Recommendations: London, England

Samantha and I couldn't decide where to go for Memorial Day Weekend this year.  After much back and forth, we spontaneously ditched a beach destination to visit Shane and Hallie in London.  Rather than running around like we typically would to see all of the major sites, we decided to have a more relaxing time while in London which included a lot of drinking and eating. 

So rather than recommending the typical touristy attractions like Parliament, the Tower of London, or Buckingham Palace, below are some recs for a different type of trip to London: 

Samantha and I in London
What Area To Stay: From my opinion, there is no better location to stay in London than SoHo.  Filled with pubs and places to grab a bite, you can't go wrong no matter where you stay. 
The streets of Soho
Where to Eat: A few of our favorites in SoHo
  • Nopi: With casual communal dining, Nopi serves up a basic but tasty menu.  If you're into it, be sure to get the quail. 
  • Bone Daddies: If you want a change from fish & chips and meat & veggies, Bone Daddies provides a great alternative with some out of this world ramen. 
  • Gale Bakery: Fresh scones with clotted cream.  That's all you really need to know about Gale's but you really can't go wrong with any of their pastries. 
Meat pies in Borough Market
What to Do:
  • Borough Market: While this could easily fall under an eating or drinking category, this is also just a site to see.  With scores of different stands, some of my favorite things to pick out while walking around were the scottish egg, cheese sandwiches from Kappacasein, and meat pies from one of the many stands. 
  • Tea Time: You can't go to London without doing tea time and there tons of places to go.  We went to the Ivy in Soho which was perfect stop a rainy afternoon.  A gin cocktail is the drink of choice (after all you are in London) while you are sipping on tea and munching on scones and sandwiches. 
Tea time at The Ivy 
  • Parks (St James Park and Hyde Park): There are plenty of parks throughout the city and they are perfect for all parts of the day.  The largest is Hyde Park which is great for a morning run and then as you stroll through the city during the day, have your route take you through St James.  It's a perfect pit stop for a beer or a pimms right after visiting Buckingham Palace.
  • Shopping Around Regent Street: Right off Piccadiliy Circus and south of Soho is one of the most famous shopping streets in the city.  Even if you aren't looking for anything, it's a perfect way to burn off some LBs from all of the food and drinks. 
All of us in St James Park
Where to Grab A Drink:
  • PS Tatershall Castle: This floating barge is a perfect place for a drink after walking around Westminster.  It's only a few hundred yards from Big Ben located on the River Thames and oh, they have great fish and chips.
  • Pubs in Soho: You can't go wrong with any pubs in London and Soho has no shortage.  Pub hopping is a perfect afternoon activity and while we stopped in plenty, John Snow is the one that sticks out - obviously for it's name.  While it may seem touristy, a walk down Carnaby Street is also a must on your pub hopping tour. 
  • Mews at Mayfair: Located on a narrow street in Mayfair, this is perfect place for a glass of Rose and some oysters.
Viewing Big Ben before PS Tatershall Castle


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