The Excellent London Itinerary for Your First Go to


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With 1000’s of years of historical past, world-class museums and points of interest, each sort of meals possible, and a endless record of issues to do, it is no marvel that London is without doubt one of the hottest cities to go to on the earth.

I personally obtained hooked on London after my first go to in 2012, and within the final decade have spent cumulative months exploring what is well my favourite European capital.

However London is an enormous metropolis, and there is so *a lot* to do there that planning a visit could be overwhelming. I do know this as a result of I have been daunted myself by the data that it is unattainable to see and do all the things in a single go to.

View of Tower Bridge in London
Tower Bridge
Shakespeare afternoon tea in London
Afternoon tea in London

It is also why, up till now, I have never tried to sort out a London itinerary in any respect on this weblog!

However I do know London properly, and have now deliberate solo journeys, {couples} journeys, and journeys with associates/relations to London. I really feel like I’ve completed all of the must-dos (most of them a number of instances), and might now assist YOU plan a extra stress-free first journey to London.

5 days in London: A primary-timer’s itinerary

The next itinerary represents the proper 5-days in London in the event you’ve by no means been earlier than (in my view, a minimum of). Be happy to make use of it that can assist you plan your individual London journey!

The place to remain in London

First issues first: let’s discuss the place to remain in London! I have been to London many instances (I’ve really misplaced depend) and have stayed in a number of completely different neighborhoods. Neighborhoods I personally take pleasure in staying in embody Kensington, Paddington, and the South Financial institution, although I’ve stayed throughout!

Room at The Ampersand hotel in London
Room at The Ampersand resort

For a short-ish journey, it is in all probability best to choose one resort and keep there the entire time. The under record is (loosely) grouped based mostly on the place in London you will discover every resort.

Some issues to think about when searching for lodging in London embody: how shut inns are to a Tube station, whether or not the rooms have air-con (a requirement for me, personally, in the summertime), and what’s included within the room fee (comparable to wifi, breakfast, and many others). Additionally be aware that some inns are in previous buildings, and never all have elevators that attain each flooring.

Bathtub with a view at Shangri-La at The Shard
Bathtub with a view at Shangri-La at The Shard

Okay, on with the itinerary now!

Day 1: Iconic London

Highlights of Day 1 embody: Westminster Abbey, Huge Ben and Parliament, London Eye, the South Financial institution, and St. Paul’s Cathedral

Should you’re touring to London from wherever in North America, then likelihood is you will be arriving early within the morning after an in a single day flight. I am not going to counsel you pack in *an excessive amount of* at present, as a result of likelihood is you will be fairly drained. (However attempt to keep away from napping/sleeping all day in the event you can, because it’ll make it easier to alter to the time change higher!)

Getting from London Heathrow to the town can take a while. My largest tip is to NOT take a taxi all the way in which from the airport. You may take the Piccadilly Line (Tube) proper from Heathrow in the event you’re on a price range. Or you possibly can go for the brand new Elizabeth Line, which at the moment will take you so far as Paddington Station, the place you possibly can switch to different Tube strains or seize a taxi outdoors. The Heathrow Categorical additionally goes from Heathrow to Paddington with no stops.

A be aware on getting round in London

London has a great public transport system, with essentially the most well-known half being the Tube or Underground, which consists of 11 completely different underground practice strains connecting all corners of London. London additionally has buses (these crimson double-deckers), overground trains, and taxis/rideshares.

London Underground sign at the Tower of London
London Underground indicators are simple to identify

Prior to now, the easiest way to make use of the Tube was to buy a pay-as-you-go Oyster Card (both at a station in London, or upfront earlier than your journey), which you may then prime up as wanted and use for all public transport. However now TFL has gone contactless, and accepts contactless card funds and even Apple Pay/Google Pay at most of its stations.

To assist navigate, apps like Citymapper are nice for public transit (and often used extra by locals than Google Maps), and I take advantage of my AllSubway app every time I have to shortly seek the advice of the entire London Tube map. (Each of those apps may also be used offline.) TFL additionally has a particular app for Oyster Playing cards/contactless funds.

