48 Hours in London England

If you haven’t read my latest travel posts, I went to England for a week with my mother in October. I’ve recapped the trip in posts here, here, and here if you would like to read them. The trip began in Cornwall, made a stop in Bath, and then ended in London.

I’ve been to London once before several years ago, but only for about 10 hours. I’ve always wanted to go back to London and see things we didn’t the first time. We decided to buy 48-hour passes for the hop-on-hop-off bus tours–and I’m so happy that we did because we were definitely tired from all our travels. Once we arrived by train to London, from Bath, we walked through Hyde Park, Kensington Gardens, and even saw Kensington Palace on our way to our Airbnb.

 

After checking in and dropping off our luggage, we made our way to the Victoria and Albert Museum. It’s so interesting too that the museum was just featured in the most recent episode of Victoria on PBS! Prince Albert wanted this museum to be completely free to the general population and there is so, so much to see! You would probably need a few days to see it all, but we just saw some highlights. We saw beautiful architecture, original works by Shakespeare, art, and so much more in passing. If you’re ever in London, the Victoria and Albert Museum is worth a visit!

After we left the museum, we got back on the bus and made our way to Harrods, which is one of the most distinguished department stores. My mom had been to London a few times before but she had never been to Harrod’s. One of our tour bus drivers stated: “if you have to ask how much something is, then you can’t afford it.” I would say that the statement was fairly accurate, haha! Harrods was very beautiful but it was extremely busy, maybe even a little too busy for us. We were also starting to get very hungry and tried to find something to eat in the food shops. We ended up going to an Italian restaurant in Harrods and ordered over-priced gluten-free pasta. However, the experience was memorable for both of us and we can now say that we’ve been to Harrod’s.

The next morning, we did our full bus tour through London. We also had high tea at Fortnum and Mason, but that will be saved for the last blog post in this England series. The hop-on-hop-off tour was interesting and nice to be able to sit down after days of walking all over. This kind of tour is also a great way to see all of the landmarks, high points, and learn history about London. I loved the bus tour and feel like I have seen so much of London!

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Bath England Travel Diary

The last few weeks I’ve been recapping my big trip to England this past October. The previous posts were about Falmouth in Cornwall and can be read here and here. The next portion of the trip was to Bath, England–the land of Jane Austen! This post is a long one, so get comfy!

I am a huge fan of Jane Austen and her work. I’ve grown up with Pride and Prejudice, Sense and Sensibility, Persuasion, Emma, Mansfield Park, etc., and they each have a special place in my heart.

As soon as we got off the train in Bath, it felt like we stepped into a new era. The people and their dress were completely different than those in Falmouth and it felt like a new experience. It also felt a little bit like Harry Potter-land because there were school children running around in their “Hogwarts” uniforms.

“If adventures will not befall a young lady in her own village, she must seek them abroad.”

–Jane Austen

Once we got to our Airbnb, we rested for a bit and dropped off our luggage. Then we began our walk back into town for dinner. I really wanted to plan for our lodging to be close to the train station and most of the places we would be eating.

Cosy Club

Dinner was at Cosy Club–which was a very unique restaurant. The interior was modern, eclectic, yet also had historical components that felt like you were in another time period. We ordered a pot of tea (because, England) a salad, and gluten-free fish and chips (because, why not?). The food was so good and just what we needed after a long day of traveling. Cosy Club was also a great option for finding gluten-free meals.

After dinner, we walked back to our small renovated boathouse, watched Persuasion, and then went to bed. The next morning we slept in a little bit and then got ready for the day.

The Whole Bagel

We had breakfast at The Whole Bagel and ordered coffees and hot bacon sandwiches. If you’ve never had a hot bacon sandwich, you’re missing out. The morning was chilly and drizzly, so we took our time drinking our hot coffee and planning our day. The Whole Bagel had so many sandwiches and bagel options, and each was also served on gluten-free bread. The staff was very knowledgable about Celiac Disease and helped us decide what to order.

After we ate breakfast, we walked around the city and began exploring. The Royal Crescent and the Circus were two landmarks that we wanted to visit. They are both historical rows of terraced houses and are seen/mentioned in many of Jane Austen’s writings.

“Oh! Who can ever be tired of Bath?”

–Jane Austen, Northanger Abbey

Next, we went to the Jane Austen Centre for tea and a guided tour. The tea service before the tour was very reasonably priced and they had delicious gluten-free scones. The tour was very enlightening about Jane’s life, work, and time in Bath. I learned that Bath was not always a happy place for Jane and in fact, it was a place of a lot of pain and suffering–and her writings depict many of those feelings. But the city was still beautiful, historical, and quiet.

We walked around the city some more and visited places like the Bath Abbey, The Pump Room, and looked around shops.

By then, we started to get very tired and felt the day catching up with us. We stopped by a local Pret A Manger and grabbed some gluten-free soup and drinks. Pret is a great option for fresh, on-the-go food and there are so many options for different dietary needs. After we ate, we went back to our Airbnb boathouse, watched Northanger Abbey, and then went to bed.

Stay tuned for the upcoming travel post all about London!