To be fair, it was more than 48 hours, I just think that sounds cooler. Forgive me?
My friend Lindsey and I had the best time in London and I’m just not ready to move on from it, so I wanted to write up this post with all our photos and some extra little moments from the trip. First off, where we stayed was the most British, quaint AirBnB that I’m pretty sure was inhabited by some really sweet grandparents. It was located in the Pilmico district(?) just a five minute walk to Victoria Station, ten minute walk to Buckingham Palace and fifteen mins to Westminster. If you’re going to London for sightseeing, this location couldn’t be better. It was great because our last day we just stayed around the area, and then the other day we took the tube everywhere. If you’re visiting the city for shopping and restaurants, then I would suggest staying somewhere like Marylebone, Mayfair, or Kensington. That being said, I thought where we stayed was perfect for a weekend in London Town. A couple more highlights…
(Is Lindsey not the cutest?! Follow her @oluckyloe on insta!)
I finally got to go to the deli of my dreams founded by my favorite vegan, Ella Mills. I’ve followed her blog for as long as I can remember and 90% of the recipes I make is from her cookbooks, so it’s very fair to say I’ve learned how to cook from her. The deli was everything I’d dreamed it would be. They had a make your own granola bowl station and I had the yummiest vegan/gf pancakes. I’ve had many of birthdays with one of Ella’s cake recipes, so to try it in her own deli was even more delicious than I could have imagined. The decor was so on brand as well I could hardly handle it. Such a cool experience for me!
We also did so.much.walking in the city but it was such a blast! There are streets and neighborhoods that feel like you’re in the middle of NYC and then there are some that make you feel like you’re in your own little world. We of course had very mini impromptu photo shoots. I’m obsessed with taking pictures of everything, and my friends ’cause they’re amazing people, and this was only fueled when Lindsey’s mom texted me the day we got there saying she needed some “discreet” photos of Lindsey for the family Christmas card. Betsy, I’m your girl.
She’s a model, people.
And then there’s this awkward girl…. i.e. ME! Hey hey!
We shopped till we dropped, ya’ll! And boy was it fun. We made it our personal mission to try and hit as many of the sustainable/ethical fashion stores in London and we did it, even while conquering the pouring rain and tube rides! If you’d like to see where what stores we visited and what we picked up, visit my last blog post here.
I’m the kind of person who could barely get through math class but I can list every little tidbit about most celebrities in the world or all the details from any Disney movie. I’m pretty pop culture obsessed, and have obviously been following the royal family for quite some time. My fascination began when I visited Paris as a young girl and my mom told me about Princess Diana. Then, it all solidified when she woke me up at 3AM to watch Kate Middleton, a mere commoner, wed Prince William in 2011. I started reading all I could on the royals, watching the lifetime series on Will and Kate, and made sure to be up-to-date on all the news. So, it was only fitting that I, your average American, met and fell in love with an English man at the same time one of my favorite actresses and bloggers, Meghan Markle (another American), fell in love with Prince Harry. Yet again, I woke up in the middle of the night with my mom to watch the wedding, only this time making biscuits using a recipe my London-born mother-in-law sent me. The whole idea of the British Monarchy fascinates me (Hello The Crown season 2!), so when Lindsey and I were walking along casually to Westminster Abbey and saw a Maroon colored Rolls Royce parked in front of a museum, I started immediately having heart palpitations. After waiting about 20 minutes and befriending the older gentlemen next to me (he made friends with the police on duty who said a royal was coming but they couldn’t tell us who), Prince Charles arrived on the scene. It was so exciting! Lindsey and I smiled and waved as he drove back, and we called my mom excitedly telling her what a cool moment we just randomly came across!
We then continued onto Westminster Abbey. While we were standing there taking photos and chatting, road blocks began going up and people started gathering. Soon, a small crowd had appeared and people began entering Westminster in fancy clothes. It was Remembrance Day after all, so we weren’t all that surprised to see that they were doing a big service. But something in us said to wait, and so we did. An hour passed and by now the crowd was huge and there were cars after cars with Diplomatic signage being directed to the front of Westminster. The security was heavy, news crews arrived, and we began to see helicopters hovering above. I turned to Lindsey and asked, “You think it could be?! Meghan Markle??” and she replied, “I think it could be… the Queen!” How crazy!
Sure enough, about 20 minutes later, we hear sirens followed by a range rover with Meghan Markle, The Duchess of Sussex, smiling at me through the window! I waved back, imagining how a 30-something American could be adjusting to living a royal life in London. Then, in the next round of sirens and fancy cars, Kate Middleton, The Duchess of Cambridge, came through. Obviously the Prince’s were in both, but my excitement was definitely for the wives. Camilla and Prince Charles (again!) came through, and we waited when all of a sudden the noises were deafening as the Queen herself rode in the back of a lit up Rolls Royce, waving and smiling as people snapped away.
It was such a special experience, and one I know I’ll remember forever.
Overall, our trip was one for the books with memories made to last a lifetime. We laughed till we almost peed our pants, drank so much tea, started a dream we’ve both been dreaming for forever (check back next year!) and spent good ole friend time together. It’s moments like these that are what life is truly all about. I hope you’ve enjoyed reading my London recap, and if you want to see it all for yourself (get ready to hear me scream “Oh my goodness” over and over when I see the Queen) check out our vlog from the trip below. Love and light! Xx