After arriving, you will in all probability need to drop your baggage off at your resort. You doubtless will not be capable to verify in but, however virtually all inns will maintain your baggage for you till your room is prepared.

Then you possibly can then head to the closest Tube station and make your solution to Westminster to begin your first day of London sightseeing! (Westminster is a cease on the Circle, District, and Jubilee Tube strains.)

1. Westminster Abbey and Parliament

Once you get to Westminster station, I at all times counsel exiting by means of Exit 4 (the Bridge Road exit). You may climb a flight of stairs and emerge at avenue stage to come back face-to-face with Elizabeth Tower (the well-known tower that homes the bell generally known as Huge Ben).

Big Ben in London
Huge Ben is definitely the bell inside this tower!

This view has the wow issue, nevertheless it’s not really one of the best for getting images of the tower. For that, head to your proper in direction of Parliament Sq. Backyard, which provides up higher views of Parliament and Westminster Abbey.

Professional tip: If you’d like the Insta-famous picture of you in entrance of a crimson telephone sales space with Huge Ben within the background, these telephone cubicles are alongside Nice George Road throughout from Parliament Sq. Backyard. You may’t miss them; there are often folks lined up for images.

Amanda with a red phone box in London
“The” London telephone field picture

From right here, it is time to go to Westminster Abbey, the gothic cathedral the place Britain’s kings and queens have been topped (and typically buried) since 1066. Should you’re solely going to go to one well-known church in London, it ought to in all probability be this one because it’s gorgeous and full of historical past each in and out.

Reserving tickets for Westminster Abbey upfront is suggested (ebook a ticket right here), and going earlier within the morning is at all times a good suggestion (which is ideal because you in all probability arrived early at present anyway!). You may both wander by yourself, or get an audio information. Both manner, permit a minimum of 1.5 hours to see all the things inside.

Inside Westminster Abbey
Inside Westminster Abbey

From Westminster Abbey, head throughout the Thames through the Westminster Bridge on foot. Keep on the facet of the street closest to Parliament whenever you cross, after which take the staircase down in your proper whenever you get to the opposite facet. Right here there is a pathway (The Queen’s Stroll) alongside the Thames that gives up my private favourite view of Huge Ben and Parliament.

View of Parliament in London
My favourite Huge Ben view!

2. London Eye and South Financial institution

After snapping some images, you possibly can comply with the tunnel underneath the bridge to the South Financial institution, which is considered one of my favourite elements of London.

Relying on what time it’s, you might both need to seize a meal now, or you might need to squeeze in a experience on the London Eye. The London Eye is without doubt one of the world’s largest commentary wheels, and you may’t miss it within the skyline on this a part of London.

A experience on the London Eye takes place in massive round pods (each can maintain as much as 25 folks) and lasts half an hour. It isn’t an absolute must-do in London for me, but when it is in your London bucket record, then do it! I extremely suggest reserving Quick Observe tickets upfront with a purpose to keep away from lengthy strains.

London Eye views
On the London Eye

Afterwards, you possibly can have a stroll down the South Financial institution. If you have not had meals but, there are a selection of pubs and pop-up cafes to select from, particularly through the summer time months. (I notably like the world of Gabriel’s Wharf, which has a bunch of cute retailers and a few eateries.)

3. Millennium Bridge and St. Paul’s (non-compulsory)

Should you’re up for a little bit of a stroll, I like to recommend strolling a few mile (20-25 minutes) alongside the Queen’s Stroll to the Millennium Bridge. You may go a lot alongside the way in which, together with a pebbly seaside!

Shakespeare's Globe theater in London
Shakespeare’s Globe theater

When you get to the Millennium Bridge, you could have just a few choices relying on how you are feeling*.

*Should you arrived in London earlier than at present, then you definately’ll in all probability have the vitality to spend extra time exploring the South Financial institution and possibly even go to one or two extra points of interest. If not, then I like to recommend crossing the bridge and hopping again on the Tube at both Blackfriars (Central/District strains) or St. Paul’s (Central Line) to go again to your resort.

Should you’re in a museum temper, the Tate Trendy is close by and free to go to (and has nice London skyline views from its rooftop commentary deck). Shakespeare’s Globe theater can also be close by, together with its connected restaurant/pub known as The Swan. The Swan has a beautiful afternoon tea that is evenly Shakespeare-themed and reasonably priced (although I will suggest one other afternoon tea later on this itinerary).

Cross the Thames through the very cool Millennium Bridge whenever you’re prepared, heading in direction of the dome of St. Paul’s Cathedral on the opposite facet.

Looking towards St. Paul's on Millennium Bridge
Wanting in direction of St. Paul’s on Millennium Bridge

If you are going to go to a second well-known church in London, then it ought to in all probability be St. Paul’s, the masterpiece with the enormous dome that was designed by Sir Christopher Wren and completed in 1710. The church miraculously survived The Blitz throughout WWII.

St. Paul’s is spectacular even simply from the skin, however can also be value visiting inside in the event you’re so inclined. (Simply be aware that it is solely open till 4:30 p.m., with the final entry at 4 p.m.) You may pre-book St. Paul’s tickets right here.

Inside St. Paul's Cathedral in London
Inside St. Paul’s

By now you will have had a really full first day in London, so it is time to head again in direction of your resort, have some dinner, and get a great evening’s sleep to gear up for the remainder of your journey!

Day 2: Parks, palaces, and museums

Highlights of Day 2 embody: Hyde Park, Inexperienced Park, St. James’ Park, Buckingham Palace, Altering of the Guard, Trafalgar Sq., Churchill Warfare Rooms, British Museum, Covent Backyard, and an non-compulsory West Finish present

1. The Royal parks

There are 4 royal parks surrounding Buckingham Palace, with the most important one being Hyde Park. I like going for good lengthy strolls in Hyde Park, and that is the place I like to recommend you begin your morning.

Italian Gardens inside Hyde Park
Italian Gardens inside Hyde Park

For a really lengthy and leisurely stroll, take the Central Line to both Marble Arch (close to Audio system’ Nook) or Lancaster Gate (close to the Italian Gardens), and stroll all through Hyde Park to Hyde Park Nook (it should in all probability take you about half-hour*). Then you possibly can cross over into Inexperienced Park and ultimately cease to see Buckingham Palace.

*Should you’re not up for that lengthy of a stroll, you possibly can take the Piccadilly Line to both the Hyde Park Nook or Inexperienced Park cease and begin your stroll in Inexperienced Park.

Inexperienced Park connects to St. James’s Park, which can also be actually beautiful and provides up some cool views of Westminster.

St. James's Park in the spring
St. James’s Park within the spring

2. Altering of the Guard

Watching the Altering of the Guard in entrance of Buckingham Palace is on numerous peoples’ London bucket lists, however hear me out: it is one London vacationer attraction that I do not actually assume is value it!

The Altering of the Guard ceremony takes place in entrance of Buckingham Palace at 11 a.m. every single day in June and July, however solely on Mondays, Wednesdays, Fridays, and Sundays from August-Might (and people ceremonies are weather-dependent).

Changing of the Guard at Buckingham Palace
Altering of the Guard at Buckingham Palace

In the summertime months, you often solely get a great view of the ceremony at Buckingham Palace in the event you arrive an hour+ upfront, which means you will spend a minimum of 2 hours of your day right here, if no more.

As a substitute, I like to recommend taking your images of Buckingham Palace, after which strolling by means of St. James’s Park to Horse Guards Parade. Right here, the Altering of the King’s Life Guard ceremony occurs at at 11 a.m. through the week and 10 a.m. on Sundays, and is nearly by no means as crowded because the one at Buckingham Palace. (Plus, this one has horses!)

Changing of the Guard at Horse Guards Parade in London
Altering of the Guard at Horse Guards Parade

From Horse Guards Parade, you can even pop by to see No. 10 Downing Road if you need, or go to one of many numerous struggle memorials between right here and the Embankment.

3. Trafalgar Sq.

Trafalgar Sq. is a must-see for most individuals visiting London, and it is lower than a 10-minute stroll from Horse Guards Parade.

Together with admiring Nelson’s Column and the opposite issues on this big sq., this can be a good place to seize a fast lunch. (I personally would in all probability seize one thing from Pret A Manger as a result of I like Pret, however there are a bunch of cafes and pubs to select from – often I simply go by Google evaluations to decide on a spot!)

Trafalgar Square in London
Trafalgar Sq.

4. Afternoon museum go to

There are SO many nice choices with regards to museums and historic locations to go to in London, however I personally would select between these choices at present, relying in your pursuits:

  1. Buckingham Palace State Rooms – For 10 weeks every summer time/fall, Buckingham Palace opens up its opulent State Rooms for excursions. My sister and I did this tour one summer time, and it was fairly cool to get a glimpse into the seat of British royalty. Timed tickets are required. My tip? Get a ticket that features the State Rooms and the Royal Mews (the stables/carriage home). Ebook a ticket right here.
  2. Churchill Warfare Rooms – Not removed from 10 Downing Road you possibly can go to the underground places of work the place Prime Minister Winston Churchill and his employees plotted Allied army campaigns (and eventual victory) throughout World Warfare II. Now known because the “Churchill Warfare Rooms,” this assortment of basement places of work is additional distinctive in that many rooms look precisely as they did when the Warfare Cupboard left them on the finish of the struggle. A should for historical past lovers! Ebook tickets right here.
  3. British Museum – This iconic museum homes greater than 13 million artifacts from the traditional world, from Assyria to China to Egypt and past. There’s been some current controversy about whether or not the British Museum ought to give a few of these (principally stolen) artifacts again, however even when they do they’re nonetheless going to have tens of millions of issues on show. This museum is free to go to, nevertheless it’s really useful you ebook a go to time on-line.
Gold Stage Coach at the Royal Mews
Gold Stage Coach on the Royal Mews
British Museum entrance hall
British Museum entrance

5. Covent Backyard and/or Soho

Your museum go to will take you into the late afternoon, and I like to recommend spending the remainder of your day in and round Covent Backyard. (It is technically walkable, or you possibly can take the Tube to Covent Backyard station.)

Covent Backyard has tons of eating places and pubs, together with some fashionable markets just like the Apple Market and the always-Instagrammable Neal’s Yard. If you’d like a novel drinks expertise in Covent Backyard, my husband Elliot and I each cherished the creative cocktails at The Alchemist on St Martin’s Lane.

Neal's Yard in Covent Garden
Neal’s Yard in Covent Backyard
Apple Market in Covent Garden
Contained in the Apple Market

For dinner, there are many choices in Covent Backyard (strive the Seven Dials Market, which is a enjoyable meals corridor), or you possibly can head over into close by Soho, which has much more eating places. (Reservations really useful at most spots.)

Professional tip: The Covent Backyard/Soho space can also be London’s theater district, so if seeing a West Finish present (London’s equal to Broadway) is in your record, this might be a great evening to ebook one! Should you do not ebook forward, you possibly can pop by the TKTS sales space in Leicester Sq. to see if there are any low-cost last-minute tickets the day-of.

Day 3: A mixture of previous and new

Highlights of Day 3 embody: Tower of London, Tower Bridge, The Shard, Borough Market, St. Dunstan-in-the-East, the Skygarden, and a strolling tour within the East Finish

1. Tower of London

Begin your day at present with a gap time tour of the Tower of London, considered one of my favourite historic websites in the entire metropolis. (Take the District or Circle line to Tower Hill.)

Tower of London gate
Exiting the Tower of London

The Tower of London (or, extra formally, His Majesty’s Royal Palace and Fortress of the Tower of London) was first conceived in 1066, and the White Tower on the complicated’s heart was inbuilt 1078 by William the Conqueror. The Tower was constructed as a royal residence, however is usually extra notorious as a jail and place of torture – and at present is thought for being house to the Crown Jewels.

You do not *have* to take a completely guided tour on the Tower of London (you may at all times simply ebook your ticket after which be a part of one of many free excursions with one of many Yeomen Warders, i.e. the Beefeaters), however if you wish to do one thing actually distinctive, take a look at this Tower of London Early Entry + Opening Ceremony and Crown Jewels tour.

Beefeater tour of the Tower of London
Beefeater excursions of the Tower are enjoyable, however often very crowded

The opening hours tour is basically cool; you get to be first into the Tower, and get to observe the Opening Ceremony the place the Chief Yeoman Warder unlocks the Tower gates for the day. You then get to see the Crown Jewels earlier than the strains kind, and get a completely guided tour of the Tower of London. Ebook this tour right here.

2. Tower Bridge

From the Tower of London, it is a brief stroll over to Tower Bridge. This bascule + suspension bridge is iconic in London, and on common carries 40,000 folks throughout the Thames each single day.

Tower Bridge in London
The spectacular Tower Bridge
Walking across Tower Bridge
You may stroll throughout Tower Bridge without cost!

You would simply stroll throughout and snap some images, nevertheless it’s additionally value it to get a ticket for the The Tower Bridge Exhibition, which is a small museum positioned contained in the Neo-Gothic towers and skywalks of the bridge. The museum covers how and why the bridge was initially constructed, and you may stroll/sit/lay down on glass flooring contained in the skywalks and likewise go to the previous Victorian-era engine rooms.

Pre-book timed tickets right here – or you possibly can really mix the Tower of London tour I discussed with a ticket for Tower Bridge in this combo ticket.

Amanda sitting on the glass floor in a skywalk in Tower Bridge
Sitting on the glass flooring in a skywalk in Tower Bridge

3. Lunch at The Shard or Borough Market

It’ll doubtless be round lunchtime by now, and you’ve got two choices relying in your price range. Each require you to proceed over Tower Bridge again to the south financial institution of the Thames.

The primary possibility is to ebook lunch (or even perhaps a themed afternoon tea) at Aqua Shard, a restaurant on the thirty first flooring of The Shard.

Different London itineraries would in all probability inform you to go to the View from the Shard commentary deck at present, however truthfully I believe the tickets are pricier than the expertise is value, and you will get the identical views by reserving a meal at one of many eating places in The Shard.

Peter Pan afternoon tea at Aqua Shard
Afternoon tea with a view at Aqua Shard

Aqua Shard is a considerably pricy restaurant, nevertheless it’s essentially the most reasonably priced spot inside The Shard that gives lunch. They’ve a set lunch menu that begins at £39 per particular person for a 3-course meal, and all tables have wonderful views out of floor-to-ceiling home windows. (Additionally they supply a enjoyable Peter Pan-themed afternoon tea; you possibly can learn extra about that right here.)

The opposite possibility for lunch is to proceed on previous The Shard to Borough Market, which is considered one of London’s most well-known meals markets. It is positioned beneath the south finish of London Bridge, and will probably be bustling at lunchtime.

There are numerous distributors to buy meals from contained in the market, in addition to a number of pubs and cafes simply outdoors. It is a extra reasonably priced possibility!

Borough Market at lunchtime
Bustling Borough Market at lunchtime

4. St. Dunstan-in-the-East

After lunch, make your manner throughout the Thames once more through London Bridge. (Sure, you are sort of simply making a loop at present! It would not make sense to make use of the Tube for this portion of Day 3, so I like to recommend occurring foot or getting a taxi/Uber.)

When you’re throughout the river, cease to see St. Dunstan-in-the-East, a former church that’s now a fantastic public backyard.

St. Dunstan-in-the-East in London
St. Dunstan-in-the-East

The church right here has gone by means of many iterations and tragedies by means of the centuries, together with sustaining harm within the Nice Hearth of London in 1666, being added onto and rebuilt within the 1700s and 1800s, after which being virtually utterly destroyed once more throughout The Blitz in 1941.

