Bookish travel log part 1: visiting

This past Saturday, I came back from a four-day trip to London. I started planning it about a month ago, which you can read about here. I had a lot of fun and it was probably one of my most favourite city trips ever. So I wanted to share some of the highlights of my four days in the British capital.

This first picture is actually one of the pictures I’m most happy with. As we all know, Harry Potter leaves for Hogwarts from Platform 9 3/4, which is located between platforms 9 and 10 at King’s Cross Station. They actually rebuilt a small set away from the platforms where you can queue to get your picture taken, with the scarf of your Hogwarts house and the wand of your choosing. What I found most surprising though, is that there are two people who work this set: a photographer and the other person gives you the coat and wand, tells you how to pose and it’s also his job to wave the scarf around for effect.

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On my first day, I immediately went to one of London’s literary highlights: the British Library. It’s situated in a beautiful, enormous building not too far from King’s Cross station. It contains one of the biggest collections of books in the world, and there is an interesting free exhibition with first editions and very valuable books.

Next, I went on a Sherlock Holmes bender, so of course I stopped by 221b Baker Street. The original door is still there (even though the address has changed by now) and the house has been turned into a museum and gift shop. I didn’t pay for the museum, but I did admire the outside and walked through the gift shop. Look at those tiny violins!

That evening, I went to the opera, because you know, when you’re in west end, you have got to see a musical! I went to the beautiful Her Majesty’s Theatre and I thoroughly enjoyed The Phantom of the Opera. I loved the music already, but didn’t really know the story (besides the phantom that falls in love with an actress). If you go to London, be sure to take in one of the musicals.

And of course, you can’t go to London without stopping by the Madame Tussauds. Yes, I did take a bunch of the typical selfies with celebrities, here are some of my favourite bookish photos! Those of you who have been to Madame Tussauds as well, who have you taken pictures with that you are really proud of?

And of course, you can’t go to London at the end of the year, without taking in the Christmas spirit. Thankfully, I am a big fan of Christmas and I love all the lights, the atmosphere, the music, … All of it! So here are some pictures of London’s Christmas decorations and London by night in general.

And of course, you can’t go to London without going shopping (more on that later). I went for tea at Covent Garden, and then I went on to London’s holy grail for booklovers: Charing Cross Road. This is a shopping street filled with bookshops and that’s also where The Cursed Child is playing. Sadly, it’s completely sold out, so I didn’t get a chance to see it. But I didn’t know where it was playing, so I was happily surprised to stumble across the theatre. And of course, I went into every bookstore that I could find on Charing Cross Road. I will write another post soon with my entire book haul.

That was basically the gist of my trip to London. I managed to drag my mom to every bookstore and sneak in some book-related visits she didn’t know about. I had the best time, and I do plan on going back to check out everything else I missed. So, if you have any other tips and must-sees, please let me know!

Happy reading and travelling,

Loes M.

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