London’s spice trail: the sights, tastes, smells and sounds of India – in Wembley
The Guardian | London holidays
by Phoebe Taplin
1w ago
In one of a series of new women-led tours, groups visit the shops, cafes, restaurants and magnificent Hindu temple on Wembley’s Ealing Road Statues of 41 deities in bright robes and garlands watch as we walk, silent and sock-footed, through endless intricate archways and air that smells of sandalwood and jasmine. A mirrored table under the elaborate central dome reflects rings of dancing figures. The Shri Sanatan Hindu temple, opened in 2010 on the Ealing Road, is a mesmerising slice of north India surrounded by grey London suburbs. The walls and more than 200 limestone pillars were hand-carve ..read more
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‘We came away awestruck’: 13 writers on Europe’s hidden treasures, from Chagall in Kent to Rome’s secret Caravaggios
The Guardian | London holidays
by Max Benato, Paul Tierney, Andy Pietrasik, Kate Abbott, Dixe Wills, Jess Cartner-Morley, Rachel Dixon, Claire Wrathall, Oliver Wainwright, Phoebe Taplin, Charlotte Higgins, Katherine Rundell and Austin Vince
1M ago
David Bowie’s Berlin bolthole and the world’s most stolen artwork in Ghent are among the cultural icons that our writers have long wished to visit When you have a partner obsessed with architecture, you can’t expect to go on holiday without a detour to see some building or another. So if it’s a city break, that usually means a walking tour of the architectural highlights interspersed with visits to art galleries ..read more
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A return trip to John Betjeman’s Metro-land, 50 years on from his classic TV documentary
The Guardian | London holidays
by Andrew Martin
2M ago
The late poet laureate’s hymn to the commuter towns of Middlesex, Herts and Bucks is still a great guide to the Metropolitan line, the world’s first urban ‘underground’ railway Here is a plan for a day out on the Metropolitan line of London’s underground, although we will at no stage be under ground, and will travel 25 miles from London. First, however, a little history. In 1863, the Metropolitan Railway (Met) built the first subterranean railway – from Paddington to Farringdon. Five years later, the Met, an ambitious and restless outfit, added to this an above-ground northern prong, from Bake ..read more
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‘They do my head in’: tour guides call for loudspeaker ban at London attractions
The Guardian | London holidays
by James Tapper
5M ago
Official tour leaders complain that freelance guides with large groups and voice amplifiers are making their job impossible They’re changing the guard at Buckingham Palace – but these days Christopher Robin would have trouble making out anything Alice says to him. Official Blue Badge guides working in London say a new wave of freelance tour guides at major tourist sights are deafening them and their guests by using megaphones and portable voice amplifiers. The Institute for Tourist Guiding (ITG) says its members are increasingly concerned about the unofficial guides who have begun operating th ..read more
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Notes on chocolate: tea and chocolate are a capital hit
The Guardian | London holidays
by Annalisa Barbieri
6M ago
London’s the place to sample this flavoursome combination I am at the Sky Garden, 525ft above London. It is the highest I’ve ever been in London, short of in a plane. The city looks compacted at such height, as if everything is within a hand’s span reach. You also realise how many buildings have roof-top gardens. Not as many as Paris, but still. The local M&S has shut down, with a sad, poignant message on its window. Luckily, I had earlier bought some chocolate bourbon biscuits (35p, 150g) from M&S and let me tell you, they are the finest shop-bought bourbons I’ve tried. Their shape is ..read more
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A River Thames walk to a great pub: The Oiler, London Docklands
The Guardian | London holidays
by Phoebe Taplin
8M ago
Fossils and geology stretching back millions of years are revealed on this fascinating route by river mudflats and ancient woods Near the start of his book Otherlands, palaeobiologist Thomas Halliday sketches the London landscape 50 million years ago: swampy forest and tropical waters filled with crocodiles, sea turtles, mangroves and huge lily pads. Otherlands is a compelling recreation of vanished ecosystems and the ways in which they can help predict possible outcomes of the changing climate. I meet the author for a riverside walk to explore modern London and its traces of past landscapes ..read more
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Let it glow: 10 best Christmas light displays in Britain
The Guardian | London holidays
by Annabelle Thorpe
1y ago
Add sparkle and cheer to dark nights at these festive illuminations and light trails A pair of giant sparkling reindeer welcomes visitors to Dunham Massey’s illuminated trail, with both the grounds and the exterior of the house blazing with vivid, festive colours. Highlights include the Rose Garden, with 150 illuminated roses that fade and brighten in time to music, and the fire lanterns, which give an atmospheric, ethereal feel to the wooded landscape. The trail takes around 90 minutes, with proceeds going to conservation work on the estate. In the nearby village of Ripton, the Black Swan has ..read more
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Aroma Buffet, London W12: ‘Delivering joy though dark times’ – restaurant review | Grace Dent on restaurants
The Guardian | London holidays
by Grace Dent
1y ago
It’s a rookie error to go heavy on carbohydrates in plates one to three, even if the Singapore noodles are exactly as I love them Food trends come and go, but the all-you-can-eat buffet plods on through the decades. Unfashionable, then cool again, then once more déclassé and, at one point in very recent history, even prohibited. At Aroma Buffet in west London, however – in a shopping centre, up an escalator, next to a Wetherspoons – the vast, lunchtime buffet of noodles, stir-fries and plentiful cakes, puddings and ice-cream is a pleasing £15. The buffet’s timing in returning to modern life is ..read more
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A day at London Pride – in pictures: ‘We are happy to sweat, feel our legs ache, bolstered by solidarity’
The Guardian | London holidays
by Guardian Staff
1y ago
On 2 July 2022 author Irenosen Okojie and photographer Cherry Au captured the solidarity, sisterhood and snogging at Pride, London I watch two Black men in love take communion at Pride from the packed edge of a street opposite the Trafalgar Square stage. Sepia pink sweets that have been thrown into the audience are unwrapped and become currencies melting in their mouths. This intimate act of personal sustenance is shared through a kiss. It is so tender that I am stopped in my tracks. Even amid the swirl of bodies jostling for space, they take their time, while Kat Graham gives a thunderous per ..read more
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‘The beating pulse of poetry’: why you should visit Keats House
The Guardian | London holidays
by Ashish Ghadiali
1y ago
The Romantic poet’s home in London was a haven where he wrote some of his most famous works. Today, two centuries after his death, it still evokes Keats’ spirit It’s testament to the hold that John Keats has on the English imagination that though he died, in 1821, aged 25 and leaving only two volumes of his poetry in print, 10 or 12 plaques or stones commemorate the geography of his short life from birth in Moorgate, London, to death beside the Spanish steps in Rome. Taken together, they form the basis of a route of pilgrimage I’ve always found worth the while and that draws me back, time and ..read more
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