Merry Me!

Tomorrow marks the LSE Bon Voyage event at Jillian’s in San Francisco. I will be in attendance along with a few other soon-to-be LSEers at an event where we can all get to know each other (and LSE alumni), ask questions and hang out! With less than two months until the big move, I’m experiencing a heightened level of excitement and nervousness! I’m sure the nerves are natural as I am leaving behind my family, my boyfriend and everything that I have known for the past 23 years, but the excitement… yes, that’s the part that’s best! Since I have been assigned housing (my second choice, but a great location, nonetheless), I have taken the time to explore the area surrounding my flat and have been getting thoroughly excited about the opportunities for education and entertainment surrounding my new home!

Below is a map of the area that I will be living in, on the corner of High Holborn & Drury Lane (Postcode WC1V); see the arrow.

HH Housing 
Although I was 50/50 on the area when I first got word on my housing, I have found that it is close to so many brilliant points of interest that I’ve started getting thoroughly excited! Since walking is the mode of transportation for most, the fact that the points of interest are within walking distance or a short tube ride, makes this all so fantastic. Beyond that, many public places such as museums and historical sites are free to visit, helping to offset the otherwise ridiculously high cost of living in the city. Here are some awesome places I will definitely be checking out once I arrive (all traveling distances & times are courtesy of Transport for London):

* The British Museum: Located on Great Russell Street, a short four minute walk from where I will be living, this is on the top of my list. The British Museumis world renowned and has an amazing exhibits that constantly change. Although some exhibitions can be seen at a cost, entrance to the museum is 100% free!

* Covent Garden Market: Although touristy, Covent Garden is a very cool market with quirky craft stalls, boutiques and restaurants. At only nine minutes walking, it’s a nearby jaunt for all things cool. In addition to shopping, fashion and food, it also boasts some interesting history and architecture!

covent garden market

* The National Gallery: This gallery houses Western European paintings from 1250 AD. Think Van Gogh, da Vinci, Cézanne and Constable. Only a thirteen minute walk. Brilliant.

* Trafalgar Square: A short fifteen minute stroll from my flat lies Trafalgar Square, home to Nelson’s Column, the largest Christmas tree in London come December (courtesy of Norway) and St. Martin-in-the-Fields church. All around, a top tourist sight with so many goings on at any given point.

* The London Eye: Question: The Eiffel Tower: Paris as ______ : London.  
Answer: The London Eye. Although it’s new (built in 2000), the London Eye offers amazing views of London and its awe-inspiring sights. A thirty minute walk from my place, it’s not super close, but it’s very much one of those must-see one-time deals. And the “flight,” as the experience is so aptly named, costs 17GBP with no student discounts available… Although it’s pretty cool, it may not make the top of my list.st_james_palace

* St. James’ Palace: Built between 1531 and 1536, St. James’ Palace has a pretty amazing history, having acted as the home of many famous queens and kings throughout history. After reading The Other Boleyn Girl, the twisted history of the monarchy tends to pique my interest. A worthwhile twenty-nine minute walk from my flat, St. James’ housed Anne Boleyn the night of her coronation.


* St. Paul’s Cathedral: Not so close, but not all that far, all things considered. A twenty-nine minute walk from my flat to the front steps of St. Paul’s,  the cathedral is the fourth in a line of cathedrals occupying that very land that has been dedicated to St. Paul since 604AD. Talk about history. The current cathedral, with it’s world-famous dome was built from 1675 to 1710 and costs 8.50 GBP to visit. Better yet, attend a Sunday Service at 10:15 and get the full experience… for free!

With so many sights nearby, I have been tempted to invest in a bicycle (a cheap-o version, mind you) upon arrival. Although walking is commonplace and a good way to get some exercise and sight-see, I find that biking is equally invigorating, plus it’s a huge time saver!

Want to see what attractions are near to you?
This site allows you to map attractions within a given area (5, 10 or 20 minute walking) based on your postcode, nearest tube station or nearby attraction!

Happy Travels,

Signature Stamp - Shannon


4 responses to this post.

  1. Posted by leonieg on July 21, 2009 at 7:25 AM

    Hi, I really enjoyed reading your blog and am looking forward to finding out how you find London and all the attractions listed above and I also wanted to let you know that I have several friends in that area and they love their location, so I’m sure you’ll have a blast. There’s a concept being run by Gekko ( which might be of some interest when you’re in London as it would maybe help you get to know the city and importantly the best places to eat! It requires you to write a short review on the Gekko website, of a restaurant that you have visited, the prize is to become a food critic for a month, with four free meals for two at some of the best restaurants in your area. To enter, all you need to do is sign up to Gekko (it’s a bit like facebook) and review a hotel or restaurant. If you do this, you are automatically entered into the draw to become a food critic for the month! If you’re interested then you can find more details on the Gekko Blog. Its a fab deal and I thought it might be ideal for you as it would help you get to know the restaurants in London and it gives you the chance to eat great food for free!


    • @leonieg: Thanks for the tip! Good to hear that your friends are enjoying their time in London as well. I’m all about free stuff, so I’ll definitely check out that site! Great info :)


  2. mhh … this is my first comment ever on this bloggy thing… dunno what to say…well..

    “you will love the uk”


  3. now with an avatar… everything’s so complicated on here..grr


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