The 12 cosiest cabins and log cabins in the UK
Listen, we love the city. We love the hustle and bustle, the noise, the never-ending supply of things to do and see. But sometimes, you really do just need to escape for a bit. A change of scenery is good for you – especially if the scenery is as gorgeous as the settings for these cosy countryside cabins. And we’re not talking about that old shed in your grandparent’s back garden. We’re talking about full-on architectural wonders – ranging from luxury woodland shacks and rustic log cabins to eco-friendly huts and elegant tree houses. If you’re looking for a scenic hangout for a group of mates, a luxe romatic retreat, a pad to get back to basics or just fancy swerving the rest of humanity for a while, plan an escape to one of these hideaways. Here’s our pick of the best cabins and log cabins to stay in across the country. RECOMMENDED:💕 The best romantic weekend getaways in the UK☕ Tiny, cosy cottages you can book in the UK🌳 11 incredible treehouses you can book in the UK🧘 The best wellbeing breaks and yoga retreats in the UK🏞️ The most beautiful national parks in the UK
The best piercing studios in London
Remember the days when piercing meant sitting in the window of a Claire’s Accessories while a crowd of shoppers looked on? Well, London’s piercing scene has evolved a lot since then. With the trend for multiple ear piercings, as well as all sorts of weird and wonderful body jewellery, showing no signs of abating, it’s little wonder that the city has seen an influx of on-trend, high-end, industry-leading studios pop up. Whether you’re looking for an Instagram-worthy backdrop to your experience, an achingly cool industry icon to do the job or just a pain-free, seamless experience, London has your back – or your ear, as the case may be.
27 London events (and new openings) to get excited about in 2020
We might no longer be getting Crossrail this year (surprise!), but 2020 promises big things for London: music festivals under motorways (seriously), unforgettable theatre and more art exhibitions than you can shake an HB pencil at. We’ve rounded up the most exciting events and goings-on to bring you the only guide to the year you’ll need this year. From Brent becoming the new London Borough of Culture in January through to the Royal Albert Hall’s concert performance of ‘Star Wars: Return of the Jedi’ in December, with London's first Trans+ Pride and the much-anticipated reopening of The Geffrye Museum sandwiched in between. We can’t predict the weather, sadly, but we can promise a perpetually sunny outlook when it comes to London’s cultural climate this year. RECOMMENDED: 101 best things to do in London
You can swim beneath the stars in this (heated) London swimming pool
Nowadays, going for a swim at one of London’s lidos usually requires advance booking, but you’ll have to be seriously on the case to maximise on this cosy, outdoor swimming adventure: Hampton Pool is back with its very popular Moonlight Dip sessions. Once again, Londoners will have the chance to splash about under the stars at the (thankfully!) heated outdoor lido. There are various time slots, starting from 6pm, but the most exciting are the Friday night 10.15pm swims: proper after-hours action. The 75-minute sessions run on selected Friday, Saturday and Sunday nights from November 26 to January 9 and can be booked on the pool’s app. They cost £12 for adults and £8 for kids. View this post on Instagram A post shared by Hampton Pool (@hamptonpool) on Oct 25, 2019 at 12:22pm PDT A moonlight dip is something you’re more likely to find at a far-flung beach party than a swimming pool in the suburbs, but the Hampton team is determined to bring it to city dwellers too. ‘We started our moonlight swims to give our customers the chance to swim in our heated pool under the stars,’ Hampton Pool manager Mickey Lewis told us. ‘Each one has its own special feel depending on the time of year, and we love seeing families from the locality and further afield coming along to join in the party atmosphere.’ View this post on Instagram A post shared by Hampton Pool (@hamptonpool) on Oct 29, 2019 at 11:24am PDT
What actually is Burns Night and how can you celebrate it in London?
January 25 marks the return of Burns Night: the annual Scottish knees-up that has been adopted up and down the UK as a good excuse for a party. But what actually is it? The calendar favourite commemorates the life of poet Robert Burns, aka the man behind the well-known new year song ‘Auld Lang Syne’, who was born on – you guessed it – January 25 (in 1759). The annual celebrations recognise his massive contribution to Scottish culture, and Scots traditionally mark the occasion with a Burns supper, which can be anything from an informal gathering with a few friends to large, loud, formal dinner parties with kilts and other fancy wardrobe choices. Typically, a Burns supper follows a set order and includes haggis, Scotch whisky and a reading of Burns’s poetry. However, as the tradition spread, celebrations outside of Scotland have taken on their own form, and Londoners can now join a whole host of Burns Night shindigs. View this post on Instagram On 25 January, Scotland celebrates its most celebrated poet, Robert Burns. Join us for two night, truly Scottish spectacle with a formal Burns dinner where the haggis gets ceremoniously presented with a piper and ‘Address to a Haggis’. The celebrations continue with a traditional ceilidh. Book now from 24th - 26th January via the link in our bio. #BurnsNight A post shared by The Fife Arms (@thefifearms) on Jan 3, 2020 at 4:06am PST Lots of people host Burns suppers at home, including making creative Burns cocktails, bu
Here’s what the new Museum of London will look like. Fancy!
