London has always been in my bucket list since time immemorial. I find so many things fascinating like the Tower Bridge, Big Ben, Buckingham Palace, Notting Hill, the Queen and many more. I thought it will only be a dream, but nothing is impossible in life.
I’ve been living in England for a year now and finally the right time has come – to see London! Hubby and I were in the big city for 3D2N. We stayed in Park Grand London Kensington which I think was a really good choice because of the great service from the staff and it’s near the train station.
TIPS: Download CityMapper app (thanks to a friend for recommending!). It was quite useful all throughout our journey as it’s a more comprehensive guide compared to any other map apps I know.
So here is my list of places you MUST see in London:
1. Visit the Sherlock Holmes Museum (221b Baker Street London, NW1 6XE)
It was around 11am when we arrived at the museum and the queue was looooong. We waited for, more or less, an hour before we got in.
You will need a ticket and you can buy this from the shop beside the museum. An adult ticket costs £15. If you’re a fan of Sherlock Holmes, I would recommend visiting the museum and (uhmm maybe) grab some memorabilia from the shop.
These are some of the stuffs in the shop.
The experience in The Shard was fantastic! I’m afraid of heights but I loved it. There’s a bar on 72nd floor where you can sip your favourite drink and enjoy the 360 degrees view. There are restaurants halfway down. So if you like a fancy dinner, you don’t have to go out of the building.
Probably not worth that much money, but it’s the experience of getting to the top and enjoy the magnificent view of London.
So from Earl Court’s station, we took a train and a bus. I’m not so sure if there is a way that you don’t have to change (this is CityMapper app giving me directions by the way). As long as you have the CityMapper app, you will never get lost (atleast for me anyway).
When we found the shop, there were already a lot of people taking photos. At that time, I was like a kid in a candy shop! I love books! It was like any other bookshops. What caught my attention is they sell stuffs related to the movie Notting Hill such as post cards with quotes from the movie, bags and fridge magnets.
I thought that shop was the one in the movie. However, upon my further research, it was a different shop. When we were walking along Portobello road, we saw The Travel Book Shop. It was the right one. But instead of selling books, the shop now sells souvenir items.
Visiting this tourist attraction is free. Your wallet can relax for a bit.
The clock is currently under maintenance. They said it’s going to take a year before it’s completed.
7. Harry Potter’s Platform 9 3/4 (Kings Cross Station, N1 9AP)
For the trolley, if you want a professional photographer to take the photo and skip the queue, all you need is pay an extra £15. If you want to go in the shop, you will need to wait for 15-30 minutes before you can get in. You can buy all sorts of Harry Potter stuffs from key chains to shirts.
We had our afternoon tea in the hotel as it was a surprise from hubby. It was absolutely fantastic!
9. Shopping high street brands in Bond Street (E15 1LT)
One part of the street reminds me of Melaka, Malaysia because of the decorated rickshaws.
One thing I noticed though is the train schedule works on time (bang on!) compared to our trains here in the North part of England. It was excellent!
Just a piece of advice, always stand on the right side of the escalator if you’re not in a rush. The left side is for people who are in a hurry. You don’t want them to run over you! Safety first.
TIP: If you’re on a short tour in London and travelling by public transportation, you have the option to get an Oyster card to pay for the fares. But if you don’t prefer it, you can still use your contactless card.
For Pinoy travellers, I highly recommend Kensington area where you can find a lot of Filipino shops and restaurants. If you’d like a quick shopping for Pinoy foods, it’s really convenient.
Also, a Jollibee fast food chain will be opened in Kensington! Watch out for that.