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The Big Smoke is no stranger to art, culture, or world -class shopping, so it makes sense that London is one of the world’s top travel destinations. The capital of England earns its reputation by offering top -notch theater productions, food from around the globe, and some of the finest museums on the planet. Of course, afternoon tea should also be on any London itinerary. Whether you head to town to watch the changing of the iconic guards at Buckingham Palace or get bird’s eye view of the city via the London Eye, sightseeing in London is sure to deliver memories to last a lifetime.
Things to do in London, England vary from the refined to the bohemian. You can grab a nightcap after an evening at the opera just as easily as you can shop the stalls of artsy street markets. Whether your trip to London will be fancy or carefree, you can find a borough or neighborhood here that makes you feel at home.
Kensington — This is one of the trendiest boroughs in the city, officially dubbed the “royal” borough. It’s no surprise, then, that the streets are lined by expensive homes and well-manicured trees. Kensington High Street offers fine shopping and dining, and visitors are welcome to tour Kensington Palace.
Covent Garden — This West End district is best known for its energetic public square, where you will often find street performers. The daily open market is perhaps the best of its kind in the city. Things to do in London’s Covent Garden also include more formal affairs, however. You can take in a show at the Lyseum Theatre or get dinner at London’s oldest restaurant, Rules.
Notting Hill — Notting Hill is more than the setting of a famous romantic comedy. This charming part of London has cobblestone streets, pubs begging for you to enjoy a leisurely lunch, and plenty of antiques vendors.
Leicester Square — Leicester Square is often considered to be the entertainment hub of the city. And with cinemas, theaters, and casinos galore—visitors can certainly keep busy any time of day.
Landmarks and other things to see in London are dripping in stories from bygone times, so if you aced AP history, you’re bound to fit in immediately. Before you take to London by foot or get adventurous, grab your camera and head to one of the many historical sites. Westminster Abbey, the Tower of London, and Big Ben are just a sampling of the places you will be happy you explored in person. Of course, you can find a theater production of nearly any sort in the city every day of the week. Catch a matinee musical in Leicester Square or grab dinner and a show in Trafalgar Square.
In addition to the many sights and attractions in England’s capital, there are also opportunities to get active. Go for a jog in Hyde Park, grab your nicest swim suit and take a dip in a lido pool, or rent a pedal boat in Battersea Park. London tours also help you burn some calories while you take in the city; whether you embark on a walking tour or kayak excursion, you can spot important sites while you work off those fish and chips. If you’re ready to see what the rest of England has to offer, day trips from London provide a wonderful opportunity to see countryside as well as major U.K. universities.
Touring on a lean budget in London? Spend time instead of cash on fantastic experiences.
National Portrait Gallery - Chock-full of displays and artifacts, this place is heaven for inquiring minds.
Southbank Centre - This is the place to get your culture fix and learn all about the region's artistic side.
Vauxhall City Farm - Animals are amazing, and you'll be able to keep company with some cool ones here.
Hampstead Heath - Let the kids have a good time or let your own inner child run free — this place simply screams fun.
Parliament Hill Lido - Put on your swimsuit and squeeze in some exercise at this invigorating swimming spot.
Goodenough College - If you're a fan of modern-day design and architecture, add this landmark to your to-do list.
Nelson's Column - Swing by this historic site and experience a part of the region's cultural heritage.
Trafalgar Square - Find out for yourself why both visitors and locals are in love with the atmosphere of this place.
Serpentine Lake - Simply being close to the water will leave you feeling peaceful and calm.
Charles I Statue - Widely renowned among those who reside here, this site is worth stopping by.
St. Martin-in-the-Fields - Gain an understanding of the local beliefs at this holy sanctuary.
Berkeley Square - Get ready for views that'll leave you in awe at this natural landscape.
Victoria Embankment Gardens - Recharge your mind and soul by spending some time with Mother Nature.
When the weather's fine, these outdoor experiences are difficult to resist:
There's no need to splish, splosh and splash your way through a wet day when there are so many excellent indoor activities like these on offer:
Bring comfortable shoes because there are lots of well-known attractions you simply can't miss:
If you'd like to discover the best of this destination, add these sights to your schedule:
Keep more of your hard-earned pennies in your pocket with these cheap and fun activities:
Your escape to London doesn't have to cost a fortune with free things like these to keep you on the go: