London 5.-10.7.2013

Happy New Year 2016! May it be adventurous and full of amazing trips for you all!

I've been very silent on here for over a year now, and as a result I've lost some readers, too. However, I'm planning to become more active again in 2016 and my blog will become a bit different, too, but more about that in the post that will follow this one. This post will be dedicated to London - the last trip before my ways of travelling changed pretty drastically.

So, we're talking about a trip that took place two and a half years ago. After wandering around in Hong Kong, Australia and Singapore, I went to London to share some quality time with my mum. It was her first trip to England and it was nice to witness her falling in love with London :)! We were a bit late with booking our accommodation and ended up staying at a more expensive place than I would usually go for, Best Western Victoria Palace. I have to say, though, that it was such a lovely experience! The area was absolutely gorgeous, the room was quiet and nice, and it was definitely worth the price. Highly recommended!

On our first day, we did some of the main sights that make you understand where you actually are - therefore, a walking tour where you get to see Westminster Abbey, Big Ben, the London Eye and the Thames, 10 Downing Street, Trafalgar Square, Buckingham Palace and St. James's Park is always in order.

My mum with a phone booth :).

After the walk, we were pretty much exhausted and decided to return to Victoria and find a nice pub. We ended up becoming regular customers of The Marquis for the duration of our stay - what a nice place! Beer and fish and chips were had, as well as a good time :).

On our second day, we decided to conquer Notting Hill as well as visit Kensington Palace. Notting Hill is definitely one of my favourite places in London - not only because of the market and because it's insanely pretty, but because of my favourite second hand book shop, Book & Comic Exchange, on Pembridge Road. For years and years, I've been going back for more cheap books - they at least used to have a bargain basement, too, where everything was up to £1! I mean, how can you resist that?! Anyway, my mum and I went to Notting Hill, had a quick breakfast at Pret A Manger, and then ventured down Portobello Road for some lovely goodies. My mum really liked the place, too, which was cool :)! And, she bought the best thing ever, an Elizabeth II who will wave at you whenever the sun is shining on her :D! A big hit among the people visiting my mum even two years later :D!

We then made our way to Kensington Palace, which was a stunning place, as you would expect it to be. Not much more to add, see for yourself!

They also had an exhibition on royal fashion, which was probably our favourite bit as it had a lot of stuff Princess Diana used to wear.

After wandering in the rooms of the palace, we were tired, AGAIN, and decided to sit down in Kensington Gardens and have some ice cream before heading back home for some more fish and chips at the Marquis.

The best thing ever :D!

On the next day, we had a lot of plans. In the morning, we went on a cruise down the Thames, which was pretty nice, and also something that I hadn't done before even if I've been to London so many times that I've lost count. The thing is that I haven't really done many things that cost money there because I used to go to London as a poor student who couldn't afford anything besides the flights there and back :D. Therefore, while I've seen most things from the outside, it isn't until more recently that I've actually got to enjoy some of the sights that have an entrance fee. Anyway, it was a really hot day and queueing for the boat in the scorching sun wasn't the best thing to do, but once we got on the boat, it was all nice and cool. After the cruise, we had lunch at Pizza Express and then headed back to Victoria to get ready for our concert in the evening - we had tickets to see Blondie at the Roundhouse in Camden!

The gig was really good, obviously! Debbie was wearing an interesting outfit that glows in the dark, true to her unique style :D.

Getting back to Victoria from Camden was really easy as we could just catch the bus to Victoria Station. Very practical!

On our final days, we went to two very different places - the Tower Of London and Camden Town. All in all, I would say that this trip was a pretty brilliant mixture of old and new, refined and cool, royal and trashy :D. The Tower was yet another place that I had never visited in my life and I was pretty excited about going. There's so much to see there! The queue to the Crown Jewels of England was crazy, and you don't have much time to look at them, but at least now I can say that I've seen them. Something that was completely appalling to me, though, was seeing the ravens that they keep there for fear of the kingdom falling were they not there. They were in a tiny cage, and correct me if I'm wrong but, to me, that's animal torture. So, I wasn't impressed with that aspect of it. All in all, though, the Tower was a great experience and I do recommend visiting it if you get the chance. I also couldn't resist the temptation to buy all kinds of ridiculous things, such as pencils with a crown on top...

As for Camden Town, my mum completely fell in love with the place, just as I suspected. With the Blondie gig, we didn't really have that much time to explore so my mum wanted to go back, and I obeyed as it's always a lovely place to be. The atmosphere is so different compared to any other area of London as Camden is buzzing with interesting-looking people and cool shops. Not really my style of clothing and shoes, but that doesn't make it any less interesting. I can always concentrate on eating orange chicken or having a drink at my favourite pub, The Elephant's Head - absolutely LOVE the place!

Orange chicken by the canal - ah, this is the life!

Back downtown and heading for - you've guessed it - one more round of fish and chips :D!

My mum being cool in London!

After doing our final shopping downtown, we took off and spent the last night at a hotel at Stansted Airport. By this point, I was buzzing with excitement as the moment I'd been waiting for since June was finally at hand - one more night and I would be reunited with the love of my life, only this time on her home ground in Hungary. I was SO NERVOUS and SO EXCITED!! I would be spending the rest of the summer with her in Szeged, Hungary, which by now has become my second home where we go for two months each and every year. And this, my dear readers, is where my blog takes a new turn as my trips will no longer be just trips, but travelling around my partner's home country. During these past two years that I've been somewhat absent on here, I've been busy visiting countless different places in Hungary, and I will be writing more about all of them in the near future. So, until the next time :)!


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