Places to visit in London – 45 wonderful places you must visit in London!
Places to visit in London – 45 wonderful places you must visit in London! If you go on listing the best places to visit in the world, London will be in the top 5 (Read here about The 40 Most Visited Cities in the World and their Top Tourist Attractions). Actually, behind the busy city, there is another London that attracts millions of visitors every year. And they take flights and flew to the city despite the monotonous weather equatorial climate.
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If you want to explore the capital of England for your next foreign trip, then you should plan early and know which the best places to visit in the city are. There are lots of offbeat places that will cast their charm on you too. Today, you will get some ideas on that.
Places to visit in London
1. Big Ben
If you head to London, your photo album should definitely include the photos of the traditional Big Ben – a fourteen-tone bell that is the dominant of the clock tower in the British Parliament building.
The clock has been working here since September 7, 1859, but less than a month later, a fourteen-ton bell cracked. Fortunately, it was repaired and after two years returned to the tower, where it still rings until today.
The 11-story clock tower, which is over 96 meters high, forms Parliament House. During the reconstruction works which were performed here after the fire of the Westminster Palace back in 1834, the tower was built according to the design of Charles Barry, and its architecture corresponds to the Victorian-Gothic style.
The official name is Elizabeth Tower, but the world-known name of it is definitely Big Ben named after its big bell.
2. Trafalgar Square
One of the most famous squares in London is definitely Trafalgar Square where you can find fountains and large sculptures of lions that guard the square.
This largest gathering place in London was named after the Battle of Trafalgar in 1805, which ended with the victory of the British Navy headed by legendary Admiral Horatio Nelson over the French fleet. To commemorate the power of Great Britain’s naval force, 52-meter high column was erected in the middle of Nelson’s Memorial Square.
The square is dominated not only by Nelson’s column but also by two fountains, the British National Gallery and the St Martin-in-the-Fields church. It has also become a model of many churches, especially in the United States of America.
3. Tower bridge
Tower Bridge is the most famous bridge in London and certainly one of the most famous in the world. Today, after more than a century (the bridge was opened in 1894) still serves its purpose.
You can find the North End of Bridge next to Tower Hill tube station or Tower Gateway DLR station. We recommend you to visit the nearby Tower of London, where you have a beautiful panoramic view of the Tower bridge.
4. Westminster Palace / Parliament building
The Westminster Palace, known as Houses of Parliament, is the seat of the British Parliament. It features Elisabeth Tower with the Big Ben bell tower.
The Westminster Palace is located on the northern bank of the River Thames, originally called Thorney Island. This strategic location has in the past determined its main function since the 11th to 16th centuries it was the official seat of the English rulers.
5. Warner Bros. Studio Tour, London
There are lots of other places to start the list with, but if you have kids with you, you should start your trip from this studio. Spend a magical day in this studio on your kid’s birthday and he/she will remember this surprise forever. Check out the beautiful props, sets, costumes that are used in different movies.
If you and your kids are fond of Harry Potter movies, this is the place where you should go to. The behind-the-scenes existences will make you amazed. You can visit Dumbledore’s Office, the Diagon Alley, the Ollivanders Wand Shop and more.
6. Buckingham Palace and Changing the Guards
People flew each year London only to have this awesome experience of a lifetime. The palace will keep you amazed by its grandeur. It is the official London residence of Queen Elizabeth and the royal family. You can visit 19 State Rooms during the summer where you can visit the enormous collection of the royal family.
You will also find masterpieces by great artists, like Rembrandt, Van Dyck and Rubens. The palace is great, as you can praise the outstanding exterior and the beautiful sight of changing the Guard at 11.30 am, every day. In the summer of 2018, the palace will be opened from 21st July to 31st August.
7. The Coca-Cola London Eye
Your London dreams can be fulfilled once you watch this great being while you are in the city. The London Eye is centrally located and it rotates on the River Thames by creating a great view. Once you are here, you can visit three landmarks of London- the London Eye, the London House of Parliament and Big Ben.
You will be surprised to know that this big entity is of 135 meters and it is the tallest cantilevered observation wheel in the world. If you want to secure your tickets, you can book advance online. The rates are lower than usual.
8. Museum of London
London is rich in history and deeply rooted culture. If you want to have a look at the turbulent history of London and overall England, you should spend a day at this museum. Also, you should take your kids to this museum so that they can learn about prehistoric London quite well.
A visit to the museum will give you a great experience of watching changing London from the periods of Romans and Saxons, until today. Another exciting thing about this museum is there is no entrance fee. So, you can live in the history of London absolutely free of cost.
