Last Christmas, I had the opportunity to visit the United Kingdom for the second time since my last visit in the summer of 2016. I was excited for so many reasons: my aunt had just had a baby, and I was going to see my family again after having been away from them almost a year. I also always love visiting places both in the winter and in the summer to see the contrasts in the environment between the seasons.
The UK always gives me such different vibes from North America, and I honestly find that it is so similar to Zim in multiple ways (we drive on the same side of the road, pronounce the word “water” the same, lol). I pretty much always feel at home whenever I visit. It’s clean, organised, vibrant, and everyone is so different from the next person. Need I mention how in love I am with some of the accents?? Beautiful. On the other hand, driving in England is such an extreme sport! Almost everyone drives these tiny vehicles that are perfectly designed for manoeuvring the extremely narrow roads – and trust me, I was holding onto the car door every time someone drove me anywhere!!
While I was only in the country for two weeks, I felt quite exhausted at the end of it and literally needed a vacation from my vacation, Lol. Because I had limited time, I was trying to make good use of every single day I was there. I visited a village called Little Rissington, which had very cute and touristy vibes to it. This makes for a good day-trip with friends or with your significant other. Interestingly, the ‘village’ in the UK is where a lot of wealthier people live, in contrast to my own typical definition of a village. That definitely challenged my perspective a little!
There were so many little Tea rooms in Little Rissington and all over the UK really, which I found quite amusing to be honest. As per the stereotype, the Brits definitely do love their tea (and beer!). I also visited Hyde Park in London for a beautiful Winter Wonderland experience, and went out to a couple of restaurants and bars for drinks with friends. This is me just sharing some of my favourite moments from my trip with you. Enjoy 🙂
I went to a NYC inspired bar called Dirty Bones in Oxford for a friend’s birthday, and the experience was quite memorable. The cocktail menu had a wide variety of summery drinks which weren’t too expensive, and were also delicious. I ordered their Buffalo hot wings and crispy lamb fries, (which, for a great total price of £14) were hands down the BEST fries and wings I’ve ever eaten before! They were flavourful and very spicy, with soft lamb, sweet miso, jalapeños, and red chilli toppings. A must have if you ever visit this place!
Winter Wonderland was one of my favourite activities. There really was a space for people of all ages: a bar with heaters, all types of drinks, and live performances more suited to the older groups, and of course, the rides and food trucks all around the park were perfect for the younger people. It was also just my second time tasting mulled wine, which is quite interesting and will take a bit of adjusting to, for me. This is definitely a great winter activity to do if you’re visiting London and want a change of scenery!
One of my evenings was spent with some good friends of mine at a Restaurant called Victor’s in Oxford. It’s located in the new Westgate Mall in town and I really LOVED the vibe of the place and would highly recommend it. It’s very modern, picturesque, and clearly Instagram-worthy, with good music and a rich atmosphere. Right from the entrance, the aesthetic of the restaurant almost made me feel like I was in a green house where alcohol was permitted lol (why hasn’t anyone invented this yet?)
The fun part is that, while there’s a classy seating area for people to enjoy their meals, the bar area also had a good crowd of people getting drinks and dancing to the music. Pretty cool. It was rather pricy though, and while the cocktail selection was intriguing, I found the food to be quite underwhelming. Everything also had a cost attached to it, including (unbeknownst to us) the water we drank while we looked through the menu. You live and you learn though, right? Haha.
And this was me on Christmas day. Giving off groovy aunty vibes. What are some of your favourite spots in the UK? Thanks for reading, and see you next week for White Wine Wednesday!