“When a man is tired of London, he is tired of life; for there is in London all that life can afford.”
One of the world’s most visited cities, London has something for everyone: from architectural opulence and rich history to literature extravagance and ethnic diversity. It’s a dynamic city with great developments, opportunities and a pleasant lifestyle but London can sometimes seem like an oddly depressing and divided place.
I have not spent enough time in this city to neither love it nor hate it but I find London simultaneously unlivable and unleavable based on my 24-hour experience. It is the grind – the stuffy commuting, the sour-faced service, the depressing and bipolar-like weather and the dubious joy. This place is also way too expensive for my liking or perhaps I was too naive on how to spend frugally in London. Despite all the fatigues, I love how the vibrant energy starts to translate at night where people are out enjoying the view, food, drinks along the lit streets; a city where you don’t have to try to meet people – they’re just there. There’s just something about London resonates with me down to my core.
Being one of Europe and world’s most famous metropolis, this city merges history and modernism into a unique way. I’m happy that I stole a day from my Amsterdam trip to make a quick run to London and exude in all its charm. Since I have only spent a day here, I will just list some of my favourite highlights and bits of this trip.
1. Amazing parks. London’s green spaces are amazing, probably amongst the many bests. There’s no better place to spend hours of freedom and solitude.
2. Walking over the Thames and along the South Bank is mesmerizing at night. This area is also known as the cultural heart of London.
3. And of course the ever-so-famous London Bridge. How can anyone miss this on their London trip? Not acceptable.
4. The whinge-worthy Tube experience. Train is my favourite mode of transportation (I love airplanes but I still hate flying) and I’ll always have a taste of train experience wherever I go. I’ve heard so many unpleasant things about riding the Tube but to me it’s convenient, easy and still a marvel of engineering.
5. Had the best time staying at La Suite West Hotel London. A fairly new upscale boutique hotel with a Japanese-style minimalist vibe.
6. Being a Disney Princess, this is definitely THE BEST CHRISTMAS TREE EVER! (The tree is at King’s Cross St. Pancras station)
7. Something is rotten in the state of Denmark. No, nothing is wrong with Denmark. I just love the quote from Hamlet. My point is I love how literaturesque this literary city is.
8. The famous Christmas themed pop-up in London, Winter Wonderland! Christmas spirit arrives with style each year and unless you have already been, it’s hard to explain just how magical the Winter Wonderland actually is.
9. Oh and I got my £6 Churros fix a year later (the last addictive churros fix I had was on December 2014 in Seoul).
10. Visited the Queen but no one was there to greet me, of course.
11. Not to forget Uncle Ben. Sorry didn’t have a dashing picture of him. (When your camera died on you and you had to rely on your phone’s camera, in a bipolar weather)
12. English Breakfast in England… like duh, obviously not to be missed.
13. Hopping on Nadal… I mean, the double decker bus. This is another exciting way to see London, although they have a double decker tour bus but doing it on your own can be as fun. Trust me, I’m a writer.
14. Experiencing the chaotic commotion in London Victoria station, because you have nothing else to do (kidding, I left my luggage at the storage so I can have a day tour before my night flight).
15. London chaps, their accent melts every girl’s heart. Having been raised on a diet of Asian men, and later explored into the world of blonde-liness, coloured-eyed candy and godlike physique, I tend to appreciate everyone’s uniqueness more. I still stand my ground that Scandinavians are the most good looking lots but there’s something charmingly old-fashioned about men’s manners here in London.
London is not my favourite city but it’s not my least favourite either. Like any other cities in Europe, London has its own charm. Each area has defined styles that contribute to this charming cultural environment which makes London one of the most renowned cities with diversity. The lifestyle here is equally intense and pleasant; the weirdest thing about being tired of London is that almost every Londoner is tired of London almost all the time. Nonetheless, it’s always growing and changing, London will turn into an urban metropolis filled with skyscrapers in no time.