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35 Cool Issues to Do in London (Final Bucket Checklist)

Are you prepared for probably the most gigantic submit on issues to do in London from somebody who has lived there and visited a number of instances? This isn’t me sitting at a desk making an attempt to sport the Google search algorithms writing primarily based on desk analysis and copying and pasting.

London Eye from the north financial institution

That is us sharing a few of what we predict is the most effective of London primarily based upon our current 10 days of intense exploring from early morning to late at night time, and, I additionally lived there for two.5 years so have loads of private experiences and opinions!

That is additionally from a vacationer perspective – as you’re the ones almost definitely to go to London on a brief journey. ALTHOUGH, we principally journey by native experiences so that you fill discover a couple of of these on this listing as nicely.

If you’re transferring to stay in London or aspiring to expertise London for longer and on a deeper dive into native experiences, your better of listing could be very totally different.

After I beforehand lived in London I didn’t do hardly something on this listing. Native dwelling is a vastly totally different expertise to vacationer journey – and London is a high vacationer vacation spot for a purpose!

London Tube Station
London is simple to discover by Tube (underground prepare)

London is jam filled with high points of interest, cultural experiences, cool neighborhoods, and surprises and hidden gems on each avenue, nook, and cobblestoned alley.

We walked on common 10 miles a day to see and do as a lot as we might. It’s one among our favourite cities on this planet and has been our favourite household journey to this point!

Since we’ve now visited over 10 international locations with our daughters, and traveled full-time with them for seven years, that’s a gold badge we’re handing over to England’s capital metropolis. (Here’s why we loved London).

For a lot of of those London finest issues to do, we have now particular person posts with extra in-depth data (and extra posts nonetheless to come back).

We even have our top 21 places to visit in London the place you’ll see some overlap, but additionally totally different suggestions. Some cultural experiences shall be British or English, so for those who’re touring to different locations within the UK, you possibly can expertise them there additionally.

And also you don’t need to miss our London travel tips submit sharing important issues to know earlier than visiting London!

TOP TIP

Most of the paid points of interest are on the London Pass by Go City, which is a superb cash saving low cost vacationer card for a choose variety of days or points of interest.

Relying in your math, you would both use it for all of the points of interest you need to do, or use the cardboard for the most costly after which buy separate tickets for the cheaper points of interest individually.

The London Sightseeing Cross can also be a favourite vacationer low cost card of ours. We love their flexibility and variety with provide entry to high London points of interest, plus quirky native excursions, and reductions on buying and consuming out. See more information and get your pass here. We didn’t get to do this one out.

Uncover the Magic at Warner Bros Harry Potter Studios

Harry Potter London Studios
Entrance to Harry Potter Studio

Excessive on the listing of many guests to London is the Harry Potter tour on the Warner Bros Studios. It was one among our favourite issues to do in London with children.

Positioned about one hour northwest of London, this backlot tour will take you thru units, props, and interactive reveals of the true film settings of the Harry Potter movie sequence.

Harry Potter Warner Bros. Studio Tour, London
Cool enjoyable on the studio

You’ll be amazed at how they created magical scenes from such small, intimate settings. All of us cherished this magical deep dive into the Wizarding World.

Permit for 3-4 hours for the self-guided tour. That offers you sufficient time to learn the tales, experience a broomstick, stroll by the forbidden forest and people scary spiders, and drink butterbeer.

Do a Beefeater Tour within the Tower of London

The Tower of London
Our Beefeater tour information

A go to to the Tower of London wouldn’t be pretty much as good with out doing the free 45 minute beefeater tour. 

Nicknamed Beefeaters, Yeoman Warders have been guarding the Tower of London since Tudor time when Henry VIII determined that the Tower needs to be protected by a part of the royal bodyguard.

They have been initially a part of the Yeoman of the Guard – the monarch’s private, crack bodyguard who traveled with him in every single place.

The Yeoman Physique of 32 women and men are all drawn from the Armed Forces, and will need to have an impeccable file of service and excessive ranks.

Visiting the Tower of London was cool
Visiting the Tower of London was fascinating!

They share entertaining and grotesque tales of its macabre historical past from its former years (and I imply centuries) as a Royal residence, armory, treasury, and zoo (thank goodness they stopped that!)

The Tower of London is definitely a fort comprising twenty-two towers however sitting within the center is the unique White Tower constructed within the 1070s by William the Conqueror. The partitions, towers, and moat surrounding it got here within the 1200s and have been there ever since.

There’s a lot to see and do right here. We’ll have a submit coming quickly. For now, you possibly can see a couple of extra pointers right here.

The London Eye on the River Thames
London Eye Views

One of the well-known points of interest in London, with a number of the finest views of the town, is the London Eye on the River Thames.

It’s the tallest commentary wheel in Europe and an effective way to see totally different viewpoints of the well-known buildings in London, just like the Massive Ben and Homes of Parliament. 

