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karasu
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"Visiting London" , posted Tue 1 Dec 08:22post reply

So, I'll be visiting London this coming January to attend an event, and I thought I would do my Cafe tradition of asking what's the best of the interesting things to see there. I know, it's London, and as such there are about a gazillion things that come to mind that I can go see without even bothering with a guidebook, but I've been given special Cafe Advice for a number of locales in the past that have not necessarily included the extremely tourist-centric things and had much better trips as a result. Budapest's thriving pornography industry is just one example!

So if anyone has any suggestions of things to look out for I'd appreciate it! I'll have about 5 days worth of vacation after my event, so that should allow for plenty of cool stuff to go and see. Okay bye!





You have to carefully reproduce the world of "Castlevania" in the solemn atmosphere.

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Iggy
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"Re(1):Visiting London" , posted Tue 1 Dec 09:31post reply

Well, as you said, it's London, so you'll have to narrow it down.
Culture? Good food from almost all over the world? Park full of deer (though January might not be the best time)? Videogames?

I rarely leave my flat so I wouldn't know (even less in January), but at least I know people who could answer better.





Maou
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"Re(2):Visiting Londonians" , posted Tue 1 Dec 10:12:post reply

Well, you'll have to become a Londonian Gothic for one thing, as you well know from your stays here at the Cafe.

You must indeed visit Lord Iggy-ngton, who thumbed his nose at the Americans and their Boston during his cancelled sojourn to the New World some forthnights ago, but who I have on good authority remains ensconced in Her Majesty's capital.

The British Museum is better than it ought to be, and you could do worse than to rent a car and drive to ancient little towns in southern England that belong in a BBC period piece. Find Dartmoor and its strange stormy moor with weird magnetic/haunted current in the air that will break your compass near the unvisited stone cricles. Or go to Avebury where they have plunked an entire town in the middle of a gigantic stone circle, ironically preserving it from the tourist hordes. Glastonbury Tor would be good for communing with King Arthur's spirit and climbing this video game-like windy spire.





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[this message was edited by Maou on Tue 1 Dec 10:14]

karasu
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"Re(3):Visiting Londonians" , posted Wed 2 Dec 01:38post reply

quote:
Well, as you said, it's London, so you'll have to narrow it down.
Culture? Good food from almost all over the world? Park full of deer (though January might not be the best time)? Videogames?

I rarely leave my flat so I wouldn't know (even less in January), but at least I know people who could answer better.


Videogames were actually near the top of my list! After spending so much time in central Europe where there is a surprising dearth of videogames (short of Chip n' Dale bootlegs for systems I've never heard of), it will be refreshing!

One of the problems with visiting London is that I barely know where to start. You and Maou have certainly provided a good place to start though! I'll see if I can think of some more specific questions to narrow down the field. I understand that some of the best Indian food outside of South Asia can be found in London, so if you have any suggestions in that regard, I'd love to hear them.

quote:
Well, you'll have to become a Londonian Gothic for one thing, as you well know from your stays here at the Cafe.


I had completely forgotten about that
quote:

You must indeed visit Lord Iggy-ngton, who thumbed his nose at the Americans and their Boston during his cancelled sojourn to the New World some forthnights ago, but who I have on good authority remains ensconced in Her Majesty's capital.


Iggy, I'm nowhere near your Power Level, but if you'd care to have a micro Cafe meetup, let me know.
quote:

The British Museum is better than it ought to be, and you could do worse than to rent a car and drive to ancient little towns in southern England that belong in a BBC period piece. Find Dartmoor and its strange stormy moor with weird magnetic/haunted current in the air that will break your compass near the unvisited stone cricles. Or go to Avebury where they have plunked an entire town in the middle of a gigantic stone circle, ironically preserving it from the tourist hordes. Glastonbury Tor would be good for communing with King Arthur's spirit and climbing this video game-like windy spire.


Hmm, I had considered visiting the south at least a bit, since distance-wise it's not that far to go really. My west-coast wizardlike sensibilities were causing me to think of going to the tourist morass of Stonehenge and Salisbury, but I'm thinking Avebury might be off the New Age charts for Ley Line proximity! Hmm, thanks for pointing it out!





You have to carefully reproduce the world of "Castlevania" in the solemn atmosphere.

neo0r0chiaku
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"Re(1):Visiting London" , posted Wed 2 Dec 05:06post reply

quote:
So, I'll be visiting London this coming January to attend an event, and I thought I would do my Cafe tradition of asking what's the best of the interesting things to see there. I know, it's London, and as such there are about a gazillion things that come to mind that I can go see without even bothering with a guidebook, but I've been given special Cafe Advice for a number of locales in the past that have not necessarily included the extremely tourist-centric things and had much better trips as a result. Budapest's thriving pornography industry is just one example!

So if anyone has any suggestions of things to look out for I'd appreciate it! I'll have about 5 days worth of vacation after my event, so that should allow for plenty of cool stuff to go and see. Okay bye!


As a soccer(football) fan, I would say any London derbies are a worth wild setting to experience. But visiting any of the games is a pretty big deal for some. If interested, let me know and I can give more information.





Long Live!

Iggy
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"Re(4):Visiting Londonians" , posted Thu 3 Dec 02:06post reply

quote:
Videogames were actually near the top of my list! After spending so much time in central Europe where there is a surprising dearth of videogames (short of Chip n' Dale bootlegs for systems I've never heard of), it will be refreshing!

I'm afraid Heart of Gaming would be the only gaming-related place you could reasonably hope for in London. Fortunately, it's quite good! If you go there with enough people to enjoy it. It's more of a small group's night out thing.

Museum-wise, the V&A >>> British Museum > the rest of the western world's museums. The V&A is also close to the National history museum, and in an overall nicer place than the British. And then you have the Tate modern as well.

Castle-wise, Windsor is great if the weather is either nice or super foggy, and Hampton Court is the place to go if you are interested in Henry VIII (actually, I'm pretty sure it's one of the questions the customs will ask you, and they won't allow you in the country if you answer you aren't).

As for Indian food, if you're in the south of London you'll find the best between Brixton and Elephant&Castle, in the north around the Shree Swaminarayan Mandir Kingsbury.
Warning though: that will be real Indian food. Don't come and complain that you lost half of your tongue and palate after ordering the spiciest dish on the menu.

Finally, as for having adventures outside the city, I have no damn idea. I have never been to any of the places Maou talked about, so take his word for it!
Warning though: Don't waste your time at Stonehenge. There's not much to see, and the site is protected so you can only see it from a certain distance. Just build it next time you play Civilization.

My mail: welcome . pingouin at gmail.





karasu
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"Re(5):Visiting Londonians" , posted Thu 3 Dec 02:31post reply

quote:
As a soccer(football) fan, I would say any London derbies are a worth wild setting to experience. But visiting any of the games is a pretty big deal for some. If interested, let me know and I can give more information.

I can't say I'm a huge fan of sport, but I've recently had some good experiences with sporting events that are outside the US style of doing things (in other words, screaming, pushy people, terrible food, and deplorable beer). Feel free to elaborate!

quote:

I'm afraid Heart of Gaming would be the only gaming-related place you could reasonably hope for in London. Fortunately, it's quite good! If you go there with enough people to enjoy it. It's more of a small group's night out thing.


I'll check it out! Given that my event is a game related thing I think I can gather enough people with interest.
quote:
V & A

This is good to know (as is the note about Hampton Court). I usually only go with one museum per trip since it's easy to get into the grip of trying to see every single item at every museum.
quote:

As for Indian food, if you're in the south of London you'll find the best between Brixton and Elephant&Castle, in the north around the Shree Swaminarayan Mandir Kingsbury.
Warning though: that will be real Indian food. Don't come and complain that you lost half of your tongue and palate after ordering the spiciest dish on the menu.

Understood. I've been suitably warned! Rest assured that I won't be tromping around in an American flag t-shirt loudly telling restauranteurs to make it as spicy as they possibly can, but hopefully having Indian food in New York and DC has prepared me somewhat.
quote:

Stonehenge


Got it, that's excellent to know since even now all kinds of tourist photos you see will make you think that you can just walk up to the stones. If I need a menhir/standing stone fix I'll consider Maou's suggestion of Avebury!





You have to carefully reproduce the world of "Castlevania" in the solemn atmosphere.

Spoon
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"Re(5):Visiting Londonians" , posted Thu 3 Dec 02:39post reply

quote:
welcome . pingouin


are you sure you aren't juan
like, have you checked

quote:
real indian food


There's at least one Indian place in Vancouver that has a spicyness scale on it that has two sides, an "outsider's" scale and an "Indian's" scale. The Indian scale goes "unseasoned/lightly seasoned/seasoned/well-seasoned". The outsider's scale goes "mild/medium/spicy/very spicy".

I forget, karasu, are you merely vegetarian or are you vegan?





