London Girls Trip

London Girls Trip

London

Average Reviews

Trip Overview

Weeklong girls trip for 10 women to London

Full Itinerary

I’m just back from my first international trip since the start of Covid – a week in London with girlfriends. And it was fabulous! After a couple of years hunkering down at home we didn’t know quite how we’d feel traveling abroad and staying in a big city, but the trip felt safe, we did a ton of walking and exploring and it was a huge success. 

So how do 10 women, not all of whom knew each other ahead of time (the organizer brought women from different parts of her life together for the trip), orchestrate a trip together? Everyone stayed where they wanted to depending on desired location/budget/style. I stayed with friends and others were scattered, solo or doubling up, throughout the city.  

Everyone was given an activity or meal to organize during the week and it was then added to the master spreadsheet, which we could all edit in real time. As we had all been to London before we were looking for activities that were a bit off the beaten track to ensure that there were new experiences for everyone, and if people wanted to visit Buckingham Palace or visit St. Paul’s, they could organize that on their own.  

People signed up for as many or as few of those activities/meals as they chose to join, and the organizer of each event then bought tickets/made reservations accordingly. No pressure/judgement to go to anything that didn’t interest you or fit your schedule.  Have a friend you want to have dinner with who lives in London? Great! Want to do every organized activity? Terrific! Want to keep your afternoons open for wandering the city solo? Also fine. Some took the tube, others chose cabs, and we all walked a TON. All good! In the end there were actually very few events or meals that included the entire group actually. And EVERYONE had a great week!

We used the wonderful Splitwise app to track shared expenses. Everyone enters any payment they make, assigning who it is to be shared between and then at the end of the trip Splitwise figures out the fewest transactions for people to be repaid in order to be ‘made whole’ on their spending. It takes the stress out of sharing costs. 

Below is the list of each day’s offered activities/meals, with comments on each. 

MONDAY

Arrive midday. 

4pm: Natural History Museum Wildlife Photography Exhibit. This annual exhibit is my favorite museum exhibition. Photographers from around the world enter their photos into this ‘best of the best’ exhibit and the results on display are amazing, with a description next to each photo describing how/why the photo came to be, as well as the specific camera settings to capture the shot. En route to the photography exhibit, we got a bonus walk-through of the fabulous dinosaur collection on the main floor of the architecturally splendid Natural History Museum. 

Dinner: I went out with local London friends to Dishroom, which has various locations and good modern indian food. Others ate at Wild Tavern in Chelsea which got solid but not stellar reviews.

TUESDAY

Morning: Walking tour of Notting Hill, scheduled via Airbnb ‘Experiences’. A fun, interesting and entertaining 90 minute tour of Notting Hill – highly recommended. He normally does it on Saturdays only but since I contacted him way ahead of time and we had enough for our own group he did a midweek tour. 

Lunch: Some ate at Granger in Notting Hill (no reservations) and really enjoyed it, followed by wandering about Notting Hill for some shopping. 

Others chose to wander first and held off on lunch until having afternoon tea at the bustling Sketch in Mayfair. Sketch is a pricey tea but the space is fabulous (very ‘instagrammable’ decor and don’t miss the ‘bathroom pods’)  and it’s a wonderful way to relax in the pink main high tea room after a busy day. 

Evening: 

London Pub Crawl – This ‘literary pub crawl’ was led by a wonderful ex-policeman/current actor who did a wonderful job telling us all the stories surrounding the pubs we visited, which were full of history. Unfortunately after our fish/chips dinner part way through the evening jet lag caught up with most of us and we had to cut it short to get some rest. Next time we’d schedule it for later in the week!

WEDNESDAY

Morning: 

Docent tour of the Tate Modern. The docent was fabulous and gave us insights into one area of the museum. Really informative and enjoyable. 

Lunch:

Sky Garden for an amazing view 

Others chose to wander and explore/have lunch on their own.

Afternoon: Tour via Context Travel of Inns of the Court which those who went on it really enjoyed and learned a lot.

Dinner: Ham Yard hotel in Covent Garden area – vibrant bar area and wonderful hotel to wander around and look at the colorful decor, art and the overall cool vibe designed by Kit Kemp of Firmdale Hotels Dinner was good but not over the top fabulous.

Post Dinner: Comedy show (Iliza Schlesinger) at Apollo theater. Awesome show. 

THURSDAY

Morning: Tour of the Postal Museum where you can ride in about a mile of underground tunnels which were used for mail delivery throughout London. Short and sweet. Kids would love this if you are traveling with them.

Lunch: Half the group had a delicious, long lunch at top rated Ottolenghi restaurant Nopi where they raved about many of the dishes including a delightfully rich eggplant main course and a wickedly spicy cauliflower appetizer . The other half had tasty Pho at a neighborhood Vietnamese spot called NgonNgon on Clerkenwell Road which was one of my favorite meals of the trip! 

Afternoon: Open time to wander, shop, explore. I went to the Summer Exhibition at the Royal Academy where over 1200 pieces of art (all for sale) by British artists are displayed. Then hopped across the street to visit the luxury tea and gifts retailer,  Fortnam and Mason 

Late afternoon: High tea at the Wolseley in Picadilly – wonderful!  

Drinks options: Dukes, and the bar at the Standard Hotel

Evening: Play – the Mirror and the Light

FRIDAY

Morning: One group did a guided tour of Windsor for most of the day, which was fabulous. 

Others did a tour of Kensington Palace, including Diana’s wedding dress and other royal fashions. Really enjoyed that as well! Followed with lunch in Covent Garden at a small neighborhood Vietnamese restaurant, Com Viet before Theater tour.

Afternoon: Tour of Theatre Royal, Drury Lane in Covent Garden. Terrific tour given by actors of this historical theater that has recently reopened after a major renovation. Then explored Covent Garden.

Dinner: Balthazar, a fun French brasserie (with a restaurant in New York as well)  in Covent Garden before walking across the street to the Royal Opera House to see an amazing ballet in an equally amazing theater. 

SATURDAY

Some people headed home on Saturday and others who stayed were on their own, catching up with friends who live in London, doing last minute exploring/shopping etc. 

SUNDAY

Head home

Shopping Guide/Stores Visited:

Anya Hindmarch – Women’s clothes and accessories store

Russell and Bromley: British brand of shoes

Toast: Women’s casual clothing

Me & Em: Women’s upscale clothing

Pamela Schiffer: Women’s clothing boutique (one shop only in Primrose Garden)

Fenwick Department Store for Trinny London makeup

Harrods: Department store

Harvey Nichols: Department Store

Liberty: Department Store with classic Liberty prints amongst other things

Peter Jones & Partners: Department store 

Fortnum and Mason: Department store

Author

Time of year

Oct-Dec

Type of Trip

Food/Culture/Arts, Urban exploration

Duration

1 week

Who Went

Girls trip, Friends (45-65 yr old)

Accommodation Type

Hotel, Friends

Budget

$200-$400

Statistics

482 Views
0 Rating
0 Favorite
0 Share