The capsule you sit in strikes slowly sufficient (30-minutes to do a full revolution) that you simply get time to benefit from the expertise and get nice photographs.

Go to a Royal Park

St James Park, London
St James Park

Londoners love their Royal Parks. These 5000 acres of high quality inexperienced areas present a phenomenal respite from a busy day exploring the town  There are eight royal parks in London, lots of that are within the central vacationer space, and all are free to go to.

They’ll have lovely gardens, fields for picnics and sports activities, lakes with boat rides, tree-lined paths, lovely views, wildlife, and lots of may have public occasions, live shows and festivals.

My favorites are St James’s Park, Regent’s Park, Kensington Gardens, Greenwich Park, and Hyde Park.

Regents Park, LondonRegents Park, London
Regents Park

As you might be in all probability on a brief go to to London, these are the London parks you’ll go to probably the most. However, London is filled with pleasant parks, gardens and squares all around the metropolis!

We’ll have a submit coming quickly on parks and gardens to go to in London.

Store and Eat at Borough Market

Borough Market, London
Borough Market

Among the finest locations to eat in London is the favored Borough Market on the south facet of the River Thames, a group of stalls and distributors promoting contemporary produce.

Whether or not you’re hungry for strawberries dipped in chocolate, mushy native cheeses, bowls of Vietnamese pho, sausage rolls or a refreshingly candy peach prosecco, you’ll discover it right here.

On the periphery you’ll discover pubs, cafes, eating places, murals and some Harry Potter filming areas, together with the Leaky Cauldron Pub.

I’ll warn you; weekends are shoulder to shoulder busy. Throughout the week it’s a a lot quieter expertise.

Don’t Miss: Espresso from Monmouth and the candy peach prosecco.

Expertise a Conventional Afternoon Tea

Afternoon tea at The Ampersand Hotel in South Kensington was fantastic!
Afternoon tea at The Ampersand Lodge in South Kensington was implausible!

It’s alleged that afternoon tea started in England in 1840, by Anna Stanhope, the Duchess of Bedford. As dinner was served late within the night, this was a method of satisfying her starvation pains mid-afternoon. It turned a trendy type of leisure and through the years it turned an expertise for extra than simply the rich. 

Some additionally say the French began it. However, let’s not get entangled in that battle.

For now, we’ll have fun the English custom of excessive tea, named so for the excessive tables it’s served on. They arrive in layers of savory and candy objects reminiscent of scones with jam and cream, finger sandwiches, macaroons, and pastries.

The Ampersand Hotel, South Kensington, London

Whilst you would possibly suppose you’re required to drink copious quantities of tea with it, you possibly can select to have espresso, and lots of will now come served with flutes of champagne or cocktails. Now we’re speaking! 

Excessive Tea on the Ritz is notorious for setting the usual for afternoon tea. The Savoy is one other old-school favourite for conventional pomp. We had many suggestions for prime tea at Fortnum & Mason.

The Lanesborough goes to offer you that vibrant floral Bridgerton afternoon tea aptitude. Equally aesthetically pleasing – in a shiny and trendy method is the Ampersand Lodge the place we skilled our science themed excessive tea, which made Kalyra’s London for teens list!)

There’s even a unusual expertise like afternoon tea while touring on a London bus or on a River Thames cruise

First time guests will need to add a excessive tea expertise to their listing of issues to do in London. 

See the Altering of the Guard at Buckingham Palace

Changing of the Guard at Buckingham Palace. Image by DepositPhotos.com
Altering of the Guard at Buckingham Palace. Picture by DepositPhotos.com

Okay, so technically we didn’t see the altering of the guard at Buckingham Palace on this current London journey – however I did see it once I lived in London.

We had deliberate for it on the day it doesn’t occur, so, test the schedule!

That is the way you make Buckingham Palace a bit of greater than only a sticky beak by the gates and some “I used to be right here” photographs.

The Altering of the Guards is the ceremony the place The Queen’s Guard palms over duty for safeguarding Buckingham Palace and St. James’s Palace to the New Guard. The pomp and ceremony of the precision drill and bands taking part in stirring music make it probably the most common London points of interest – and it’s free!

Buckingham Palace, London
Buckingham Palace

Buckingham Palace has been the official London Residence of the Royal Household since 1837. If the Royal Commonplace flag is flying it means Queen Elizabeth II is in residence, and if the Union flag is flying it means she’s out of city.

Because the Queen has chosen of late to reside extra at Windsor Citadel, her favourite of all her palaces, the chances are you’ll see the Union flag.

Days & Occasions:

  • June – July: Day by day
  • August – Could: Mondays, Wednesdays, Fridays and Sundays.
  • Begins at 11am and goes for about 45 minutes.

