible.
Once we’d finished breakfast, we hopped on the tube to the Natural History Museum for the 10am opening. We had this on our to-do list for our previous trip but due to it being Christmas time, we didn’t fancy being in the 3 hour queue to get inside so thankfully, this time was a lot more quiet and only a ten minute wait.
Neither the Mr and I are big fans of museums as we’re both visual people but due to high recommendations from fellow bloggers and family members, we decided to go (it’s free, donations welcome) and two hours later, we came out.
I was completely amazed by how spectacular all of the displays are, but I was looking forward to the big hall more than anything and when we slowly got to that part, I was blown away. It was magnificent and had such a Harry Potter Great Hall vibe about it which I absolutely loved (as you can imagine).
Yes, that is indeed Ben’s Cookies. I had two during our trip. The chocolate orange ones are definitely the best and top tip: get one first thing as they’re fresh.
After finishing at the Natural History Museum around noon, we wanted a healthier choice for lunch and with Leon being on the museum’s door step, we knew we’d get a tasty lunch there. I opted for my usual; Chargrilled Chicken Aioli Box which filled me right up until tea time.
Notting Hill and Portobello Road have been on my to-do list for a solid year or so. Yes, it was mainly because of the colourful houses and doors for Instagram photos, but it was also a chance to see the market and to see a different side of London.
Plus, it’s the perfect chance to open up the Right Move app and play the “guess how much this house costs” game which we played quite frequently. This area of London is very picturesque, perfect for bloggers to take outfit photos (we spotted two!) or just to wander round on a weekend.
There was one fast food place which I’ve wanted to try for quite some time and seeing as it’s not in the North, this was the perfect chance. Shake Shackcertainly didn’t disappoint. I ordered the Shake Burger which is essentially, a single burger with a side of crinkly fries and the shack-made lemonade (extremely sweet and far too much sugar, only managed a few sips). Very delicious and a well deserved treat.
After our dinner, we had about forty minutes before we needed to be at the Prince Edward Theatre so we took a stroll around Piccadilly Circus, another side of London which I’d never seen before. The festive lights really added to the beauty of the night time and I just love how the streets of London all loop back to one another.
Aladdin is my all time favourite Disney film, so you can probably imagine my excitement when the Mr bought us tickets to watch it at the theatre during our time in the capital. I really want to tell you about it, I really do but I’m going to do a full blog post about it very soon!
Day Three: Camden + Regent’s Park
With our train home scheduled for 4pm, we had a late start to the day and stumbled upon Garfunkel’s which was a short walk from our hotel. With yesterday’s disappointment, we both opted for the eggs benedict and oh wow, it was incredible. The ham was thick, the sauce was delicious and both the eggs were cooked to perfection.
The Mr wanted to show me another side of London which I hadn’t seen before: Camden. I knew a little bit of what it had to offer but when we arrived there, I was amazed by how unique the stalls are.
With it not quite being midday and our bellies still full from breakfast, we didn’t have any of the food from the stalls aside from a delicious sweet treat from Crosstown Doughnut’sand let me tell you, I was on an extreme sugar high after inhaling the raspberry one!
Once we’d walked around Camden Market, we stumbled across Hartland Road which is a beautiful little street filled with the most colourful doors. Once again, we played the “guess how much this house was” and we were very surprised by how much some of them were.
With three hours until our train home, we managed to squeeze in a quick walk around Regent’s Park and it was so lovely to be amongst the green. As a countryside girl, I can’t tell you how happy I was to be surrounded by trees rather than sirens going wild every five seconds.
As we made our way back to Covent Garden (we walked A LOT), we came across Park Square West which is right next to Regent’s Park and filled with extremely pricey, yet beautiful homes and of course, I took some photos for Instagram.
London, it was a pleasure to explore new parts of you but I’m happy to be back where the air is very fresh.