Thursday, 8 October 2009

The London List

I think a lot of people know this already, but if all goes well with US immigration, Dan and I may be packing up our life in England by Christmas. England's given us four good years, but it's time to move on. The plan just keeps getting better and better too... Instead of heading straight to America to jump into the stress of job, flat, and car-hunting, we've decided to take a breather in between. So naturally, we're going to New Zealand.

Dan's parents live in Auckland, and we haven't seen them in three years! Plus, NZ will be in the throes of summer – why didn't we think of this earlier?! Also, it can be difficult to think about the next season in life when you're in the thick of the current one. Our time in NZ will hopefully give us some perspective on what's next. So, we're not moving to New Zealand, we're just going to hang out there for a bit before moving to Los Angeles.

Having an end date makes me appreciate London so much more, because I know I have to make the most of it. Now, rather than spending Saturdays watching nine episodes of the West Wing (which is perfectly legitimate), we're waking up early (around 10) and ticking things off our London list.

The London list is a live document, so please give me any suggestions. In a year's time I don't want to think back, regretfully ruing the fact that I never made it to Ripley's Believe It Or Not. Or that I missed out on a market or coffee shop or any other hidden gem.

So, this is not comprehensive, but it's a start...

The London List

Victoria & Albert museum!
Cabinet War rooms (Churchill's WWII HQ preserved)
Transport museum (to buy old-school underground maps)
Victoria Park village
The London eye (? undecided, it's a £25 ferris wheel!)
Leather Lane Market
Exmouth Market
every instance of good coffee
good pubs
Mildred's (on Lexington)
Kew Gardens
Richmond Park
Broadway Market & London Fields
Borough Market
Tate Modern
Falkiner's Paper shop in Holburn
Cabbages & Frocks market in Marylebone
Soseki Japanese restaurant


amyrenee said...

I love these shots of you! You miss LA, and I miss London... How appropriate.

Anyhow, two suggestions:

1. The National Portrait Gallery
Little cafe at the top, right off of Leicester Square. It's got amazing panoramic views of the city at night, and it's nice but not over done. One of my favorite things I did, and a lovely prefix menu.

2. Tea Palace
Right next to my place in Notting Hill -- very cool modern take on traditional tea

Oh, why do my picks always revolve around food... :)

Wishing you a wonderful finale in London!

Jenny said...

So, what is a "bit"? How long will you be in NZ?

Nadine said...

So exciting!! Which route will you be taking to NZ? I only ask because sometimes people go through Hawaii :)

For London, have you done Madame Tussads? It's a bit expensive, but so well known that I had to go when I was there.

Also the British Museum. It was amazing for me to see The Rosetta Stone in person after reading about it for so many years.

Enjoy your last few months there!!

Jocy May said...

check out the gams in that first pic- wow skinny mini! have a fabu time in NZ! i'm so jealous! take loads of pictures and continue to blog- i need to live vicariously through you!

alisha said...

Thanks for all the tips - I'll take them on board!

'A bit' could be about 6 weeks possibly. That sounds like a nice amount of time to soak up the Kiwi summer. Nadine, not sure the route will take, but will definitely consider the Hawaiian route, to make our trip all the more epic. It would be great to see you!

I'm sure the next few months are going to fly and looking forward to making the most of every minute!

La Dolce Vita said...

I would suggest these in London:

1- Fortnum & Mason
2- Greenwich Observatory and Park.
3- Windsor and the Castle (outside London, but not too far!)
4- Probably you have made it to Portobello Road Market and Camden Town market many times, but if you haven't...don't miss them!

If something else comes to my mind...I will write you back!

WOW! 6 weekes in NZ sound great! That will be lot of fun. Some friends of mine went there some years ago and told me there are amazing natural hot water springs...and landscapes are terrific!

I miss London too!!!

ululani said...

Its so funny isn't it how one never goes to all the places they're supposed to have been to. For example, I've been here for a year, but I haven't even gone to some staple places to visit- ridiculous! I just went to the V&A museum this past month for the first time. :D

Anonymous said...

Hampton Court Palace (specifically the Chapel- look up as you go in, it's heavenly) and gardens- especially the Maze, very good fun!
The Natural History Museum- my favourite exhibits are the gemstone rooms- but the building itself is simply magnificent and really deserves a good look around on it's own merits.... you can get married in the central atrium and whilst they don't hang flowers on the diplodocus skeleton in the middle, it looks fantastic nonetheless....

Quite jealous of the big NZ trip....!

alisha said...

Thanks for the tips! Ulu, I just went to the V&A for this first time this Saturday - maybe we missed each other. ;)

Can't wait to get New Zealand tips next...

Matt and Joey said...

High tea before you go is a must. Also, Harrod's is unreal and very stressful, but if you get upstairs to the children's department (live pets!) or back to the food halls, it can be a lot of fun.


Lynne said...

There's brilliant coffee out the back of Columbia Road - have you been there?

alisha said...

It's great feeling like I have so much to keep me going for the next few months.

Lynne, I have been to Columbia Road for the flower market but didn't get coffee there. Is it in a cart? I'll have to be back.

Monica said...

Hi Alisha! Wow if we did not know any better we would think you are a Londoner!!! We love the list we have just looked at it. Very impressive. Where is that top picture of you located? It does not even look like England. Love it! . I think we might do something like this too. Oh yea, what is that coffee shop book you were talking about??? Ian and Monica P.S. Ian was wondering of you walked the embassy district in Kensington... it fun to dream about that area!!!

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