The Most Unusual Traditions and Events in London (part 2)

Guy Fawkes Night

On November 5th every year, bonfires are lit in the country and scarecrow-like effigies of a man named Guy Fawkes are soaked in flames at the same time fireworks are illuminating the night sky.

The reason is that on that day of the year 1605, Guy Fawkes and a group of his Catholic cronies reportedly plotted to blow up the Palace of Westminster when the State Opening of Parliament was held. They are said to have planned to kill Protestant King James I of England and Ireland, kidnap his daughter, Elizabeth, and install her on the throne, hoping that she would be a monarch sympathetic to the Catholics of the realm. As a result, Britons light bonfires in order to remind themselves not to be like Guy.

A decree from King Charles II admits that there is a requirement that at least six ravens is always kept at the Tower of London. Rumor has it that the law stemmed from a warning the king received in the courtyard, telling the king that if the Tower could not be abandoned by ravens, then the monarchy would collapse and Britain would fall.

Annual Sheep Drive Across London Bridge

Perhaps London Bridge is most widely known for its falling down, but every year in September, it becomes the place for a strange spectacle when a herd of sheep is driven across the bridge by the freemen of London. Somehow like sheep, Londoners with an agricultural influence flocked to the event. This is exactly the event: 2017 saw the wealth of the world and the presenter of The Great British Bake Off Mary Berry.

The Worshipful Company of Woolmen, one of the City’s Livery Companies – corporations and ancient and modern commercial organizations – has been around since the 11th century and is responsible for this whole issue. Nowadays, the event was held with the intention of promoting the wool industry, but in the past, traveling with sheep across the London Bridge was the norm as it was the only way to market it to the City. Learn more about the annual sheep drive in London.

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Top Five Football Attractions in London

With a rich history of sport dating back centuries, 13 football teams, and a dizzying array of stadiums, the sporting culture of London is enough to rival any other city in the world. In fact, tourism to the city is also energized by sport, particularly football. There’s lots of things for football fans to explore when visiting London. And we have compiled five of the top football attractions in the city.

Stamford Bridge Stadium

Located in West London’s Fulham area, Stamford Bridge Stadium is home of Chelsea FC. Easy to reach from the nearby Shaftesbury Paddington Hotel, this historic stadium promises not only Premiership excitement but more than 140 years of sporting history.

Emirates Stadium

Located in North London, the Emirates Stadium is home to Arsenal FC, one of the best UEFA Premier League teams in the UK.

The Emirates Stadium has a capacity of 60,000 prospectors. It offers world-class football throughout the season as well as matchday tours, self-guided tours, and Legends Tours that provide a unique insight into the history of the club. It is the fourth largest stadium in the UK.

White Hart Lane

Located in East London’s Tottenham area, with a capacity of 62,000 spectators, the White Hart Lane is the new stadium for the Tottenham Hotspurs. The multi-purpose stadium also hosts NFL games and live performance events thanks to a first of a kind removable pitch.

Olympic Park

The Olympic Park is a football stadium but is also used for other sporting activities as well. It was first developed in the East London’s Stratford area for the 2012 Olympic Games. It was also used for West Ham United’s home games and other international sporting events for track and field athletics.

Wembley Stadium

Wembley Stadium was the home to the Tottenham Hotspurs during their recent Stadium renovations. With a capacity of 90,000, it is the largest football stadium in the UK. This stadium comes equipped with expansive tours and its own museum.

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The Most Unusual Traditions and Events in London (part 1)

London is a capital city that has such a long history so it hangs on to some archaic traditions that may not make a lot of sense to the unknowing observer. Here is a list of the most unusual traditions and events in London.

Peter Pan Cup

Many people love to spend Christmas morning going to church to open the presents left under the tree by Father Christmas. Meanwhile, many others take to freezing cold water in Hyde Park for the 100-yard swimming race Peter Pan Cup. Inaugurated in 1864, the unusual race acquired its name in 1903 when the writer for children J. M. Barrie presented the winner’s cup, a role he performed until 1932.

