England

CANTERBURY WESTGATE GARDENS

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Westgate Gardens in Canterbury is definitely one of the best parks I’ve been to. A lovely waitress in Whitstable told us about this spot, otherwise I don’t think we would have found it. Through the park there goes a river, and you can also take a boat (punt) tour. We would have done it, but thought it was too hot to be in the sun. Instead, we found a quiet spot in the garden under a tree and took a long nap.

I’ve actually been to Canterbury before. When I was 12, we took a class trip to England and visited here for one day. What I remember was a lot of shops, the cathedral, and fish and chips that I did not like. Not that there was anything wrong with the first visit, I definitely got more out of the city this time. I believe it would be nicer to do shopping here than in London, as it’s always so busy there. In Canterbury there are a lot of tourists as well, but not enough for it to be too crowded.

We also visited the cathedral, but some parts were closed due to renovation. I was surprised that you had to pay a rather high entrance fee (now 5 pounds, normally 12,5 pounds?!). It was an alright visit, although not sure it was entirely worth the money, as the best parts seemed to be closed.

WHITSTABLE BEACH SUNSET

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After spending the entire day walking around and lying on the beach, it was time to get a drink from the shop and watch the sun set into the sea. In Finland, they stop selling alcohol in stores at 9 pm, so I really appreciate that here in England you can get a casual drink from the shop even if it’s later than that. I bought this wine glass from the shop – it’s plastic and comes with a lid – how perfect for picnics! You can fill it up and then put it in your bag if you need to, or place the lid on if you don’t have a stable base and there’s a risk of spilling. What a great innovation.

Anyway, even though it was overcast, the sunset was beautiful and it was nice to feel the air get colder. If you go to Whitstable I really recommend staying until the sunset. There’s also a cool beach bar if that’s what you prefer over a picnic. Read my other post about Whitstable by clicking here.

WEEKEND GETAWAY TO WHITSTABLE

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The heatwave is still going, and as said before, it’s insanely hot in the city. Therefore, we planned a quick weekend trip to the countryside to get some fresh air and relax. This time we picked a pretty random location none of us had heard before; Whitstable. We actually stayed in an Airbnb in Herne Bay, but there was not much there. However, Whitstable seems like a popular place for Londoners to take a break.

Whitstable is a small town (or a village) in Kent, which is in South East England. The beach is huge and the town is famous for its oysters. There were a lot of people enjoying the sun, drinking some beers, watching the Whitstable sunset and having dinner. There was also a high street with a few restaurants and surprisingly many flea markets. On a sunny day, it was easy to spend the entire day there, and I recommend a visit if you’re about.

These photos are taken in front of a random house on the high street. Loved this outfit btw – I’ve been looking for some linen shorts for ages, but it has been difficult with the budget that I’m on. I was lucky to find these from Stradivarius for only £12,99. I can tell the quality isn’t amazing, but I guess you get what you pay for.

ACTUALLY MOVING TO LONDON

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I’m so thrilled to announce that’s it’s finally official: I’m moving to London! I have about two weeks left here in Finland, and during that time I have to finish all my uni assignments and get rid of my current apartment, as well as furniture etc. I’ve already sold so much stuff, including clothes, almost all of my plates, and my curtains. That might be the reason that I can’t sleep and I’m still up writing this at one in the morning.

I hate the idea of putting all the good stuff in my mum’s garage and have them sitting there for probably years, so I decided to give Facebook flea markets a chance. I never knew how convenient they would be! Almost all the items I put on sale attracted a lot of interest, and just by selling the unnecessary things I’ve already covered the cost of my flight. If you’d start applying this more often, you could just travel for “free” in exchange for getting rid of all the crap in your closet. Then you’d always have an excuse to go shopping because you’d need to replace some of the sold items… Sounds good to me!

What comes to the photos, they were taken in London last October. My timing was bad enough to make it to London right after they had started renovating Big Ben. I decided to embrace it and take a proper tourist photo anyway, and I think it is actually kind of funny. Who takes a picture with a building site?! (In this case, I believe, quite many actually.)

BRIGHTON PIER SNAPS

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As I’m impatiently waiting until I can book my flights to London, I decided to have a look at some of the photos taken in Brighton last October. Before we arrived, I was warned that it’s “just a small town”. However, in my perspective it was actually quite big. The population (according to Wikipedia) is roughly only 156 000, but i swear it felt like it was the size of Helsinki, or even bigger. Brighton was also ranked as “the most hipster city in the world”, which does not surprise me. What was more surprising was that Helsinki was ranked as 9th! Here’s the link to the ranking of most hipster cities in the world. Brighton was indeed full of flea markets, coffee shops, tiny boutiques and really seemed like an entrepreneur’s dream: if you have a weird business idea, that’s the place to make it happen! Some major brands, including The Body Shop, also come from Brighton.

As this post comes with pictures from Brighton Pier, I may as well give my comments on that. That’s Brighton’s main attraction and definitely worth visiting. There’s an arcade, some candy floss kiosks and even a small amusement park at the end of the pier. If you have some extra coin you could easily spend half a day playing all the games and trying all the other experiences the pier has to offer. If you’re on a budget, it’s definitely nice to just have a quick stroll around, and I must say it’s also very instagrammable. The beach in Brighton is also massive, and should get pretty busy on a nice summer day. Can’t wait!