VISUAL DIARY: LONDON
My top ten London things:
My favourite discovery this trip was Brixton, thanks to my friend Kalapi who invited me over for craft beers and burgers at Brixton Village Market. Brixton has tons of great little restaurants, cheap fresh veggies, cool outdoor food and designer markets. Plus you can buy sick African textiles and wigs in every style and colour.
Another glorious place is Richmond. Head to the riverside and eat ice cream and hang out. Take a walk, ogle houseboats and Jersey cows. If you're mobile, head up to Richmond Park and see grazing deer and find the keyhole vista out to St Paul's Cathedral.
If you find yourself in London in the summer, and the weather's behaving, take along a picnic and Pimm's and strip down to your basics at one of the parks. My votes go to Regent's Park and Hampstead Heath.
I'll be honest, I love East London. Head to Bricklane on a Sunday. It's really grimy but the vibe is ridiculous, plus there's cool markets like Upmarket and always sample sales. Some of the best street art is here too - you'll find works by Space Invader, Alexis Diaz, ROA, DALeast and many more. Have a drink at Indo and eat at Tayyabs in Whitechapel. Perch yourself on a boat and chug beer at the canal side Crate Brewery in Hackney Wick. Go to Dalston Roof Park!
There are lots of fantastic markets in London but East London's Broadway and nearby Netil are my picks. Find Violet Cakes, great vintage dresses, Chegworth Valley's unreal juices and lots of incredible independent designer wares. Easily one of the best spots to buy gifts and souvenirs in London.
Find a cute cafe to love. My two favourites are the adorable Scooter Cafe and the bicycle cafe look ma no hands!
There's tons of museums and galleries if you're into that and many of them are free though you might have to pay for special exhibitions. A good place to start is at either of the Tates.
Then walk along on the Southbank. There's tons to see not least Big Ben and the houses of Parliament and the London Eye, but always interesting street performers, sustainable projects and places to get a bite. In the summer, there's always a fun pop up outside the National Theatre.
There are great gigs in London all the time. I'm biased but I love the Village Underground which always has a good roster of shows and if you want to dance to an unbelievable soundsystem, Plastic People is your spot.
If you really want to see the city, ride a red double decker bus. It's not as efficient as the tube, but it's cheaper and you'll be able to see a great deal of the city's amazing architecture.
Some tips: Get an Oyster card for public transport (it'll save you a small fortune). Also pick up a Time Out free on Tuesdays outside most stations.