The London Diaries: Views of the City & Some of My Favourite Spots

One of the things I really wanted to do over the summer was to visit the Sky Garden. I love viewing places from above so it seemed like the perfect way to enjoy London, without the extortionate expense of the Shard. The Sky Garden is free, though does require advance booking, and includes an inside garden area and large viewing balcony.

 photo The Sky Garden 7_zpssnr6kz7q.jpg photo The Sky Garden 6_zpsqos8vovx.jpg photo The Sky Garden 5_zpspucvitb5.jpg photo The Sky Garden 4_zpskrhp14q2.jpg photo The Sky Garden 2_zpsmmkta4gn.jpg photo The Sky Garden 3_zpsgdrqpxlh.jpgI felt the garden area was a little disappointing, lots of trees and not many flowers. The views however were stunning.

We had originally planned to climb the Monument after this, but as this towers above that view we decided to give it a miss. Definitely worth an hour of your time to soak in the view, possibly have an (overpriced) cocktail and a good natter with your best friends.

 photo Favourite London Things 12_zpsgjp8dxzl.jpg photo Favourite London Things 1_zpst2fsfarc.jpg photo Favourite London Things 16_zpsirxptiae.jpgOver the last week I managed to squeeze in visiting almost all my favourite places, seeing some of my favourite people, and eating a lot of my favourite food.

After W’s leaving drinks we wandered along the Thames, crossing Albert Bridge. It might sounds silly, but I’m a little bit in love with this bridge. It’s like something out of a Disney movie, light up, old-fashioned and generally just beautiful. Perfect as the sun goes out.

 photo Favourite London Things 17_zpsuh59fcy3.jpg photo Favourite London Things 19_zpsiu1bkotf.jpg photo Favourite London Things 20_zpsgtohmnnz.jpg photo Favourite London Things 21_zpsxxcmsauq.jpg photo Favourite London Things 22_zpsgol9oitf.jpg photo Favourite London Things 18_zpspbpjisxf.jpg photo Favourite London Things 2_zpspnnkfylg.jpgLast Saturday was a whirlwind. Scotch pancakes fuelled our morning of shuffling around Borough Market. I’d never seen it so busy, it was actually a little unpleasant as it was SO overcrowded. I couldn’t find the end of the queue to order those gorgeous looking Scotch eggs, so we grabbed a pretty yummy Salt Beef lunch (rye bread sandwich for me, bagel melt for W, both minus the gherkin, because EWW…) before escaping to the relative quiet of the city. We’d picked up some doughnuts from Bread Ahead but in all honesty they weren’t that great. Overly sweet filling, relatively dry dough. A disappointment compared to their brownies.

 photo Favourite London Things 10_zpscg2h10k7.jpg photo Favourite London Things 8_zpszcbuhhis.jpg photo Favourite London Things 5_zps9kexkpyu.jpg photo Favourite London Things 3_zpsgxjczlu6.jpg photo Favourite London Things 6_zpswuuwvqd2.jpgWe’d originally planned on making the most of the Open House events across London. We’d been too late to enter the ballets for Downing Street, the BT tower and 1 Canada Square, so I aimed at the Bank of England. Unfortuantely the queue put us off, so we meandered over to the Emirates Skyline. Whilst not included in Travelcards it does provide a cheap way of getting another view of London – and I personally loved the calmness of the flight. And watching the waterskiing lessons as we came into land!

 photo Favourite London Things 11_zpszozsvotf.jpgI then introduced W to St Katharine’s Docks, which is definitely one of my favourites spots in London, before we headed to tick off one of my 30 Before 30 with some lobster. We visited the Burger & Lobster in Harvey Nics, hoping to avoid queuing. In the end we still waited 30 minutes but it was pretty much worth it. Our lobsters were sweet and succulent, the lemony garlic butter the perfect accompaniment. I reckon it would be the perfect date night as it’s something a little different, we definitely had a giggle trying to extract all the meat!

 photo Favourite London Things 14_zpsgb5hqdoo.jpg photo Favourite London Things 13_zpsufl8tvsk.jpgMy original Sunday plan of dividing packing time with a picnic in Richmond Park was foiled due to a duathalon; we ended up lying on Ham Common for a few hours. We watched the cricket match, soaked up some sun and then had a drive around the area. Perhaps not what I had planned, but a lovely little break anyhow.

 photo Favourite London Things 15_zpswbijnby3.jpgAnd then that was it, our summer in London was over. On Monday we moved back up to the Midlands, and tomorrow I leave again for Kent. This summer has led me to fall completely and utterly in love with our capital city, and I would dearly love to live there for longer. It’s allowed me to live with my boyfriend for the first time, it’s allowed me to meet some of my favourite bloggers. I’ve eaten a lot of street food, attended events, and even spent 18 hours in Manchester doing some filming. A fantastic summer by anyone’s standards. And now this brings me to the end of The London Diaries. I still have quite a few London related posts waiting, but I’ll spread them out a little. After all, being on a student budget means little eating out from now on! Until next year, London… (or Wednesday at least, hello grad interviews!).

Where is your favourite spot in London? How was your summer?