I am a British traveller with a love for writing, photography, and fun! Hoping to share some of my experiences with the world. :)
Published March 8th 2014
A wild place to eat and shop
I absolutely love London, even after spending 3 years abroad returning to London is still one of the best places in the world for me. I definitely think London is like marmite, you either love it or hate it. I quite enjoy the hustle and bustle; I find it all very exciting and kind of magical.
My youngest sister, Sian, had never been to London and I feel everyone should experience it once, especially if you're English. She was 13 late January and I was 25 early February, so we decided as a family (my dad, his wife, my 2 sisters, me and my boyfriend) to take a day trip.
My boyfriend and I had some stuff to sort out in the morning whilst my family checked out Camden Markets for a vintage jacket for my sister. We met up and tried to decide on a restaurant.
We wanted somewhere a bit novel, who might make a fuss over it being our birthdays and I remembered there was a Rainforest Cafe here. We all visited Rainforest Cafe in Disneyland Paris years previously and loved it so, we thought it would be a good call.
For those who haven't been to a Rainforest Cafe, it is a restaurant based on, you guessed it, a rainforest. They are beautifully decorated with trees, plants, waterfalls, starry ceiling decor and pretend animals which on occasion move. Every half hour or so there is a mini storm where you're conversation is interrupted by loud claps of thunder which sets off all the animals (and most if the babies visiting!)
We arrived at Piccadilly Circus Underground and in true English fashion it was peeing it down. Thankfully the cafe was a short walk away.
We were informed prior to arriving that they didn't take bookings but upon arriving they said we'd be seated within 10 minutes and we were. We told the hostess it was our birthdays and even after either not believing I was 25 or baffled why I wanted a sticker with my name written down, and after 3 attempts of spelling Sian, we got our birthday stickers.
We were seated in a little platform for ourselves which was pretty cool and even though we weren't surrounded by novelty animals it was nice to have our little private section.
Our waiter was, okay. We were a little disappointed with him. To start we weren't sure if it was a language barrier (harsh European accent) or if he was being quite short with us but as the night went on we did feel he wasn't the friendliest of staff. However other staff who brought the costumed frog up to us and sang us 'Happy Birthday' made up for it.
Rainforest Cafe isn't cheap, but nowhere in London is. So for a novelty experience it is fairly reasonable. All in all we had a great time, and I would definitely return there. The food was great as was the drinks and atmosphere, and while we thought the staff could have been better, it was just one guy, and we weren't put off returning because if it.
If visiting London from abroad then there are plenty of other fantastic restaurants with a real feel of London, however, for birthday fun or just fun in general I'd definitely say check it out, especially if you've never experienced one before.