I remember the details of the last time I was in London like it was just yesterday.
It was Christmas 2009 – only my second trip abroad. Tom and I were spending the holidays with his extended family, and I was meeting them all for the very first time. I distinctly remember feeling so pleasantly at home when I realised his family was as big, lively and welcoming as my own.
Last time I was in London, I rode in a black taxi. Walked the “Beatles Crossing” at Abbey Road. Posed for photos with wax figures at Madame Tussauds. Spent a day wandering through the British Museum – which still one of the best collections I’ve seen!
Add in the Tower of London, Buckingham Palace’s Changing of the Guard, Winter Wonderland in Hyde Park, a West End show and walks along the Thames. I ticked off all the major tourist sights and then some. And I loved it!
We ate pie and mash with mushy peas and eel, fish and chips, ploughman’s lunches and those giant English brekkies. We ducked into quintessential old British pubs for pints of proper cask ale. I probably sat on the very same bar stool that Shakespeare or Hemingway drank at (probably not.).
Last time I was in London, I walked around in constant awe, seeing sights with my own eyes that I’d only previously seen in history books, movies and documentaries.
Tom and I rang in 2010 among the thousands of shivering revelers that lined the Thames, huddled together to watch the new year fireworks display.
Last time I was in London, I was still studying at university in Sydney. I had bangs (clearly a mistake). I was just about to become an aunty for the very first time. Fast forward seven years, and I now have five energetic, amazing nieces and nephews!
Last time I was in London, I froze in rainy 8°C weather and danced in the snow. Now that I live in Washington State, I’ve acclimatised to the cold – but I’m still obsessed with snow.
Today I’ll be returning to London for the first time since. It’s safe to say a lot has changed over these years – especially my travel style – but I could not be more excited to again wander those cobblestone streets and marvel at the ornate architecture.
I think I’ll always be in awe of London.
Bonus: this time I no longer have to choose my watering hole based on the price of a pint!
Tom and I will be in London for a short but sweet 9 days. Enough time to reunite with family in Cambridge and Southend, explore Hackney with my cousin, and celebrate a wedding. We’re also throwing in a quick jaunt to York!
Until I get home things will be a little quiet here on the blog. But I’ll make sure to have a pint and pie & mash for you all!
Have a safe and happy new year! See you in 2017!
Got any awesome London tips? Let me know in the comments below!
Like this post? Pin it for later.