In August, I finally made it to London (about time!). Four days were enough to make me fall in love with this amazing city.
I didn’t know it before this visit, but I think London is my ideal European city. It’s normal to speak English, you can completely get by with credit card (I didn’t have to get cash once, even for transportation) and they have all the familiar shops from the U.S. It was somehow so… comfortable being there.
To my surprise, even the food was great. Someone told be before the visit that the international cuisine in London was top notch, and I found that to be completely true.
We stayed in the South Kensington area, in Imperial College London, Prince’s Garden. We stayed in a “hotel” operated by Imperial College – they rent out the dorm rooms during breaks when the students are gone. It was nothing fancy (well, it’s a dorm) but was comfortable, clean and very reasonably priced for being in the center of London.
It was maybe a 5-minute walk to the South Kensington station, and was surrounded by beautiful architectural buildings, museums, restaurants and cafés. Oh, and Harrods was nearby.
Imperial College London, Prince’s Garden
Watts Way Westminster Borough
London SW7 1BA
I’m quite picky about food when I travel. It doesn’t mean that I go to 5-Star restaurants, but I love to try local eateries I’ve bookmarked for a long time. Monocle Café was one of them, and I was very much looking forward to visiting. With the clean, Japanese-inspired interior and great coffee, it didn’t disappoint.
18 Chiltern St,
Marylebone, London W1U 7QA
Leon was a surprising find. With the motto ‘naturally fast food’, they have a wide range of items made with fresh and healthy ingredients, including hamburgers, salad, wraps, hot boxes and so on. If you want to grab a quick bite to eat that doesn’t cost a fortune, but is healthy, this is it.
Other places we liked were Honest Burgers and Khan’s. Honest Burgers had a chic interior, friendly staff and oh my god, the fritter burger was to die for. Khan’s had amazing Indian food.
We accidentally ran into Comida Fest, a Latin America street food festival. They had a lot of stands with amazing looking food, and the mood was uplifting with live music. The Ceviche we tried was so fresh and delicious.
Locations vary depending on time
Although I didn’t take a picture, Comptoir Libanais had AMAZING Lebanese food and a very cozy and colorful interior. I recommend the Mezzo platter – I’m always for dishes where you can try a little bit of everything.
The Borough Market was so much fun with a wide variety of stands with all sorts of food – definitely a must-visit. There’re also some interesting shops and restaurants nearby.
8 Southwark St,
London SE1 1TL
The first museum we visited was the Victoria & Albert (V&A) Museum. This was definitely one of my favorite museums ever, both because of the wide variety of artwork and the carefully curated museum shop.
Then, I visited Tate Modern. I normally always like modern museums but this was especially spectacular. With the large hallway filled with sound art, you actually experience art the moment you walk in. The art collection was very diverse. The museum shop had a wide range of books on art, design and culture.
Victoria & Albert Museum
Knightsbridge, London SW7 2RL
Bankside, London SE1 9TG
Although I didn’t get to do nearly as much shopping as I would’ve liked to, I made sure I visited Harrod’s. This historic department store was stunning, and I think even non-shopaholics would appreciate the amazing interior and the variety of things they have to offer.
PS by Paul Smith was a shop full of interesting and quirky items not just from Paul Smith. Definitely worth a visit.
87-135 Brompton Rd,
Knightsbridge, London SW1X 7XL
PS by Paul Smith
St. Paul’s Cathedral, with its architecture and garden, is worth a visit. When we went there on Sunday, it wasn’t too crowded and it was nice to discover the area as well.
St. Paul’s Cathedral
St. Paul’s Churchyard,
London EC4M 8AD
With it being only two hours away by plane, I’m surprised it took me this long to make it to London. I really enjoyed the trip, even though it was too short. Oh well, I’ll just have to visit again soon!