After several days of being a nomadic tribe, we finally settled down in London! It was a lot more buzzing than the cities we were previously in, and there were tons of people and activities crowding the streets.
By the time we reached London it was already evening so everyone scattered for dinner around our hotel, which was in Wembley Park.
A few of my friends and I went to a fifties-style diner called Frankie & Benny’s, and I had hot baked wraps stuffed with avocado and red pepper. This was the exact moment I fell in love with wraps—I’d never really eaten them before at home but after this I found myself wanting them again and again
It also came along with chunky coleslaw and the hugest baked potato on the side.
Skipping straight to breakfast the next dayThis hotel also had a little morning buffet, so everyday I liked to pile my favourites onto my plate. There always had to be muesli, and I’d rotate around the muffins and croissants and scrambled eggs. It was a luxury to see so many different kinds of breakfast food
The first day in London was specially for sightseeing! We had a tour guide bring us around the famous landmarks of the city, like Buckingham Palace and Hyde Park (plus countless red telephone boxes).
Seeing all these places that are always in movies and on the Internet was a bit surreal, like living inside Google Images. Plus, I thought that spot on the right was perfect because you can get two big British icons squeezed into one picture.
We took a walk through Hyde Park too, and met all these wonderful wildlife who were game enough for lots of photos (although the squirrel was a tad impatient).
And then we found a nice, spacious part with lots of lawn chairs for us to sit down and do nothing but appreciate the fresh air and nature around us.
(We did this for about two minutes to take a photo)
Lunch break—there wasn’t a lot of time so a group of us got sandwiches and fish and chips from a small food stall. We ensconced ourselves in a in a corner and ate in a circle in front of the wall. I tried a panini with cheese and peppers; toasty sandwiches are perfect for cold weather! I wanted the ciabatta but they were all out, so I ended up with this one. It was still tasty, though it was a bit huge for me to finish.
There was an ice cream van, so I bought one! Vanilla soft cream in a chocolate-dipped oyster shell, and a flake sandwiched in between. Yum
The Tower of London was surrounded by a spectacular sea of poppies. There were probably as many people as there were poppies—it took ages getting jostled by everyone before I could get a good view.
The Tower of London was the most interesting attraction I visited in the UK, so it was a great pity that there was too little time to cover the entire grounds. I wanted to see the Crown Jewels, but the queue was so long it’d probably take a day and a half before I got my glimpse. We settled for the White Tower instead, and had a look around the old royal armouries. After that I really wanted to explore at least another tower, but there wasn’t enough time to waitI did see the ravens though, and the soldiers marching around!
I’m sorry I’m blocking the view of the Tower Bridge…but there’re already tons of good pictures on Google, I need the photographic evidence that I was there
A picture of the London Eye is mandatory even if you don’t actually sit on it.
I also met the cutest dogs!
And then for dinner I had wraps againThis time they were stuffed with fish fingers and accompanied by a tiny salad on the side. I had them in another pub in Piccadilly Circus. We were in the Chinatown area so some of the teachers and students went to eat good old Chinese food, but my friends and I were still adamant about eating British so we went to a cosy pub instead.
So that was the first proper day in London! After going to landmark after landmark I felt like I’d unlocked a slew of tourist achievements in a combo. It was amazing to finally see (part of) London for real