Eat a Conventional Sunday Roast

Edinboro Castle Pub, Camden, London
Sunday roast on the Edinboro Pub, Camden

You will notice all of them throughout London and the UK – conventional Sunday Roast. It’s a British cultural expertise to not miss.

It’s mentioned to have began through the reign of King Henry the VII in 1485. The royal guards would eat roast beef each Sunday after church, which is claimed to have given them the identify ‘beefeaters.’ (they now run the excursions on the Tower of London).

On Sundays all through the U.Okay., pubs and eating places are packed full for the roast dinner; it’s thought-about the time for households or buddies to get collectively and share nice meals.

Though Roast Dinners started with Beef, trendy instances make room for Rooster, Pork, Lamb or Vegetarian. Many locations will provide a conventional Pub roast or one with a bit of extra of a contemporary aptitude.

Don't miss fish & chips in a London Pub
Don’t miss fish & chips in a London Pub

Sometimes included are roasted potatoes and root greens, inexperienced greens like cabbage and spring greens, cauliflower cheese, and many gravy. It’s conventional to serve it with a Yorkshire pudding, which is a savory eggy batter poured over beef drippings.

We completely loved our Sunday Roast at the Edinboro Pub in Camden. They’ve a beautiful beer backyard and gluten free beer to match!

Simply head to the closest pub to search out one! Here are 16 pubs we loved in London!

See the Iconic Massive Ben

Big Ben, London
Massive Ben

Massive Ben is to London, what the Eiffel Tower is to Paris. An unmissable iconic landmark. 

Massive Ben is the 13.5 tonne iconic clock tower on the Homes of Parliament. Formally, it’s the Elizabeth Tower, however everybody calls it Massive Ben after Benjamin Corridor, the First Commissioner of Works when it was completed in 1858.

You may see it from many viewpoints in London, together with the London Eye, Westminster Bridge, cruising alongside the river, and our favourite, from Parliament Sq..

Parliament Sq. is subsequent to the Homes of Parliament and Westminster Abbey. It has statues of well-known political leaders together with Winston Churchill, Abraham Lincoln, and Nelson Mandela.

Winston Churchill Statue overlooking Big Ben
Winston Churchill Statue overlooking Massive Ben

One in every of our favourite iconic London photographs we captured on our journey – that even native Londoners didn’t find out about – was that of Winston Churchill searching upon Massive Ben.

The Homes of Parliament is the place all of the vital enterprise in operating the nation occurs. You may tour inside throughout choose days and instances. I used to be lucky to have a good friend working there once I lived in London who invited me in for a drink at one of many pub’s inside. It was a cool expertise!

Tour Westminster Abbey

Westminster Abby, London
Outdoors Westminster Abbey

Because you’re at Parliament Sq., let’s cross the street and tour Westminster Abbey, the Royal Church of England. Each monarch since William the Conqueror has been topped right here and lots of have been married within the abbey as nicely.

I loved our self-guided audio tour of Westminster Abbey greater than I believed I’d, as did our children (14 & 10).

You’ll stroll by the gorgeous, tiled sanctuary the place weddings occur; the flowery quire; go to the tombs of many royals and vital individuals; pay your respects on the tomb of the Unknown Soldier; and see the tasteless Coronation Chair.

Inside Westminster Abbey, London
Inside Westminster Abbey is superb!

Don’t miss the Poets Nook the place you’ll discover the resting locations of a few of England’s best: Chaucer, Dickens, Tennyson, Kipling, and Hardy.

I additionally loved seeing the attitude of the abbey from strolling across the cloisters and gardens. This tour is a part of the the London Pass by Go City.

Tour Kensington Palace and Gardens

At the gates of Kensington Palace, London
Kensington Palace

Kensington is called the residence of the Younger Royals. It’s the official residence of The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge (i.e. Prince William and Kate) and their kids. Harry and Meghan lived right here for a time, and most famously, it was beloved Princess Diana’s residence.

That is additionally the place the legendary Queen Victoria was born. You may comply with her Royal footsteps on a tour by her re-imagined childhood rooms and the King and Queen State Residences, and the magnificent King’s State Residences and Queen’s State Residences.

Kensington Palace, London, England
Inside Kensington Palace

I cherished the Life By a Royal Lens exhibition sharing the Royal Household by pictures, the views from the home windows, the flowery Kings Staircase and King’s Gallery.

And probably the most lovely Kensington Gardens with their memorial to Diana and the legacy of her working doing good for the world. We actually loved this London expertise.

Book a tour here, or use your London Pass by GoCity

Discover Covent Backyard

Covent Garden, London
Road leisure in Covent Backyard

One of the well-known places to visit in London is Covent Backyard. 

Wander the cobblestoned areas surrounding the central market, which had its beginnings as a convent backyard within the 1500s. It served totally different functions from then, however by the 1800s it had developed into the biggest produce market on this planet. Its overwhelming measurement prompted its relocation in 1974. 

