I didn’t expect flamingos

Being a tourist in your home town is something we don’t do very often, but when your chosen home is London, you are definitely spoiled for choice. It always surprises me when I hear people say they’ve seen all of London. After 12 years here, I feel I’ve barely scratched the surface. So, when an opportunity arose to meet an old friend, who has recently relocated here, we spent the afternoon as tourists (hat tip to Facebook that allowed us to keep in touch, it’s close to ten years since we last saw each other).

I highly recommend the London Walks as a great way to see unexplored avenues of London -I always discover something new that I haven’t seen before, new aspects of history of which I was previously unaware. I think most Londoner’s would find something to interest them as well as first timers to the city.

And today was no different. We went on the Old Kensington walk, starting at High St Kensington. First stop, the Roof Garden, with 1.5 acres of planned gardens, all on the 6th floor roof of the building now owned by Richard Branson. The story goes, that he purchased the building in 1981 with his newly acquired riches after being refused entry to the famous night club on the premises,  back when he was a mere Mr.

As we were walking around, it was impossible to tell that we were on the top of a building. The landscaped gardens -complete with live flamingos and ducks – are an oasis in the middle of the bustling city.  I think I’ll have to find an excuse (even a flimsy one will do!) to go back for a drink on the terrace and enjoy the ambience on a summer’s evening.

What are your favourite or secret places in your home town? Why not take a day to be a tourist in your own city? You might just discover a new favourite place to enjoy, and if you’re really lucky, there might even be flamingos.