Iggy
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"Re(6):Visiting Londonians" , posted Thu 3 Dec 02:51post reply

quote:
are you sure you aren't juan
like, have you checked

I welcome penguins.
Penguins are welcome everywhere I go.

I don't see what you're talking about.





karasu
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"Re(6):Visiting Londonians" , posted Thu 3 Dec 02:53post reply

quote:

real indian food

There's at least one Indian place in Vancouver that has a spicyness scale on it that has two sides, an "outsider's" scale and an "Indian's" scale. The Indian scale goes "unseasoned/lightly seasoned/seasoned/well-seasoned". The outsider's scale goes "mild/medium/spicy/very spicy".

I forget, karasu, are you merely vegetarian or are you vegan?


Hey Spoon! It's been a while! Yes, I'm vegan. Indian food (especially Kerala and other southern styles) typically has no trouble accommodating this though.

My usual tactic at Indian restaurants is to completely avoid discussing spiciness, since I'm okay with a range of it, and see what I get. I tend to enjoy some local places that fall to the spicier/more flavorful end of things, but I've definitely been surprised by how spicy some restaurants are willing to make food for me!





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Maou
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"Re(7):Visiting Londonians" , posted Thu 3 Dec 03:08post reply

quote:
are you sure you aren't juan
like, have you checked
I welcome penguins.
Penguins are welcome everywhere I go.

Ha! I imagined it as an e-mail account created specifically to welcome Juan and other penguinists in a similar visiting Iggy thread in the past.

We must not forget to visit Grand Retired Arthritic Penguin Dippy while in England





人間はいつも私を驚かせてくれる。不思議なものだな、人間という存在は...

nobinobita
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"Re(8):Visiting Londonians" , posted Thu 3 Dec 12:24:post reply

quote:
are you sure you aren't juan
like, have you checked
I welcome penguins.
Penguins are welcome everywhere I go.
Ha! I imagined it as an e-mail account created specifically to welcome Juan and other penguinists in a similar visiting Iggy thread in the past.

We must not forget to visit Grand Retired Arthritic Penguin Dippy while in England



I've never been to England, but I just wanted to say how much I enjoy (living vicariously through) these travel posts!

I can't recommend any places to see or things to eat, BUT if you find yourself in a book store, I highly recommend you keep an eye out for some 2000AD comics, particularly Nemesis the Warlock and the ABC Warriors.

These books are really hard to find in the US!

They are super rad, punk rock, grimdark, incredibly fun comics. They're also interesting from a historical perspective as they provided tons of inspiration for countless games/comics/anime throughout the 80s and 90s. Warhammer may be the direct inspiration for everything from Blizzard on, but 2000AD comics are what inspired Warhammer.

I recommend that you particularly look out for anything drawn by Kevin O'Neill. He's best known on our side of the pond as the artist for Alan Moore's The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen. He also caused quite a bit of a stir in the 80s when he drew a few comics for DC that drew the ire of the Comics Code Authority. When asked what particular parts of the comic were offensive, they responded it was his entire drawing style! lol

Actually also keep an eye out for stuff by John Hicklenton too. His stuff is even more awesomely grotesque!

Have fun dude! Can't wait to hear all about your trip!






www.art-eater.com

[this message was edited by nobinobita on Thu 3 Dec 12:35]

neo0r0chiaku
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"Re(6):Visiting Londonians" , posted Fri 4 Dec 01:27:post reply

quote:
As a soccer(football) fan, I would say any London derbies are a worth wild setting to experience. But visiting any of the games is a pretty big deal for some. If interested, let me know and I can give more information.
I can't say I'm a huge fan of sport, but I've recently had some good experiences with sporting events that are outside the US style of doing things (in other words, screaming, pushy people, terrible food, and deplorable beer). Feel free to elaborate!


As for Indian food, if you're in the south of London you'll find the best between Brixton and Elephant&Castle, in the north around the Shree Swaminarayan Mandir Kingsbury.
Warning though: that will be real Indian food. Don't come and complain that you lost half of your tongue and palate after ordering the spiciest dish on the menu.
Understood. I've been suitably warned! Rest assured that I won't be tromping around in

-- Message too long, Autoquote has been Snipped --

From what I heard, a good area to witness the games are the pubs in North London. Mainly for Arsenal, Spurs, or Chelsea Supporter bars. I think during the time you are there, Arsenal and Crystal Palace will play. They are both from London. The people are wild and loud. They practically have their team chants, songs, and goal celebrations throughout the whole game. They chug massive beers! Its a good first time experience but let not forget to be aware of the bar fights between supporters of different teams!

