The NFL in London

Traveling overseas with an infant is a lot easier than you’d think. Aside from lugging the baby carriage around, all you have to do is feed him and watch him sleep. Wait, I’m getting the sense that my wife would disagree.

We took our 3 month-old son on a family trip to London recently. His memories of the trip have surely been erased from his rapidly forming neural pathways, but we think he had a good time.  Dean has me beat by a mile–my first taste of “international” travel came at age 13 when I went to Canada for a baseball tournament (my second was Peru at 19).

London skyline

London morning

The main reason why we carried the newest member of our family to London was to watch the Giants play the Rams at Twickenham stadium, one of three NFL games held in London this year. 

Kid at Buckingham Palace

Dean at Buckingham Palace, clearly unimpressed by royalty

We packed the days leading up to the game with a good amount of activity. We took Dean and his cousin to the London Zoo, where at a special exhibit we fed these little mustachioed monkeys. Unfortunately Dean was asleep the whole time.

London Zoo

Emily feeding a little monkey at the London Zoo

London Zoo

Family at the zoo

Buckhingham kids

Emily and her sister at the changing of the guard

We stayed in Mayfair, not far from Buckingham palace. Great area with a few good cafes and pubs, especially Caffe Nero on Berkley Street. Dean got his first taste of English pub life in the middle of the afternoon at the Burlington Arms off Saville Row. His muffled fussing could just barely be heard above quiet conversations of the patrons.

Burlingham Pub London

Dean at a proper pub

We visited London’s classic department store, Harrods, as well as Fortnum and Mason where we “took high tea.” The Harrods toy area was a dream come true for the kids.

London is a bargain these days, too. The British Pound has dropped about 15% against the Dollar since Brexit so things were relatively cheap.

Fortnum and Mason London

Dean at high tea at Fortnum and Mason, one of London’s class department stores

Dinners were without the kids: Scott’s, a classic London seafood establishment; LeBoudin Blanc for you guessed it, French; and Bocconcino for you guessed right again, Italian.

Westminster London architecture

Beautiful facades in Westminster

10 Downing Street

10 Downing Street

National Gallery, London

National Gallery

On game day, driving through the parking lot towards the 70,000 seat stadium we noticed the many fans showed up wearing the jerseys of random NFL teams, not just those of the Giants and Rams. I guess people over there were just psyched that any NFL team was playing in London and they would take what they could get. The back-to-back national anthems of the UK and the USA played as servicemembers from each country unfurled their flags across the field.

Twickenham Stadium national anthem - NFL London

Twickenham Stadium national anthem

It was a short trip but worth the haul. I hadn’t been to London in about 12 years so this was a good reintro. Will definitely want to go back one day when Dean’s a little older.

Kevin is based in Washington, DC and writes about his travel adventures in the Mid-Atlantic region and around the world. Through entertaining writing and eye-catching photography, he aims to provide readers with useful information as they plan their next trips.

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