At the beginning of last October I was lucky enough to pay a visit to one of my favourite European cities: London. Unfortunately I only had 72 hours to dive into busy London traffic and enjoy its beautiful corners, crazy people and delicious food offerings. Nevertheless, I managed to enjoy my time there to its fullest and would like to provide you with a perfectly balanced, stress-free 72 hours plan. Ladies and gentlemen, buckle your seatbelts… London, here we come!
Day 1, morning – arrival at London Stansted Airport. Let’s indulge in a delicious Pret A Manger porridge while taking the Stansted express to Liverpool Street. Believe me, you won’t find many recommendations on food chains like Pret on this blog, but a place where you can get reasonably healthy food on the go is hard to find where I come from, so I really enjoy coming to the UK and enjoying a good old porridge from Pret A Manger. Locate your accommodation next and get rid of your baggage; all you’ll need for the rest of the day is some money, your phone, your Oyster Card and your camera.
Day 1, midday and afternoon– Let’s hit town! Take the Northern Line to Charing Cross and take a nice walk from Trafalgar Square down Whitehall, passing Downing Street and several gorgeous majestic buildings which accommodate several museums and departments. As soon as Big Ben and Westminster Abbey come in sight, get yourself a snack and indulge in some people-watching. Crowds of tourists, hectic MPs and loads of honking taxis are part of a more than amusing spectacle that you should enjoy for some time. Next stop: Waterloo tube station where you can take the Northern and Piccadilly Line to Piccadilly Circus. Spend some time shopping along the prestigious Regent Street and don’t forget to pop into Liberty to enjoy its gorgeous architecture from 1875 and Christmas department. Turn into Oxford Street and visit Lush’s biggest shop where you can enjoy a hair treatment, massage or simply smell Lush’s amazing bath bombs.
Day 1, evening- Time for dinner! Enjoy an amazing vegetarian or vegan meal at Mildred’s in Lexington Street, Soho. Happy and full of delicious food you can take the Northern Line from Leicester Square to Camden Town and enjoy an evening stroll through quirky Camden Town.
Day 2, morning- Embark on a quick morning run through one of London’s many beautiful parks. My personal favourite spot to do so is Finsbury Park but if that’s too far away from your accommodation try another park instead.
Day 2, midday and afternoon- After a quick shower and a yummy breakfast the time has come to travel back into your childhood. The Making of Harry Potter outside of the UK’s capital will show its magic by sucking you into everyday life at Hogwarts, showing you the original movie sets and letting you ride a broomstick and Mr. Weasley’s magic car. Let me just give you a quick tip: don’t try that overpriced and awfully sweet butterbear they sell in the exhibition; try butterbear ice cream instead and you will be able to enjoy an entire day full of fun and nostalgic feelings.
Day 2, evening- You’ll probably be a little tired from all the impressions you gathered throughout the day. Time for a relaxing yet exciting movie! If you are lucky enough to stay in a cozy accommodation treat yourself with your favourite Harry Potter movie and a takeaway curry. If watching a movie is impossible in your hostel or on your couch you can also take the Northern Line to Leicester Square and pay a visit to one of the many cinemas in the area.
Day 3, morning- Enjoy a nice morning stroll through Soho and pop into House of Minalima to gaze at the beautiful graphic art of Fantastic Beasts and Where To Find Them as well as Harry Potter. You might even finally receive that letter you’ve been waiting for since you were nine. Afterwards you should walk from here to Covent Garden and make a visit to a couple of the old bookstores and art galleries in between the two London areas.
Day 3, midday and afternoon- After strolling around the colourful streets around Covent Garden you should satisfy your hunger with a lunch at Le Pain Quotidien. After that head back down to Westminster Abbey, where you can rent a city bike for only a couple of pounds and start the best London city tour possible: driving along the Thames all the way to the famous Tower Bridge gives you the chance to look at many of London’s most famous sights, such as the Millennium Bridge, St. Paul’s Cathedral and the Tower of London. This is where you can return your bike and take the tube back to your accommodation in order to pick up your baggage before you return to the airport.