I recommend Nepali food over Indian food. If you do try, get the veggie Momos. To bad you will miss out on Nepali goat because its amazing! For dish, I would say the Okra. Also try Naan, Chipati, or Roti. They are different types of flat breads. You get ones that have either garlic, spinach, cheese, Etc. on top. They are best eaten plain dipped with which ever sauce/curry you have on your main dish.





Long Live!

[this message was edited by neo0r0chiaku on Fri 4 Dec 01:32]

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"Re(7):Visiting Londonians" , posted Tue 8 Dec 02:22post reply

What's your budget (e.g. for a nice meal), karasu?
And does it bother you to eat alone or with strangers?

Also, do you already know where you'll stay?
London is a big city so you might as well plan ahead according to your homebase.





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karasu
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"Re(8):Visiting Londonians" , posted Tue 8 Dec 09:50post reply

quote:
What's your budget (e.g. for a nice meal), karasu?
And does it bother you to eat alone or with strangers?

Also, do you already know where you'll stay?
London is a big city so you might as well plan ahead according to your homebase.


I always budget extra for food since vegetarian or vegan food is typically around 50% more expensive than everything else. That said, for an extremely fancy meal I would probably be willing to spend upwards of 50 pounds per person (and then eating white rice for subsequent meals, har har). I could probably stretch things a bit more for a truly fantastic meal. I'll be traveling with my wife, but we are both just fine with eating alone or with strangers.

We'll be staying near the Barbican station, not too far from St Paul's cathedral. I don't recall the name of the hotel, but it's in that vicinity, and we've had it booked for a bit now. My event stuff happens right near there too.





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"Re(9):Visiting Londonians" , posted Tue 8 Dec 22:01post reply

Right, I actually forgot you were vegetarian. With this in mind, I can recommend two places. Nama in Notting Hill is pretty good and quite famous. Kin (near the BBC London Radio) is also pretty good. My foodie friends in London tell me Vanilla Black is a cool place but I never tried it. And if you really want to treat yourself, I can vouch for the Rasoi in Chelsea, an amazing Indian restaurant and wonderful experience. Not only is the food excellent but the location is also striking; it feels like you're the a movie set of a James Bond movie. Three stars Michelin restaurant. Quite expensive but worth it. A la carte should be around £50-60 per person. I see on their website they also have a Vegeterian Prestige 7 courses-menu for £79 per person.

The Barbican has good exhibitions but it's one of the few paying museums (since it has no permanent collection). The area is delightful retro-futuristic and a sad collection of concrete as you could see from the depiction of London in Clockwork Orange. It's quite an atmosphere.

One museum I strongly recommend to anyone visiting London is the Wellcome, which is free and centered around the History of health and medical science in (mainly) Western culture. The evolution of personal hygiene in Europe, how the Nazi government used science for personal gain, society's perception of hysteria, the major breakthroughs of sexology... There is always an interesting topic to tackle there. It's near Euston.





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karasu
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"Re(10):Visiting Londonians" , posted Thu 10 Dec 01:57post reply

quote:
Right, I actually forgot you were vegetarian. With this in mind, I can recommend two places. Nama in Notting Hill is pretty good and quite famous. Kin (near the BBC London Radio) is also pretty good. My foodie friends in London tell me Vanilla Black is a cool place but I never tried it. And if you really want to treat yourself, I can vouch for the Rasoi in Chelsea, an amazing Indian restaurant and wonderful experience. Not only is the food excellent but the location is also striking; it feels like you're the a movie set of a James Bond movie. Three stars Michelin restaurant. Quite expensive but worth it. A la carte should be around £50-60 per person. I see on their website they also have a Vegeterian Prestige 7 courses-menu for £79 per person.


Hahaha, Rasoi looks and sounds INCREDIBLE. I may have to try and stretch the budget a bit creatively to make it work, hmmm. Thanks for the recommendations! Vanilla Black was already on my list to visit but I was unaware of the others!
quote:
Museums

The Wellcome sounds fantastic! I'll add it to our list of things to see. As for the Barbican, I'm actually quite the fan of the architecture. The term Brutalism gets thrown around quite a bit for any post-50's concrete-based architecture that people don't like, but this is the real deal

Thanks again for your suggestions!





You have to carefully reproduce the world of "Castlevania" in the solemn atmosphere.