London is officially off my bucket list!
Reminder: With my mom being a flight attendant for Cathay Pacific, my family and I have the opportunity to travel around the world with her on her flights. Hence, the reason I get to travel as often as I can.
Our trip’s duration was from March 27 – March 30. Yes, we were only given three day to explore London and make the most out of it. So here was our itinerary during our stay:
Day 1: (27/3/16)
CX237 departed Hong Kong International Airport at 12:35am (HK time) and arrived London Heathrow airport at 7am (LDN time). I made sure I had enough rest on the plane so that I was ready to explore the city.
First, we needed to purchase an oyster card (similar to the Hong Kong Octopus card). You top up as much as you want, but of course depending on how far you’re willing to travel around London’s underground. In our case, we topped up £20 + £5 deposit. In London, the child oyster card age limit is from 11-15, so my brother’s fare was half the price of the adult’s. Basically, how their card works is the same as Hong Kong’s. Touch in and touch out. However, their oyster card only works for the London underground and their buses.
After purchasing our cards, we headed to the London underground station right under the airport itself. From terminal 3 we had to go to Hammersmith station on the Piccadilly line.
The train ride was about 30 minutes in total. Once we arrived at Hammersmith station, we walked to our hotel, Novotel London West. It was approximately a 5 minute walk which wasn’t too hard to find. The downside to our morning was that check in wasn’t until 2pm. We arrived at the hotel before 9am.
So what we did was make our way to Portobello Road at Ladbroke Grove station. Aside from Nottinghill, Portobello had similar quaint and colourful houses. Plus, it was the closer station from our hotel.
It was almost close to lunch time, so after strolling around we made our way back to Hammersmith to have lunch at Nando’s!
Okay, in all honesty, Nando’s wasn’t too great. I expected way too much because of the hype people gave it. It’s average and I’m really not a fan of spicy food, so I wasn’t impressed with their chicken nor their peri-peri sauce. It wasn’t a place worth going back to, and it was quite pricey for the quality of the food.
Anyway, after we ate we headed back to our hotel to finally check in. As soon as we got our room we all took showers and had a change of clothes to head out into Central London.
We got off at St. James’ Station to make our way through St. James’ Park and onward to Buckingham Palace. It wasn’t hard to find our way there because there was a map by the station’s exit.
St James’ Park was BEAUTIFUL.
Buckingham Palace was 5 minutes away from the park, so after appreciating the beauty of nature we made our way there.
After trying to make Buckingham Palace look as photogenic as possible, we made our way to the London Eye because we purchased our tickets in advanced online. On our way there, we stumbled upon the famous red telephone booth and the Big Ben. Which I actually didn’t expect because I wasn’t paying so much attention to the entire map. It was easy finding our way around because there were tourist maps near the attractions and a lot of signs. (And the fact that everyone could speak English.)
The London Eye took 30 minutes in total and by the time we got off the wheel it was already 6:30pm. Jetlag started kicking in so we decided to head back to Hammersmith and have takeout in our hotel room and pass out right after.
Day 2: (28/3/16)
The next morning we made our way to Paddington station to go to London Terminals because we were off to see the Windsor Castle! My parents have actually been and seen the castle, but that was apparently 20 years ago.
Unfortunately, pictures weren’t allowed inside the castle… but honestly that didn’t stop me. However, I don’t think i’ll be posting them here just in case they ban my blog or something.
Fun fact: while we were touring the castle, the Queen, William, Kate and their kids were on the opposite section of the castle having lunch. The Queen has her very own private section within and it’s where she actually stays. Buckingham Palace is merely just her office. Sadly, we weren’t able to catch a glimpse of any of the royalty, but I was still quite excited at the fact that I was just a couple feet away from them.
By the time we finished touring around the castle grounds, we headed back into London to explore a little bit more of what the city had to offer.
Day 3: 29/3/16
Before arriving in London, my mom already planned on taking a day drip to Bath. We woke up early in the morning, got ready and made our way back to London terminals. The train ride to Bath from London took an hour and a half. Thankfully, there was wifi on the train.
Being born and raised in Hong Kong, there isn’t a lot of greenery. Majority of what I’ve seen growing up were tall buildings. So, on our way to Bath the view was breath taking. Everything was green and had wide open spaces which you rarely see in Hong Kong. (Unless you go hiking).
Halfway through the day it started to rain. Ah yes, UK’s gloomy weather. It did depress us a bit, so instead we went back to the town centre and shopped.
After doing a little shopping, we made our way back to London. Another hour and a half on the train. By the time we arrived back into London it was already 7:30pm. We were tired and very hungry. Room service did just the trick.
Day 4: (30/3/16)
CX 238 was scheduled to leave London at 5pm, so we had enough time to do a little bit more shopping in Hammersmith. Marks & Spencer + Primark = Heaven.
By 3pm we made our way back to London Heathrow Airport. Annoyingly enough, the day we left the weather was perfect. Absolutely perfect. However, it was back to humid and misty Hong Kong. Thanking my mom again for doing what she does because without her, we wouldn’t be able to witness cities as beautiful as this.
Until the next adventure!
Link to my travelog: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BzMhV3GFIqI