The 3rd leg of our trip was a couple days spent in London and Brighton. We follow a lot of people on social media (hi Zoella, and Michalaks) who live in and around those areas and we were so excited to get out and explore the cities for ourselves. Michael and I had both been to the city before: I visited London when I was 10 for a quick day trip with my mom and Michael had visited several times with his family, so it was fun and different to get to explore the city together as adults.
Our first day spent in London was amazing, the weather was gorgeous, it was sunny and not a cloud in the sky. Our Airbnb was located in the Chelsea neighborhood just around the corner from the Saatchi gallery (which we missed, but hopefully will get to stop by next time), so we started off there and made our way around the city.
In my opinion, the best way to see a city is on foot, and while you have the energy at the beginning, I always say make the most of it and plan a walk that will take you around all your points of interest. I usually do this while researching my trips, I will look up locations that I’ve seen other people go to, or that I come across randomly, and star them on Google maps, while signed into my account. This way, it saves all of your starred locations, and once you feel you’ve done enough hunting around, I typically break the stars off into mini itineraries based on how much time we have, the location of the attraction, and transit options. This honestly is one of my favorite parts of trip planning, I love being able to find the best routes between locations, and best pit stops between them.
Anyways, my trip planning tangent aside, we made our way from the Saatchi Gallery up to Hyde Park. I loved walking around this neighborhood and taking in all the green spaces and beautiful and large terraced housing. Once we made it to Hyde Park, we decided to rest our feet just for a little bit and we found a cozy piece of grass under a tree and relaxed. There were so many people out on the lawns that day, sunbathing and reading, some playing fetch with their pups and it was nice to sit back and daydream about living around there one day. After we felt we had recuperated enough, we made our way down to the outside of Kensington Palace to take a peek at the royals and and after that we made our way down towards Covent Garden. When in Covent Garden, we met up with Michael’s family, had a little stroll around all the stalls, listened to a fabulous opera singer, and had a quick bite to eat followed by gelato at Venchi.
After lunch we parted ways with his fam, and continued our trek around London to Carnaby Street. I have always wanted to stop by Liberty London, and look at their beautiful displays of cosmetics, fabrics and flowers. After perusing around a little bit and deciding everything was out of budget, we kept window shopping and made our way to the Crumbs and Doilies bakery where we got ourselves a little treat to take back to the AirBnb.
After mooching around Carnaby Street, the sun was hanging lower in the sky, and we decided to use the last of our energy to tube from Piccadilly Circus to Big Ben to see Southbank during sunset. We walked along past Big Ben and the London Eye and googled to see where the closest pizza place was before deciding on Franco Manca and a loooong lie in the next morning.
The next morning we took a train into Brighton, which ended up being on the hottest day of the year. Needless to say, it was difficult to cope. We tried to get around and see as much as we could, but due to the weather the day ended up passing in a bit of a sweaty blur. We got ice cream at the ever so popular Boho Gelato, which was delicious and walked around the outside of the Brighton Pavilion and the lanes. We stopped by the mall and I might be dreaming this but I think we saw a movie to escape the heat for a couple hours and then trudged along to my last stop: the beach huts. Brighton was a sweet beach side town with lots of charm, cool independent shops and cafes, and I hope that one day we will get to go back and experience it on a day that isn’t sweltering.
Then we trekked it back to London for what we thought was going to be our evening speed train, but life had other plans and we had another night in the city before heading off again the next morning for our next stop, Paris!
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