When many people think of a country or city, they immediately have a picture in their mind of what it is like even if they have never actually been there themselves. For example, if in the case of London you only think of rain, red telephone boxes or the royal family, you would be mistaken. This metropolis has a great deal more to offer than that. Although I must state that the cityscape is of course heavily influenced by the royal family and the pretty old telephone boxes. But somehow the image in your mind that has been created by the media does still come to the fore.

Equipped with a rain jacket, sunglasses – the weather forecast gave cause to hope for a few days of decent weather – a camera and the mini Perillo in my bag, we set off on our trip at the beginning of May. Our itinerary included the many tourist hotspots such as Buckingham Palace, Trafalgar Square, Westminster Abbey, Piccadilly Circus, the London Eye, the Tower of London, Tower Bridge, Big Ben and so on. To get a better overall perspective, we decided on a bright sunny day to join the free guided tour of the city offered by NEW EUROPE; this means that at the end of the tour you decide how much it was worth. This tour is definitely recommended and is also highly entertaining: the guides are not only very knowledgeable on the history, politics and culture of the city but also communicate this knowledge with great enthusiasm. The various hop-on/hop- off bus tours throughout the city are best avoided; the traffic congestion means that it is quicker to travel on the underground or on foot.

We chose to stop for a bite to eat at Borough Market by the Thames – this old food market is home to numerous restaurants and market halls and definitely offers something for every taste. In spring, the many parks such as St. James Park near Buckingham Palace are highly recommended – visitors can expect to see a real sea of flowers. And you can also get away from the hustle and bustle of the city and relax there. You should be aware that in London you are always surrounded by people; the city is thriving. Eight million people from around 200 countries in the world come together in the English capital. By the way, we were spared the infamous rainy weather in England on this short trip.

VERDICT: London is a city that you need to have seen and experienced. Maybe you too will soon be hearing the words “London calling”…

COUNTRY   United Kingdom
CITY    London
NATURE OF STAY  city trip
PLACES OF INTEREST  Buckingham Palast, Trafalgar Square, Westminster Abbey, Piccadilly Circus, London Eye, Tower of London, Tower Bridge, Big Ben usw.
PARTICULAR HIGHLIGHT sunny weather, walk through St. James Park; my visual highlight was the hotel at King’s Cross/St. Pancras Station
LOCAL SPECIALITY Because of there are living 200 different nations in London, so nearly every culinary desire could be fulfilled. “Borough Market“ offers a hugh spectrum of different food and satisfies many tastes.
INSIDER TIP Guided city tours from NEW EUROPE are free of charge! The guide hit the ground running: she was so excited about the city, its history and its culture.  You just have to pay what you want, if you like the tour.

TEXT Lena Winter IMAGES Lena Winter