It’s also subsequent to different vacationer points of interest in London, like Trafalgar Sq., Leicester Sq., Soho and the West Finish theater district. 

Covent Garden, London
Restaurant at Covent Backyard

There are countless eating places and bars and native shops. Performers rotate all day lengthy on the road just under the balcony of the well-known Punch and Judy pub (good luck making an attempt to get on it!).

Don’t neglect to unfold out throughout the central Covent Backyard market space to discover the encompassing cobblestone streets and facet alleys for different secret gems! .

Once you want a break, head to Lamb & Flag for a household pub lunch within the oldest pub in Covent Backyard. (this was one among our favourite London pubs).

See a theater present within the West Finish

matilda cambridge theater
Matilda Cambridge Theater | Supply DepositPhotos.com

London is famend as among the finest locations on this planet for theater. There are over 40 theater venues within the West Finish performing to over 14 million yearly.

There’s a massive number of musicals on provide, a number of the hottest ones being the Lion King, Depraved, Les Misérables, and Hamilton. (I noticed Les Misérables and Saigon when dwelling in London)

On this household trip to London, Kalyra, Savannah and I went to see Matilda within the Cambridge Theater in Covent Backyard, whereas Craig caught up along with his previous Rugby teammates from Sydney in Chelsea.

Matilda the Musical is primarily based on the Roald Dahl guide and film. Many of the forged are younger kids, who’re very proficient. We laughed your complete time!

I’m glad we added this it our London itinerary within the final minute as our teen said it was one of her favorite London experiences.

Discover the Murals in Shoreditch

Shoreditch, LondonShoreditch, London
Shoreditch

If you’re brief on time and need to expertise extra conventional London points of interest, then save Shoreditch as a factor to do in your subsequent London journey. 

These with longer than three days in London and love exploring trendy tradition, you’ll want to do a mural tour of the Hip Shoreditch in East London. 

Road artwork within the UK continues to be technically unlawful and thought of a felony exercise, which implies avenue artwork can pop up shortly, however taken down simply as quick.

Shoreditch, LondonShoreditch, London
Highly effective mural in Shoreditch

Shoreditch is the anomaly and is the epicenter of London’s avenue artwork scene as they combat again on the vandalism label. Essentially the most well-known secret avenue artists of all time – Banksy has left his mark in Shoreditch a number of instances.

Shoreditch Road Artwork tour – this got here so extremely really useful to us, however we couldn’t make it work with our schedule. Positively a factor to do in London after we return. Check out this Shoreditch tour here.

Drink a Pimm’s & Lemonade

pimm's and lemonade
Pimm’s with a View

If you’re coming to England and intend on experiencing a excessive tea, you can not cross on consuming a Pimm’s & Lemonade. It’s considerably of an unofficial drink of London, particularly on a sizzling summer season’s day. (What? You imply that’s a factor?)

James Pimm invented and marketed the very first “Pimm’s’ as a well being tonic within the 1840s. It was a gin-based drink combined with a secret mixture of herbs and different liquids and was used to help digestion. It was served in a small tankard model cup which was referred to as the ‘No.1 Cup’

Founder's Arms Pub, London
Founder’s Arms Pub is a high spot by the river for a drink

It’s an important drink to have with buddies because it’s usually served by the Pitcher, ice-cold and stuffed with contemporary fruits. It has a mildly candy and spiced taste and is refreshing. I can’t consider I by no means drank it once I lived in London. I appreciated it so much!

Select a bar, any bar, however if you wish to comply with our recommendation: When it hits Pimm’s o’clock on a sunny day in London take pleasure in yours with a view on the Founder’s Arms on the River Thames at Southwark.

Have a London Ale + a Conventional Pub Lunch

Camden Head Pub in The Angel District
Having fun with an area cask ale on the Camden Head Pub in The Angel District

As we talked about in our greatest pubs within the London submit, we completely love the English pub expertise, and had lunch in a single nearly every single day. Properly, at the least we stopped in for a pint of ale!

Nearly any pub in London may have a comfy, heat ambiance with an unbelievable historic story to inform. You’ll discover low ceilings, creaky stairs, stay music, beer gardens, and beautiful London views. 

Most will provide a menu of historically English pub meals. We already talked about the unmissable Sunday roast, however different English favorites to attempt are the fish and chips, bangers and mash and gravy, and pie with mash and gravy. You could even discover some mushy peas – one other English favourite.

And I used to be thrilled to search out a few pubs that had gluten free fish and chips.

Camden Head Pub, The Angle, London, England
Craig having fun with a pint

Alongside your pub lunch, you’ll want to style a conventional English ale pulled into the glass by a hand pump. As a earlier bartender in London, I can inform you pulling a couple of of those pints of a night can provide you sore arms!

