We’re not telling you to GET LOST, we’re telling you to get lost. See the difference? Put down your phone and set off on an adventure; there’s a whole world out there that you’re yet to discover.
1. You’ll avoid the tourists.
This isn’t guaranteed, but it’s pretty hard to get lost in areas such as Piccadilly Circus or Oxford Street. Unless you’re getting lost in a crowd–that’s actually pretty easy–but it’s not the kind of ‘lost’ we’re encouraging.
2. There’s a surprise around every corner.
…and mostly good ones. London is full of wonderment and surprise. Turn a corner and you’ll discover a quirky pub, some awesome street art, a restaurant you didn’t know existed, a plaster nose stuck on the wall… the possibilities are literally endless. Even down the most unsuspecting streets, you’re bound to find something curious and/or exciting. P.s. the thing about the noses is a real thing. There are seven of them dotted around Soho — go and sniff them out.
3. You’ll find things that you may not have seen otherwise.
If you leave the house with a set itinerary in mind, it’s likely that you’ve done a bit of prior research. While that’s sometimes good (and often necessary), it’s also a bit of fun to just wander about and see where the day takes you. You may end up in an obscure museum that nobody on TripAdvisor has ever mentioned, discover a delicious new restaurant that isn’t featured on Google Maps, or a secret fairytale location that isn’t listed on Lonely Planet. These places will often have the most charm, and you wouldn’t have stumbled upon them if you weren’t rambling aimlessly.
4. You’ll start to fill in gaps in your mental map.
If you’re looking for inspiration for some Sunday strolling, allow me to put forward the secret passageways of the city around Liverpool Street… This alleyway in particular, is one of my favourites…
A photo posted by London ??? (@poppy_loves_london) on
There’s no better way to find your bearings than walking around the city on your own two feet (not sure who elses you’d use). You may have lived here for years, but we bet there are still gaps in your geographical knowledge. We’re sure there have been moments where you’ve been walking around only to find yourself exclaiming “Ohhhh that’s where we are”. Stuff like that doesn’t happen on the tube.
5. You’ll pay more attention to what’s around you.
We’re all guilty of staring down at our phones; either following directions, texting our mates or watching hilarious videos of cats jumping in terror at the sight of a cucumber. But while you were doing that, you may have missed something incredible…
6. It’ll encourage spontaneity.
“Ooh this random bar on this random street in God knows where looks really great, let’s go in”! Being spontaneous can often be a better approach than aiming for somewhere specific that you’ve probably been to time and time again. Expand your horizons and do something new. You’ll never know if it was worth it unless you try. And, who knows, it may become your new favourite place.
7. And if nothing else, you’ll see how well you handle the situation.
Are you super savvy with a great sense of direction or are you just completely bloody useless? Roll with whichever persona you appear to adopt. Both could reap great results.
Feature Image: St Dunstan’s in the East (Instagram/@ravenjess)