I can’t believe it’s all over, Christmas and New Year! How upsetting. As I sit back and reflect on the festivities, I smile and remember how amazing it truly was. This Christmas was mine and my boyfriend’s first, of which we spent together and never left each other’s side for two weeks so now we’re back to work it feels like I’ve lost an arm! To round off our celebrations we headed to London for New Year and I thought I’d let you all in on what we got up to on our travels.
We booked the trip back in October and got a brilliant deal from our local Thompsons which included rail fare, hotel bed and breakfast, London Eye Tickets and a Thames River Cruise, it was a right bargain especially for this time of year. We left Newcastle early morning on the 30th arriving in London around 11am as we were lucky enough to get an express train. We stopped at the Corus hotel, near Park Lane and Hyde Park which was lovely, very central.
Once we’d dumped our bags and I’d reapplied some lippy we decided to get straight out there and explore, starting with Camden. This was my boyfriend’s first time in London so I wanted to make sure we visited as many hot spots as possible since I’ve been before and know my way around-ish (I wouldn’t exactly say I was an expert, but I’m familiarized with London). Camden is full of character, it’s a unique place which screams diversity and an extrovert’s heaven. We browsed the streets, the market and best of all the stables which is where you can find all the street food. You name a type of food, they have it. I was particularly drawn to the Mexican stand because obviously, I love Burritos and when I laid eyes on the dishes they we’re preparing my inner fat girl was in her element and the want in me was unleashed… although Burritos are sorta’ healthy right? Vegetables and the likes?! It was amazing. My boyfriend went for a Chicken Korma from the Indian stand, which was so tasty and then we finished our food off with a fresh Nutella Crepe…my mouth may or may not be watering right now.
After a quick drink pit stop, we headed back on the tube to Southbank as we’d planned to go on the London Eye later in the afternoon. Again, we explored the area plus the Christmas markets and we then found the Rekorderlig Cider Lodge. Rekorderlig’s effortlessly stylish Cider Lodge returned to Southbank Centre’s Winter Festival for seasonal fun and festivities, allowing guests to immerse themselves in Scandinavian style, culture, food and drink. We were in our element once we’d found a cosy sofa in front of a fire in the lodge which has been designed to be like a Scandinavian house with a cider, our favourite cider at that! I was over the moon that the lodge was offering the new flavour Spiced Plum which has been huge this winter! So yeah, I’ve now decided it’s my new favourite cider. My plan was to fuel my boyfriend up before we went on the London Eye because he’s scared of heights and it half worked, I did get him on. With a short walk and que, we we’re on the eye and he hated it… I’ve been on before but not at night, it is a fabulous experience and I advise anyone visiting to London to do.
Lastly, on our way back to the hotel we decided to nip into Winter Wonderland at Hyde Park. One word, magical. As you walk into the wonderland you are dazzled with the bright lights and glow, then hyped up by the joyful atmosphere. The rides are spectacular; the lights shine brightly and the food stalls available are astonishing. After a walk around, we headed to the Bavaria area where we sat watching the event unfold before our eyes with a stein of beer.
Then New Year’s Eve arrived, we were shattered from the day before so managed to have a little lie in before lining our stomachs for the big day a head with a full English breakfast. We got ready and headed out to Buckingham Palace and visited the queen obviously (she probably wasn’t even there). There was a New Year’s Day parade going on when we arrived so the crowds were out in masses but we still managed to get amongst the flow. We then made a short walk to Big Ben and Downing Street, which to be honest isn’t much to look at since it’s guarded up with Police but at least we can say we’ve been. We then caught the tube to Oxford Street and grabbed a burger at Burger & Cocktails, it didn’t disappoint. Then after a walk along the Oxford stretch we headed back to our hotel to grab forty winks and get ready for the New Year’s Eve Fireworks display.
We decided to go for yet another meal, who knew exploring could be such hungry work? Before we headed to the Fireworks display. We had a few cocktails to get the celebrations going and a Chinese then travelled to Trafalgar Square at 9. I’d bought tickets in advance for the event as there are different zones for different views and the likes plus I suppose there’s a huge demand since it is aired on the BBC every year, we we’re the blue zone. We’d got a spot and we’re settled with our cans of cider (classy), then patiently waited midnight to arrive. And when it did, it was spectacular. Breath taking. I am so pleased I got to see the sights I did that night with my boyfriend, it’s a new year we won’t forget.
The next day, New Years day, was time for us to head home! We were gutted, we could have easily stayed a few more days since London feels like a never-ending city. Before we left, I took my boyfriend to Harrods and for a bite to eat before we went to Kings Cross.
Then it was time for home, we we’re on the train heading back to Newcastle discussing when we could return. London it was a pleasure.
How did you spend your new year?