It is a uniquely British shelling out gadget that’s particularly acceptable for conventional cask-conditioned ales. It permits the casks to be saved in a cooler cellar beneath the bar and the beer to be pulled or drawn as much as the bar and provides a decrease carbonation beer.

The English will inform you it’s a much better tasting beer. Craig agrees and drank loads of them to reach at that conclusion.

Do the Southbank Stroll

Exploring Southbank in London
Exploring Southbank in London

We took any probability we might to stroll alongside Southbank to get from A to B.

This South Financial institution to Southwark stroll alongside the Thames begins at Westminster Bridge, wanting in the direction of the Homes of Parliament all the best way to Tower Bridge. Or vice versa. It’s roughly  2.5 miles / 4km in complete. 

There are beautiful views throughout and also you’ll cross iconic points of interest just like the Tower of London, Shakespeare’s Globe, The Shard, London Eye, and Tate Fashionable all underneath the omnipresent watch of St Paul’s Cathedral. 

Alongside the best way, you’ll discover some common and well-known pubs like our favorites The Anchor and The Founders Arms. Plus, sunsets from listed below are lovely.

Straddle the Prime Meridian in Greenwich

Royal Observatory, Greenwich
The Prime Meridian

Head to the Royal Observatory in Greenwich, the Place of Time, situated about 40 minutes southeast of Central London alongside the Thames.

Right here you possibly can study the fascinating historical past of how the Royal astronomers experimented and studied the celebrities to give you in the present day’s trendy model of time.

It’s measurement (GMT) all begins on the Prime Meridian. You may test off your bucket listing that you’ve got stood with one foot within the West and one foot within the Japanese hemisphere.

Royal Observatory, Greenwich
Nice views of Canary Wharf from Greenwich

Placing the icing on the cake, is the view behind of the glittering trendy skyscrapers forming the Canary Wharf skyline in entrance of the Thames.

It’s the proper encapsulation of the trendy and historical worlds that London has developed by to turn out to be this unbelievable metropolis we love a lot.

Go to Trafalgar Sq.

Trafalgar Square, London
Lord Nelson statue at Trafalgar Sq.

Trafalgar Sq. is likely one of the most famous places in London to visit. Everyone who visits likes to have their photographs with the massive lions, which symbolize the braveness of Britain. Youngsters will love climbing them!

The 52-m excessive statue of Lord Nelson dominates the sq. and the Nationwide Gallery is the beautiful constructing within the background.

It’s actually the middle of London and has at all times been a spot for Londoners to assemble, whether or not that’s to usher in the New 12 months collectively, or protest, rally or march for vital rights and causes.

Trafalgar Square, London
Trafalgar Sq. is a well-liked London attraction

One in every of my favourite issues about Trafalgar Sq. are the pedestrian lights surrounding it. They’re LGBTQ visitors lights that embrace two males and two ladies holding palms and forming a coronary heart, and varied gender symbols together with a transgender signal.

Take within the Greatest View of London from The Shard

The Shard
The Shard stands tall on the Thames

Piercing the sky above London is the needle-like construction of the Shard, the tallest constructing in Western Europe.

It’s shortly turning into a London icon and common place to go to, particularly for the unbelievable views from its 72nd ground open-air platform. There may be an enclosed viewing platform on degree 69 as nicely.

The Shard View is an costly factor to do in London, however the 244m excessive sweeping London views make it worthwhile. I completely cherished the implausible perspective of the River Thames snaking by the town east to west.

It was significantly transferring for me as I lived in London for 2 years and by no means noticed it from this angle. I LOVE this metropolis a lot!

View from the Shard in London
View of the Thames from the Shard in London

Goal for about an hour earlier than sundown so you possibly can expertise the nightfall golden mild views, sundown panoramic views, and nighttime views when these London lights sparkle.

You must reserve your tickets in advance. (It is going to additionally prevent cash). This attraction is included within the Go City Card. This could be the star occasion of the cross!

See 15 more fantastic places for London views.

STAY:

Need to expertise 5-star luxurious with these views? The Shangri La Lodge is situated on Degree 34 of the Shard. Every room has floor-to-ceiling home windows offering spectacular views of the town, and maintains the theme of Oriental magnificence discovered all through the lodge. Check availability and book your stay here.

Discover Regents Canal (cruise or stroll)

Camden Town, London

Among the finest issues to do in London that we haven’t carried out earlier than was a canal boat cruise from Little Venice to Camden Markets in North London. 

Regent’s Canal is a 9 mile ribbon of water that runs from Little Venice to the the place it spills into the Thames at Limehouse.

It provides guests an opportunity to expertise a quieter facet of London. What was as soon as a busy cargo transportation route has turn out to be leisurely waterways by London providing individuals a tranquil place to stroll, paddle, or boat experience.

