Over Easter weekend, David and I visited London for the first time. We wanted to have a quintessential London experience and fully embraced a weekend of tourist-y adventures. Weather wise, we were blessed with the most beautiful sunny skies and temperatures in the high 50’s to low 60’s which was ideal for exploring but also bundling up. We have a lot of ground to cover so let’s dive right into this Spring in London travel blog!
Day 1: Arrival, Camden Market, Notting Hill
We flew out of Baltimore on Thursday night, passed through Reykjavik, and arrived in London late morning on Friday. We flew on FlyPlay airline which uses Stansted rather than Heathrow. It took about an hour and a half by uber to arrive to our hotel in Kennsington. You can read all about our stay at the K+K Hotel George here or visit the hotel’s website here. It’s a beautiful 4 star hotel right next to Earl’s Court station. We loved the location and the room was clean and bright and for under $180 was a great value!
Our room wasn’t ready yet on arrival so we dropped off our bags and headed out to try the Tube. We took a wrong turn but eventually made it to Camden High Street. It was an experience to say the least! By this point it was mid afternoon and we were quite hungry so we went straight to Camden Market in search of lunch.
It was a beautiful day and a Friday afternoon so the market was truly packed. When I say packed I mean like pressed together squeeze your way through the crowd kind of packed but we laughed and didn’t get stressed by it. We loved exploring all the side avenues and offshoots and didn’t hesitate to stop and try something new.
Our first plate was a curry chicken dish, the sweet stall owner was passing out samples and we were immediately won over. It was warm and savory and flavorful, we were big fans! Then just a few stalls down I spotted the famous Halloumi fries I had seen on TikTok. It was like a Middle Eastern mozzarella stick, cheesy and delicious and doused in tasty sauces- and completely gluten free!
We spent the next hour wandering around before finally braving the line for arepas. Some of the more popular stalls have waits that could rival Disney World and this was one! Forty five minutes later we had steaming stuffed arepas and went by the canal to sit and eat.
We rode my favorite Lime scooters back to the hotel. I have to admit, though, I enjoyed them more in Paris. The roads in London don’t seem to be nearly as bike/scooter friendly as other cities so we decided no more scooters this trip.
When we got back to the hotel our room was ready and the hotel staff had already brought our bags up to our room for us- such a nice touch! We picked up our cameras and headed out on a photo walk to Notting Hill.
This was a new experience for us and a highlight of the trip. David is my primary second shooter so we photograph together often but never in this sort of totally relaxed, no pressure setting. We will definitely be incorporating photo walks into all our future trips! We had the best time being silly, talking, and getting creative together.
On the way back to the hotel we stopped by a little cheese and wine shop for dinner. I picked out a few cheeses and gluten free crackers and David got a pint of ice cream. We had a picnic dinner back at the hotel and watched half a movie together before calling it a night.
Day 2: Big Bus Tour, Borough Market, Dishoom
On day two of this Spring in London travel blog, we started out on a Big Bus Tour. We really wanted to see as much of the city as we could and with the open air double decker bus, this seemed like the perfect way to do it!
We caught the bus at Gloucester Road and rode for about an hour and a half enjoying the sites before getting off across the city at the Tower Bridge stop. From there it was a short ten minute walk to Borough Market.
This was my favorite market of the trip! It felt like somewhere I would go regularly if I was a local. With all the cheese and specialty food stalls like olives, truffles, and sweets, it was somewhere I could see us going on a Saturday morning to have fun and pick up items for the week. It was busy but Camden Market prepared us well!
We had a little debacle with a dish I’d seen on TikTok, the exotic mushroom risotto, not being gluten free. I realized it before taking a bite thankfully. Even though David doesn’t like mushrooms he happily enjoyed the whole dish. For me, we picked up some Indian street food and pad thai.
We also shared this amazing cup of fresh strawberries layered with hot milk chocolate, it’s simple but absolutely delicious! We also tasted our way through many of the cheese stalls and I have to admit, I’m incapable of tasting a cheese and not buying it. I bought every cheese I sampled except one, I went a little crazy!
