There is something rather special about spending a Sunday in London. Mainly because I really enjoyed the laid back vibe around the city. Usually, London never stops, people rush everywhere, the tube is always busy and the streets are super packed. Not on Sunday. I didn't know if this was ordinary for London, or I simply got lucky. I reckoned everyone was having a picnic in Hyde Park since the weather was glorious (this is definitely not ordinary for London).
No matter the reason, I got to stroll through the British streets without feeling rushed nor agitated. Or at least this is what happened first things in the morning, in Ealing.
I started my day by having breakfast in WA, a Japanese café located about 15 minutes walking distance from my hotel, in Ealing. I was on a mission to find a really cool place to share with my snapchat community because I have been assigned to do a snap take over for Matador Network.
Since I already spent my Saturday discovering the less known streets of London, I decided to spent my Sunday doing what everyone does best in London: shop!
I embarked on a journey from Ealing to stop No.1: Covent Garden. Do you remember me telling you about the laid back London which I experienced first thing in the morning? I soon discovered, people were not sun bathing in Hyde Park, they were all here, with me, in Covent Garden. Gosh, I really had difficulties navigating around through the Piazza. However, if you love theater, culture, food and fashion, Covent Garden really should be on your bucket list. Despite the business of it all, I actually really enjoyed my time in Covent Garden Piazza. There were a couple of live street performances and plenty of open stalls, selling anything and everything from soaps and souvenirs to awesome hand painted t-shirts and pillow covers. In a weird way this place reminded me a bit of Barcelona.
From Coven Garden, I started walking towards Mayfair. There are several brands shops and boutiques in Mayfair, which makes this neighbourhood a perfect place for the avid shopper. I went around with the idea of buying a new skirt and I ended up spending a few hours shop hopping. Clothes are pretty expensive in the area, but during sales, there are definitely lots of shopping opportunities.
I'm not sure if I ever mentioned this before, but I am a huge Harry Potter fan. This is because I was one of the lucky kids to have grown up with the books and movies. I lived through the books and to a somewhat extend it was because of the idea of Hogwarts, that I wanted to study in England.
I have been to the studios in Leavesden and have visited the Kings Cross train station before. But, since I was yet again meandering through the streets of London, I figured it would be a loss if I wouldn't visit the Harry Potter shop in Kings Cross. It is one of the best places to buy jelly beans which taste like soap, vomit or ear wax. Hardly a surprise that nobody misses the chance to eat something that tastes like dirt just because it has been featured in one of the most successful movies of all times. Nevertheless, I did go to Kings Cross and that's where I found the other half of the London population.
A bit pressed for time, I took the subway back to Ealing where I reclaimed my car from the parking lot. I very much enjoyed a car-less weekend around London. As opposed to driving straight back to Bristol, I decided to take a small detour to Banstead. Why? Because I knew of a well kept secret which can be found in the area: 25 acres of beautiful lavender. I know, I was just as surprised to find an actual lavender field in London. The place asks for £1 entry per adult, which is a bargain. There are plenty of photographic opportunities around and you can truly enjoy a nice afternoon walk through the small purple bushes. There is a cafe with food, tea, coffee and ice cream.
I wanted to spend a couple of hours just sitting down, enjoying the relaxing fields and reading my book as the sun went down. It's also an epic place to catch the sunset.
Did I enjoy my weekend in London? Yes, I absolutely loved it. The highlight of the Sunday trip was actually in Piccadilly, on my way to Mayfair where I stumbled across a place called Japan Centre. I ended up having lunch there. Their ramen was quite good and cheap too. You can sit down and have a cup of tea, as well as fresh sushi if you wish. At the end, I strolled around the store and bought some of the Japanese goods which I love so much: seaweed, matcha sweets and kombucha tea.
Overall, I loved how many Japanese shops, restaurants and cafes I found during my stay in London. Odd, I know, I should have spent more time looking for British traditional items, but in reality, I am a Japanophile and I will never skip the opportunity to enjoy popular Japanese food.
How would you spend a Sunday in London? Where would you eat and what would you like to see the most? Tell me all about it in the comments section below.