Camden Town, London
Exploring the canal by foot

The relaxing and picturesque 40-minute canal ride will take you alongside Regents Canal, by the 248m Maida Hill tunnel, and previous the unique neighborhoods of Maida Vale and Primrose Hill, with properties of celebrities, and expansive and landscaped again gardens of grand homes.

We additionally walked alongside right here from Camden to Regents Park. Now we have extra data in our full information on a day out in Camden Town.

Discover Camden City and Camden Markets

Camden Town, London
Camden City is common on a Sunday!

Whilst you’re exploring Regent’s Canal, you will need to incorporate a cease off in Camden City. It’s one among our favourite locations in London for its eclectic, grungy, various model. 

It’s a London neighborhood recognized for the Camden Markets and its stay music scene. Many well-known artists from around the globe have performed right here or acquired their begin right here, or sadly, died right here.

Click on the next hyperlink for our information on things to do in Camden Markets which incorporates the canal boat experience, a Sunday pub roast, Regent’s Park, and a few high pubs for stay music!

Go to the London Museums + Artwork Galleries

British Museum, London
British Museum

We’re not massive museum individuals, so we didn’t go to many for this London journey. We journey a lot and have visited so many museums that we are inclined to run the opposite method now. 

Nonetheless, on my subsequent go to to London, I’ll plan to go to extra as London has distinctive museums. And, as a bonus, the everlasting collections at London’s museums are FREE. In the event you love museums, I’ve little question they’d be among the finest issues to do London.

You’ll find a museum of any measurement and to go well with any curiosity. We even got here throughout the Vagina Museum in Camden!

tate modern london
The Tate Fashionable can also be a should go to

Most notable are the Nationwide Gallery and the British Museum. We did spend an hour within the British Museum and it was implausible and I do want it was longer.

The Tate Fashionable was one other London gallery attraction we devoted a while for and completely loved the artwork on show. It’s nicely value including this to your London itinerary, if not for the views alone!

Take a strolling tour by London’s historical past

Walking around Kensington, London
Strolling round Kensington

Each avenue and cobblestone alleyway in London has an enchanting historic story to inform. One in every of our favourite methods to expertise the tradition and historical past of a vacation spot is to take a strolling tour. 

What do you need to study? There’ll be a strolling tour for it. 

As we have been visiting London with children on this journey, we didn’t do the Jack the Ripper strolling tour. However that was one of many first issues I did once I moved to London. I LOVED it! Sure. It is going to freak you out. 

What freaked me out much more was I usually needed to stroll previous one among his killing alleyways of a night after my shift on the pub to get residence. The chills in my backbone doubled the tempo of my legs!

Stroll Throughout Millennium Bridge

millennium bridge london
The Wobbly Millennium Bridge

The Millennium Bridge is likely one of the coolest, newer additions to London metropolis. Opened in 2000, it has a warped, futuristic look with magnificent views all spherical.

I cherished the dome of St Paul’s Cathedral rising in entrance of your eyes with every step. And look behind for views of Tate Fashionable, and to the appropriate for Tower Bridge views, and views of life on each banks of the river.

Millennium-Bridge-london
Strolling throughout Millennium Bridge to St Paul’s
The river thames views
River Thames and Tower Bridge within the distance

It’s also referred to as the Wobbly Bridge as when it was first opened an engineering defect brought about it to shake and wobble when individuals walked throughout it. They needed to shut it down for 2 years to repair it.

Make sure to look down. An unknown artist ceaselessly comes by and secretly creates paintings out of the dried-up gum. Gross however cool.

city of london school
Daniel Radcliffe’s Faculty / The gum artwork

Harry Potter Followers: London Boys Faculty (on the left as you method the north facet) was the place Daniel Radcliffe went to highschool. Keep in mind when the Loss of life Eaters assault London within the scenes from Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince? They have been filmed on the Millennium Bridge.

Stroll throughout Tower Bridge (and see it open!)

Tower Bridge, London, England
The enduring Tower Bridge

One other bridge you’ll need to stroll throughout is Tower Bridge, one other well-known landmark of London. Nearly anybody coming to London is already acquainted with the elegant great thing about its neo-Gothic turrets and blue suspension cables.

Stroll throughout Tower Bridge free of charge and get nice views overlooking the Thames and again over the Tower of London.

You may head up into the north tower to the (paid) Tower Bridge Exhibition for increased views and to study extra of the engineering and historical past. It’s a paid attraction and is included in your London attraction pass.

Tower Bridge, London, England
Strolling throughout tower bridge

Test for instances when the Tower Bridge will elevate up its bridge arms so boats beneath can cross by. They do need to guide it 24 hours prematurely so you possibly can plan forward for this cool expertise.

On common, Tower Bridge opens its bascules round 800 instances a 12 months, that’s round twice a day. Check opening times here.

Take a river cruise to see it from beneath as nicely.

Do a Thames River Sightseeing Cruise

River Thames Cruise, London
See Massive Ben from the River Thames

There may be nothing like seeing London from the attitude of its snaking River Thames.

The Lastminute.com London Eye River cruise is a 40-minute round tour of the Thames on a small open-top ferry with guided commentary. The departure touchdown dock is true underneath the London Eye.

I cherished the commentary that taught us so much concerning the historical past of the Thames and the position it’s performed in London life.

The cruise will take you previous Massive Bend and the Homes of Parliament earlier than turning round to move east passing underneath lots of London’s bridges spanning the river – every with their very own identify and story.

River Thames Cruise, London
Shut up views of Tower Bridge

You’ll study many tales concerning the iconic Landmarks you’ll cross like Massive Bend, London Bridge, HMS Belfast, The Shard, Tate Fashionable, Shakespeare’s Globe, the Tower of London, St Pauls’ Cathedral, and Tower Bridge, which you’ll get to sail underneath earlier than turning round to cruise again.

Book your Thames River cruise ahead of time.

You may see extra in our Reel of the River Thames cruise. (Observe us over there for extra enjoyable journey adventures and ideas!)

London River Cruises

Click on on the hyperlinks beneath to study extra about these river cruises on the Thames and to guide your journey.

Tour St Paul’s Cathedral

St Paul's Cathedral, London, England
St Paul’s Cathedral was spectacular

St Paul’s Cathedral is likely one of the most well-known cathedrals on this planet and one among London’s most luxurious buildings.

There’s a rule that St Paul’s have to be seen from eight separate locations all through London which is why so lots of the trendy skyscrapers are uncommon shapes. They’re making room for that line of sight!

Now that you simply’ve seen that spectacular dome from across the metropolis, it’s time to see it from the within and find out about this architectural masterpiece from Sir Christopher Wren, constructed after the Nice Hearth of London between 1675 and 1710.

We visited on a guided tour with Monograms travel, however commonplace admission consists of an audio information. Go to the crypt to see memorials of lots of of well-known and nice individuals, together with the our bodies of Wellington and Nelson mendacity immediately underneath the dome.

Sadly, the whispering gallery across the base of the dome was closed after we visited, however this is likely one of the finest issues to do in St Paul’s in addition to the Stone Gallery and Golden Gallery, each on the high of the dome providing unbelievable views of London.

Ask the attendants if they’ll take you to the spiraling Harry Potter staircase. This staircase in St Paul’s was used because the “Divination Stairwell” situated within the North Tower of Hogwarts Citadel for the Harry Potter movies, .

Get your picture at Platform 9¾ Kings Cross Station

Platform 9 3/4, Kings Cross Station, London
Platform 9 3/4 at Kings Cross Station

Even for those who don’t comply with the Harry Potter filming path throughout London, I like to recommend you propose for getting your picture operating the cart into the wall at Platform 9¾  at Kings Cross. 

That’s after all in case you are a Harry Potter fan, in any other case it may not float your boat. 

I used to be the one one in our household who did it and I had a load of enjoyable. The Head Wizard was so cool in displaying every individual totally different witchy poses. As this was a as soon as in a lifetime, I used to be not going to carry again!

We have been fortunate to solely have a ten minute wait. Strains right here may be as much as two hours. Get there as early as you possibly can, or later shut to complete time. Good luck muggles. 

Simply so you recognize, Kings Cross Station is actual. Platform 9¾ is just not. They’ve a delegated area on the station (not even on the platforms) on your photographs with the cart going into the wall. 

There’s a Harry Potter retailer right here as nicely the place you should buy your fan favorites.

Kings Cross Station, London
St Pancreas Station

If you wish to see the platforms (the place many scenes have been filmed) both catch a prepare someplace or ask the guards if they’ll allow you to on the platform to take a photograph. Throughout the street is St Pancreas which is the background setting for the flying automobile scene within the second film.

Kings Cross was my arrival level into London once I first arrived in 1997 as a broke backpacker with an contaminated foot and never realizing a soul. I used to be overwhelmed and scared. I acquired fairly emotional coming again right here because it jogged my memory of my journey from there to right here and the way a lot I’ve grown! You can read more about that story here. 

Go to Leadenhall Markets

Leadenhall Markets, London
Entrance to Leadenhall Markets

In the event you’re heading east in the direction of Liverpool Road then I like to recommend you go to the beautiful Leadenhall Markets in Central London.

These lovely coated markets have been initially established in 1321 as a marketplace for butchers and fishmongers (Nonetheless historical past says it was the middle of Roman London as a bazaar space within the 1st Century!)

A lot of the ornately adorned inside and cobbled laneways that you simply see preserved in the present day is from a redesign in 1881.

