London is the fifth stop of my one-month Famous Hostels Eurotrip!
London, the capital of the UK, is one of those cities everyone has to visit at least once in a lifetime. With the most iconic red telephone booths, double-decker busses and underground stations, you won’t forget for a second where you are.
My journey from Paris to London was one to never forget. With my InterRail Global Pass I took the Eurostar train that runs through the world’s longest underwater tunnel (53,4 km) and with a speed of 375 km per hour! In a bit over two hours I got from the French capital to the heart of London and within four hours I was already checked in at my next hostel.
In London I stayed at St. Christopher’s Inn Village close to the London Bridge. I slept in a 10-person dorm where each bed had a its own curtains (how cool!). Similar to the hostel in Paris, there’s a bar where you can have amazing food (try the veggie burger!!) and a lot of drinks at night.
After I arrived I decided to immediately explore the area. The hostel is located at Borough Market, which is a lovely indoor food market with the most delicious bread, cakes, teas and everything you could ask for being in the UK. I walked from there to the London Bridge (looking out over the famous Tower Bridge) and wandered along the River Thames. Even though it was still October it kind of felt like Christmas; all the cafés looked so cosy and had little Christmas lights.
The next morning I joined the Free Walking Tour that left from the hostel. The friendliest English girl with the most amazing accent picked us up and took us into the tube. She explained us how to get around (the underground can be expensive but if you get an Oyster Card it’s about half the price) and together we went to Green Park where the tour started.
As always, I met a lot of other travellers on the Free Walking Tour. Most of them stayed in the hostel too.
We walked around Green Park, the only park in London that’s just green (there are no flowers), and heard old myths about the reasons why. From there we made our way to Buckingham Palace where we (probably) saw Queen Elisabeth making her way to the Palace in one of her royal carriages. It was really cool to see all the soldiers on their horses in traditional costumes.
From Buckingham Palace we walked to Trafalgar Square where you can find the National Gallery (good to know is that almost all museums in London have free admission, so you can visit as many of them as you’d like). It’s a beautiful square and I decided to come back to visit the Gallery later, where you can also find one of Van Gogh’s famous Sunflowers.
Unfortunately Big Ben is currently being renovated so there wasn’t a spectacular view of the famous clock.
The tour ended at the Palace of Westminster. However, together with the people I met on the tour we decided to walk to the other side of the Thames and have lunch at Lower Marsh. This is one of London’s oldest and best-loved market streets where you can get the most delicious food for a really good (not London-like) price.
After lunch I walked to Convent Garden, the arty area of the British capital. I always love street performances and here you can find plenty of them. Here you can also find London’s China Town and a lot of international clothing companies. I walked around and went to the National Gallery and British Museum.
By the time I left the museums I was a bit tired but decided to get the most out of my day and visit Exmouth Market, one of London’s hidden gems. This is an upcoming place with lots of cool bars and restaurants. I met a friend there and after we had some beers we decided to walk to Kings Cross station and see Harry Potter’s famous platform 9¾.
The next morning I woke up early to check out and have a final wander around Tower Bridge before going to my next destination! I said goodbye to the amazing staff at reception (thanks for all the tips!) and made my way to Amsterdam, where I am now. I will write more about the beautiful canals soon! In the mean time make sure to follow my journey on the Famous Hostels Instagram!
Visit Daisy’s Blog My Travel Tricks for more info.