Wednesday, April 22, 2009

What To Do in London

Lots of fellow students are making the right decision and choosing to move far, far away to London for a semester. Cheers, everyone! As I did with Paris, I thought I'd make a quick list of cool places to see and visit. The Paris list was quite a bit longer, but I trimmed this down to the essential places and things to do/see. Shall we?

Bars and food:
-Drayton Arms, right around the corner from some of the BU housing, for pub quiz
-Catch (22 Kingsland Road, Shoreditch) and any clubs around 333, in East London: Catch is free to get in and they have great DJs and cheap drinks.
-Metro [which just shut down and may have moved to Camden] and Bourne and Hollingsworth at Oxford Street: Metro has amazing Wednesday nights where they play indie, Britpop, '60s music and have great drink specials. B&H is a 1920s themed bar with amazing gin cocktails and people come in costume. You can take the night bus straight to Metro.
-Lab for good cocktails (12 Old Compton Street, Soho): really expensive but worth it
-There are some great outdoor bars around the canal at Camden market. Get a Pimms Cup cocktail and hang out outside when it’s warm.
-Crêpe place around the corner from South Ken tube station for really amazing, high-quality crêpes.

Markets:
-Camden Market on Sat: Get off at Camden Town tube stop, turn right and walk through market (including Stables market) and then down Chalk Farm Road to Primrose Hill and then climb the hill for a great view of London. It’s a 20 minute walk.
-Borough Market on Sat: London Bridge tube stop. It’s a food market and they have amazing places to grab lunch. Get a cheap tea and scones next door to Neil’s Dairy Yard. They also filmed part of Harry Potter in the flower store nearby. Vinopolis Wine Museum is fun and they give healthy pours.
-Spitalfields on Sunday (Brick Lane): Liverpool St Station and then cross the street and head to Spitalfields covered market. Go to Absolute Vintage, Beyond Retro, and the Old Truman Brewery (at Brick Lane) for awesome clothes markets. The bar across from 93 ft East has outdoor seating and amazing live music.
-Not a market, but check out Liberty and Carnaby Street. It was the epicenter of the '60s mod culture.

Tips:
-London Zoo is really expensive and not worth it
-If you like theater or musicals, go to matinee shows or get BU's cheap tickets. I also stood in line for tickets and ended up seeing Ewan McGregor in Othello for like $30.
-Join the lecool london and London Parties email lists
-Clubs like Mahiki, Boujis, Chinawhite, Kensington Roof Gardens, and Amaya are all famous and have celebrities but usually cost 20 pounds to get in (unless you’re on a list from London Parties)
-Take advantage of the nearby Imperial College: BU students get a student ID card and can hang out in the pub
-Time Out London has great free walking tours, events, and dance nights for each week
-Whichbudget.com for cheap tickets to the rest of Europe
-Take the Eurostar to Paris-- it's quick and easy, and you save the money from a cheap flight on the metro/tube fare.

Check out more of my reviews of London shops and a few from Paris here.

3 comments:

alabama bobby said...

Your whichbudget link goes to londonparties! The deceit! I have my own link:

apple hates babies!

maybe i like apple now?

Anna said...

Sorry sorry it's fixed now.

Lindsay said...

add the portobella market -- some of the best crepes you will ever get.

also, while it may seem touristy, climbing up to the top of st. pauls is def worth while.

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