Pearly Kings and Queens Harvest Festival

The pearly tradition of London is positively peculiar. Every year, in September, pearly kings and queens descend on Guildhall for the Harvest Festival, involving Morris and marching bands, maypole dancing, and a pearly parade.

The festival has its origins with 19th-century market traders (costermongers) and a street cleaner and rat catcher by the name of Henry Croft became the first Pearly King during the Victorian era. He may have got the idea from the flashy style of the kings and queens, who were elected to represent the collective interests of the market traders.

Inspired by the pizzazz and community orientation of the coster kings, Henry smothered his suit in mother-of-pearl shiny buttons and collected money for charity. The coster kings and queens took part in his charitable cause as pearly kings and queens and every London borough quickly had its own pearly royalty. And a working-class tradition was born.

Bankside Twelfth Night

In London, a very unusual tradition takes place every January, as a man shrouded in a suit emerges from the Thames in a rowing boat accompanied by a merry posse. They wish good health to the people congregated by the Globe Theatre, Bankside of Shakespeare.

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London food guide: 8 things you need to try in London (part 3)

Sticky toffee pudding

Now let’s come back to desserts with one loaded with calories: Sticky toffee pudding – one modern British classic that was developed in the 1970s by Robert Lee and Francis Coulson, at the Sharrow Bay Country House Hotel. This dish consists of very moist sponge cake, finely chopped dates, and covered in a toffee sauce. Sometimes it is suggested to serve the sticky toffee pudding with vanilla ice-cream or vanilla custard. As its name suggests, this delicious treat sticks to your mouth and teeth, so remember to wash your teeth carefully after enjoying this dessert.


Traditionally consumed in London’s East End, cockles are a type of small clams. They are available and easy to find in markets, grocery stores, and also ready-made on takeaway restaurants. For decades, they have been a staple food and definitely a must-try in London. Cockles are worth a try thanks to their advantage of being affordable and authentic at the same time.

Afternoon tea

The afternoon tea, served between 3:30 PM and 5 PM, is one of the most famous British traditions. It is a custom that originated among the wealthy classes in England in the 1840s. The habit of having a light meal accompanied with tea in the afternoon has been spread throughout the world. Foods served with the afternoon tea may be bread and butter, cucumber sandwiches, egg and cress sandwiches, cakes, scones, or pastries. Finger sandwiches are more favored in general, with the bread crust removed. Nowadays, afternoon teas are usually served as a treat in hotels or at special occasions. For more festive occasions, a glass of champagne can be added to the afternoon tea.

We are sure that if you visit London, you will highly appreciate British cuisine for its simple and nourishing food that will give you the energy you need for a long walk on the banks of The Thames.

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Top Five Alternative Team Sports To Try In London This Summer (part 2)


Rounders is a fun summertime sport that is played throughout the parks of London. You might have come across Rounders at school, but it has become a social game particularly for adults and work-colleagues. The sport can be played with simple basic rules. The competitive clubs tend to be for women only, but there are lots of social mixed leagues that are developing, which is perfect if you have got a team of five or more already. If you want to play for a club, head to Rounders England’s website with the list of London clubs. If you want to join a social league, visit Go Mammoth’ website, which sets up groups and teams for individuals and groups.

Roller Derby

Roller Derby is the fastest growing sport in the UK, especially in London – the epicentre of this roller revolution. The sport has complicated rules, which can be roughly summed up: one person races round a track on skates while the other team tries to stop them. It is full contact, and there’s also plenty of styling. Ladies rosters in London include the London Roller Derby, London Rockin Rollers, and Croydon Roller Derby. There is also a men’s team, Southern Discomfort. If you like things punk and alternative, Roller Derby is the sport for you.


Dodgeball, the sport popularized by the Ben Stiller cult comedy, is a underground hit with young professional community in London. The rules of the sport involve throwing rubber balls at the other team and then trying to hit them. It can be played in various ways. Go Mammoth and Dodgeball London organize a series of pay-in leagues that takes place during 10-12 weeks. You can join the leagues as an individual or a team. The UK Dodgeball Association lists all joinable teams if you want to go for the long haul.

