I know, „London is always a good idea“ might sound like a cheesy quote you’d read on Instagram, but to be honest, it’s true. That’s probably also the reason why I’m always excited to go back to the British capital. And this time, believe it or not, already for the fifth time. But what can I say? When London is calling, you must go. Anyways. I wanted to spend my birthday this year somewhere else, so I spontaneously booked a short trip to London and was supposed to leave Saturday morning. But due to the current situation in international air traffic, things didn’t go as planned, and my flight was nearly 3 hours delayed.
So, by the time I finally made it to Gatwick Airport, I jumped on the next train heading south to Brighton. As I’ve already been to London several times, I decided to explore some other areas nearby. And since I’ve always wanted to go to Brighton, and it’s only 30 mins by train from Gatwick Airport, it seemed like a legit plan going there. Once there, I walked down to the seaside, along the famous Brighton Pier, and took a short break at the Royal Pavillon Gardens. Later, I strolled around the city for a while before taking the train back to London. In the evening, I then met up with Leigh, whom I met last year in New York and her friend Jai for pre-drinks at his house. Together, we then went to the Basing House club in Shoreditch and had a pretty long and fun night out. And by the time I was back at the hostel, the sun was already about the rise again.
Nevertheless, I managed to get at least a few hours of sleep, and after grabbing breakfast at Ole & Steen with my roomie Agustina, I went out to explore the city. First, we tried to catch the Changing of the Guards at Buckingham Palace, but by the time we got there, the parade was already over. So, we met up with Lucia, one of the girls Agustina met a few days ago, and strolled around the city together – including taking pictures at London’s probably most photographed telephone box. On our sightseeing tour, we also stopped at The Garden at 120, which is not only an observation deck but also a rooftop garden in the middle of the city and is definitely worth a visit. Plus, it’s free.
Later, we spent some time around the Theatre District, checked out Seven Dials Market, and strolled through Covent Garden. Before heading back to the hostel, we passed Trafalgar Square and Piccadilly Circus, and then hopped on a doubledecker bus back to Victoria Station. And since it was the day before my birthday, in the evening, together with the 3 Argentinians Agustina, Lucia and Nico, I went to Bar Elba, a rooftop bar in Waterloo, to celebrate my birthday.
The following day, it was not only my birthday but also already my last morning in London. Thus, Agustina and I grabbed some breakfast to-go and sat down with it on a bench at Hyde Park. After a long stroll through the park, we reached Notting Hill and walked around there for a while. And of course, we also had to take photos in front of the many cute and colorful houses. In the afternoon, we had some late lunch at Granger & Co. while heading back to the hostel later. And in a blink, my time in London was already coming to an end, and I had to say goodbye to Agustina, who made my time and especially my birthday in London pretty special.