Travel Notes | 12 Hours In London

Travel Notes | 12 Hours In London

In hindsight, spending a whole 12 hours in London was probably not one of my wisest choice as it was three days before my first exam. But as I was heading for a visa appointment I had to just take what I could get and hustle on with it. My sister was accompanying me so we were all set for twelve hours in the capital city.

I had never been to London before this visit so twelve whole hours was definitely not enough. I would love to venture back and see all the foodie hot spots I’ve seen mentioned by my fave London bloggers, explore allll the history and hit the shops London style.

I was worried I would hate London and it wouldn’t meet my expectations but thankfully this wasn’t the case and I loved it. The weather was horrifically chilly for April which was a shame and I got to wear this new gingham shirt from Primark. It does make my boobs look like basketballs but swings and roundabouts eh?

GETTING THERE & GETTING ABOUT

We ended up flying to London due to the time constraints and it was a little bit cheaper than getting the train. This brought us to Edinburgh airport at about 4.30am which is not ideal and we didn’t fly home again until about half past 8 at night, giving us a whole day in the city.

London is, obviously, a vast city but due to our limited time we were concentrating on certain areas around Hyde Park and Oxford Street. We didn’t use the tube as we weren’t heading any further than places we could get on foot and to get to and from the airport we got the very handy Heathrow Express from Paddington Station.

WHAT WE DID

Due to the embassy appointment we had to be a lot more flexible with our time and just go with the flow as I was unsure how long it would take etc etc. We wandered from Paddington to embassy via Hyde Park which was really cool.

We headed back to Hyde Park later in the day to walk around in the chilly sunshine. We stopped by the Serpentine Lake which was very beautiful and ended up hiring one of the pedal boats for a bit. I can imagine on a warm and sunny day that Hyde Park is even more glorious.

Obtaining the visa wise I definitely didn’t need to be as stressed as I was. It was an incredibly tense experience with super tight security but the staff were very helpful, patient and friendly and it a quick and painless experience once you are on the inside. The queues are just a bit of nuisance however.

On Oxford Street we popped into Primark as I wanted to buy a hoodie as I was freezing. I picked up a bargain lilac one despite Louise telling me lilac is not my colour. Turns out, she is right. We both weren’t that bothered about shopping as we didn’t have a lot of money to spend on clothes we didn’t need so we didn’t spend too long on Oxford Street.

The National History Museum was another stop on our roller-coaster day. It was incredibly cool and I feel very slighted we didn’t go on a school trip. We also had a mooch around the Victoria and Albert Museum which is such a fantastic museum and I would love to head back to explore it fully at some point. This area of London was absolutely gorgeous and I cannot even begin to comprehend how expensive it is to live here.

Our final ‘tourist stop’ was Buckingham Palace. I’ve seen countless pictures of this building but it didn’t wow me like I thought it would face to face. It was cool but I prefer the likes of Versailles or the Czech royal palace.

WHAT WE ATE

Food wasn’t overly exciting in London as we were both skint and had quite strict time constraints. We had breakfast in the Caffe Nero in Edinburgh airport and then spent about an hour around five o’clock in a Pret off Hyde Park to recharge our phones and warm our bones with coffee. Louise also chilled out in an Eat when I was in the embassy and she says it was ‘nice’.

We had lunch at a Bella Italia near the Victoria and Albert Museum. It was a super cute little restaurant in a gorgeous area. We filled up on some pizzas, calamari and garlic dough balls which was the perfect fuel for the rest of our afternoon of exploring.

It was a whistle stop tour to the capital and it has just made me wanting more, which is always a good sign! Till the next time London.

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