London Plans


If there is one thing that should be clear to anyone who reads this blog it is that my husband and I love to travel to the U.K. We have been to London a number of times. The last time was a couple of years ago. Happily, we are going again in February. Our original plans were to go to Yorkshire for our next trip. However, this trip was planned after my husband was in a motorcycle accident last year and needed something to look forward to in order to get through a long and painful recovery. He couldn't handle the thought of anything unfamiliar because the concussion made it seem too overwhelming. We have been to London enough that we know how to get around, we know where we like to stay, where we like to eat, and, most importantly, which bookshops I like to visit.

Unfortunately, my husband is still dealing with health issues from that accident and is currently once again out of work on medical leave. We thought he would be completely recovered by now and that is just not the case. We are still going on the trip because it is bought and paid for but it will be even more low-key than I originally thought.

I am anticipating a week of coffee shops, museums, bookshops, and National Trust properties. So, really, not that different from our usual trips. Maybe just a bit slower with a few more naps. If any of you lovely readers from the London area have any suggestions for any of the above please let me know. Especially any suggestions for less well-known places. Do you have a favorite non-chain coffee shop? Is there some quirky little museum you love to visit? Bookshops, always bookshops. I know to go to Persephone and Daunt and Charing Cross Road but I really enjoy the little hole-in-the-corner secondhand shops. Do you know any of those? And finally, what about an easy, calm day trip out of London? We have done quite a few but we do like taking the train and seeing a bit of the world outside of London. Is there a town that you recommend visiting? It doesn't have to be a huge destination. It just needs to be scenic and fun to wander around.

It has been a rough year. My husband and son have both been ill. Life is a little uncertain right now. Hopefully, a visit to one of our favorite places will restore a bit of happiness and ease to our lives.




15 comments

  1. hope you have a great trip to London! you can visit Kenwood house for instance or Dr. Johnson's house or Dulwich area

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    1. All of those sound interesting. Thanks for the suggestions.

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  2. Hello
    Dulwich is a lovely area and excellent museum. The Dennis Severs House is an amazing place - you need to prebook. I highly recommend.The John Soane museum is lovely. How about Cambridge as day trip - very easy to do. I also highly recommend London Walks - I have done many of their tours (from one hour to day trips) and often more Londoners on tour than tourists. They are so interesting. Loved their secret pub tour. Have an interesting and peaceful time. Bronwen

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    1. I have read about the Dennis Severs House. That is a possibility. I received a few recommendations of The John Soane museum so I will definitely have to look into that. Thank you.

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  3. I hope you have a great time and that your husband continues to recover. Have you been to Winchester? I went there as one half of a day trip, because Jane Austen is buried there, but it is a lovely scenic place in addition to that, with the cathedral and some castle ruins and a swift little river running through the middle of the town.

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    1. Oh, what a good idea! I knew of the Jane Austen connection which is a definite selling point! I will put it on my list to look into.

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  4. I've never been to London, but I've always wanted to go. I hope you have a wonderful trip!

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    1. Thank you. We are looking forward to it. Planning is half the fun.

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  5. I hope your trip goes well and is a great restorative for you both!

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  6. It's always good to have something to look forward to during difficult times. Further to Bronwen's recommendation of the Sir John Sloane Museum, I haven't been there yet but last time I was at Persephone, Lydia strongly, strongly recommended I go visit (it's quite close to the shop). I'm not sure how mobile your husband is at this stage in his recovery but my favourite thing to do in London is walk around different neighbourhoods. On my last trip, I found the book 33 Walks in London That You Shouldn't Miss indispensable. It recommends nice routes through many neighbourhoods and includes little shops and sights to visit along the way. Even if you don't do the full walks, it would have lots of great ideas for cafes, museums, etc. It's how I found about about the Quince Tree cafe at Clifton Nursery in Maida Vale, which turned out to be one of my favourite meals during my trip and had such a lovely setting (the cafe is within the nursery and you can stroll along the canal and past beautiful homes before or after visiting).

    Have a wonderful trip!

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    1. I bought the book as soon as I read your comment and it showed up over the weekend. I have been happily flipping through trying to decide which walks we will do. There are so many I want to try. Thank you for the suggestion.

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  7. We all need something to look forward to I think. There are some good suggestions above, I'm adding in Rye in East Sussex if you want to visit a lovely old small town.

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    1. I enjoyed reading about your visit to Rye. That is a definite possibility.

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  8. I second Rye - excellent suggestion - especially if Mapp and Lucia fan - it's lovely. Another doable day trip to a lovely town would be Lewes in East Sussex (easy by train) - lots of independent shops and cafes and a very old (and quirky) bookshop. Thomas Paine lived there. From Lewes very easy to take a short taxi ride to Monk's House. Enjoy your trip.
    Bronwen

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