Museum buffs, we’ve got some exciting news. The Museum of London has today (Monday January 13) revealed its detailed plans to transform a set of derelict, former market buildings in West Smithfield into a world-class, 24-hour cultural destination. Currently part of the Barbican complex of buildings, the Museum of London documents the history of the UK’s capital from prehistoric to modern times and it’s a big draw for Londoners looking to learn more about their home and visitors wanting some insider insight. But now the free museum is on the move to a new and bigger home. Their proposal, submitted to the City of London Corporation for approval today, aims to preserve much of the historic fabric of the old market buildings, some of which date back to the Victorian era and have fallen into disrepair, by making relatively few contemporary interventions. The cavernous and atmospheric spaces that exist both above and below ground would serve as display, exhibition, learning and events space. Upon its completion, the brand spanking new Museum of London would expect to welcome more than 2 million visitors a year. So what will the new Museum of London look like if the plans are approved? Well, pretty fancy if these images are anything to go by: Photograph: Secchi Smith Photograph: Secchi Smith Photograph: Secchi Smith If everything goes to plan, when it opens in its new space the Museum of London will host a range of exciting events and entertainment, as well as even more op
Broadway Market’s iconic pie and mash shop F Cooke has closed after 120 years
Hackney’s Broadway Market has a lot going for it. The little street plays host to around 135 stalls selling a fabulous array of fresh produce, vintage clothes, flowers, coffee, books and groceries. There are also myriad food options for the trendy east London crowds to pick at as they meander, including Deeney’s toasted sandwiches and Fin + Flounder’s crab cakes. One of the foodie staples, which has been a crowdpleasing favourite for 120 years, is legendary pie and mash shop F Cooke. The restaurant was run, until very recently, by the founder’s great-grandson Bob Cooke, and the comfort-food establishment had been serving the same menu since it opened in 1900. View this post on Instagram F. Cooke #pie #fcooke #englishfood #foodie #broadwaymarket #pieandmash #eastlondon #interiordesign A post shared by Mayuko (@polkadotroom) on Apr 13, 2019 at 11:36am PDT But the iconic shop has now closed its doors for the final time. Owner Bob Cooke told the Hackney Gazette that, after years of declining business, it ceased trading on Christmas Eve. View this post on Instagram A post shared by Amanda Jacks (@mrsjacks) on Jul 5, 2019 at 7:07am PDT It was announced in May 2019 that the family-run restaurant would be closing because it could no longer deal with rising rates, changing tastes, and the emergence of more and more restaurants on Broadway Market, a compact street which runs from London Fields to the Regent’s Canal. But it was unclear when the shop woul
The best pictures from London’s No Trousers on the Tube day
If you went down to the tube yesterday, you were in for a big surprise, because Sunday January 12 marked No Trousers on the Tube Day, the one day of the year where it’s acceptable to get on the underground without being fully dressed. Part of the global No Pants Subway Ride, which was launched in New York in 2002, hundreds of Londoners made their way around the city without any keks to mark the eleventh year of this baffling event, which culminated in an afterparty at O’Neills on Wardour Street. The unseasonal activity, which has now spread to 60 cities around the world, was started in an effort to help city-dwellers shift the January blues, and the mood was certainly one of jubilation. If you weren’t there yesterday and are curious as to what hundreds of people in just their pants on the London underground looks like, we’ve rounded up the best photos in the name of investigative journalism. Enjoy! View this post on Instagram London No Trousers 👖 Tube Ride Day 2020 #notrousers #notrouserstuberide2020 #notrouserstuberide #transportforlondon #happypeople #beautifulpeople #fun #london #january #2020 #timeoutlondon #eveningstandard #canonuk #canonphotography #canon 📷 A post shared by Carocas Photography (@_carocas_) on Jan 13, 2020 at 3:40am PST View this post on Instagram London No Trousers 👖 Tube Ride Day 2020 #notrousers #notrouserstuberide2020 #notrouserstuberide #transportforlondon #happypeople #beautifulpeople #fun #london #january #202