As a substitute of rebuilding the church after WWII, the Metropolis of London determined to show the ruins of St. Dunstan’s right into a public park. They planted bushes and a garden, and at present it’s a spot that locals come to learn or chat or take pleasure in a quiet lunch open air. It is free to go to, and undoubtedly value seeing!

St. Dunstan's from the outside
St. Dunstan’s from the skin
Old stone windows at St. Dunstan's
Outdated stone home windows

5. Sky Backyard or Backyard at 120

If you wish to get some nice London skyline views that do not value as a lot because the commentary deck at The Shard, there are two to select from very shut to one another on this facet of the Thames.

The primary is the Sky Backyard, which is a mostly-indoor backyard and commentary deck contained in the “Walkie Talkie” constructing at 20 Fenchurch Road. Most individuals will inform you to go right here, because it’s free to go to (although you do have to reserve a timeslot on-line upfront.)

Inside the Sky Garden in London
Contained in the Sky Backyard

I will be sincere with you although: I have been to the Sky Backyard twice, and whereas it does have a novelty issue to it, I do not personally love it. The view from the small commentary deck is not one of the best, and it might probably typically get fairly crowded.

If the climate is good, I might really choose to go to the Backyard at 120 (positioned atop the constructing at 120 Fenchurch St.) as an alternative. This out of doors rooftop backyard can also be free to go to, however you needn’t make a reservation. This one is all open-air and provides up some distinctive views.

Amanda at the Garden at 120
Backyard at 120

On the ground proper under the Backyard at 120, there is a cool restaurant and bar known as 14 Hills that has equally good views. If the climate is dangerous, you may at all times choose to seize a drink on the bar right here as an alternative, which appears like an indoor backyard.

6. Leadenhall Market (non-compulsory)

That is an non-compulsory additional cease, however if in case you have the time, Leadenhall Market is not removed from Fenchurch Road (it is actually a 3-minute stroll).

Leadenhall Market is a fantastic Victorian-era indoor market, with little boutiques alongside eating places and pubs. Should you’re eager about Harry Potter filming areas in London, this was one! And even in the event you’re not, it is nonetheless a extremely lovely market to see.

Leadenhall Market in London
Leadenhall Market

7a. East Finish and Jack the Ripper tour

Subsequent we’re heading to London’s East Finish, which is not at all times an space folks will inform you to go to in your first journey to London. However I really assume it is an ideal place to seize dinner after which go on a strolling tour.

The guts of the East Finish is a few 20-minute stroll from Leadenhall Market in case your ft aren’t already useless, or you possibly can catch a taxi/Uber or take the Tube to both Liverpool Road or Aldgate East.

As soon as within the coronary heart of the East Finish, you possibly can pop into Outdated Spitalfields marketplace for some searching, and search for avenue artwork on Brick Lane. (Brick Lane can also be recognized for its meals, particularly curries, so this can be a good possibility for dinner.)

Street art in London's East End
Road artwork within the East Finish

This night, in the event you’re into true crime and never too squeamish, you possibly can ebook a Jack the Ripper strolling tour like this one.

Jack the Ripper was a (nonetheless as-yet unidentified) serial killer who terrorized the Whitechapel space in 1888. His murders have at all times been intriguing in a grisly kind of manner, and most Jack the Ripper strolling excursions wind by means of the streets of Whitechapel after darkish, telling the tales of the ladies he killed when you stand typically within the precise spots the place their our bodies had been discovered.

Jack the Ripper walking tour
Jack the Ripper strolling tour

7b. Thames cruise

If Jack the Ripper would not actually curiosity you (I have been on two excursions and cherished them, however I completely get that the true crime craze hasn’t ensnared everybody), another choice for this night could be to remain in central London and take a night cruise on the Thames.

The Thames is, in my view, not essentially the most lovely of rivers to cruise on, however doing so does offer you a special perspective of London. I do not suggest a dinner cruise, however a night cruise with a glass of bubbly like this one could be good.

It IS cool to see London all lit up after sundown.

