Claire & I decided to take a little morning walk today to Regents Park. The park is about a 20 minute walk from our building. When we arrived we got a very big ‘Lady & The Tramp’ vibe, the fence automatically reminded us of one of our favourite Disney movies. We found a bench & sat down to enjoy our brunch while looking at a beautiful fountain, just a normal casual morning here in London. Connected to the park is the London Zoo, but it didn’t seem like it was open at the time that we entered. The park is a massive amount of grassy land in the middle of the city. Dogs were running wild, which made me quite happy; seeing a dog automatically makes it any day a good day. Squirrels were coming right up to us and the pigeons were fat as ever from people feeding them. Even though it is mid-January there were flowers blooming and fountains flowing, it seemed like a morning in March.
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The less crowded area was a nice rest from the fast pace of London. I love the city, but sometimes it can be so overwhelming to basically run everywhere. At times it’s nice to just take a stroll around and ‘get out’ of the city. I will definitely be returning when I get a little stressed out. It’s amazing how even in this city there are parks all over, which can help you escape every once and awhile.
There are events constantly going on in London, clearly showcased in magazines such as TimeOut, or plastered all over the streets. This past weeks main event was Lumiere London. Taking place all over London in places such as King’s Cross, Trafalgar Square, & Piccadilly Circus. Light installations were set up across the city for people all over London to view as art. Personally a group of friends and I set out to the King’s Cross area first because that is where we live.
Some of the installations included a birdcage, a tunnel of recycled plastic bottles, a hauntingly beautiful dress, and a King’s Cross tunnel of lights. All of the artwork was so amazing. It was great to see such a big turn out of people who also enjoy art.
Piccadilly was insane! There was a massive amount of people that flooded the streets. Despite the packed area the lights were totally worth it.
Here are just a few of the installations at Piccadilly, which are a walking woman, flying fish, a jellyfish, and rooftop silhouettes. I’d have to say my favourite installation was the flying fish. The only way to describe them was magical. This beautiful music was playing as these giant fish were floating gracefully in the sky, while changing color.
Unfortunately this was only a weekend event, but I hope that it comes back to London again. Take a chance on those events that you find in magazines… it might be something spectacular!
Another day, another adventure here in London. The abundance of things to do makes it easy to never be bored. A fellow art lover & I decided to make a complete day of admiring art in the National Gallery at Trafalgar Square. If you are in London it is a have to do activity. The Gallery is free, which is also a huge plus. You could spend multiple days there just taking in all the beautiful pieces. I am personally a big fan of contemporary art such as Van Gogh; but who doesn’t love Vam Gogh. There was a specific piece that caught my eye, that I’ve actually been stuck on ever since. The painting is by Louis-Léopold Boilly, A Girl at the Window.
Obviously a photo that I took doesn’t do the painting justice at all. It was an artist I am not familiar with, and he clearly has a great talent. I was extremely happy to come across it. Go out & see some art. Even if it’s on your own. Go look at something beautiful today.
As a student in an expensive city I need to find the cheapest food I can get. In my history class the Professor shared a valuable market that is very close to my residence building in King’s Cross. The market was only a quick seven minute walk, that opens up at 9am. A friend & I decided to take the adventure and see if this Professor really knew what he was talking about. Luckily, he was right! We arrived around 10:15am while the stands were just finishing setting up. Stands featuring paella,cheeses, fresh fish & produce. To any students I highly recommend. I was able to get 5 huge lemons for £1, 3 avocados for £1, a pound of baby potatoes & a pound of brussel sprouts for both £1 as well! I bought enough food to last me at least 3 meals, which will save me valuable money here. I’m very excited about being informed about this market, & I have to give big thanks to my history Professor. Outlining the market are various store fronts with even more produce and a bakery as well. Of course I couldn’t turn down fresh croissants! A nice americano coffee with a chocolate croissant was a great way to start the day.
Even though I had been to London twice before I had never ridden the London Eye. The huge Ferris Wheel sits along the Thames River. We had gotten tickets in advance, since yet again it was a group field trip. I suggest getting tickets in advance though, because the lines can get very long. I am not afraid of heights like some may be, but I definitely think it is a good idea to get over that fear quickly, because the view is amazing and completely worth it. I would love to get tickets again especially for an evening view. It really was a picture perfect sunday to go. We also stopped to get a view of St. Pauls which is always a beautiful sight. The original cathedral burned down by the Great Fire of London in 1666. Christopher Wren rebuilt the cathedral and it was finished in 1697.
Luckily this is the last group tour I have for a little while because classes begin tomorrow! I’m very excited to begin learning here, even though it’s very different from the states I’m ready to give myself a challenge. Soon enough I’ll be living like a local!
Since I am still in the midst of Orientation week, I have group field trips. I am not particularly found of these, I want to look like less of a tourist everywhere I go. However, walking around in a huge group doesn’t really help me blend in. Today we visited Windsor Castle, the Queens’ favourite residence. It has a very rustic beauty, very different in comparison to the elaborate Buckingham Palace.
Windsor Castle is the largest & oldest occupied castle in the world. The castle was originally built by William the Conquerer. Soon enough it became the private residence of the Royals. Within Windsor there is great history, including the St. George Chapel, which has a huge beautiful stained glass window & an impeccable ceiling.
Learning history is always exciting to me, but actually being able to see it, & picture it all makes it a hundred times better.
I am now in London until April. It’s an interesting time in my life, I’m both terrified, yet so excited to be living in my dream city for 4 months. I’ll be studying history & also psychology at City University. It’s crazy to have your dreams really come true, and have the chance to live it out.
Visiting places like Camden & Big Ben never get old. I couldn’t imagine getting bored of the beauty that surrounds me. Remember to live your dreams out no matter what they are, because they’re important, even if they’re only important to you; that’s all that matters.