Simon Willison’s Weblog

Entries tagged london, travel

Filters: Type: entry × london × travel ×

What are some of the best offbeat attractions in London?

Camden Passage antiques market in Islington (near Angel tube) should be right up your street. It’s full of fascinating characters and intriguing shops, including bits and pieces of WWII memorabilia.

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What are the cheapest ways for a single man to eat in London without cooking?

24 hour fried chicken joints are a relatively cheap source of calories if you want hot food and don’t want to cook.

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What should one bring on a trip to London?

Bring an unlocked smartphone (Google Maps is essential, it has excellent public transport directions—don’t trust Apple Maps). You can get a pay-as-you-go SIM when you arrive, provided your phone is unlocked (check that you will be able to put a UK SIM in it).

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What are some fun things to do in Camden Town, London?

Check out Brew Dog—excellent craft beers and really good (and interesting) burgers.

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What are the few must-do things in London before one leaves this place for good?

In terms of museums, it really is worth checking out the big four: the British Museum, the Science Museum, the Natural History Museum and the V&A. They’re all exceptional (and free to enter). Here are some highlights...

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What are the coolest things to do in Dalston Junction (London, UK)?

That’s about 20 minutes from Broadway Market (at the south end of London Fields) which is very nice at the weekend.

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For a first-time visitor but longtime Anglophile, what’s essential to see and do in London?

Don’t spend too much time on the tube. It’s fast and convenient (and a marvellous piece of Victorian engineering) but its often better to walk if your journey is less than three stops. London is a delightful city to walk around, and you’re certain to see all sorts of interesting buildings on a 10 minute walk through any area. Get a data SIM for your phone and use your maps app to avoid getting lost and you’ll have the freedom to explore all kinds of interesting streets that most tourists who stick to the tube for everything completely miss.

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Where are the best places to go in London on a weekend for free?

Just walk. One of the joys of London is that any walk you take is guaranteed to turn up interesting architecture and surprises. I once spent an afternoon walking from Paddington to Tate Modern and saw loads of fascinating places that I had no idea were there. Use Google maps and look out for interesting looking squares, parks and back streets. These days I also tend to pop open Foursquare’s “Explore” tab every now and then to see if I’m walking near something particularly interesting.

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