Once you are up and ready to start your day, take full advantage of the Traditional British Breakfast offered by your hotel. You are likely to find many items that resemble the Traditional American Breakfast, such as eggs, bacon, sausages, bread products, porridge, coffee, and juice. You might also find a few pleasant surprises. Black pudding is common, as are roasted tomatoes and sauteed mushrooms. While I occasionally try dishes that contain meat on my travels, I am of the vegetarian persuasion. I was thrilled about the tomatoes and mushrooms, but I didn't try the black pudding. Black pudding is not actually a pudding. Traditionally, it is a sausage made of pigs' blood, onions, herbs, spices, and oatmeal or barley. It is also something you are likely to encounter at your breakfast buffet. You might also find rice and curry (remember, there is a large Indian population in the U.K., and the culinary influence is very much present), and you will absolutely encounter black tea. I am a great lover of both coffee and tea, and as such, I can tell you that drinking black tea in the U.K. is more satisfying than what you get in most places in the U.S.. The tea is fuller bodied, and I would recommend that even your average coffee drinker give it a try.
|Outside of Victoria and Albert Museum|
Once you are successfully able to peel yourself away from the V & A Museum, take a walk down the street to Harrods. Harrods is the world's most famous luxury department store. This department store is a landmark itself. It was first established in the 1800's and has alternated between private and public ownership over the years. In 1985, it was purchased by Mohamad Al-Fayed and his brother Ali, who added some visual interest to the already iconic store. They added the Egyptian room, which features memorials to both his son Dodi and Diana, Princess of Wales after their tragic deaths. The gorgeous Egyptian artistry alone is ample reason to take a ride up the escalators (which also have historic implications, being the one of the world's first set and all). If the memorials and Egyptian artistry aren't reason enough, the Harrods website is well organized, and contains a section that is specifically geared toward helping you to plan your trip.
|Afternoon tea treats|
|Aerial view of Skypod Bar|
For London, Day 1, here are our SLURGES and SAVERS:
- Use public transit (prices vary)
- Hotel Breakfast (included)
- Lunch (grab 'n go or pack a granola bar)
- V & A Museum (Free)
- Harrods (Free, unless you shop or eat there)
- SkyPod Bar (the drinks aren't cheap, but no cover charge, and it's less expensive than dinner)
- Afternoon Tea
- Make sure you know what time your last train is or you will find yourself taking an extra taxi-cab.
- Also, make sure your credit card has a chip in it so that it can be read. Additionally, you need to know the PINN that goes with it; signing isn't generally the manner in which the transaction is completed.