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Friday, 14 June 2013


Tower Bridge - fortunately it wasn't raining
I start my UK travelogue with....of course London, the heart of England. I had spent a very short time there and thus I cannot describe much about this city. People might say that Paris is 'City of Love', so what about London? James Bond's city? or Mr Bean's City? Actually UK is the first foreign country that I went to. Until now, I haven't been in Singapore, which is located just across the Tebrau Strait. Hahaha what a shame! London is a big city, has the combination of modern and classic landscape. You could see the Victorian era buildings stand still as well as the monuments (Though large part of the city had ruined during the WWII German bombing and great fire once). What's more? There were bronze/stone lions. Lion is synonym with England, but there is no lion in UK right? Why ??? About the building, one thing that I had spotted there; you could see Tesco or any other exclusive shops in the old buildings. In addition, those buildings are clean and equipped with up to date facilities and utilities. It is very-very rare to find such scenery in Malaysia. Few imperial era buildings could be found in Penang and Malacca but the rest have become faded. Yeah, this is London anyway.

Greater London (Left: Picadilly, Right: Trafalgar Square)
You might see a lot of people from different countries here. In fact, I could not compare who were the true Londoners, who were the non citizen residents and who were short time workers. Please be careful with those foreingers. At the bus station, the officers warned not to give used train ticket to these foreingers. I didn't know why. Before I went to London, many of my friend had advised not to come by car because of this tax and that tax, expensive parking and time consuming. So, I had two choices; train or bus. When I arrived, again the options were; underground or taxi or bus. As the result, I mixed them. For a better sightseeing, I took Big Bus service. Here is the URL if you need further info: 

You can download the route map so you can decide where to go and where to stop. It was only GBP 21 per adult. If you plan to travel using the underground, do not forget to buy the Oyster Pass (remember in HK they provide Octopus). It was faster to travel by underground train but make sure you are fit enough to go up and go down using the stairs. There were elevator but you must understand, Londoners are always rushing especially at peak hours. And the elevator is not short just like back home in the shopping complex. It is deep under the ground! I list down here the interesting places here so you can plan your visit;
  1. Sightseeing: Westminster Abbey, Big Ben, river Thames cruise, London Eye, Tower of London etc.
  2. Mosques: The Islamic Cultural Centre & The London Central Mosque (adjacent London Business School and Queen Mary's Garden) Regents Lodge, 146 Park Rd, London NW8 7RG.
  3. Shopping: Oxford circus (Oxford street), Covent garden, Harrods etc.
  4. Chill out/Lepaking: Hyde park, St James Park, Trafalgar Sq., Leicester Sq., House of Parliament, Buckingham Palace, Madame Tussauds etc.
  5. History lovers: Museum of London, British Museum, Dickens Museum, Sherlock Holmes Museum etc.)
  6. Football lovers: Emirates stadium, Stamford Bridge, Craven Cottage, Lotfus Rd. (mostly in west London - Emirates in the northern part)
  7. Tempat mengadu: Malaysian High Comissions,  45-46 Belgrave Square, London SW1X 8QT.
  8. Rindu masakan kampung:  Malaysian Student Department, 33 Queensborough Terrace, London W2 3ST.
Yupp, I agree - you need at least three days to cover those places. I had only one day so what could I do? (buat bodoh je la!). Here are some of the photos taken by me.

Covent Market (almost like Pasar Seni - KL?)

London Eye (Is it like the 'Eye of Sauron' or 'Sharingan'?)

Malaysian Student Department (The canteen here serves Malay food)
Parliament of UK
Regarding the location, each of the location has it own post code. If you are driving, just type it and the code will lead you (definitely the car will bring you) to the right - accurate - exact location. Of course GPS is vital. An talking about the transportation and car, it was quite unique to see the old fashion taxi in London - not really in London but entire UK operates the similar type of taxi. You might feel as if your are in the 40's or 50's. That's authentic! Halal restaurants are everywhere. There are numbers of Indian/Pakistan restaurant around London. If you want to find for local Malaysian food, just go to the Malaysia Hall London. Otherwise, you could find Sate House, Rasa Sayang, Jom Makan, Sedap and Tukdin. There are more, just google it. Malay, Indian-Pakistani, Chinese; Try to guess why so many of them here? Because long time ago we were under the the British rules- directly or indirectly. I wonder if there are my family bloodlines here. Ok, back to the restaurants. Those restaurants are located in certain zone such as the zone between Piccadilly Circus and Leicester Square (underground entrance) and the other zone is near London Paddington station. I didn't go there because I wanted to try another halal food. And, I found the 'tajine of Morocco'. Yeargh! Lovely and fabulous taste. Morocco with lamb. I'll go to Morocco one day. Next visit - next visit ya.
Lamb meatball tajine

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