Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Summer in the City: What to Do?

This year -- for the first time in many -- we're having a proper summer. By 'proper summer', I mean that it's not raining every day of the week, the temperature's above 15 C, and you don't need to head out swathed in scarves to brave the elements. (I'm not joking. One year, I didn't even unpack my summer clothes.)

So to celebrate, this post will be all about my favourite summer things! (Apologies to followers of my Talli Roland blog for the duplicate, but I thought this post worked well for both my blogs!)

1. Pimms. Pimms is a yummy liqueur that you mix with lemonade, cucumbers, strawberries and gin. I know it sounds strange but it can actually be very refreshing. And lethal. A friend of mine once streaked through Richmond after consuming too much Pimms.

2. Proms. Every night from mid-July to mid-September, you can attend wonderful classical music concerts at the Royal Albert Hall for only £4!

3. The Serpentine Pavilion. Each summer, a new architect is commissioned to design a pavilion in Kensington Gardens. It's up for about two months and then they dismantle it.

4. Stripy deck chairs in Hyde Park. Plop one down by the lake, lean back, and watch the trees sway above your head. Bliss!

5. Regent's Park Open-Air Theatre. The only permanent professional outdoor theatre in Britain, Regent’s Park Open-Air Theatre holds over a thousand people. With its pitched seats, though, you’ll feel like you can practically touch the actors on stage. Founded in 1932, the resident company is the New Shakespeare Company. At least two Shakespeare plays are performed each summer – one of them usually A Midsummer Night’s Dream, which lends itself perfectly to the park’s leafy environment.

6. Swimming in the ponds at Hampstead Heath. Bizarre but true - if you fancy a dip in a secluded pond, head up north to the Heath. There's a men's pond, a women's pond and a mixed pond.

7. Opera Holland Park. Every summer, a massive open-air opera stage is constructed in Holland Park. Tickets range from £10 to £57 and if you're a young person (not me...) then you can get free tickets here.

8. Pavement Caf├ęs. Being able to sit on the street and eat probably doesn't seem that exciting, but when you live in a country where the sun rarely makes an appearance then it's downright intoxicating (in more ways than one).

9. South Bank Stroll. I may have mentioned several thousand times that The Man proposed and we got married on the South Bank, so it's no surprise strolling along the Thames when the sky is brilliantly blue is on my top 10 list.

10. Sun. SUN! SUUNNNN! Although technically, I'm not sure sun can really be classified as part of a British summer, when it does make an appearance we appreciate it that much more!


Theresa Milstein said...

It's been between 95-100 here. Brutal!

Your drink sounds good. In this heat, I like a shot of Limoncello. It's the perfect drink in a lot of ways because it cools in the summer but warms in the winter.

There's a contest in Newburyport here this Saturday. I hope it's less hot than today because I want to go, and then head to the beach.

Ellen Brickley said...

The Open Air Theatre is great, I saw Macbeth there with my OH a few years back and it excellent.

One word of warning, though. As it gets dark, it gets *super* cold because you're just sitting in one place. Bring lots of layers and prepare to drink tea at the interval.

'Cross the Pond said...

All sound fabulous. I'll check them all out. Lovely to meet you today! looking forward to the partial!

Marsha Moore said...

Theresa - Limoncello is one of my favourites! I love it!

Ellen - I hear you. I nearly froze when I last went!

'Cross the Pond - lovely to finally meet you! Working away on my 100 pages...!

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