TfL has confirmed that Crossrail now won’t open until the end of 2021 😭
Crossrail, the transport infrastructural equivalent of the unicorn: there are many tales about it, but no one has ever seen it. And it seems that Londoners, who aren’t the most patient of commuters at the best of times, still have a long old wait before they’ll finally get to ride on their new train line. A whole 24 months, to be exact. Speaking to the London Assembly’s budget and performance committee today, Transport for London’s commissioner Mike Brown announced that they were working to a timetable of between September and December 2021 as a new opening date for London’s latest line (‘late’ being the operative word here). If you aren’t up to speed, allow us to give you a transport update: Crossrail, which will be officially called the Elizabeth Line once it’s up and running, will connect Reading and Heathrow in the west to Shenfield and Abbey Wood in the east. Once it’s open, you’ll be able to get from Canary Wharf to Paddington in a pretty impressive 17 minutes. It was initially meant to open in 2018, having cost £14.8 billion, but there has been a series of delays and budget issues along the way. The Crossrail route was actually first proposed in 1941, but before you start thinking it’s taken 79 years to get to this point, the actual construction only started in 2009 at Canary Wharf. The high-speed line was intended to open in December 2018, but budget setbacks saw it delayed until autumn 2019. And you thought a 13-minute delay on the Central line was bad? Then we wer
This eco-friendly afternoon tea raises money for a rainforest charity
If you’ve ever been to Petersham Nurseries, either the original shop and restaurant in Richmond or the newer offshoot in Covent Garden, you’ll be in no doubt about the brand’s love of nature, thanks to its plant-filled glasshouses, lush flower displays and giftshop filled with goodies for green-fingered Londoners. But this year, Petersham is going even further, partnering up with rainforest charity Cool Earth to create an environmentally conscious afternoon tea. Available at its Covent Garden branch from January 9 until March 29, the tea is a collaboration that aims to raise money to help halt deforestation and empower rainforest communities working to lessen the detrimental impact of climate change. Using locally and ethically sourced ingredients (of course), the afternoon tea offers sugar-seekers treats such as Peruvian chocolate and coffee bean macarons, classic battenberg cake and indulgent victoria sponge filled with seasonal jam and decorated with garden flowers. Photograph: Petersham Nurseries The savoury bites sound just as delicious, featuring a squash and chilli quiche, cauliflower pani puri (crispy balls of wheat with a vegetable centre) and beetroot, buckwheat and walnut crostata. To finish it off – if your jeans aren’t already whimpering for mercy – there’s a selection of miniature rhubarb and custard tartlets with a seasonal bellini or non-alcoholic cocktail. Feeling good about your contribution to the planet has never tasted so good. The Cool Earth After
City envy: we want a four-day working week like Helsinki
Going back to work after Christmas is hard, but imagine how much easier it would be if we only had a four-day week made up of six-hour shifts? Well, that’s exactly what Finland’s new prime minister, Sanna Marin, wants to introduce. This new working week is already in place in Sweden, where a six-hour shift experiment first began in 2015, and Ms Marin hopes that the reclaimed hours will help people pursue their hobbies and get in more quality family time. Currently, the Finnish workforce follows a similar pattern to the UK: eight hours a day, five days a week with two days off, so this new proposal, if successful, would mean Finns gain an extra 16 hours of free time every week. Just think what you could do with 16 wonderful extra hours. Finally visit all those London museums you’ve never made it to? Do all 101 of the best things to do in London? Or watch 16 episodes of ‘Ru Paul’s Drag Race’? Hey, no judgment here. ‘I believe people deserve to spend more time with their families, loved ones, hobbies and other aspects of life, such as culture,’ Marin, the world's youngest prime minister, said recently. ‘This could be the next step for us in working life.’ Finally, a political policy we can wholeheartedly get on board with. Pondering which new interests you’d take up if you worked a 24-hour week? Check out our pick of the best hobbies to try in London.