9. Take a Bus Tour of London
When you are in London, you should take a hop on hop off bus tour. Without it, your entire tour will be incomplete. You can buy a 24-hour ticket and enjoy the iconic places in London from the comfort of the bus tour.
You can also get a free river tour and a free walking tour once you buy the bus ticket. Once you are on the ride, you can hop on and off as much time you want to explore the city. With an audio guide, you can get to hop off at 60 stops during your journey.
10. Tower of London
The magnificent Tower of London will open a treasure chest in front of you. The Tower of London has been served for many purposes from the early time. From prison to the palace and museum to the zoo, it has acted in various roles. This iconic sculpture of London has been regarded as the World Heritage Site.
If you are a history buff, this is the place you should spend your day during your London trip. The Crown and Jewel exhibition is something worth watching here. You can book tickets online to avail the great discount and avoid any kind of hassle.
11. Piccadilly Circus
How to turn your boring London evening into an exciting one? Head towards the Piccadilly Circus, the famous meeting point in the city. This place is full of lights and colors and crowded with tourists. You can sit by the famous statues of Eros, or you can take snaps before the gigantic advertising screen.
As this is a central meeting point, you can walk in various directions from here, like towards Piccadilly, Shaftesbury Avenue, Leicester Square and Regent Street. If you want to see Piccadilly Circus at its best mood, you should go over there on St. Patrick’s Day or join the New Year’s Day Parade.
12. Madame Tussauds Museum
How about clicking pictures with Michel Jackson or Brad Pitt? Yes, that can be possible once you are in Madame Tussauds Wax Museum. You can find 300 wax figures with 14 interactive areas there. With all glamour and glitz, this museum is something that you never want to miss while visiting London.
The museum remains open seven days a week. Generally, the opening hour is from 9.30am to 5.30pm. Peak opening hour is from 9 am to 6 pm. The peak opening is only on weekends and on the UK holidays. Find your favorite movie star or take a snap with your beloved Star War superhero!
13. The British Museum
If you are an art connoisseur, or at least an art lover, the exterior of the museum will blow your mind. And once you enter, you will get flabbergasted. With more than 13 million artifacts, the British Museum is one of the most fabulous museums around the world. It is really difficult to describe this vast entity within limited words!
It has the finest and marvelous collections from different countries around the world, including China, India, Europe and lots of other countries. Among the most spectacular exhibits, the Elgin marbles from the Parthenon, the colossal bust of Ramesses II, etc. are the most popular ones.
14. Sea Life London Aquarium
How about having a great adventure under the sea? For that, you don’t need to go under the sea, but book tickets for Sea Life London. This will be a great and unique experience for you when you get to see around 400 species of animals under the ocean, including sharks, clownfish, stingrays, moray eels, etc at this aquarium.
The shark walk and the green sea turtle are definitely the star attraction of this place. And if you are at the shark reef, you can get to see a variety of species, like bow mouths, tiger shark, grey reefs and black tips.
15. National Gallery
London is the city of rich history and culture. And you can get the proof while you visit the National Gallery of London. Located on Trafalgar Square, this gallery is the best hub for the best paintings of renowned artists around the world.
The masterpieces of Leonardo da Vinci, Gainsborough, Rembrandt, Renoir, Turner, and Van Gogh will make you just stand still in front of those creations. You can take a free guided tour, audio guides, etc. that are available in multiple languages. Kids of all ages can enjoy the tour as there are lots of fun activities for them.
16. Covent Garden Market
How about shopping for a bit while enjoying your trip to London? Go to Covent Garden Market which was once the famous market for fruits and vegetables. Presently, it also sells handmade crafts, jewelry, and other goods.
Go to the Apple Market where you can find amazing handmade jewelry, watercolors, beautiful crafts and paints from Tuesday to Sunday, whereas, on Monday, it is the market for antiques and collectibles. You can take a walk through the East Colonnade Market. It opens for a day in a week and famous for hand-knitted and weaved clothes, handmade soaps, handbags, jewelry, artwork, homeware, etc.
17. Westminster Abbey
London is the epitome of British Royalty and Westminster Abbey is one of the most famous entities of it. It has been associated with Christianity from the early 7th Century. It was founded by Edward the Confessor in 1065. He chose the place for his interment.
Later, this ground was considered to be the burial grounds of the royal people and the most sovereigns. The irony is, presently, this place is being used as the best wedding location for the royal family. A place to end the journey has turned out to be a place for starting a new life! That is really great.
18. Little Venice
You are in London and can’t make it to Venice? Don’t get upset as Little Venice will not fail to bring back your happy mood. Located to the north of Paddington, this is a canal and waterways that is really amazing. This place is particularly located at the joint of the Regent Canal and the Grand Union.
This is a perfect place for cozy pubs, waterside cafes and wonderful restaurants. Have a boat ride in the canal or go for the puppet rides. Don’t forget to have a great dining experience in the beautiful restaurants over there.
19. Windsor Castle
This is the largest as well as the oldest occupied castle in the world. If you want to explore the history of 900 years, you have to include this place on your tour list while in London. And surprisingly, even after so many decades, the castle is still in working condition!
You can visit the huge State Apartments, the finest collection of artwork, St. George’s Chapel and Queen Mary’s Doll House there. But, before visiting the castle, you should always check out their website. As it is a royal residence, the date and time of opening can be changed with short notice.
20. Hyde Park
If you are in London, you can’t miss roaming around this largest open space in London. Hyde Park covers 365 acres area and it is one of the main attractions of the city among the tourists from 1635. The park is really famous for the Serpentine, the man-made lake in the park that is popular among the visitors for swimming and boating.
There is also a Speaker’s Corner, a traditional ground where anyone can give a speech on anything. The Apsley House will remind you of the great victory of the Duke of Wellington in the Waterloo. It has turned out to be a museum the duke’s magnificent collection.
21. Tate Modern
Your London trip will remain incomplete you don’t spend a day at this gallery. There are lots of museums in the city which have their own specialty. Tate Modern is a museum that has a huge collection of contemporary and modern art.
The Turbine Hall is really awesome and while it runs the length of the entire building, showing you the jaw-dropping work of the legendary artists, Cezanne, Matisse, Bonnard, Picasso, Dali, Rothko, Warhol, Pollock, and Bourgeois. You can get a free entry to this art gallery, but charges are only applied during some special events and exhibitions.
22. Barbican Art Gallery
Art connoisseurs, as well as art lovers, come back to London again and again only to visit the masterpieces of artwork by the traditional and contemporary artists. There are two galleries there; one is for an art exhibition while the other one is for organizing conferences.
The gallery organizes exhibitions of modern photography, designs, and fine arts. The admission charges of exhibitions are not always the same. So, you need to check that out before planning to spend a day to be amazed by the exhibits. There is no entrance fee applicable for children under age 12. You should visit the art gallery once and you will love it!
23. St. Paul’s Cathedral
This is one of the most famous and largest churches in London which shows you the great English architectural work. The previous building was destroyed in the Great London Fire in 1666. Later, Sir Christopher Wren designed the present building. The two Baroque towers are worth to watch while the 365-foot dome of St. Paul’s Cathedral will blow your mind.
While taking the stairs to the dome, you should have a look at the intricate work of art. And when you are here, you should not miss the Whispering Gallery. Once you enter here, the calmness of the church will calm your disturbed mind.
24. Neal’s Yard
When you are in a foreign country, you definitely want to go shopping. After all, you want to collect memoirs from the country that will remind you of your lovely trip. While in London, you can’t ignore Neel’s Yard. This shopping zone is the most beautiful in London with its colorful courtyard and bright and well-decorated shops.
If you want skincare products, you can head towards Neel’s Yard Remedies. For having delicious British farm cheese, go to Neel’s Yard Dairy. Also, you should be in the Wild Food Café for their lip-smacking breakfast menu. Don’t forget to try their nut-free raw chocolate tart.
25. Royal Opera House
Experience the Royal Ballet, theatre performance or Royal Orchestra at the Royal Opera House while you are in London. Tourists can watch shows during the daytime and you can also go for guided tours there. For that, you need to book early for having the best guides.
You can make your tour at the Royal Opera House even more interesting, just by having a brunch or lunch at the Amphitheatre Restaurant. How about having a drink at the Amphitheatre Terrace while enjoying the view of the Covent Garden Piazza that is across the road! You can also buy souvenirs from the ROH shop.
26. Kew Gardens / Royal Botanic Gardens
This is officially known as the Royal Botanic Gardens. This beautiful place is located on the south bank of the River Thames which is in the southeast part of London. The 300-acre area will amaze you with the different types of species of plants. This garden was built in 1759 and it was undertaken by the Government in 1841.
The adjacent woodland and the Queen’s Cottage were added to this stunning garden in 1897. There are lots of musical and other events are organized in this garden. If you can make it at that time of the year, you can enjoy the tour a lot.
27. The Royal Mews
Once you get the view of the Gold State Coach in the Gold State Coach House, you will forget the world. The glittery coach is something that you may not have seen anywhere around the world. Actually, the Royal Mews is the place where historical carriages and coaches are kept for exhibitions. It is located in the Buckingham Palace.
You can experience a variety of state vehicles, whether traditional or modern ones. There are horse-drawn carriages, motor cars, etc. which are still used for state visits, coronations, the State Opening of Parliament, weddings, and official engagements. This is, actually, the finest working stable, in the world till now.
28. Tottenham Hotspur Stadium
Presently, the address of this stadium has been changed and it is connected to Wembley Stadium for one season as the older stadium is under renovation. If you are a sports person, this stadium tour will definitely woo you. The lush green fields, surrounded by the sophisticated gallery, are something you always dreamt to be in for watching a match.
You can buy tickets online early so that you can avoid jostling for tickets with other tourists. You can also go for hospitality packages. Keep a day for this stadium tour and you will get a lifetime experience here.
29. Victoria and Albert Museum
If you want to explore the old London and want to relive the ages you have read-only in literature, this is the place you should visit once. Victoria and Albert Museum is the world’s greatest museum which brings you the collections that are unmatched to any other museums of the world.
For art and designs, this is the best museum of all. Recently, the museum has gone through a grand renovation and renewal and renovation. After that, the highlight of the museum is the Medieval Renaissance Galleries which consists of the artwork of that age. You shouldn’t miss the jewelry galleries of this museum.
30. Hampton Court Palace
Having a boat ride on the River Thames will take you close to lots of places for sightseeing. Hop off to visit one of the most famous palaces in London aka Europe, the Hampton Court Palace. Have you seen the Great Hall? It’s dated back to Henry VIII’s time.
If you are interested in spooky things, this place will surely attract you. Yes, this is one of the haunted places in London. It is believed that two of his six wives roam around here. You can also visit the clock court, the State Apartments, the Haunted Galleries, the Elizabeth Knot Garden and a lot more.
31. Granary Square
The squares are the best part of London where you meet new people, make friends and have some quality time with them. If you have a working visa for London, hopefully, you will work on the weekdays. Why not make your weekends full of fun by visiting this public square in London?
This is a place that hosts several types of concerts, events, and activities that you can enjoy as a visitor or take part in those. To fill your weekends with fun and remove all boredom of your monotonous life, you can visit there on weekends and holidays.
32. Cutty Sark
This legendary ship is a must watch on your London trip. It was built in 1869 and was used to carry tea from China. In this business, Cutty Sark had visited almost every major port in the world. Know the history of the ship and the stories of adventures she had gone through.
You can also be the sailor and let your imagination sail free while you take the steering wheel in hand or learn the stories of those brave sailors who have sailed her. This is really one of the most award-winning visiting sites for travelers in the city.
Don’t you want to buy some memoirs for your friends and family back in the country? Why not you go to Harrods? For 160 years, Harrods is serving the visitors and the locals with the first-class service, best product quality, and top-class retail theatre. Once you are here, you will be blown out.
With 330 departmental stores in the 7-story building, you can only get confused about what to buy and whatnot. Whatever you want in food, technology, fashion, homeware or anything else, Harrods is your perfect destination. There are also 17 boutiques that are dedicated to the topmost international brands, like Dior, Valentino, and Prada.
34. Camden Town
This place is a quite popular cultural neighborhood in North London. This place is famous for alternative culture as you can get the crowd, full of Goths, rockabillies, punks, and other types of tourists. If you want to watch the modern face of London, this is the place you should visit which is the mod community of the town.
Are you into inking and piercing? There are lots of parlors that give you the best services. Go to the Camden Market where you can enjoy numerous street café to enjoy street foods along with the plush restaurants which serve international cuisine.
35. Horse Guards Parade
Horse Parade is another traditional practice of the Royal Guards. And this you can visit at the Horse Guards Parade ground near Whitehall. Actually, this ground is used for all types of parades and ceremonies.
Every day, the changing of the guards’ ceremony starts at this ground at 11 am from Monday to Saturday and on Sunday; it starts from 10 am only. If you want to visit this parade, you can be there at the given time. You can see the guards, yelling at each other, forming their formation and all. If you have kids with you, they will love the horses.
Do you want to enjoy the nightlife of London? Are you ready to make the devil alive? Then, this is the place that will cast a charm on you that you can’t avoid at all. This place is the hub of grand eateries and pubs.
If you want to be there during the daytime, you can experience the outstanding cuisines at the restaurants. But, the night is young here. And when you are at Shoreditch, you should visit Trapeze, the circus-themed bar. Why is it so popular? They serve drinks at large popcorn tubs! Interested? Sail on!
37. Sherlock Holmes Museum
221B, Baker Street! You can’t miss this you know. Step inside and you will find the Sherlock Holmes Museum. Actually, it was the apartment of Holmes that Sir Arthur Conan Doyle wrote in his stories.
The museum is full of life-size waxworks of Mr Holmes cases and you can also find souvenirs and lots of other quirky objects. What you need to do is to stand in the queue to buy tickets and then make entry to this famous museum. Spending some time with your favorite detective of all time is certainly something that you don’t experience every day.
38. Hampstead Heath
If London is a city of museums, you can call it a town of gardens and parks. Acquiring 790 acres of space, Hampstead Heath is really one of the biggest parks in London. The highest point of this park is Parliament Hill from where you can enjoy the great view of the entire city.
This place is famous for the lush green fields, crystal clear ponds, and the wooded areas. Not only that, but you can enjoy the wildlife there in the small woods and can have a small adventure there. If you want to enjoy nature in London, you should visit here once.
39. Columbia Road Flower Market
The name is enough to describe the place, right? But, once you go there, the blossoming buds will welcome you all smiling. Located on London’s East End, this market is famous for a friendly atmosphere. You can make your Sundays full of life and fun as the market is open on that day from 8 am to 3 pm.
There are 60 independent shops, including, vintage clothes stores, cupcake shops, garden, and antique shops, small art galleries and obviously, English and Italian delis. So, while buying seeds, plants or flowers, you can also refuel yourself from the cafes, restaurants, and pubs, nearby.
40. The Gherkin
Yes, this may not be open to the public, but you can also watch the most spectacular building of London from outside. The vast entity with its intricate architecture is worth visiting once. This iconic skyscraper of London is also known as 30 St. Mary Axe.
This is also called ‘The Cucumber London’, the ‘London’s Egg’ etc. because of its shape. If you make a booking to any restaurants inside it, you can make an entrance into the building. The building looks adorable at any time, but it is all dazzling during the night time. You should have the view to get amazed.
41. The BFI IMAX
Are you a film buff? Then, include the British Film Institute on the list of visiting places in London. It is located in the populated area of Southbank and it is a perfect destination for the tourists who want to relax after a tiring day of strolling in the historical places around the city.
You can watch any films, whether it is something modern or classic as the BFI has shown on a regular basis. Also, there is a library and shops to check out. BFI has its own restaurant and bar where you can munch something delicious. Grab your favorite snacks and drinks and watch the movie of your choice.
42. O2 Brixton Academy
If you are a music lover and look for the best live music concerts, there are numerous venues in London of that. Brixton Academy in South London is one of such fabulous destinations. Originally, it was a theatre and cinema and it was named as Astoria.
After fifty years, it was turned into a great venue for organizing live rock and pop concert. The famous acts played in this venue are, Sex Pistols, The Clash, Madonna and New Order. This academy saw the final performance of the Smiths. For go-to music, this venue is really lovely.
43. Wonderlab: The Station Gallery
This is the science museum in London which can be the best place for the science geeks and the kids. When children see things practically that they read in books, it will be easier for them to understand.
This interactive gallery only brings out the scientific wonder from your regular life and presents them to you through attractive artwork, live shows, and artworks. You can take part in the live experiments, or take a tour of seven themed zones, and also get amazed by the work of the scientific and mathematics geniuses.
44. Oxford Street
After reaching the culmination point, there is nothing better place than to end this discussion. Once you are done with all the places in London, visit Oxford Street. This is the best shopping zone in London that has more than 300 shops and it gets more than 50,000 visitors each day.
There are internationally famous departmental stores which will attract you by the fabulous displays. If possible, you should visit this street during the Christmas and New Year Season. The street is illuminated by Christmas lights and the evenings are gorgeous there.
45. London Zoo
The London Zoo boasts 712 species of animals and several world-firsts. It was founded back in 1828 as the first scientific zoo on the planet, but it was not open to the public until 1847.
The world’s first reptile pavilion, as well as the first public water aquarium or insect pavilion, were opened here as well. The zoo is located on the northern side of Regent’s Park. You can get here by car or by public transport.
So far, you get enough ideas about visiting London and the places you should include on your must-visit list. Whether it is your business trip, or you want to be there for vacation, you should have fun unlimitedly. London has always been one of the most favourite destinations among celebrities.
So, you never know whether to bump with someone for whom you can go crazy! Book flight tickets early if you are going there at peak season. Also, you should be ready to face the boring weather of London. Be prepared for it. Happy journey!