👑 Notes on London

I spent two and a half months in the spring of 2022 living in London. Here are my notes:

  • I could never get bored of London. There is so much to do.
  • The tube and buses make cars unnecessary. Everywhere in London is accessible with public transportation. It’s surprisingly freeing.
  • London museums are free and amazing. I went to the British Museum twice and still didn’t get to see all it has to offer. The Natural History Museum is worth a visit for the building alone. I also enjoyed the Museum of London and National Gallery.
  • When you visit, get a Santander Bicycle and take a ride through Hyde Park. Stop at the cafe by the lake for a snack.
  • Other lovely parks I visited include Hampstead Heath, Bishops Park, Holland Park, and Regent’s Park. I wish I had taken the time to make it out to Richmond Park.
  • The theatre is fun and affordable. Avoid the big productions. Go see something more intimate. The Play That Goes Wrong is a blast.
  • There are outdoor markets everywhere, and the food is always great. I particularly recommend Portobello Market, Borough Market, Broadway Market, and the small farmers’ market at Hampstead Heath.
  • Eat a Sunday roast and a full English breakfast. But don’t stick only to traditional English food. London is full of amazing cuisine from all over the world.

🔔 A Philadelphia Itinerary

For the next few weeks, I’ll be in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Here are a few activities on my to-do list:

  1. Visit Reading Terminal, eat a pretzel.
  2. Visit the Philadelphia Museum of Art.
  3. History stuff: Independence Hall, Ben Franklin Museum, Portrait Gallery in the Second Bank. Skip the Liberty Bell.
  4. Go to a Phillies game.
  5. Spend a day in Fairmount Park.
  6. Make a weekend trip to NYC.
  7. Make a weekend trip to DC.
  8. Eat a roast pork sandwich, either from John’s Roast Pork or Tommy DiNic’s.
  9. Eat a cheesesteak, but not from Pat’s or Geno’s.
  10. Watch: Rocky.
  11. Read: The Autobiography of Benjamin Franklin.

🐗 Notes on Florence, Italy

I spent the first quarter of 2022 living in Florence, Italy. Here are my notes:

  • I recommend visiting in the shoulder or off-season (I was there from January to April). The weather is mild, and there aren’t as many tourists as in the summertime.
  • We stayed in the neighborhood of San Frediano. I recommend it for long-term stays. The neighborhood is populated by locals, but still within walking distance of the city center. I also like the Santo Spirito neighborhood, but it’s much more touristy.
  • The Mercato Centrale is the place to go if you need a break from traditional Italian food.
  • Walk through the Piazza della Signoria after dark. The statues and buildings are beautiful to view in the moonlight. And you won’t have to jostle with tour groups for space.
  • The Duomo is the most stunning building I have ever seen. Buy tickets to go up the dome and down to the crypts. Make sure you visit the Opera del Duomo Museum. It’s well worth it.
  • My two favorite places to read a book are in Parco di Villa Strozzi and on the Pescaia di Santa Rosa.
  • Speaking of books, the trains are a great place to get reading done. Make the time to visit Siena, San Gimignano, Bologna, and/or Cinque Terre while in the area.
  • The pasta and pizza are amazing, but I miss the gelato most. Gelateria La Carraia is spectacular.