Parks and Rec

Initially, I was just going to London as I had booked a show the month before, and honestly, after a stressful week, I was not feeling up to even going to the show. However, I got myself up and got into London for 10am.

My first stop was to Piccadilly. I love exploring Piccadilly and Mayfair, looking through the shop windows at things I’ll never be able to afford. I stopped briefly at the market at St James’ Church-an amazing little find which can make the centre of London feel like a village. After this, I visited Fortnum and Mason, a gourmet 18th century department store. It’s a little bit like a tourist attraction, but it’s worth visiting to see how the other half live-and to try the jam!

After exploring Piccadilly and Mayfair, I wandered north to explore Regent Street and Oxford Street. While my initial mission here was to find a birthday present for my mum (thank you M&S), I also wanted to explore Liberty, another London department store. I love their stationery range, and hope one day to be able to afford a monogrammed notebook.

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I still wasn’t feeling 100%, and I decided the best way to rectify this would be to take a stroll in the park. After getting a Flake 99 ice cream, I walked down to St James’ Park just in time to see the Queen’s horses strolling up the Mall, which was a happy surprise! St James’s Park may be my favourite park in London; I love seeing the ducks in the pond, and I love the area around the park. After a surprisingly fast stroll around the park, I walked up Whitehall, past Downing Street, to find lunch.

After all that walking, I was exhausted, and starving! I stopped to have lunch at Tortilla, a chain restaurant that specialises in Californian inspired Mexican food. It may be a chain restaurant, but I can’t get enough of their burritos!

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Over lunch I had decided to walk up to Covent Garden, but having been there recently, I decided instead to meander through the Victoria Embankment Gardens. Although I saw Breathe in the pop up cinema there, I’ve never visited the park, and I was pleasantly surprised. There was also a Kazakhstan Spring Festival going on, and while I didn’tvisit it, everyone seemed very happy and the music was enjoyable. The park was lovely, and as it’s only a couple of minutes away from Charing Cross station, it makes a great place to escape from the hustle and bustle of London.

I spent a few minutes walking up to Leicester Square and people watching before trying to get into the Lego store and seeing the queue go on for what seemed like miles! Giving up on that, I walked down to Trafalgar Square where a games festival seemed to be going on. After watching a very amusing game of human Pac-Man for a few minutes, I moved onto my last spot of the day.

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My day out in London finished with a matinee performance of The Grinning Man. I went in with no expectations, and it really blew me away. Full of laughs and horrors, it was a sensational way to end such a good day.

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