Our Tube Station
Last weekend,we returned to London for the weekend,our first time back since leaving in December. We went back for a birthday party for all the babies from my NCT group (antenatal), 7 babies & 12 Adults.It was so lovely to see everyone again.
After many years of living in London, and taking full advantage of all the wonderful things to do,I’d like to share our favourite things. Beyond the usual tourists spots,there are plenty of hidden,and unknown gems,that don’t always have to cost money. Take the tube, don’t be afraid, it is so easy to use,get yourself an Oyster card the day you arrive £5, and top up as needed.
Camden Town & Market
Quirky,busy,fun,punks,wild ones,anything goes here.Take a stroll through the highstreet,there are so many quirky shops & of course the usual tacky tourists shops. Bypass these and head straight for The Stables,hidden at the back on of the main market on the left,here is the real gem. It’s quieter,and full of “real” vintage shops and all the food from around the world that you can think of.
Before Amelia came along,I would head up to Camden a lot on my days off and wander around. If you are bringing children,try and avoid at the weekends,or go early morning. Take your baby sling,it’s much easier than a buggy.
To get to Camden Town, take the Northern Line (black line).Well worth a visit, it’s one you will never forget.
From Camden Town, walk along the river, listening to the buskers under the bridges on the way,a 20 minute walk will lead you to Primrose Hill.
Once the “it” place to live amongst the “celebs” of London. Take a walk through the park,grab a nice cream,or if the weather is nice,take a picnic and rug. Walk to the top of the hill in the park and enjoy beautiful views of the London skyline.Picking out buildings you know .Its one of our favourite Parks in London. Directly across from the Park is London Zoo.
If you are interested in the zoo- my tip is buy a train ticket from where you are staying,if it is not Central London, and get yourself a 2 for 1 on entry to the zoo, by filling out this form,print it and present on the day with your valid train tickets.
If the Zoo is not your thing,directly across from Primrose Hill is another favourite park of ours, Regents Park.Its a beautiful park,with loads going on.
Anything goes in London,last Sunday,two women were practising their yoga on the Bandstand in Regents Park.This is what I love about London.
An eclectic area,walks along the South Bank bank whether in winter or summer are always lovely.Our favourite things to do along the Southbank are visit The Tate Modern museum and Borough Market,more amazing worldwide foods.
With a birds eye view of the sights along the river, wine festivals,Christmas markets, and of course for the tourist, you have The a London Eye,Florence Nightingale Museum (any nurses like me,would find this really interesting),Thames Clippers (here you can take boat rides along the Thames & on to Greenwich),London Dungeons & the London Aquarium.
For a romantic night out,with beautiful food and amazing cocktails- try The Oxo Tower.
If it’s a child free weekend,then hire some “Borris Bikes”,click here to see how to hire, and take them through the streets and of London,ride into Hyde Park via Marble Arch,and wander around. Hyde Park has the huge Winter Wonderland theme park over the month of December, with its German market.
We would generally drive to Greenwich,however there are plenty of ways to get here. take a Clipper Boat along the Thames to Greenwich,while having your own riverside view of London Town.
Greenwich is home to a World Heritage Site, Europe’s most successful entertainment arena, The O2,Bitains first urban cable car,The Emirates,London’s oldest Royal Park and the place where hemispheres meet.
Greenwich Royal Observatory (Home of meantime) This line is marked by a metal strip running through the courtyard. By standing over this line, you can be in both the eastern and western hemispheres at the same time.The Observatory is on top of the hill. The pathway up can be a little steep, especially if you are pushing a stroller. If you’d prefer a longer but easier way, follow the signs for the accessible path, which winds around the back of the hill up a more gentle slope.
The views once on top are amazing. Below you is Inigo Jones’s Queen’s House and Wren’s Hospital (later the Naval College); to the right, the Dome. Opposite are the towers of Canary Wharf and upstream the West End. As you stand on the zero-degree meridian beneath Wren’s Royal Observatory the whole city seems to stretch out in time and space.
We all know London is a Mecca for shopping, but if you want something different from Oxford Street,Regents Street,Westfields (huge shopping centre) one in West London & one in East London,and of course Harrods is worth a “look”.Then my top places for a different shopping experience is Convent Garden,Carnaby Street,take a walk through Kingly Court off Carnaby street to my favourite restaurant/wine bar Shampers.
I also love Liberty department store,known for its floral & graphic prints,it’s just that little bit different from all the other department stores.
London offers so many brilliant,different & eclectic restaurants.Take a chance and walk away from the high streets,down the cobbled streets and find the best of the unknown.
The list could really be endless with regards things to do in London. These are my favourite.
For kids,London Dungeons,The Tower
Of London, London Zoo,London Aquarium, Hamleys Toy Store,Piccadilly Circus are just about 1/4 of things to go. LegoLand is a short drive outside of London,worth taking a visit,and in to the towns of Windsor & Eton.
What Amelia Wore
Sunday,she wore her Boden Duck Print Dress.See here.
Monday, Amelia wore her Cath Kidston, out of stock now,but similar in store.