I heard once that London is the city that all other cities are based off of. Regardless of the truth in that statement, I genuinely went to London this weekend with no expectations. Andrew lived here for a summer in high school with his dad (bummed I got Michigan…) and I have a dear friend that moved to the city a few years ago. With tour guides in place, I was ready to spend the three-day Bank Holiday weekend doing a bit of everything.
1. London is international. The architecture and the national landmarks like Big Ben remind you of your surroundings, otherwise you may not be aware you are in fact in London. Accents and languages vary by each person you pass.
2. The underground is your bestie. The tube system is brilliant and easy to navigate. No offense New York. London is massive and the tube was the best way to quickly pop across town. I did manage to sneak on my first big red double-decker bus as well.
3. Hang out with the locals. Having friends show you “their neighborhood” is the way to see any city. We spent time in Soho and Regent’s Park, places we may not have initially been drawn to if we were sightseeing on our own.
4. Always bring an umbrella with you. London makes our place in Wales seem downright dry.
5. Of all the beautiful landmarks and historic buildings in London, the Tower of London and Tower Bridge were it for me. This is where I fell in love with the city right on the spot. The financial district is oddly more my speed. The views were epic.
In short, three days in London was not enough time to get a true taste of the city. The holiday and Notting Hill Carnival made it difficult to get close to Parliament or Buckingham Palace, but it was still easy to see why London sets the standard for city living.