An inexpensive date in London

Yesterday A and I decided to be extravagant and hop on the train to London. We only live 25 minutes away from London Marylebone, but only tend to visit for work. It does seem a shame, when there is so much to explore, so we arranged a day out with a friend and off we went.

We used railcards to get into London, saving 1/3rd off our travel. We then spent an hour and a half wandering around the bustling Borough Market, trying free samples, sniffing jars bursting with rich morsels of food and soaking up the delicious atmosphere.

We had a good childish giggle at "please do not touch the saucisson"...

We met a friend, who happens to be a well respected authority and published author on the life and works of Charles Dickens, and he gave us a walking tour of Southwark. I'd never really explored that area before, and was surprised how steeped in history it was.

The wall of the debtors prison which held Charles' father

A quote from Little Dorrit (also pictured: my feet)

Along the way, we also went into the London Hop Exchange and the wonderful man on the security desk kindly gave us a really colourful talk about the history there. He obviously loves the building a lot, and it's clear why. The architectural features really were spectacular. It was empty and calm, yet just off Borough High Street.

All in all we were walking for at least 4 hours. It was a glorious day for it - the weather was stunning - and it's inspired me to get some of the Dickens novels I haven't yet read from the library. There were some lovely gardens and churchyards on our walk, and we snapped a few photos of plants we liked as we're currently planning our garden.

I'd like to say we brought sandwiches, but we were a bit naughty and spent £10 on some wonderful street food which we enjoyed in a small local park. I don't regret it one bit, as it was food I would struggle to make at home. We ended our adventure in the afternoon, hopping on the train home and spending the evening chatting and drinking wine in our garden.

Total spend: £20 each for about 9 hours of entertainment, in one of the most expensive cities in the world.


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