Spontaneous weekend trip to London

12th October 2018

London Eye from the Thames

Nothing planned for a weekend and you are looking for some ideas, but can’t come up with something that sounds exciting enough to make you want to get out of bed and head out into the cold? You’ve done all the local stuff more times than you care to remember and you are desperate to do something new? What about a spontaneous trip to a European capital? After all, living in Europe, it’s never a very long flight to reach another country and to get immersed in another culture for a few days.

Cities like Prague, with their incredible city centre architecture, local beer and cuisine; Copenhagen, with the typically Scandinavian Christmas market at the city centre amusement park Tivoli; and Stockholm, with the chance of ice skating and eating real meatballs, never fail to deliver. Neither do London, with Premier League football and world-class museums, Paris with its famous monuments and buildings and Rome, with mind-blowing architecture and paintings. These cities will always make for great destinations for a long weekend. A weekend in Rome has a special place in my heart, with all of the sightseeing and the amazing food. For inspiration on places to stay, check out the best hostels in Rome.

The iconic London Eye

London is always nearby

A favourite for many is London. It´s main attractions are surprisingly closer to each other than you may think, and it’s an easy capital to visit with many direct flights from all over Europe, as well as from further afield. During 2017, almost 19 million visitors came to London. During October, November and January, London is much more enjoyable than in December and during the summer months. And there are also some great shows and exhibitions to visit, which will add to the fun.

For any Harry Potter fans, the tickets for 2019 have recently been released so there are lots of tickets available for almost all dates in January onwards. But be quick, they do sell out very fast!

Another great venue in London is the O2 Arena, where during the next few months you can experience world famous music from the likes of Andrea Bocelli, U2, and Def Leppard, as well as classics including Disney on Ice and the Strictly Come Dancing Live Tour.

Actually, all of Britain is likely to get Strictly crazy in the next few months! With Strictly Come Dancing currently on British television and the Strictly Live Tour taking place at the O2 arena from January 2019, you can get your fill of glitz and sequins, either on screen or live.

Packing light

The ballroom dresses and sequins are probably best left at home, instead check out the packing tips for a Euro trip, which I published earlier. The weather in London usually never reaches any extremes, so as long as you pack and wear layers you’ll be able to cope with everything London has to offer. However, you’d better pack your raincoat and/or umbrella to be prepared for any surprise rain.

London is an amazing city as you are never far away from the peace and tranquillity offered by greenery. Hyde Park, St James’ Park and Regents park are all within short walking distance from the main tourist areas like Oxford Street and the museums at South Kensington. Things to see and do in Hyde Park include visiting the Speaker’s corner, the Lido (best in the summer, but they have a lovely café open all year), and a visit to the Diana Memorial Fountain to enjoy the sound of flowing water. If you have children with you, the Diana, Princess of Wales Memorial Playground, close to High Street Kensington, will be a fun experience. There is a huge pirate ship to climb and explore, as well as swings, sand pits, and climbing frames.

Never enough time

London is easy to get around, since most of the central tourist attractions and hotels are all within easy walking distance of each other. You can also use the iconic red double-decker buses and black cabs (now appearing in all colours due to advertising) to get around, especially if you have lots to carry after a successful shopping trip or coming home after a late night out. London also has on-street bicycles for hire and you can catch one of the many ferries to see the city from another perspective. London has so much to offer that you may find yourself planning your next trip already when you are there.

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