Burger King’s first plant-based burger launches in London this week – but vegans can’t eat it
Ah, Veganuary. The month when lots of people up and down the UK, even hardened carnivores, try 31 days of plant-based eating. It’s also, unsurprisingly, the month when eateries reveal new vegan options to satisfy the demand. High street fave Pret has launched a vegan croissant (this is NOT a drill), while Yard Sale and Patty & Bun are among the gaggle of restaurants offering customers veggie versions of old favourites. Now, Burger King has announced the launch of its Rebel Whopper: a meat-free take on its classic burger. Made from soy, the burger is available on the BK app from today (January 6) and from restaurants in London on Wednesday. However, before you rush out to get your hands on it, there is a catch. A big one. A whopper, if you will: it’s not suitable for vegans or vegetarians. Although the burger’s ingredients are all plant-based, it is cooked on the same grill as the restaurant’s beef originals, which rules it out for anyone who adheres to a strict no-meat diet. Weird, eh? Apparently the burger is aimed at flexitarians, aka people who are trying to cut down on the amount of animal product they consume. Burger King’s marketing director Katie Evans believes that the burger is a ‘game changer’ for anyone trying to cut down on meat. ‘We wanted our first plant-based Whopper to replicate the indulgence and flame-grilled taste of the real thing as closely as possible,’ she explained. But it does mean that if you’re giving Veganuary a real go, you’ll have to look so
You can now have a floating Sunday lunch aboard this London boat
Just when you thought Sunday lunch couldn’t get more joyful, London Shell Co has announced that you can now have your weekend staple to go... down the Thames. Okay not ‘down’ the Thames, but certainly on it. Floating restaurant The Grand Duchess, moored on the Grand Union Canal at Paddington Central, is extending its weekly offering to Sunday sessions. Get your sea legs and jump aboard for an afternoon of live music, indulgent sharing mains and seasonal seafood. Diners can expect dishes such as classic fish pie, rolled lamb saddle with celeriac and anchovy gratin, and whole roast monkfish tail with roast garlic and potatoes. Fish is sourced fresh from Cornwall (not the Thames, thankfully) and the wine comes from producers who follow ecologically conscious processes. We know that the siren call of your local is hard to resist, but you can’t beat a boat. New year, new roast, right? Find out more at London Shell Co's website. Prefer to stay land-based for your Sunday roast? Check out the offerings at these pubs. Favour brunch to lunch? These Sunday brunches are the best in the capital.
The world’s first Christmas card is now on display in London
We go online for lots of things these days, but happily, printed Christmas cards seem to have stood the test of time. They come in all shapes and sizes, from those covered in sustainable glitter to 3D wonders depicting classic festive scenes – the options are endless. But the Christmas card had humble beginnings, as proved by the world's first printed version which has now gone on display as part of an exhibition at the Charles Dickens Museum in London. Charles Dickens Museum Created in 1843, the same year that Dickens’s ‘A Christmas Carol’ was published, the hand-coloured card depicts an endearing family scene: people gathered around a table, enjoying a glass of wine together. Underneath the image, a message reads: A merry Christmas and a happy new year to you, with the sender’s signature included beside it. Designed by Henry Cole and illustrated by John Callcott Horsley, the card was sent by a son to his parents and was one of just 1,000 original prints – only 21 have survived. As well as the Christmas card, the exhibition will feature Dickens’s manuscripts and original illustrations for his Christmas stories and beautifully bound jewel-studded books by Sangorski & Sutcliffe. ‘Beautiful Books: Dickens and the Business of Christmas’. Charles Dickens Museum. Until April 19 2020. £9.50. Tickets can be booked here. Feeling festive? Check out our guide to Christmas in London.
Kew’s festive light trail is back – and it’s bigger than ever
There are certain markers that let us know the festive period has officially begun: light shows being switched on across the city; window displays featuring sparkles and copious amounts of synthetic snow; and the appearance of those blue tins of Roses chocolates. Most exciting of all, though, is Christmas at Kew. This yearly event is an opportunity to immerse yourself in all the joys of the season, from toasting marshmallows on an open fire to sipping mulled wine as you listen to Christmas carols, all the while surrounded by larger-than-life light installations. It opens tonight, with a brand-new, after-dark light installation that’s longer than ever before. And we’ve had a first look. View this post on Instagram A post shared by KidRated (@kidrated) on Nov 18, 2019 at 10:44am PST Those who have been before will recognise some old favourites as well as a whole host of fresh projections and displays, including a cascade of glowing bulbs illuminating the Treetop Walkway. It’s an amazing large-scale installation, akin to standing in the middle of a glittery waterfall. Photograph: Jeff Eden/RBG Kew The immersive vine installation promises to be a favourite with children and adults alike. It allows you to wander through changing ribbons of light. Just watch out for people pausing for selfies midway – or prepare to guest star in a few. View this post on Instagram A post shared by Andrew Lalchan | Photographer (@alalchan) on Nov 19, 2019 at 11: