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A Blog Day Afternoon in Kingston Upon Thames

Posted on April 30th, by Peter Parkorr in Britain, London, Picture Perfect. 20 comments

My life as a travel blogger took me to Kingston recently, a suburb of London. It’s a nice little place that is easy to get to, but feels a million miles from the capital. As I explored the town centre I felt like I could have been on the pretty streets of Cambridge, or maybe in a Yorkshire market town.  Follow my blog with Bloglovin

Places to eat and drink in kingston

Kingston Bridge at Sunrise by Flickr user Geraint Warrington

Kingston upon Thames

So what is there to do in Kingston, why do people come here?

People probably come to see Banksy’s telephone boxes – even if you’ve never heard of Kingston I’m sure you’ve seen this Banksy street art installation in pictures!

places to eat and drink in kingston

The infamous Banksy telephone boxes in Kingston by Beechwood Photography

The Kingston half marathon is a few weeks before the Manchester and London marathons so people come here as part of their training to test their legs. The conference facilities are another reason, as we saw at Traverse 15, which was held in the Kingston Uni Business School. The hotel I stayed at were hosting a wedding party for the weekend too, so accommodation being cheaper than central London is also a good draw for the town.

Cocktail Classes making Caipirinhas Las Iguanas Kingston-18

A street art inspired Library opposite Las Iguanas

Apart from that, the town is a pleasant leafy place with people going about their lives. There seems to be decent shopping in the centre, and a nice restaurant and bar scene along the river. It’s a 40-minute train ride from central London but you feel so much further from the city.

Places To Eat And Drink In Kingston

My visit to Kingston also featured indulging in what I like to call proxy travel, or travelling without moving. First up, myself and a few bloggers were invited to try out Thai cooking lessons at Kingston’s Busaba Eathai – a small but successful chain of restaurants, coming to Manchester soon.

Places to eat and drink in Kingston

The skilled hands of Head Chef Hesh taking us through our cooking class, starting with a Som tam salad

This was a brilliant way to spend a couple of hours on a Sunday morning, and we ate so much fresh delicious food, made mostly by us and with a couple of specials from the chefs. The perfect hangover cure!

Thai Cooking Classes Busabai Kingston-14

Look how perky I am in my chef’s whites! Or not…

Then after a short break the afternoon got a little boozy, with lessons in making Caipirinha cocktails at Las Iguanas. Las Iguanas are bar-restaurants that deliver a Latin American vibe and you can find them across the UK. With the help of the manager Craig and using their own brand of Cachaça (from their Amazonian distillery in Brasil) it was a pretty tough afternoon making and tasting a Caipirinha or five, as the photos no doubt show…

Cocktail Classes making Caipirinhas Las Iguanas Kingston-11

Caipirinha. This is the end result you are looking for.

The guys at Las Iguanas also gave us some of their favourite dishes from the tapas menu to try, which we demolished in fairly short order!

Places to eat and drink in Kingston

The serious business of menu tasting. TravMonkey Paul can hardly get a hand in!

Have you ever been to Kingston? Would you try either of my proxy travel experiences from the weekend?

I did take the time to film both cooking lessons at Busaba Eathai and cocktail making at Las Iguanas, so make sure you are subscribed to my Youtube channel to see those when they are published.

More photos from the day for you below.


Thai Cooking Lessons At Busaba Eathai

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A tray full of flavour that we mixed into fishcakes

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The finished fishcakes which were cooked for us to feast on with the rest of our dishes

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The raw ingredients for a veggie Pad Thai

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The raw ingredients for my Pad Thai

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Using the woks in a professional kitchen was great!

Thai Cooking Classes Busabai Kingston-12

Some of the fresh ingredients that went into out Som Tam salads. So good!

Thai Cooking Classes Busabai Kingston-19

This is how my Pad Thai came out, with a little rearrangement from Hesh

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The food all looked great, tasted delicious, and there was enough for people to take home and eat later too

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The house special Calamari which they insist you try (as do I!)

Learning To Make Caipirinhas At Las Iguanas

Cocktail Classes making Caipirinhas Las Iguanas Kingston-10

Cachaca is the central ingredient in a true Caipirinha

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You will need a whole lime per drink, and it’s useful to have a shot first so you know what you are dealing with!

Cocktail Classes making Caipirinhas Las Iguanas Kingston-8

One portion of your five a day per glass.


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The nachos at Las Iguanas hit the spot for a shared lunch

Cocktail Classes making Caipirinhas Las Iguanas Kingston-14

Duck wraps were most people’s favourite

Cocktail Classes making Caipirinhas Las Iguanas Kingston-12

The chicken ‘samosas’ were very good as well

Cocktail Classes making Caipirinhas Las Iguanas Kingston-19

Las Iguanas Kingston is a nice place to hang out for a while and have a few drinks, so we did.