London dopefest? Plus more questions about my trip

As I posted a few weeks ago, pinknotes212 and I are going to be traveling in the UK for a fortnight. Anyone interested in meeting for a pint or two while we are in London? Assuming either Friday or Saturday evenings are best, the two nights possible for us are Friday, 23/7 or Saturday 24/7. We are staying near the Tufnell Park tube stop on the Northern line, so anywhere we can get to from there works for us.

Now for the questions:

What are the “must sees” in London?

Can anyone give me any advice about international phone cards to use to call back to the US? Or about phoning in general from the UK to the US?

For international phone cards, you should be able to get them all over the place. Heaps of off-licences (grocery stores) or post-offices will have posters on their window at the front showing rates for international phone cards. You should be able to just ask them what the best one they have for dialling the US is (they’ll usually have a bunch of different types with different rates for various regions)

And I’ll add the British Museum to the list of must-sees.

I’d ride the London Eye if it’s clear. The view of London is spectacular. You might want to check out the NADS board, it’s heavy on Brit dopers who could probably be persuaded to take you guys on a pub crawl. They did me. It was quite fun.

Ye Olde Cheshire Cheeseis my favorite bar in London, and the food is decent. A bar has been on the same site since 1538, and it famously used to be frequented by Samuel Johnson and Charles Dickens. If we have a Dopefest in London, depending on the numbers this is a great place to have it.

The Black Friar, just by Blackfriars station, is my second-favorite pub. Slightly harder to get to (I think Blackfriars station is still closed; I always end up going by taxi).

Almost all the museams in London are free. You can check out the Rosetta Stone in the British Museaum, and yes, admission is free!

Proms, a six-week classical music festival, starts from the 16th of July. Lots of very reasonably priced concerts every day of the week at Royal Albert Hall and other famous locations. Check out the schedule here.

Portobello Marketis fun, if a bit touristy.

If you’re into that sort of thing, there are Jack the Ripperwalking tours.

I live on the Northern Line, by the way. Tufnell Park is pretty close to King’s Cross, Euston and Liverpool Street, so tube-wise you can get just about anywhere. Make sure to check for tube closures especially on the weekends. Get an Oyster cardas soon as you arrive, it’s a lot cheaper than paying each time (and you can use it on buses as well).

Make sure your hotel rooms have A/C. Some rooms don’t (our house doesn’t have any A/C) and while most of the time it’s not needed, there are days when you’ll definitely want it!

If you venture out of London, I’d recommend Leeds Castle, St Albans, Bath, Oxford, Cambridge, Glyndebourne Festivalfor opera… so many places to recommend!

Hope we can have a pint or three while you’re here!

Is your lucky day! While you are in town, the Press Photographer’s Year exhibition is on at the National! LINKY

What a good opportunity to see what sort of photos the British press have been publishing over the last year! Also, it’s free. It’s on the South Bank, a top notch place to hang out on Saturday/Sunday if the weather’s nice as you’ll get all sorts of performers and buskers playing their trades.

The PPY is genuinely good, some really striking photos, and only a short walk up to the Tate Modern - also free. In fact, most if not all London museums are free(you sometimes have to pay for specific exhibitions) so check out The Science Museum and The Natural History Museum at South Kensington too.

Have a great time - we are having fantastic weather at the moment so hope it holds for you! :slight_smile:

I could probably make it into town on the Saturday. I also second Morgyn’s of cross posting to NADS.

How did I miss this? :smiley:

Well, it was six years ago. Sadly, I can’t remember all of the people I met, and some are no longer Dopers. There was paulbrzrker (think that’s how he spelled it, Garius, and bonzer for part of it. They not only took me to about 8 different pubs (including The George, where Shakespeare is said to have rehearsed his actors and is still the oldest still in business pub in London and maybe the world), they pointed out all sorts of neat touristy things and walked me right through a street market early in the crawl. Which sold books. This was an evil, evil thing of them to do, because I wound up carrying about half-a-dozen books the rest of the day. Oh, the suffering I experienced! :wink: And there was Indian food at the end of it all. Bliss!

Which probably makes me the Doper living closest to where you’re staying. Nice area, though not particularly touristy. If you want to try a gastropub, there are various ones round about, like the Junction Tavern. You’ll get a wider selection of restaurants and shops by hopping on the tube and popping the two stops down to Camden.
The most famous tourist attraction in the area is Highgate Cemetery - a tour of the western half is highly recommended, since that really is the perfect romantically overgrown Victorian cemetery. And from there it’s worth walking up Hampstead Heath, which includes Kenwood House (as featured in Notting Hill), which has one of the great smaller art collections in the country, all for free.

As for that weekend, I’ve a prior engagement on the Friday, but should be free on the Saturday.

Hurray! I am so glad a couple of you want to meet. I have never planned a trip this complicated on my own, so it helps to know I will get a chance to talk to some locals. :slight_smile:

How about we plan on meeting on Satuday at Ye Old Cheshire Cheese?

Teacake? Illuminatiprimus? You guys up for this?

I think I might be free on the Saturday evening. Garius, paulberserker et al might still be up for a jar too.

The list of must-sees is just too long, though, sorry!

I’ll quite happily drag myself back to work on a Saturday (the Cheshire Cheese being just around the corner from where I work) in a good cause like a Dopefest.

Must-sees: Definitely museums, and I’d add in a couple of markets. Borough Market is a lot of fun. After the hot weather we’ve been having, the parks are a bit arid, but I’d still take a stroll in one or two of them.

I wish you the happiest of times!

I have theatre tickets on Saturday 24th, but I might be able to make it to the Cheese for a sneaky half. How exciting, I’ve never (knowingly) met any Dopers before!

Whatcha seeing, Teacake? We are hoping to pick up some cheap day of show tickets.

The new(est, I don’t think it’s actually that new any more) Alan Bennett at the National: “The Habit of Art”. It’s my end of term treat - I’m looking forward to it!

This is your friend. If you have one of those fancy phones and are taking it then bookmark that. The Northern Line will be working but other lines may not.

Also, you can get your travelcard/Oyster ahead of time and delivered to you by looking here.

Going by the weather this month it will be either a heatwave or a downpour. Pack shorts and umbrellas. :stuck_out_tongue:

I think we’re fast approaching the point where we need a definite plan. Since nobody has suggested anywhere other than Ye Olde Cheshire Cheese, I propose we meet there from 2pm onwards. This coming Saturday, the 24th.

Unless anyone has a specific different proposal.

If you love the film The Railway Children you might want to take in the live play at Waterloo station.


Bonzer, that sounds like a plan. Looking forward to it!

I just said out loud “I’m going to meet strange Internet people on Saturday… no, wait, I’m not, because I’m going to the Farnborough air show”.

Brynda, I hope you have a great holiday over here, and I’m annoyed that I double-booked myself into avoiding a Dopefest. Cest la vie when you are disorganised enough to do this.