my 5 favourite hidden spots across London

London, like any great city, has so much to see and do. It takes a lifetime to experience all of it. To walk every alley and see every show. But, when you are here for an extensive amount of time or are revisiting for the millionth time, finding lesser known gems of the city feels extra special. Nothing is truly a secret thanks to social media, geo-tagging, and Pinterest, but there are definitely places that are a little farther off the paved road if ya know what I mean? 

Here are my 5 favourite London "secret" spots!

1. St. Dunstan in the East

A friend told me about St. Dunstan in the East on my trip last summer. We had made plans to go there, but plans changed {like they so often do} due to a crunch in time. I've since been able to stop by multiple times on the walk home. St. Dunstan is lodged unexpectedly in the middle of bank buildings, skyscrapers, and a hotel. The church was damaged in both the Great Fire and World War II but thanks to minor repairs over time, its outer walls remain to house a city garden. 

HOT TIP: Avoid going at lunch time! You'll run into heaps of people eating on their work break, which ruins both pictures and the serene mood of the place. 

2. One New Change Roof Terrace

You might pass by One New Change thinking it's nothing more than a shopping center. you might even browse its two-floor H&M, grab some {unauthentic} Thai food from "Bangkok Cafe", and then leave without even realizing that one of the best FREE views of the city can be found on the 6th floor of the shopping complex. Simply catch the elevator up to floor 6 and snap away! There are also steps to sit on and ponder the Universe if that's what you're into. 

HOT TIP: The security guard on the terrace told me that the view at sunset is out of this world. He also said the terrace empties out, so you won't have to fight with people over the scenery. It's a 30-minute walk from my flat, so naturally, I have returned time and time again to take in London from above.  

3. ArcelorMittal Orbit

ArcelorMittal Orbit was brought to my attention by Bailey who, while visiting London, wanted to stop by WestHam stadium to pick up kit for her boo thing. She had messaged me saying the stadium was near a slide, as a way to help me navigate us there. A slide?! I'd never heard of any massive slide?! After a Google, I was excited to make the trek up to Northeast London to see the UK’s tallest sculpture and the world’s longest, fastest, and tallest tunnel slide. It's probably not something people think of when they list places to go and things to see in London, which makes it off-the-grid. 

HOT TIP: There is free WiFi available in Queen Elizabeth Park and a cafe with a view of the river. Stratford tube station is the closest to the park and plops you right inside Westfield shopping center. 

4. The Wren

The Wren is an independently owned cafe hidden a church abbey. I walked by the abbey and noticed people sitting with adorable mint ceramic mugs on the patio. I went inside to see what the deal was, and that's when I found the quietest, most off the radar cafe in London. Giant stained-glass windows and high ceilings create a beautiful atmosphere. If you're looking for a seriously secret work space in the city, The Wren is exactly what you need. 

HOT TIP: Everything on offer {both breakfast and lunch service} is sold at cost, making it super affordable food option for the area. I only had the chance to drop in once, but I picked up a pot of tea for £1.75!

5. The Domino Telephone Booths

I met Sandy in the line of a Lululemon meditation bus on Regent Street and we immediately exchanged Instagram handles. We bonded over our love of travelling and our London bucket lists-- places we had yet to visit in London but still wanted to. We were able to travel on the Southwest National Rail lines down to Kingston in the Greater London area to visit the art installation, which is FREE and open to the public. 

HOT TIP: There is a cafe around the corner called Beanberry.  It has a true coffee lover's menu {none of the flavoured, frappe shit}, free WiFi, and clean bathrooms. Beanberry is pretty much the only other thing I recommend checking out in Kingston. 

I'd love to know what your favourite "hidden" spots in the city are!

Let me know in the comments below!