Christmas in London With National Express*

I hate getting up early on a Saturday. Saturdays should be for lie-ins. Except one particular Saturday when I met up with my lovely friend Rachael at 9am at Pool Valley (in Brighton) to travel up to London to see the Leicester Square Christmas Market!

As we’d got there early anyway and I’d misread the time by 10 minutes, we popped into Edendum for a quick coffee first. It’s such a pretty coffee shop and I can’t believe I’ve never noticed it before!!

After coffee, we headed to the National Express coach station and waited for the coach to arrive. It got in about 10 minutes late, but we soon headed off as there weren’t too many people boarding.

The coach journey from Brighton to London Victoria takes just over 2 hours; which, although it’s quicker to go by train, works out a lot cheaper and you’re guaranteed a seat. Plus you’re unlikely to get an unruly mob of excitable women drinking cheap gin and tonics from a can because they’re off on a hen do!!

With hundreds of destinations (and 82 of them available to travel to on Christmas Day), plus the benefit of air conditioning, power sockets and toilets, going by coach is definitely a more luxurious option! That being said, I plugged my phone into the USB port and nothing happened πŸ™ As I said, they do have plug sockets as well though, but I hadn’t brought one with me. Booooo!

We managed to snag a couple of seats at the back where there was loads of leg room!! The seats were super comfy and the time flew by as we chatted the whole way πŸ™‚

We pulled into London Victoria about half an hour after we were meant to so we immediately jumped on the tube and headed over to Leicester Square for the Christmas Market. I have to admit, it didn’t exactly blow me away. It was quaint and sweet but it was small. Really small. We only stayed for about 15 minutes, mostly so I could get some photos.

Rachael and I had tickets booked for the London Eye at 3pm so we decided to walk over to the Eye so we’d be in the right area. It took us about 20 minutes to walk it, which wasn’t too bad. As we were walking over the bridge, I noticed there was another Christmas Market at Southbank, so we stopped there for a while and grabbed some food!

I got a wild boar sausage wrap from The Athenian, It was absolutely delicious and crammed full of food <3

At about 2.30, we headed to the ticket collection office to pick up our Eye tickets. We probably queued for about 20 minutes to collect the tickets and queued for about 10 minutes to board the Eye. It was a really lovely experience and I loved seeing London from so high up (even if the Parliament side window was covered in rain)!!

After our go on the Eye (which took about 30 minutes), Rachael and I walked across Westminster Bridge to get the tube back to Victoria πŸ™‚

We made it in plenty of time for our coach and I’m pretty sure it arrived back in Brighton a lot sooner than the advertised time πŸ˜€

By the way, customers who book travel on the National Express website by 23rd December for travel by 31st December 2018 will receive 50% off a journey booked between 7th January and 15th February 2019 (subject to terms and conditions).

How do you prefer to travel? Are you a coach fan? Let me know in the comments below πŸ™‚ x

*This was a collaborative post with National Express who kindly paid for our travel and a Merlin Entertainment Pass for a trip on the London Eye but all views are my own; not the views of London though, they’re everyone’s!

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10 Comments

  1. What a lovely day that was! I definitely enjoyed my first trip on a National Express coach. Far comfier and more pleasant than the train. πŸ™‚

    1. Ah yeah, I’d definitely rather pay for a cheaper seat and get up early, but I’d begrudge that a bit! I love the not having to change anywhere bit and stand on a platform for ages! Xx

    1. I did, thank you πŸ™‚ Yeah, my “in-laws” take the coach all the time to the airport, it’s much more convenient, plus there’s someone to help with the cases πŸ™‚

  2. National Express is my favourite way to travel to London from where I live. We don’t have a train station in my home time and the closest one that heads to London is 20 minutes away by car. Which makes National Express both a better and more cost effective option for us. I’ve been to the Leicester Square Christmas market before but wasn’t impressed – I agree it’s very small.

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