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London food guide: 8 things you need to try in London (part 2)

Sunday roast

As its name suggests, Sunday roast is a main meal typically served on Sunday. It consists of roasted meat, roast potato, and accompaniments like sausages, vegetables, stuffing, gravy, and Yorkshire pudding. In a UK poll, this dish ranked the second in a list of things that people love about Britain. The meats used for the Sunday roast can be chicken, beef, pork, turkey, and lamb; therefore, it is a versatile dish that can suit a variety of tastes. when it comes to an original Sunday roast, the most important thing is to have the Yorkshire pudding on your table – this food is made from batter consisting of eggs, flour, and water or milk.

Pie and mash

This food has originated in London, making it even more a must-try when visiting London. Traditionally, it is a food of the working class, developed in the 19th century. Pie and mash consists of minced beef and cold water pastry pie served with mashed potato. Parsley sauce, commonly called eel liquor sauce or liquor (but it doesn’t contain any alcohol), is often added to the dish. It is one of the most affordable dishes in the capital of the UK, perfect at the end of your visit, when you might have little money left in your pocket.

Eton mess

A meal in the city of London can not be perfect without a typical English desert such as Eton mess. It is an English dessert consisting of broken meringue, strawberries, and whipped heavy cream. As its name suggests, it has originated at the famous Eton College with its first mention in print dating from 1893. Although meringue was added to the dessert later, what hasn’t changed is the messy aspect of the dessert with different fruits available. However, the classic strawberry version is the most favorite of both locals and tourists alike.

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London food guide: 8 things you need to try in London (part 1)

Every great city in the world has its special dishes, and may also offer a variety of ethnic dishes by the various ethnic groups established there. London is not an exception. This city is the place where you can have a hearty English breakfast as well as find one of the most delicious shawarmas. Food is culture, and the capital city of England has a very rich gastronomic culture, even if it might not be as famous as the French or Italian one. Let’s see what foods you need to try in London.

The English breakfast

If you enjoy a copious meal in the morning, you need to try this infamous English breakfast, which includes the following items in its full version: fried egg, sausage, hash browns, white and black pudding, baked beans, bacon, mushrooms, toast, and half a tomato. Some may think that this is enough food for an entire week, but in fact, this was the best option for those who could eat in the morning but have no idea when they can have food again throughout a day of hard work. Perhaps it’s not the type of breakfast you want to have every day, but it might be a good idea to try before a day of continuous sightseeing.

Fish and chips

Appeared in the 1860s, fish and chips is another iconic dish of Britain. This food consists of fried battered fish and hot potato chips. It is a takeaway food traditionally using beef dripping or lard for frying, with vegetable oils being preferred nowadays. This food has spread throughout English-speaking countries, including Canada, The United States, Australia, New Zealand, and South Africa, and is sold by fish and chip shops. An interesting fact about this food: in the UK, waste oils from fish and chips shops is used as a source of biodiesel – a measure with a significant impact considering that fish and chip restaurants sell a quarter of the white fish consumed in the kingdom and 10% of all potatoes.

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Top Five Alternative Team Sports To Try In London This Summer (part 1)

It’s coming round to summer and the sun is brightening. You want to be active by playing a sport and you also want to try something new? Don’t worry! We have gone deep-diving through London’s athletic community to find a few sports for you to pick up from scratch. Here’s the list.


If you don’t have any Dutch or Scandinavian connection, you might not have heard of this hoop-based sport. Korfball is a combination of basketball and netball, and is a necessarily mixed-gender sport. A team consists of 4 men and 4 women, who are later split into different halves of the court to charge with getting the ball through their respective baskets. There are some fiddly rules in this sport, but the basic idea can be chosen by anyone. London has 11 Korfball clubs around all of its regions, all cater for beginners and most for juniors. It is great to know more people and tends to replace the British sporting machismo with a much cooler Scandi touch.

Ultimate (Frisbee)

The name of the sport doesn’t lie: it is truly ultimate. Because of copyright issues surrounding the commercial product, the Frisbee or Ultimate Frisbee should be referred to as just Ultimate. And it is played with discs, not Frisbees – so don’t make that faux pas! The sport has similarities to netball but with points being scored in American Football-style end-zones. Competition can range variously from a fun throw around in a park to series tactics, and the game in the United States is professional and televised live.  Playing Ultimate in London is pretty easier: there are a lot of clubs spread across the city, and there are also social pick-ups, casual games for all abilities. However, don’t be fooled: this is serious exercise – but it also does have a fun edge.

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Top 10 Tourism Destinations In London (part 2)

4. The Royal Botanical Garden (Kew Gardens)

The Royal Botanical Garden hasglass-like dome shape, which makes it look like a transparent train terminal. This botanical garden is a safe home to exquisite plants and flowers. The Garden has a historic palm house that is haven for its very own tropical rainforest, a charming glasshouse for alpine plants, and an 18-meter-high treetop walkway giving visitors an experience like never before. It is a sanctuary of green calm and bliss.

5. Buckingham Palace

If you are traveling to London for the first time, this iconic palace is a must-see. First, it is the official dwelling palace of the Queen of England. In 1761, George III bought Buckingham House for Queen Charlotte and since then it has gone through many renovations. In counting, the Palace has 774 rooms and holds thousands of guests every year for great royal ceremonies, events, as well as garden parties. Hanging on all the walls of this palace are beautiful works of arts. It is open to the public from late July to September and on select days in January, April, and December.

6. Kensington Palace

Once home to the late Princess Diana of Wales, now Kensington Palace is the royal residence of the new Duke and Duchess of Cornwall. The stylish palace estate features avenues to learn about her Majesty the Queen along with her monarch’s beautiful exhibitions. Visitors can explore the extraordinary lives of royal leaders and the history of royal weddings. Royalty speaks at every point in Kensington Palace and visitors can also have high tea around the corner at The Orangery.

7. The Tower Bridge

Many visitors mistake this fascinating site for the London Bridge, but the Tower Bridge is different from it. This bridge is Gothic by design with a beautiful feature lifting and dividing the bridge into two to make it easy for traffic on the waterways. The upgraded glass walkway also creates more space for viewers on the bridge. You can step inside and tour the magnificent Victorian engine rooms. The Tower Bridge is open from October to March and April to September.

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Top 10 Tourism Destinations In London (part 1)

London with rich and unique history and amazing preserved British culture is one of the most beautiful tourism destinations in the United Kingdom. You will never run out of amazing things to do in this city as it has so many historical landmarks and great attractions to keep you busy.

Here are top ten stunning London tourism destinations that you must visit when you are in the city.

1. The Museum of London

The Museum of London has a stunning beauty to behold. With legendary exhibitions showing London through the ages, this famous landmark and architectural masterpiece holds a lot of British history, from prehistory to modern times. It offers unique collections including more than a million objects! If you are a history fan and want to understand more about the British Empire and how it became the great city like it is now, the Museum of London is a must-visit place.

2. The National Gallery

There goes a saying that, “A picture is worth a thousand words”. The same goes for the National Gallery in Trafalgar Square, London. It is one of the unique popular destinations where art is at its finest. The gallery consists of collections from famous artists such as Leonardo da Vinci, Vincent van Gogh, Claude Monet, Michelangelo, and Johannes Vermeer. Sometimes the educational gallery with a warm and welcoming atmosphere also has visiting exhibitions of other famous artists.

3. The London Museum of Transport

The London Museum of Transport, located in Covent Garden Piazza, holds fascinating secrets blowing your mind. It shows all that there is to transport with various collections including everything from vehicles and infrastructure to old photographs, recordings, and relics. Visiting the museum is also a great way to explore the history of transport in London and learn about the famous transport system of the city.

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