The Shard and Tower Bridge lit up after dark
Cruising the Thames after darkish

Professional tip: Do not need to take a guided tour/cruise? You may at all times hop on any of the commuter boats that run up/down the Thames. The Uber Boats by Thames Clippers, for instance, function like water taxis, and a single experience inside central London (for instance, between Tower Bridge and Westminster) prices simply £7.70 in the event you pay utilizing an Oyster card or different contactless fee.

Day 4: Day journey time!

After three very full days in London, you will have had the possibility to see many of the metropolis’s highlights. So at present I like to recommend making the most of the truth that London is near numerous different actually cool issues!

Whether or not you need to absorb extra historical past, go to a fort, exit into the countryside, or immerse your self in some film magic, there is a London day journey possibility for you.

I am unable to inform you which day journey you must take, as a result of your pursuits may be completely different from mine. However listed below are 5 nice day journeys to think about:

Possibility 1: Spend a day in Greenwich

Greenwich is technically nonetheless a borough of London, positioned alongside the Thames to the southeast of the town heart. You may take a ship to Greenwich, after which spend the day exploring all kinds of maritime historical past.

Prime issues to do right here embody visiting the Outdated Royal Naval School and Nationwide Maritime Museum, touring the Cutty Sark ship, going to the Royal Observatory to straddle the Prime Meridian, and stress-free in Greenwich Park. (Undoubtedly get a Greenwich museum go for today!)

Possibility 2: Harry Potter Studio Tour

Gryffindor Common Room set at Harry Potter Studio Tour
The Gryffindor widespread room set

The vast majority of the Harry Potter movies had been shot in movie studios in Leavesden simply north of London, and the studios have now been remodeled right into a museum-like expertise for followers.

You may see precise movie units, costumes, props, and idea artwork from the flicks, and luxuriate in interactive experiences that seize the magic of the Harry Potter world. It is a should do for many Harry Potter followers and 100% value it. (Ebook tickets with transport right here.)

Possibility 3: Windsor Fort

Windsor Castle
Windsor Fort

If you wish to get an additional style of British royalty, then a day journey out to Windsor may be best for you. You may discover the lovable city of Windsor, and tour the ornate State Flats and gothic St. George’s Chapel at Windsor Fort, which is the oldest continuously-occupied fort in Europe, relationship again to the eleventh century.

You may take the practice to Windsor by yourself and simply get a fort entrance ticket, ebook a tour with bus transport, or pair up a go to to Windsor with another areas on a full-day tour like this one.

Possibility 4: Tub and Stonehenge

The Roman baths in Bath
The Roman baths in Tub

Stonehenge is a must-visit for many individuals touring to the UK, however I will be sincere with you: it is not value making a visit to see it by itself. As a substitute, I might pair up a go to to Stonehenge with a day journey to a different location like close by Tub.

The entire metropolis of Tub was named a UNESCO World Heritage website in 1987, and it is recognized for its historic Roman baths, the attractive Tub Abbey, fairly parks and gardens, the symmetrical Georgian-style Royal Crescent, and Pulteney Bridge over the River Avon.

You may ebook this Stonehenge + Tub day journey, or go for this one that additionally features a cease in a picturesque Cotswolds city.

Possibility 5: Oxford

Oxford architecture
Oxford structure

Lastly, the college city of Oxford additionally makes an ideal day journey from London. You may wander out and in of the retailers on the town, and likewise go to a few of the college’s most well-known schools. (There’s even an Oxford Harry Potter strolling tour, the place you possibly can see filming areas and the eating corridor that is mentioned to have impressed the Nice Corridor in Hogwarts.)

You may simply take the practice from London, or ebook a tour that pairs up Oxford with one other location like Highclere Fort from Downtown Abbey, or maybe the Cotswolds.

