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Natallia

January 20th, 2024

How to escape London without leaving London

0 comments | 1 shares

Estimated reading time: 10 minutes

Natallia

January 20th, 2024

How to escape London without leaving London

0 comments | 1 shares

Estimated reading time: 10 minutes

The pace of London can be exhausting. When combined with your workload and your various LSESU societies and activities, you may at times feel burnt out. It is inevitable that you may wish to escape the fast-moving city and retreat to a slower pace of life, even just for a couple of hours. By the end of my first year I found a number of places that offered this break and allowed me to slow down and gather myself.

One of the most therapeutic places for me is Hampstead Heath. To me, Hampstead feels quite different to the rest of London, with its green spaces and small town feel. Swimming in the ponds allow you to reconnect with nature. It offers me, personally, a sense of cleansing and refreshment that I have not felt elsewhere in the city. The area has many dogs, which is something that I miss when I am in the centre of London. To me, this feels more homely.

Another place to me that feels like an escape is Greenwich. While it can be touristy and quite busy, the overall feel of the area is quite different. It has a large park, a market and less of the “city” feeling. The physical distance between it and the centre helps to create mental distance from where you are and your busy life in central London.

It almost goes without saying that a walk in a park can help you to slow your pace. Often you will find that your accommodation is located close to green spaces where you can relax with a book. Alternatively, day trips to Richmond and Kew Gardens can help to give a sense of escape.

Bookshops also provide a haven from London’s intensity. I love wandering around my local independent book shops, charity shops and Waterstones alike, to escape into the world of books.

I find museums have the same feeling: walking around them again forces me to slow the pace and take time with my thoughts. Museums can also provide me with the opportunity to enjoy a podcast or music. My personal favourite is the National Portrait Gallery, which is not far from campus in Trafalgar Square.

London is such a great place to be as a young person because of its dynamism. Yet on every busy street, there is some place or garden that can help you to slow down. Make sure to look after yourself and not get too caught up in the speed of the city.

About the author

Natallia

I am a first year undergraduate, studying BA History with Spanish. I am involved with many societies, such as the newspaper, netball and yoga. When I am not in the library, I love to explore London and find unusual new places.

Posted In: London life

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