There are many Londons to explore. From the bustle of Soho’s labyrinthine streets to the vertigo-inducing skyscrapers of the City, the capital has almost as many unique enclaves as its 8 million residents. With so much choice, and so much ground to cover, deciding what to do in 24 hours can be a daunting task. Even for myself, a lifelong Londoner, there are always new places to find and old favourites to rediscover. With TripAdvisor at hand though, a healthy appetite for all things cultural, and a topped-up Oyster card, you’d be surprised just how much you can fit in and how quickly you’ll find yourself an honorary Londoner.
One of London’s great virtues is its diversity; walk through pretty much any part of town and you’ll see different communities living side-by-side and sharing the best of what their cultures have to offer. If you’re arriving by rail into Euston, you can do no wrong with a traditional fry-up breakfast from the quaint bistro Cappadocia. Sit on its garden furniture and stuff yourself with fried delicacies and all the trimmings. Just a short walk away, there’s Drummond Street – famed for its community of Indian restaurants. If a fry-up doesn’t tickle the tastebuds, then try a masala dosa, a traditional south Indian breakfast of thin rice pancakes stuffed with potato curry.
You’ll no doubt need a walk after all of that, so hop on the tube for a few stops to the Barbican Centre, one of London’s most iconic brutalist buildings and cultural centres. Grab a coffee and take a seat in the courtyard by the fountains and then wander into the centre and explore the free art displays at the Curve gallery (recent displays have included the films of John Akomfrah and the startling photography of Richard Mosse). Or, check out the main gallery for larger exhibitions, including the stunning recent retrospective of painter Jean-Michel Basquiat.
Read the feature in the Guardian.
[This piece was published on 20/11/18]