READ MORE: The Greatest Day Journeys to Take From London

Day 5: Fairly neighborhoods + afternoon tea

Highlights of Day 5 embody: Neighborhoods like Notting Hill and Kensington, afternoon tea, Camden City, and the Regent’s Canal

Since at present is your final day in London, we will take it simple. Right this moment goes to be a extra stress-free day spent exploring a few of my favourite London neighborhoods, beginning with arguably a few of the prettiest ones, after which shifting on to a barely edgier one.

1. Notting Hill

Painted houses in Notting Hill
Painted homes in Notting Hill

Should you’re into the London Instagram aesthetic of pastel-painted row homes, charming mews, and vintage retailers, then I might suggest beginning your day in Notting Hill. (Notting Hill Gate on the District, Circle, and Central strains, or Ladbroke Grove on the Circle and Hammersmith & Metropolis strains make good beginning factors.)

In Notting Hill you possibly can seize breakfast or brunch, store for antiques and classic clothes on the Portobello Street Market, and simply absorb this charming neighborhood. (Simply bear in mind, although, that individuals stay within the fairly pastel homes, so be respectful in the event you’re taking images.)

2. Kensington/South Kensington

Churchill Arms pub
Churchill Arms pub

From Notting Hill, it is a beautiful stroll south by means of Kensington to South Kensington (or you may hop on the Tube to Excessive Road Kensington or South Kensington).

Should you stroll, you possibly can cease by the Instagram-famous Churchill Arms pub. And in the event you occur to be visiting within the spring (often in late April/early Might), then that is the a part of London that experiences “wisteria hysteria,” when the wisteria vines burst into purple blooms in areas like Bedford Gardens and Kynance Mews.

If the climate is not nice, South Kensington is house to a number of wonderful (and free) museums, together with the Pure Historical past Museum (reveals on dinosaurs, volcanoes, gem stones, and extra) and the Victoria and Albert Museum (one of many largest utilized artwork and design museums on the earth).

Whale skeleton in the Natural History Museum in London
Pure Historical past Museum

3. Afternoon tea

I do know I’ve already talked about a number of afternoon tea choices on this itinerary (just like the one at The Swan, and the one at Aqua Shard), however at present I counsel undoubtedly setting apart time for a correct afternoon tea.

There are two on this a part of London that you could by no means go unsuitable with:

  1. Science Tea at The Ampersand – The science-themed tea on the Drawing Rooms inside The Ampersand resort is considered one of my all-time favorites. The tea tray comes out effervescent with dry ice, and the themed treats are so enjoyable. Tea is round £50 for adults and £35 for teenagers. Closest Tube station: South Kensington.
  2. Tea at The Lanesborough – The Lanesborough resort in Knightsbridge provides up a fantastic and stylish afternoon tea in a stunning conservatory-style tea room. (This one would possibly win “prettiest London afternoon tea” from me.) The afternoon tea right here is each fancy and scrumptious, and begins at £65 per particular person. Closest Tube station: Hyde Park Nook.
Science-themed afternoon tea
Science-themed afternoon tea
Afternoon tea at The Lanesborough
Afternoon tea at The Lanesborough

Superior bookings for each of those afternoon teas is very really useful, and could be completed on-line.

4. Camden City

After your tea expertise, hop on the Tube to Camden City, a cool neighborhood north of central London recognized for its distinct different, punk-ish really feel (they even have the primary Wendy’s on the earth the place Wendy obtained a punk/emo makeover).

Discover the colourful Camden Market, and maybe head as much as the park on Primrose Hill for nice London views. The Regent’s Canal additionally runs proper by means of Camden. When you have the time, you possibly can take a canal boat experience from Camden to an space known as Little Venice, which is tremendous beautiful. (You may pre-book waterbus tickets right here.)

Camden Locks
Camden Locks

Should you’re hungry for dinner tonight (relying on whenever you had your afternoon tea, you might not be very hungry!), there are some good spots in Little Venice, or you may head into close by Paddington.


And that is it! That is the way you pack as many London highlights as doable into only a 5-day go to. May you do roughly in these 5 days? After all! However after many journeys to London myself, I actually assume this itinerary is an efficient place to begin for first-time London guests.

Now go forth and plan your individual London journey!


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