If you have been desperate to soak up the rays now that spring has finally arrived, then now is the time to do so. As soon as a speck of sunlight seeps out from behind the crowds, beer gardens are filled to the brim with thirsty punters, and everyone flocks to local parks in order to bag the best spot in which to set up a makeshift barbecue.
London is home to many beautiful nature hotspots, where you can soak in the stunning scenery and relax and unwind with family and friends. It is the perfect place in which to while away a few hours and have some much-needed ‘me time’.
After a long, hard week at work, the first thing you will want to do is forget all of the stresses and strains of your usual daily routine. And what better way in which to do this than heading down to the nearest green spot and enjoying the sunshine with a carefully-laid out picnic filled to the brim with delicious snacks that you can graze on throughout the afternoon.
Because you have been living in the capital for a while, it might have escaped your notice that there is some spectacular scenery to enjoy whilst feasting on a banquet fit for a King (or Queen!). Cherry blossom trees, for example, are absolutely exquisite, and are the perfect example of what Britain has to offer when it comes to natural beauty.
The cherry blossom signifies the ultimate in Japanese culture, and is beloved in the country. The white and pink flower’s brief but mesmerising bloom serves as a stark reminder of the transience, fragility and simplicity of life, and they also symbolise clouds, which you will see on a frequent basis, wherever you are stationed.
Although Japan’s cherry blossoms are considered to be quaint and idyllic, you do not have to take a long flight in order to witness their charm and allure. They are held in such high esteem by the Japanese that they actually have an annual celebration for when the trees eventually flower, called Hanami, but you can see these amazing flowers all over the world.
At Kew Gardens, for example, you can see the cherry blossoms in full bloom from March to April, and witness their breath-taking beauty first-hand. Just take a long, leisurely walk and you never know what may be around the corner. There are so many lovely flowers and exotic plants to admire along the way, and once you have reached your destination then you can then marvel at this romantic flower with your other half, and discover why it is considered to be such a wonder.
Whether you are shopping, sightseeing or want to spend a little time exploring the city centre before a concert, theatre show or high-end meal in the hottest restaurant in the area, Kensington Gardens has a wonderful variety of cherry blossom trees right by Lancaster Gate. You can either cycle or walk around the garden and see awe-inspiring landscape gardens and 150 year-old water fountains, before settling under a shaded tree. It could very well be a cherry blossom tree, as they can grow to an impressive size!
If you are looking to have a quiet hour’s lunch break before heading back to the office, then why not dine al-fresco at St. James’s Park. Even though it is located in the heart of the city centre, it is peaceful and tranquil, and the perfect place to sit down with a cooling drink and a deli sandwich before having to tackle a mountain of paperwork. The cherry blossom trees are spread out generously too, so you will see an abundance of them on your travels. Buckingham Palace, Westminster Abbey and Big Ben are also situated close by, so tourists will be in seventh heaven.
Greenwich Park has a lovely avenue of cherry blossoms, which lead to the beautiful rose garden at Ranger’s House. This can be found right at the top of the hill, closely situated to the Observatory. It is the ideal spot for both tourists and locals, as it offers a modicum of peace and quiet, yet is still close to all amenities.
So, if you have booked into a hotel such as the famous Park Grand London Lancaster Gate Hotel then it is literally a couple of minutes’ walk away, which means that you will not have to spend a fortune on extortionate taxi fares or take your chance on a late-night Tube service.
If you are desperate for a well-deserved cuppa yet still want to make sure the little ones are entertained then Regent’s Park is the place to be. There is a sizeable, sprawling lake, a great playground and a café offering cakes, snacks and hot and cold beverages which cater for all tastes. London Zoo is also just around the corner, meaning that you can see wildlife comfortably roaming in their natural habitat before you head off into the night for an evening of wining and dining. There is also an abundance of cherry blossoms, which vary in colour, so you can see how different they are as the seasons change.
If you travel to the USA, Sweden, China and, of course, Japan, you will find cherry blossoms dotted around everywhere, but if you look closer to home then you may very well be in for a treat. The capital has cherry blossoms on street corners and church gardens, so all you need to do is head out to the centre and sample a taste of country living.
Planning a trip to the capital takes quite a lot of time and effort, especially if you only have a couple of days to spare and want to take in all the sights and attractions without missing out on something important. The West End has so many must-see shows on throughout the year, so it is essential to book in advance if you are to secure the most sought-after seats in the auditorium.
And, you will most certainly want to visit the many bars, bistros and brasseries which dominate the capital, as London is widely considered to be the ultimate when it comes to haute cuisine. With more and more eateries opening every month, it is vital to make sure that you know exactly where to go in order to enjoy fine dining from around the globe, even if you have a strict budget to adhere to.
Once you have shopped until you drop and savoured a delightful 5-course meal (complete with complimentary canapes and after-dinner coffee), it is time to bid goodnight, and make your way to the finest guesthouse in town.
Park Grand London Lancaster Gate Hotel provides everything you could possibly wish for. With cutting-edge contemporary design and modern, upmarket suites, and a unique, boutique design, every guest will be made to feel like royalty. You get complimentary broadband and a free Full English, which will fill you up and make sure you are ready for the day ahead.
All dietary requirements are taken into consideration, so if you have any bespoke requirements then do not hesitate to ask. With a friendly, welcoming team of staff and guaranteed customer satisfaction every time, it is the only place to stay if you are looking to make your break away truly memorable and special.