We also stopped by the Free From Bakery stand where I picked up gluten free scones and bread (for my cheese of course!). For David we picked up donuts at Bread Ahead before heading over to see the Tower Bridge.
I took a few pictures then we hopped back on the Big Bus to continue our tour around the city. We made one final stop at Buckingham Palace. I seriously need to rewatch The Crown now with a whole new perspective!
We took the last bus of the night back towards Kennsington and got off at Kennsington High Street. Our friends had recommended Dishoom to us, the wait was about an hour and forty five minutes but we were able to get into the bar after just a half hour. It was perfect timing as we weren’t that hungry yet but definitely wanted to get off our feet.
The meal was delicious but it was the theming and vibe of the restaurant that really wowed us. Dishoom totally transports you to a breezy cafe in Bombay. There was a plethora of gluten free options for me and we shared everything so we could try more. We ordered the chicken ruby (which was by far the standout of the night), the mattar paneer, the chili butter bhutta (a chili butter rubbed corn dish), bhel (a cold puffed rice salad that’s very light and filled with fresh herbs and pomegranate), and the gunpowder potatoes.
Before we knew it the restaurant was closing. It was a beautiful, short walk back to the hotel, perfect after our meal. We watched the other half of our movie then passed out completely!
Day 3: Southbank Centre Market, Tate London, London Eye Champagne Experience
On our final day of this Spring in London Travel Blog, we picked up some coffees then again rode the Big Bus tour (it was a two day ticket) to take us to the center of the city. We missed our stop for Southbank haha so we got off at Covet Garden and walked across the Waterloo Bridge which was beautiful.
It took some wandering and exploring but we at last found the Southbank Centre Market (for future reference, it’s not along the water like I had thought, it’s a block in). This truly felt like a locals market and it seemed like most of the people there were Londoners, not tourists. There were tons of food stalls with a wide array of options. I decided to get the gluten free arepas and David got duck fat fries and bao buns. It was okay but I thought the arepas at Camden Market were better. I would get it again though!
Then we rode the public bus over to the Tate London, we LOVED riding the bus and would definitely rely on it much more on future trips! JMW Turner has been my favorite artist since I was seventeen in AP Art History class and it was a delight sharing some of his works with David. The Tate London collection is the largest in the world but is more focused on early works, unfinished works, and sketches. We really wanted to get over to the National Gallery as they also have a large collection of Turner’s work but we just couldn’t make it there in time.
As the sun started to set, we headed to the London Eye. For Christmas, my Pop had gifted us a London Eye Champagne Experience. We scheduled it for around sunset on our last day which was perfect timing. We liked how the city felt familiar and it was the ideal way to reminisce on all we’d done this weekend. The ride goes by faster than expected but was a lot of fun. We likely wouldn’t do it again but if you’ve never done it then I’d highly recommend it once!
Finally, we couldn’t leave London without trying some classic fish and chips. We took the bus over to Hobsons Fish and Chips by Hyde Park. They’re famous for their gluten free fish and chips and we weren’t disappointed! It was another highlight of the trip! The food was phenomenal, I ordered the cod and David ordered the haddock. The batter was everything you could want, crispy and flavorful, and the fish was perfectly tender. I couldn’t get enough of the house made tartar sauce too! it was so special that they had such an extensive gluten free menu so we could both try the classic.
Spring in London Travel Blog Overall Thoughts
We were so thankful to have this weekend to getaway together just the two of us. My parents said we should make a weekend parents only trip like this a yearly tradition and we were all too ready to agree with that!
I described London as having many personalities. Some cities, like Paris, are like one cohesive person who knows exactly who they are. London, however, is like 17 people who are all exceptionally different. From Camden to Kensington to center city, ancient landmarks to modern structures, London was one of the most eclectic cities I’ve ever seen and we had the happiest weekend exploring many of London’s distinct personalities.
I hope you enjoyed this Spring in London Travel Blog! If you’d like to see more of our travels, reviews, and trip reports, there’s plenty more from around the globe here!