It’s now a buying precinct with stylish bars, cute cafes, boutique shops and a few taverns. One of many causes vacationers come right here is that it was used as the outside for Diagon Alley within the first couple of Harry Potter movies.

The Lamb Tavern is a superb pub right here, in operation since 1790.

Observe the Harry Potter Movie Places Path

Kings Cross Station, London
Kings Cross Station

There are fairly a couple of areas in London the place scenes from the Harry Potter films have been filmed. In the event you’re a fan, this could be one among your favourite issues to do in London.

We didn’t particularly comply with a path or do all of it in sooner or later. However we knew the place numerous the areas have been and, if it was within the space we have been visiting, we made a facet step to go and see it. 

Among the finest methods to expertise Harry Potter locations in London is through a walking tour. I want we did this simply so we might have heard extra tales and felt extra linked to every location. Doing it ourselves didn’t have fairly the identical magic and was extra only a “nicely that is it,” snap a photograph after which depart. 

House of MinaLima
Home of MinaLima retailer

I’ve talked about a pair on this submit already (and I’ll write a separate submit on every one quickly)

A number of the main spots are:

  • Kings Cross Station & St Pancreas
  • The Leaky Cauldron at Borough Markets
  • Cecil’s Court docket and Godwin’s Court docket, Covent Backyard
  • Leadenhall Markets
  • Millennium Bridge

Book your post on the Harry Potter walking tour here.

Watch a sporting match

Wembley Stadium, London. Image by DepositPhotos.com
Wembley Stadium. Picture by DepositPhotos.com

In the event you can time it proper, I extremely suggest incorporating a sporting match into your London itinerary. 

You may both see a stay match at one of many many sporting venues across the metropolis, or just from inside a pub, or outside massive display when massive matches are on. 

It’s an electrical expertise with a lot fever and pleasure with the English chanting, singing, and celebrating lengthy into the night time … in the event that they win. God assist London in the event that they don’t!

As I lived in a home with Australians, Kiwis, South Africans, Irish, and Brits, you possibly can think about the enjoyable we had on the pub neary each weekend watching cricket, rugby, or soccer.

Don’t neglect London is residence to Wimbledon! Cricket followers may need to go to Lords (my dad’s favourite factor to do in London. He even performed on it.) Rugby followers at Twickenham, and soccer followers, Wembley (there are much more!)

Get your Selfie at Piccadilly Circus

Piccadilly Circus, London
Piccadilly Circus

Piccadilly Circus is sort of a mini Occasions Sq. in New York. Filled with neon lights, large flashing promoting billboards and folks getting selfies. It’s overrated, however many vacationers adore it so I’m including it right here for you. 

It’s only a street junction with a round area within the center with a statue of Eros on it. 

From right here you possibly can simply stroll to Piccadilly, Leicester Sq., Shaftesbury Avenue, the curving Regent Road, and Covent Backyard.

Purchasing on Oxford Road

Oxford Street, London
Oxford Road

Surprisingly excessive on many guests’ listing of issues to do in London is to go to Oxford St, the world’s largest excessive avenue (that’s Primary Road for non-UK individuals).

Perhaps it has no attract for me as I walked alongside it scores of instances whereas dwelling in London to get from A to B.

Oxford Road is likely one of the busiest streets in London, particularly on a weekend, so be ready for shoulder rubbing. It simply will get too intense for me. 

It stretches 1.5 miles from the nook of Hyde Park all the best way right down to Tottenham Court docket Highway and is stuffed with shops promoting style, magnificence, tech and homeware. You’ll discover manufacturers and department shops reminiscent of Hole, River Island, Primark, Selfridges, Home of Fraser and Marks & Spencer.

There are additionally greater than 500 eating places alongside the road and facet streets.

Take a day journey from London

Bath Abbey, England
Bathtub is a implausible day journey from London (or in a single day keep)

Want a break from the depth of London? There are numerous implausible UK locations which can be simple day journeys from London.

We suggest going by prepare as it’s cheaper and simpler than automobile rental. You can additionally do the National Express bus service.

We caught the prepare to Bath from London for 2 nights, and then Oxford for 2 nights in the course of our London journey. Each have been implausible.

As a substitute of a day journey, we suggest an in a single day keep, so its not as rushed.

Different top places to visit in England near London embrace Windsor, Stonehenge, Brighton, Cambridge, and the Cotswolds. You’ll find a number of day trip tours from Get Your Guide here.

E book your London Lodging

In want of a lodge or condo rental when visiting London?

FREE London Bucket Checklist Printable PDF

We’ve created a easy one-page guidelines of all the highest issues to do in London, UK. We’ll quickly have some PDF itinerary guides for you! Pop your identify within the kind beneath to entry. We’ll e-mail you the itinerary guides as soon as they’re prepared!

What are a few of your favourite issues to do in London? Please share within the feedback beneath. That is your probability to tell us a few of these extra native experiences.

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