My flight touched down at Heathrow airport early this morning (before 7am).

View from an airplane window showing the engine and wing over a seascape of clouds under a blue sky.

An airport apron with a Virgin airline aircraft, a DHL delivery truck, a baggage tug, an air traffic control tower, and a ground crew member wearing a hi-vis vest.

I didn’t check a bag, so getting through the border and exiting the airport was a breeze.

A subway station on the Elizabeth line from the airport. Interior of a modern subway station with curved walls and ceiling, featuring a reflective surface on one side and a tiled flooring leading to platform gates where people are standing and walking. One individual is noticeable in the foreground pulling a red suitcase.

I decided to take the train to get from the airport to the neighborhood where I’d be staying (how could I not??). I took the Elizabeth line from the airport and transferred to the northern line on the Tube.

I’m staying in London at The Bull and Last a pub and inn right next to Hampstead Heath park in the NW5. A real pub is something I wanted to experience while in London, so why not stay at one! But seriously, I think it’s great how they’ve remodeled this old pub and brought it back as an active inn. A traditional brick building housing “The Bull and Last” pub with a black facade, large windows, hanging plants, and road signs visible on a cloudy day.

My limited touring around today (lack of sleep on the plane got me–the flight was comfortable, a 5pm departure was just too early for me to fall asleep) involved walking through part of Hampstead Heath. I quickly learned this part of London is very dog friendly (which makes me like it even more). There were tons of dogs in the park, many off leash. Even better, there were lots of dogs in the cafe I visited this morning and in the pub.

Another creature that’s abundant here: snails. Not sure if all of London is like this or it’s just this neighborhood. 🐌

Before dinner, I wanted to try and see a little more, so I headed out toward the Barbican where I hoped to see the conservatory. Unfortunately that was closed but I checked out a gallery and the surrounding area.

A fountain in a pond, surrounded by brick pavement with brutalist architecture and modern buildings in the background, under a rainy sky.

Then back to The Bull and Last for dinner, which was good. I ordered a tomato salad and the BBQ cod which I really enjoyed.

Tomorrow is more sightseeing before I take the Eurostar to Paris on Thursday.