Moving house followed by Christmas meant December ended up being a pretty expensive month for me, and with the last payday of 2013 being moved forward to before Christmas, January payday seems a long way off. The urge to hibernate all month is admittedly strong, but I want to try and not write the month off completely, so I am trying to get out and about to as many free or cheap places in London as possible. This is my top 10 list:
As the weather was just gorgeous on Saturday - clear blue skies and crisp air - this is where we started. It's right by London Bridge which is so convenient for me, and filled with thr most tempting and mouthwatering food (see photos above!) It's open Wednesday to Saturday and has a mixture of ready to eat food (Oh falafel wrap, you steal my heart!) and really reasonably priced fresh food to take away as well. For £2.50 I bought a punnet of avocadoes and three pomegranates to munch on this week, and for £2.00 James bought a cookie as big as my head.
This is my local market, and has been nearly all my life, so I know it well and had to represent the Sout East! It is mainly an arts and crafts market at the weekend with all sorts of handmade jewellery, clothes and other bits and bobs, but it has an amazing food section as well, so definitel stay for Lunch. It's under cover so even if it is raining it is worth a visit.
This is the museum of the home, which fits in well with my interests at the moment! I haven't been since I was little, (looking through my list I realise how many free museums my parents made the most of when I was young. I think they instilled a lifelong love!) but I remember it vividly as room after room in a different period style. I can't wait to visit again.
This museum has been strongly recommended by a lot of people so I defintely want to make time for a visit this year. It was the home of the architect Sir John Soane, and is filled with all the things he collected. I understand it gets really busy so best to get up early and arrive for opening time.
I absolutely loved this museum as a child (I had a total dolls house obsession. Which is now continued in my real house obsession!) but I haven't been for many years so I am interested to see how it has changed over the years. I remember it being dusty and poorly lit, but absolutely fascinating. Now it has free wifi and a cafe, so I imagine it's quite a lot different!
I visited Columbia Road on a bitterly cold February Sunday last year with Reda, and it totally brightened up the long dark winter. The street was so busy, and full of bright flowers that I couldn't help but be cheered. For a few pounds I bought armfuls of tulips to fill my house with, although it's quite a way from my house so making sure they make it in one piece was a worry!
The William Morris museum is one I have never visited, but it's definitely on my list. The gallery was redeveloped in 2012, and holds over 10,000 objects relating to WIlliam Morris' life and work so it is a msut see for any fans.
I first learnt about the Barbican Conservatory when Kit bloggerd about it. Her photos were just stunning, and it has been on my to visit list ever since, although as it is only open on Sundays and Bank Holidays I havent managed to catch it yet. One for 2014 definitely!
Time to feel like a teenager again? I think so. I haven't been to Camden Lock market since I was 13 and desparately trying to be as cool as the people I saw in Camden. I failed obviously, but I'd love to go back and see what all the fuss was about!
10. Postman's Park
I stumbled upon this part one Saturday when I was out with my family. It's a tiny little square of park in the City, dedicated to people who have died saving the lives of others. It's so interesting and humbling to read the dedications.
So that's my top 10, what are yours? I'm hoping to collect enough ideas to fill my weekends with fun free things all year.