Travel, Teach, Live in Europe and Middle East
If you have any plans on visiting London, and you should, as it is one of the best cities in the world to visit, try some of the less touristy areas and see parts of London where the locals go.
The majority of visitors to London always visit Harrods, they may not purchase anything due to the very high costs of its merchandise, but they contribute to the large crowds that can be found in the store on any given day. Instead, when next in London, visit the Liberty Store on Great Marlborough Street, it is considered the quintessential English emporium. Opened in 1875 with a focus on value, quality and beautiful designed products.. It has a mock Tudor facade and quirky layout., but you will find the the latest fashions, as well as design classics from up-coming designers of both women and mens clothing. Among it's variety of accessories, are designer handbag,; the hottest sunglasses in various styles and shapes, and a fabulous selection of shoes, from retro brogues to clogs in many colours. The Emporium is famous for its scarf room where you will find the largest selection and styles available in London. While this store is very well known, it does not draw the large crowd of tourists to be found at more world famous stores..
Hyde Park is another famous landmark that is known around the world with its, horseback riding, tennis, Serpentine Gallery and Speakers Corner, but there is another larger park in London - Richmond Park in the southwest - where visitors can spend a pleasant day visiting the ponds, gardens and ancient trees, or renting a bike to ride into the rolling hills. After an active day they can enjoy real English Tea and Scones in the elegant Georgian Pembrooke Lodge, which has a view of the Thames Valley.
Madame Tussauds is famous, and rightly so, with its interactive exhibits, Chamber of Horrors and Spirit of London ride depicting from Tudor times to the present, but the lack of crowd control and the very hefty fee to visit acts as a deterrent for many visitors. There is an alternative, the interactive galleries at the Museum of London, which recount 350 years of the cities history, including the Lord Mayors gaudy gold coach, and the piece-de-resistence "the Georgian Pleasure Garden" with mannequins adorned in wigs, masks and period dress from centuries past. An added reasons to go, there is no admission cost and crowds are not as large.
Spend a pleasant day along the South bank of the River Thames, which flows along some of the most popular places to see in London - The House of Parliament, The Tower of London and the London Eye. This is the cultural heart of the city, buzzing with things to see and do all year, some of which are free. Being away from the bustling West End, it offers a relaxed shopping experience, among unique boutiques, irresistible jewellery stores, and Gabriels Wharf, a riverside oasis of shops, studios, bars and restaurants, from where one can get a spectacular view of St. Pauls.
When in London, do what the natives do, stay away from the expensive and crowded areas while still seeing the best the city has to offer.
Mona Graham, A Way To Travel - http://www.awaytotravel.com