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A Glorious Summer Day in the Life of London

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A summer day in London can be a glorious experience. We’ve been fortunate enough to be in London a few times this summer, and people-watching is one of the sweet luxuries of a visit. Here’s a round-up of some of the chic, interesting, elegant, and eye-catching people and OOTDs that we saw by day. And some of the quiet moments that touched us as dusk set in.

The Luxury of a Photo Journey in London in the Summer

The Luxury Photo Journey is an occasional series here at Dandelion Chandelier. Sometimes we find ourselves in a place so stunningly beautiful that words fail us. In those instances, we’ll let the images do most of the talking.

Like any great city, London is too vast to fully capture in one day (perhaps even in one lifetime). Even one day in the summer, when daylight comes early and lingers late. Our little slice of London for this photo journey is in the central area. Further explorations to come. But for now, here’s what we saw in Piccadilly, St. James and Albertopolis.

A Glorious Summer Day in London

We thought the people-watching in New York was good, but London can definitely hold its own. The weather was so fine on our last couple of visits that we didn’t even go inside for tea. Next time.

Off to Work on a London Morning

We begin our day in London in Green Park, under a bluebird sky.

perfect summer day in London
Morning in Green Park Photo Credit: Dandelion Chandelier

The Londoners were hustling to work, many on foot. And some by bike.

The morning commute near Buckingham Palace Photo Credit: Dandelion Chandelier

A few were getting their cardio in with a brisk walk in St. James Park.

Morning cardio in St. James Park Photo Credit: Dandelion Chandelier

A stop at Westminster Abbey mid-morning

After the morning rush, we rambled over to Westminster Abbey for a self-guided tour.

Mid-morning outside Westminster Abbey Photo Credit: Dandelion Chandelier

It’s stunningly beautiful any time of year, but in summer, there are lots of families with young kids on school break visiting the iconic church.

Family activities in the Cloister of Westminster Abbey Photo Credit: Dandelion Chandelier

The serene gardens of Westminster Abbey are a perfect place to be at midday – but if you want more action, just hang around for the lunchtime concert to begin,

In the garden at Westminster Abbey Photo Credit: Dandelion Chandelier

High Noon on Westminster Bridge

At the top of the afternoon, the Westminster Bridge over the River Thames is thronged with people, mostly visitors and people trying to sell them something. A photogenic taxi was too perfect not to include.

perfect summer day in London
Afternoon on Westminster Bridge Photo Credit: Dandelion Chandelier

Somehow, we never tire of seeing the bright red phone booths in London. Sure, they’re touristy. But it’s London!

Summer day in London
An iconic photo booth near Parliament Square Photo Credit: Dandelion Chandelier

A Visit to Buckingham Palace

One of the excellent things to do in London in the summer is a visit to Buckingham Palace. It’s only open to the public in the summer, when the Royal Family decamps to the countryside. It’s a great experience, and the gardens behind the Palace are almost as spectacular as the royal home itself.

The garden of Buckingham Palace Photo Credit: Dandelion Chandelier
Pall Mall Photo Credit: Dandelion Chandelier
Summer day in London
Pall Mall Photo Credit: Dandelion Chandelier

An Afternoon in St. James Park

After Buckingham Palace, taking a stroll through St. James Park is the perfect next step. The swans are likely to be out.

Summer day in London
St. James Park. Photo Credit: Dandelion Chandelier

The ice cream truck is likely to make an appearance, as well.

St. James Park Photo Credit: Dandelion Chandelier

If you wanted to, you could happily sit for an hour or two just people watching in London in any park. The crowd at St. James Park is generally extremely chic.

St. James Park Photo Credit: Dandelion Chandelier

A Quick Stop for Outdoor Art

Every time we visit London, we try to stop at the Royal Academy to see what’s installed in the courtyard. Somehow, we’re never disappointed.

Summer day in London
The Royal Academy of Arts 250th Summer Exhibition Photo Credit: Dandelion Chandelier
Sculpture by Anish Kapoor in the courtyard of the Royal Academy of Arts – “Symphony for a Beloved Daughter, 2018” Photo Credit: Dandelion Chandelier

Bookstore Run

There’s a great row of bookstores in Piccadilly that are also on our must-visit list whenever we’re in town. Hatchards, Maison Assouline, and Waterstone’s are all places to get lost in for a while. Especially in the hottest part of the day.

Hatchard’s Bookstore, Piccadilly. Photo Credit: Dandelion Chandelier.

Sweets for the Road

After the bookstore run, stop for a treat at Fortnum & Mason.

Fortnum & Mason. Photo Credit: Dandelion Chandelier.

Summer Evening People-Watching in London

In summer, the sun doesn’t really set until about 10:00P. Which means the streets, parks, and concert halls are all full of life in the after-work hours. Even on a weekday.

Some are going to BBC Proms concerts at Royal Albert Hall.

Summer day in London
Royal Albert Hall before a BBC Proms concert Photo Credit: Dandelion Chandelier

Some are just getting the evening going at a fantastic eatery (like Sexy Fish).

Sexy Fish Restaurant, London, Photo Credit: Dandelion Chandelier

And as dusk draws near, others are just quietly passing the time in conversation.

Photo Credit: Dandelion Chandelier

It’s good to know that even in a massive metropolis like London, there’s room for serenity and calm, if that’s what you’re after.

What’s your favorite part of London on a brilliant summer day? We can’t even begin to choose. We’ll just have to keep coming back until we figure that out.

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