London is one of the most beautiful cities in the world and was in my bucket list since a long time. This year in July I could finally manage to tick if off the list.
The climate is wonderful though one moment it is sunny and the next moment it’s raining.. extremely unpredictable ( Moral of the story is : Always carry your umbrella along for sightseeing).
Sightseeing in London requires a lot of walking . Most of the attractions are situated close by so taking the public transport is not feasible ( Moral of the story is : Wear sturdy & comfortable shoes )
London has a lot of places with history and art. In this post I am going to share the main sightseeing places in London . Like I have mentioned in my previous post on How to Travel to London on a Budget ( Do read it ) , London is divided into 6 Zones. The main attractions are in Zone 1 and a few in Zone 2.
Atleast a week is required to sightsee the major attractions. And it is preferable that all the tickets for the attractions are booked online on their official sites since there are huge queues at the ticket windows plus the rates of tickets purchased online are a lesser than the ones purchased at the ticket window
I have clubbed the sightseeing itinerary day wise based on their proximity to each other to save time on travelling and avoid using public transport.
What to see on Day 1 : Tower of London, Tower Bridge, HMS Belfast ,All Hallows by the Tower, The Monument,Sky Garden The Shard, Tate Modern , City Hall & the London Bridge are all in the same vicinity. The famous food market Borough Market is also situated close by. This market has stalls of different cuisines and desserts. The St Pauls Cathedral can also be visited which is a little distance away
There are many buses going to these places . The London Bridge station, Tower Hill station are also close by.
What to see on Day 2 : Westminister Abbey , London Eye,Big Ben, Buckingham Palace ( including the Royal Mews & The Queens Gallery ) & the Imperial War Musuem (Churchill War Rooms ) . You could also relax at the St James Park or the Green Park next to Buckingham Palace.
The Westminister Abbey opens at 9.30 am and takes about 2 hours to view.
The Buckingham Palace has the change of guards on the foregrounds of the Palace at 10.45 am ( it gets real crowded so recommend to go early to get a prime spot ) . It is advisable to visit the Palace first lest you miss this event and then visit the Westminister Abbey and the nearby attractions.
Note : The lavish interiors of the Buckingham Palace are open for display to the public only from July – October . Book online in advance to avoid disappointment. The slots for viewing get filled fast . Rest of the year the Palace can be viewed from outside.
What to see on Day 3 : Trafalgar Square, Picadilly Circus,Leicester Square , China town.
Shopping at Selfridges, Primark on Oxford street or at the highend shopping destination in Mayfair and Bond street. All these places are at a walking distance .
What to see on Day 4 : Covent Garden ( an upscale shopping market ) , Madame Tussauds, The Lords Cricket Ground, Camden Market for shopping . Relax at the Regent Park and also visit the Portbello Market which is closer to The Lords
What to see on Day 5 : Musuems : There are excellent musuems in London for History Buffs . The British Museum with its amazing ancient cultural exhibits from around the world takes an entire day or more. So plan your tour dates accordingly taking into account the days to be spent in the museum. Do check out their Egypt & Greece exhibits atleast if pressed for time .
The National Gallery with paintings dating back to the mid 13th century by some of the famous artists like Rembrandt ,Vincent Van Gogh, & Michelangelo . The National Gallery is at Trafalgar Square so can be combined while exploring Trafalgar Square
The Musuem of London can be visited along with the The Kensington Palace, Princess Diana’s Memorial Foundation and the Marble Arch . Hyde Park is adjacent to the Kensington Palace
What to see on Day 6 -7 : Book Day tours to the scenic countryside . You can club Oxford, Warvick Castle,Stratford Avon and Cotswold in one trip . Windsor Castle, Bath & Stonehenge can be combined in another trip. You can book the tours through local tour operators like Viator , Evan Evans.
London is a big city. It’s not possible to cover each and every tourist attraction within a week . However , the major and most visited and famous attractions are mentioned above.
Hope you find this helpful . Do follow me to read my blog on ‘ How to explore the London Tourist spots alongwith the history behind the places ‘.