Since Dexter left his football team a couple of weeks ago (long story), it has really freed up our weekends. My weekend used to consist of taking him to training on Saturday and then transporting him wherever he needed to go for the match on Sunday, which often started at 2pm, which meant the whole day was a write-off.
Anyway, I have my weekends back, hallelujah! And the first thing we did was work with Southeastern to devise a fantastic family day out in London for the two of us. Tweens/teens are notoriously hard to please but by using their 2FOR1 offers, I came up with, what I thought, was a great day out for both of us.
Like with any day out, it’s important the kids are fed at the earliest opportunity. It saves lots of “Muuuuuuuum, I’m huuuuuuungry” moans, and so we decided as a treat to go to the Montcalm Hotel for Afternoon Tea. The service was great, some of the sandwiches were pink and yellow (!) and everything was delicious. We were allowed extra sandwiches, scones and cakes if we wanted them and we ate in the Crescent restaurant, which is situated in a bright atrium – so it’s light and airy. I can’t recommend it highly enough.
From there, Marble Arch, we jumped on the tube and made our way across to the London Eye, where we were going to pick up our London Eye River Cruise from London Eye Pier. The funniest thing happened on the tube platform though. Now bearing in mind how big London is (ie. very big), the chances of bumping into someone you know are quite slim. However, a lady passed me that looked really familiar … turns out it’s a lovely lady I work with at my day job, and bearing in mind only five of us work for the company, that was pretty spooky.
Anyway, I digress!
We arrived at London Pier and the heavens opened. Neither of us had packed a coat, or an umbrella of course, so we got somewhat damp. The weather made for some great moody London Eye and Houses of Parliament photos though, so every cloud … (pardon the pun!)
Now we had planned to go on a London Eye River Cruise, another 2FOR1 offer, but unfortunately, because I hadn’t actually booked a space for us, they’d sold out. A rookie error, so do make sure you call ahead and don’t make the same mistake I did. Top tip there! But I do recommend you go, it looked wonderful and we’re going to try again, preferably when the weather is a little … less rainy. It goes as far as Tower Bridge and returns 40 minutes later having cruised past the Houses of Parliament, St Paul’s Cathedral, the Tower of London, Shakespeare’s Globe as well as Westminster, Millennium and Tower Bridges, with a full commentary – so the kids might even learn something!
Next on our itinerary for the day was to visit the London Film Museum where they were exhibiting James Bond’s cars, in a Bond in Motion exhibition. We are big Bond fans so we were really looking forward to this. This is another 2FOR1 offer and cost £14.50 for the two of us to enter.
The museum is just round the corner from Covent Garden, so it’s really easy to get to, and once you have a look at the brief exhibition upstairs, you head down to the basement where the main exhibition is. There were some amazing cars and even speedboats to look at, and it was a great way to spend an hour or so. If you’re a die-hard James Bond fan, you will absolutely love this.
By now, it was about 5.30pm, and we were peckish so decided to head over to Maxwells in Covent Garden for dinner. This was also a 2FOR1 offer, but there was a good selection of other restaurants in London to choose from, but I chose this one because I thought it would suit Dexter better. I used to go to Maxwells when I worked in London as a twenty-something and would always follow it up with cocktails at Rumours … aaah, those were the days!
So suffice to say it has been a while since I’ve been to Maxwells, and it was really nice to be back. With the 2FOR1 offer you must print your vouchers off at home and take them along with you because if you don’t have it, they can’t honour the offer. Just FYI. Our voucher was for main courses only, and we got the cheaper meal free. Dexter, as per, went for burger and chips, and I went for a chicken salad which was really delicious – he had crunchy tortilla strips on top, avocado and cooked peppers as well, delicious!
We were too full to have anything else and so decided it was probably about time to head home as Dexter had school the next day, but it was nice being in Covent Garden for the afternoon because it’s great for people watching if nothing else!
I also made a video of our day out if you’d like to see it:
We jumped on the tube and headed back to St Pancras, where we picked up a train and headed home, getting home by 7.30pm, not too late at all.
I’m in London a fair bit for work and blog stuff, but I always struggle when it comes to taking Dexter up there because I can just never come up with ideas for things I think he’d like, but I would definitely use Southeastern’s 2FOR1 offers a game because when you go on the site, it gives you some great ideas for things to do if, like me, you lack inspiration.
It was really lovely spending the whole day with Dexter, something I have really missed due to him being at football all the time, and we will do this type of trip again. The 2FOR1 offers aren’t just restricted to London either, so if you’re thinking of a day trip with the kids, or even without them, take a look at their website for some inspiration. Here’s a link about the 2FOR1 offers to make life easier.
A big thank you from Dexter and I to Southeastern for such a wonderful day.