London Travel Guide
Capturing the same vibrancy as capitals such as New York, Milan and Paris, London, in the southeast of England, is a city that is every bit deserving of its reputation and a destination that few (who can afford to visit it) are disappointed by. Offering historic and cultural sites, modern themed attractions, fantastic shopping opportunities and endless evening entertainment options, this is a city that affords little time for boredom and can easily be classed as one of the world’s great capital cities.
Visitors wanting to see the city’s chief sights can take open-top bus tours which visit all of the best known locations, landmarks and monuments. Alternatively, these can be pursued independently by a combination of walking and the London Underground Rail system, or ‘the tube’. The list of sights is extensive but no London visit would be complete without seeing Trafalgar square, Big Ben, the Houses of Parliament, Buckingham Palace, Westminster Abbey, Tower of London and Tower Bridge.
For a break from the sightseeing, head for locations such asstreet, Covent Garden, Bond street, Sloane square and Soho, where shopping opportunities are plentiful. If it’s market day then head for Camden, Brick lane, Brixton, Greenwich and Petticoat lane for a traditional London market experience. When the evening arrives, the city center comes alive and a multitude of restaurants begin dishing up fine food, while drinking venues covering everything from old fashioned pubs to über-trendy bars offer abundant socialising opportunities.
Buckingham Palace: the official residence of the UK’s royal family, who reside in this magnificent building. Access to the interior is not permitted; however, visitors can observe the daily Changing of the Guard ceremony and enjoy the fine views of the palace exterior.
Westminster Abbey: a magnificent example of Gothic architecture and the principal Anglican cathedral of London. Provided services are not in progress, visitors are permitted to enter and view the magnificent interior in which the earthly remains of many famous persons are kept.
The Tower of London: home to the Crown Jewels since 1303 and once a prison for high status and royal prisoners, London’s famous tower is another of its must-see landmarks.
The Houses of Parliament: the House of Commons and the House of Lords make up the UK’s parliament buildings; interior access to the former is permitted to visitors via the public gallery; however, the latter can be viewed externally only.
Trafalgar Square: best known for housing the Nelson’s Column monument as well as its giant lions, fountains and ubiquitous pigeons. You simply cannot leave London without having your photo taken here.
The London Eye: somewhat like a giant Ferris wheel, this popular attraction lifts visitors high above the city, giving them some unique views across the entire borough.
The Tate Britain: among the country’s finest art facilities, the Tate refers to a number of galleries of which the Tate Modern in the former Bankside Power Station is one of the most impressive.
Museums: The Victoria and Albert Museum, the Natural History Museum, the Museum of London, the British Museum, the London Transport Museum and the Science Museum are just some of the many fascinating cultural, historic and scientific facilities to be found in London.