The sun was shining gloriously, my apple green soft-top Maserati was parked neatly under the shadow of the Shard and I had a generously proportioned gin cocktail in front of my hand for sipping*. We’d popped into the Tanqueray Gin Garden at Bar 31 in the Shangri La (disclosure: we were invited guests of the Shangri La) right next to London Bridge Station, and life was good.
* One of these things isn’t quite accurate – I’ll leave you to guess which. Hint: I haven’t got rid of my taxi app just yet – and make sure you have a chauffeur if you’re going to bring your apple green Maserati with you.
I simply had to draft out a round-up of the 9 best London afternoon teas I’ve enjoyed in 2018/2019, especially as someone, somewhere in the universe has designated this week national afternoon tea week. I mean it’s only the best time ever to reminisce about afternoons of luxury – who needs more excuses to book a few more!?
Not all afternoon teas are created equal. Crumbling scones, dry sandwiches and, horror of all horrors, having to share or barter around the delicate confections of cake that crown afternoon tea tiers. But. None of these have made it onto this list.
Flight delays and cancellations – they’re the worst way to start and end much looked-forward-to trips. Disclosure: This post was commissioned by MYFLYRIGHT who help travellers who have had flights in the EU delayed or cancelled to claim compensation.
Tap tap-tap. After a long weekend exploring Cologne, we were all pretty tired. Some of our group had flown back to the UK a bit earlier in the day, landing in Manchester, but we sorry few had rocked up and checked into our London flight a few hours later. Arriving at our gate – one at the very end of the airport terminal – we began to suspect that our flight was delayed when there were no airline staff anywhere near said gate, but we chalked it up to ‘one of those travel things’.
With a couple of nights to explore, every time that I investigated where to stay in Rotterdam the newly opened luxury hotel, The James, kept popping up at the top of all of my searches.
Whether it was fate or clever Google remarketing, I’ll never know, but it was such a lovely stay that I’ll chalk it up to fate. (Ps. that’s what I’ll blame all my future booking choices on I think – fates that have excellent taste in luxurious hotels.)
It isn’t often that you visit an incredibly popular tourist attraction and find an afternoon of peace. The Kinderdijk Windmills were designated a UNESCO world heritage site and I was visiting for the heritage – but what I hadn’t counted on was glorious sunshine and a quiet fishermans nook to spend an afternoon in.
Kinderdijk is situated in the Alblasserwaard polder at the coming together of the Lek and Noord rivers. To drain the polder, a system of 19 windmills was built around 1740. This group of mills is the largest concentration of old windmills in the Netherlands.