Wrapping visitors in an intoxicating embrace of culture, cuisine, history and art, London has never diminished in its capacity as one of the most iconic ‘rite of passage’ destinations for young travellers.
Many arrive for a few weeks’ holiday, only to be deliciously sucked into the city’s slipstream for years. Seductive, exciting, and always surprising — resistance is useless at any age.
If you are planning to check out lots of London attractions during your stay, it’s well worth investing in a London Pass. Enjoy discounted entry and skip-the-line access to a host of attractions (around eighty in total), with flexible one to six-day passes.
This London city guide is packed with ideas for things to see and do. Enjoy your visit.
Watch our video of five amazing things to do in London in 24 hours:
There’s also an exciting ‘underground’ arts scene, with an eclectic array of permanent and pop-up performance and art venues in off-the-beaten-track places like hip and happening Hackney and Bermondsey.
You absolutely cannot visit London without seeing a West End show. There are almost 40 theatres located in the West End itself, and countless independent and fringe venues within easy reach of the city centre. Visit the TKTS booth in Leicester Square to pick up great deals on unsold seats for that evening’s performances.
London for history lovers
From the Stone Age to the Romans, Normans and Anglo-Saxons, London has been part of the bedrock of world history.
Take a stroll back in time at the British Museum, which holds priceless treasures such as the Rosetta Stone and controversial Parthenon Sculptures. Painting an even bigger picture, the Natural History Museum holds a mind-boggling collection spanning 4.5 billion years.
Covent Garden can reveal much about London’s storied past (keep an eye out for the blue plaques that denote buildings of historical importance). Next, head for the Tower of London — one of the city’s most recognisable heritage landmarks. Aside from ogling the crown jewels and making friends with the ravens (or not), you’ll get the chance to meet everyone’s favourite prison guards — the Beefeaters.
Top Oz Tours offers a great range of England day tours, guided experiences, and attraction tickets and passes. There are no booking or credit card fees when you book through us, and you’ll have access to the widest choice of activities and most competitive prices.
London’s political precinct of Westminster harbours more than its fair share of historic secrets. Join a knowledgeable guide on a visit to the fascinating Churchill War Rooms — an underground network of bunkers that served as government offices during the Second World War.
Great places to eat in London
If you had a year to eat your way around the city, you might get a decent overview of the culinary kaleidoscope that is 21st century London.
For delicious and inexpensive places to eat, the aromatic curry houses of Brick Lane and the global melee of Borough Market are good places to start. The city is also home to nearly 4,000 pubs — most of which serve up cost-effective traditional British fare. Look for the ones hosting plenty of local workers at lunchtime and you’ll know you’re onto a good thing!
For high street shopping heaven, head straight to Oxford Street and Regent Street in the West End. Harrods and Harvey Nichols in Knightsbridge top the list for high end retail therapy, but spread the love (and the cash) to other ritzy retail enclaves like Sloane Street and Bond Street. And don’t worry, window shoppers are welcome — so go for the experience — even if you leave empty-handed!
Top Oz Tours now offers a great range of fully escorted multi-day tours and walking holidays in the United Kingdom. And we're offering $100 AUD per person off all new bookings placed via our new tour concierge line. Browse the available options, find the tour of your choice, and contact us to make your booking. It's that easy!
Ways to relax in London
Despite the hustle and bustle, there are plenty of relaxing things to do in the UK capital.
For a mega-metropolis, London has a surprising number of green spaces. Hyde Park and Hampstead Heath are probably the most famous, but you should also visit beautiful Richmond Park (home to wild red deer) and Kew Gardens. Both are extraordinary havens of nature, and are located within easy reach of the city.
Browse our range of London tours and experiences here.
Do you have any tips to add to our London city guide? We would love to hear from you. Please leave a comment below.
Additional images: Bigstock
About the writer
Julietta Henderson is a Melbourne-based travel writer and author. Originally planning to visit London for six months, she ended up staying for ten years and now divides her time between her home in Australia and several months of the year in the UK, Italy, and France. Julietta has travelled extensively through Europe, North America, Indonesia, New Zealand, Australia, and Russia, and believes the keys to a great travel experience are an open heart, an open mind, and an open-ended ticket. Her first two novels — The Funny Thing About Norman Foreman and Sincerely, Me — are now available in bookstores.