My Dream Trip to London (SOLO)

It has always been my dream to travel to London. I’ve always been fascinated by attractions like Big Ben, the British accents and of course the royal family. When I first got my passport back in 2020, it was specifically for an upcoming trip to London. But then, COVID hit and my dream trip was delayed. Three years later, I was finally able to visit! 

Where I Stayed

I saved some coins by staying outside of London at the Renaissance London Heathrow hotel. I picked this hotel for a few reasons. 

1. It’s right next to the airport (which also has a tube, or train, to easily get to central London). 

2. This is a Marriott owned hotel, and I get a discount as well as rewards points! 

3. Unlike the many budget hotels that tend to be in central London, this one was spacious! It was also beautifully decorated and my entire vibe. 

With my discount, I only paid $89 a night for my stay! This hotel also had two restaurants and a cafe with different pastries, coffees and teas. 

What I Wore

I traveled to London during the Spring season, so a raincoat and umbrella was a must! Aside from a few showers, the weather was actually great. Since I was traveling solo, I didn’t want to wear anything that stood out too much, so I stuck to neutrals. 

I’m so happy I purchased this tote bag for my trip! Not only was it stylish and giving Lowkey luxe vibes, but I was also able to fit plenty of things inside. Like my camera, handheld tripod, snacks, portable charger and more.

Where I Ate

My main goal while visiting was to try all of the traditional dishes in London. I had the most delicious fish and chips at Bar Eleven inside of my hotel.

I also tried a Steak & Ale pie (similar to a pot pie) at Nag’s Head in Covent Garden. Of course, I had to try a traditional English breakfast at All Bar One in Windsor.

The breakfast was completely different from what I’d normally eat, but, it was SO filling! The traditional breakfast included eggs, sourdough toast, baked beans, grilled tomatoes, mushrooms and sausages (I opted for vegan sausage since they didn’t have any non-pork options).

Dinner by the Tower bridge at The Ivy was one of my favorite dining experiences in London. The view was absolutely everything, especially when the sun began to set. I enjoyed a 2-course dinner (there was a 3-course option, but I knew I wouldn’t be able to eat all of that food) and a special cotton-candy cocktail.

Also, I highly recommend you try some pastries and other sweets from local cafes and bakeries.

What I Did

I bought tickets for a hop-on-hop-off bus tour to get around both London and Windsor. I highly recommend this, because it gives you a chance to see all of the attractions and to get pics away from all of the tourists on the ground. You can also get off the bus at any stop, and catch another bus whenever you’re ready to resume the tour. There’s a super helpful app you can download to keep track of the buses and attractions. Headphones were provided onboard so that you can learn all of London’s history and special landmarks during the ride.

Afternoon tea was one of my absolute favorites! I chose Prêt-àPortea at the Berkley specifically because it was a fashion-inspired tea experience.

It was amazing and so fancy! They served unlimited teas, several different sandwiches and deserts. Each desert was inspired by designers like Jean Paul Gaultier, Prada, Dolce & Gabbana and more. The service was great too! I honestly could’ve sat here all day, but forced myself to get up and explore the rest of London, haha.

Big Ben & The London Eye

Buckingham Palace

Covent Garden

Covent Garden was PACKED! It’s filled with restaurants and shopping. There’s also entertainment as well. Personally, I didn’t like how crowded it was (I also went on a weekend evening), but you can’t go to London without experiencing this area.

Visiting Windsor & Touring Windsor Castle 

Visiting Windsor was such a beautiful experience. It’s such a charming town, and it’s not as busy as central London. As soon as you exit the train station, you can see the ginormous Windsor Castle. I was literally shocked to see a castle in real life, and the fact that it was so huge. I was so excited to tour Windsor Castle, although they only let you tour some state apartments (rooms used by the royal family), Queen Mary’s dollhouse and St. Georges Chapel. We weren’t allowed to take pictures inside, but here are a few from their website that show you just how STUNNING the inside of the castle was.

 

OVERALL EXPERIENCE & TIPS

Traveling to London solo was one of the best trips and best experience. It felt so liberating to travel by myself and follow my own plan, especially in a place I’ve always wanted to visit. I was able to do every single thing and visit every landmark/place that I desired. I also felt safe while doing so. This was such a beautiful place and I can’t wait to visit again.

  1. Bring an umbrella and/or rain jacket – This is especially important if you’re traveling during the Spring season like I did. Rain is likely, so be prepared!
  2. Make reservations – Reservations are key to making sure you’ll have a seat at your desired restaurant. You don’t want to get there and find out they’re booked for the day or that there’s a long wait until a table is available.
  3. Keep the time change in mind – Be mindful of the time change when planning your trip. Take at least or day or two for traveling purposes only. Then plan your sightseeing outside of those days.
  4. Get an Oyster Card – This is great for getting around London and can be used on buses and trains. It’s convenient and saves you money. You can learn more about Oyster cards and where to get them here.
  5. Use hop-on-hop-off bus tours to get around – This was one of the best sight seeing experiences in my opinion. It helps you to travel effortlessly around London and see all of the major attractions.
  6. Wear comfortable shoes – unless you plan on balling out on taxis, make sure you wear comfortable shoes for exploring London. There’s so much to see and so much ground to cover!
  7. Book attractions – Be sure to book attractions and to book them in advance if possible. This guarantees your spot and helps you to layout your daily plan for your visit.
  8. If you’re planning to visit Windsor Castle, get your tickets in advance to avoid long lines (and believe me, the lines do get long!)
  9. Travel essentials – Be sure to bring a travel adapter to make sure you’re able to plug in your devices (UK sockets differ from the U.S.) and bring a portable charger to make sure your phone never dies while out exploring.
  10. Download the app City Mapper – This app was super helpful when it came to navigating London via bus, train and walking.

XO,

Jamie

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