Things-to-do: "Ice Skating at Natural History Museum"
I am so sorry I haven't updated - but I have been going mad here for three days without ANY internet! It all of a sudden disappeared on Saturday, without any warning, and now we have been stranded for three days feeling lost as hell. What did we do before internet? I don't care; let's just not go back there. Three days was enough for me.
Anyway, Sunday was fun! We went to London with the Scandinavian Society (or the ten of us who showed up) and went ice skating outside the Natural History Museum. It was truly beautiful and, as you can see from the pictures, all decorated. With Christmas music in my ears the only thing missing was a little snow to make it all perfect. My Christmas spirit has arrived and I love it!
Primark and I have a love-hate relationship. I love it for the same reason as every other Primark fan - it is cheap. Primark costs nothing. They have everything practically for free. Obviously, I am not the only person i England who likes all the good, cheap stuff they have at Primark which means that the store is always crowded. Lots of people, screaming kids and crazy women fighting over the best pars of shoes or the cutest handbag. Primark makes me feel as exhausted as a good run would do, but who did not say shopping was hard work?
However, I would say that it is worth it. You might be surprised by what they actually have! We are talking underwear, shoes, jewelry, clothes, jackets, hats, scarves, handbags and everything else you could possibly think off. Definitely a must when you visit London! They have a huge Primark store in Oxford Street, right by Marble Arch. I usually go to the one in Kingston, but the one in London is ten times bigger!
My two last Primark buys which cost me around 20 pounds (190 norwegian kroners). The shoes are probably going to kill me, but as I always say to myself, practise makes perfect.
Things-to-do: "London for Christmas"
This might be a very obvious "thing-to-do" - but still, London is so beautiful and decorated for Christmas so I figured I would write a post about it anyway. Here are som tips of what to do in London for Christmas:
Oxford Street - Oxford Street is in a wonderful Christmas mood and everywhere you turn something reminds you of Christmas: the window displays, the street decorations or the people running around with their bags full of Christmas gifts. The street itself is super, super busy so make sure you have PLENTY of time. There are lines in all the stores and there is no way you can walk in a fast pace from store to store. Oxford Street, together with the whole of London, is extra busy during weekends.
Covet Garden - A beautiful area which are also very busy towards Christmas. It has many of the same chain stores as Oxford Street, but you can also find more specialist stores selling unique and different things. The perfect area to look for the more special Christmas gifts!
Department stores and window displays - You don't really have to buy anything to have fun in London during Christmas. Walking around and looking at the window displays is more than enough. These pictures are from a store where I live and from Selfridges in Oxford Street.
Winter Wonderland in Hyde park - This is described as the perfect place both for children and adults. This place looks like Santa's factory on the North Pole and gives you the ultimate Christmas spirit. I haven't been there yet, but I am going this weekend and I'll write a better post about it when I get back.
Christmas in Kingston - Even Kingston, the town where I live, is decorated for Christmas. This is outside of our shopping center- The Bental's Center. I think Kingston is a way better place to do shopping at the moment because it is less crowded (even though its way more people than usual) than London.
Lighting of the Norwegian Christmas tree at Trafalgar Square 1.December - So excited for this Christmas tradition! Every year Oslo sends a Christmas tree to London to thank England for their help during the Second World War and every years it is lit the first of December.
Christmas market at South Bank - Another market that is definitely worth checking out. It is a beautiful walk along the river Thames with lots of small Christmas shops.
The only thing we are missing now is a tiny bit of snow......
(Pictures by me and Thea)
Things-to-do: "Brick Lane"
Brick Lane is a market in London. It is famous for its vintage and second hand stores, but you get everything there, not only vintage! Brick Lane is also an amazing area with so much to see. When we were there we visited two markets, Brick Lane and Old Spitafield market. They are both in the same area and all around these two markets you can find amazing shops for everything between heaven and earth!
Old Spitafield market: Welcome to Old Spitalfields Market, one of London?s finest Victorian market halls set in an historic location in the heart of the City and one of the crown jewels of East London. You can dine in style, browse through the antique market, buyunique designer clothes and relax with a glass of fine wine watching the hustle and bustle of the City pass you by. Easy to find, Old Spitalfields Market is a short walk from both Liverpool Street and Aldgate East stations.
Spitafield market was more of a designers market than a vintage market. It is the place to get unique designes and special items. They had so much great design and even if you don't have money to spend it is a wonderful experience just walking around feeling the atmosphere.
Old Spitafield market.
Brick Lane: London?s Brick Lane Market is a traditional flea-market affair, with a rich diversity of products and wares with everything from food, second-hand clothes (always worth a look for the retro-lovers), furniture, bric-a-brac, magazines, toiletries, sweets, electrical equipment and ABSOLUTELY EVERYTHING in between.
Brick Lane is heaven! Vintage heaven! I found so many great items in Brick Lane, all unique and special. That is what I love the most about Brick Lane, it had a huge variety of vintage - all special in its own way. I also loved just walking around looking at all the people dressed in a chicy, retro kind of way. It really got me inspired!
I would really recommend going to Brick Lane on a day-trip if you are in London. There is so much to see and so much to explore, I haven't even seen any of it yet!
Last night we went to Chinawhite in Cental London. We fixed the deal with the promoter which meant free entrance and free drinks! But, oh my god, it was such a porch place! The drinks were £14 and the shots £10.50!!! That is craziness! It is even more expensive than in Norway! And in England, that is BAD! We're so used to £2 drinks at Oceana here in Kingston so it took some while before I got over the price-shock. The good thing was that since the place was so porch it was full of people with money. Me and Julie found a couple of guys that we hung out with and well, let's just say we got some more free drinks. Had a good night even though I ended up scaring off the boys crying like a baby because a stupid lady refused to give me my jacket....
Today all I want to do is lay in bed and eat the wonderful chocolate Liva brought me. It was so nice to have her here. Wish she could have stayed one more day though, because I was not the best company today....
I have to eat some more chocolate and watch a movie now. Good night!
Things-to-do: "La Tasca"
As I said, we tried out a new restaurant last night. It is called "La Tasca" and it serves the real, Spanish tapas. We were all very hungry and decided to go for the three course menu with wine and on the side we ordered bread. It was a lot of food! More than enough. I really liked the dim atmosphere of the restaurant. It made me sit back and enjoy my food even more.
I would really recommend this restaurant! I actually wish we would have had even more time there because tapas are supposed to be a slow-meal. Or, in other words, a meal that you spend a lot of time eating. They also had some delicious desserts that I want to try out next time.
I am having a friend over next weekend and I think I might take her to "La Tasca" - definately one of the best restaurants that we have tried in Kingston so far.
With this said I have started this new category on my blog called "Things-to-do" where I mostly will recommend things to do in Kingston/London such as places to eat, stores to go shopping, markets etc. Just to give you some tips if you are ever to come to this area of London. Most of the places I recommed can also be found in central London.