Before we begin, catch yourself up on my life before I jet set off to Europe. In the below vlog, I go curling with the fam jam, show you beauty pieces I wrote for FASHION and update you on my move to Korea. Watch. Now.
Perfect, you are caught up. ALLO! Welcome to my post on my visit to LONDON, ENGLAND! I touched down at Gatwick Airport and my first thought (dead serious) was “I AM IN THE LAND OF SPICE GIRLS!” Truth: The day Geri Halliwell left the band was the first time I ever experienced heartbreak.
After a 6 hour flight from Toronto I checked into The Royal National Hotel, a HUGE hostel near Russell Square Station. I was a little nervous to stay at the hostel since I had no idea who my roommates would be and had to share a room with them, whether I liked it or not. In my two nights I got to know two wonderful ladies. One who was embarking on a European adventure (like myself!) and one who finished. Sharing a room with a stranger isn’t as awkward as you may think, perhaps I lucked out on having two amazing roomies but I loved getting to know both of them, even if it was for a short period of time.
Kristina (a fellow Canadian!) was my roommate on the first night in London. Her and I took the subway to Hyde Park for their Christmas market and, oh my god – THE MARKET WAS MASSIVE! The entire area was filled with shopping, rides, mulled wine, live music.. pretty much everything you ever want in a Christmas market. We discovered a Carousel Bar, where we spent most of our time that evening.
The best part of Europe during the holidays? CHRISTMAS LIGHTS GALORE! This is only a fraction of lights that were displayed throughout the city (this one was located in Hyde Park). Oxford Street was also a favourite when it came to Christmas lights, it’s like walking through a mesmerizing dream.
The next day I woke up and made a B-line toward Platform 9 3/4 at Kings Cross. I’ve seen many friends take pictures of themselves going into the famous wall to Hogwarts so obviously, I had to get one for myself.
“Just do a little bit of a run if you’re nervous.”
After getting back from Hogwarts, I went to Buckingham Palace. It’s as grand and beautiful in person as it is on postcards. Can I please casually stroll into each of the 775 rooms? Do you think there’s a bowling alley in there somewhere? Or a McDonalds? Probably.
Around lunch time I got myself some fish & chips (with all the sauces) and sat outside on a park bench facing the London Eye, the world’s largest observation wheel. Not a bad spot to relax, nibble on some food and do some people watching.
After lunch, I crossed a bridge to make my way to Big Ben at the Palace of Westminster. I won’t go into detail on how lost I got getting there.. more times than I would like to admit. I was trying to make my way from Buckingham Palace to Big Ben but ended up on the complete opposite side of the city. To make it easy for yourself, just hop on the subway and go to Westminster station.
BTW, the subway cars in London are SUPER small. One person standing room small. The stations also have a ton of stairs so wear comfortable shoes when exploring the city and travel during off-peak hours, the fare is cheaper and you actually have room to breathe.
Want to see my London trip come to life? Watch my vlog below!