London is a beautiful city with a rich history and a sophisticated taste. Remarkable towering glass buildings dot the skyline, juxtaposed against the Tower of London and other historic sites. London is a fantastic city to visit; the culture is fantastic and American visitors will enjoy being able to speak the local language. London enjoys well-organized public transportation, and is very easy for visitors to navigate.
Top Things To Do in London
1) Explore the Tower of London
The Tower of London is a must visit attraction for any trip to London. With over 1,000 years of history within the fortress’ walls, the Tower of London is interesting to children and adults alike. The Tower is run and inhabited by the Beefeaters, or technically the “Yeomen Warders of Her Majesty’s Royal Palace and Fortress the Tower of London”. These are honorable servicemen who have served in the armed forces for at least 22 years in order to become the Queen’s Royal Bodyguards who guard the tower, the crown jewels, and offer tours to visitors from around the globe.
The Yeoman Warder tours are potentially the greatest attraction of the Tower of London, as the sharp-tongued tour guides explain the history of the Tower, tell stories of past horrors, and help tourists get a general grasp on the layout of the tower. If you are lucky enough to enter through the gates at the right time, hop on to a tour immediately after the entrance. The tours start every 30 minutes so if your timing is off you can stop in and explore the coin making processes of the Tower.
Be sure to view the Crown Jewels, as they are the most spectacular jewels you can see on display. In addition, stroll the grounds to see the famous ravens, the white tower, the torture at the tower exhibit, and the Royal Beasts exhibit to learn about the menagerie that was kept on the grounds when it was the official residence of the royal family.
2) See the Changing of the Guard at Buckingham Palace
Visiting Buckingham Palace to see the changing of the guards could be one of the most iconic images of things to do in London a visitor can find. It is, however, quite well-known and is it is necessary to arrive early in order to get a good spot to see. The scene outside of Buckingham Palace itself is can be a bit chaotic as the pedestrian square in front of the palace is usually quite crowded with tourists, and it is suggested that you should arrive at least an hour early if you want to get a spot on the fence to watch the changing of the guard.
3) Shop in Camden Town
Camden town is an edgy and exciting part of London, just off the northern line on the tube. Visiting Camden Town is one of the top things to do in London offers excellent shopping, both for London trinkets and for unique and exciting imported items. There is a good-sized market area with stalls that mainly offers women’s clothing. You can find cute dresses, coats, trinkets, gifts and shirts here. In addition, many of the shops that line the main street go back into specialized stores, and there are some awesome niche and thrift stores tucked into the streets. We enjoyed Rockit London for their cheap prices and nice pieces.
Closer to the canal, Camden Lock Market offers delectable foods from across the globe; from paella to peruvian, any craving can be quenched. Camden lock is a great place to pause and eat during your shopping trip. You can pick up a coffee or a mulled cider here to keep you warm in the winter months as well. Camden Lock Market offers an array of imported, handmade, and specialty goods, and strolling through the market stalls is one of the best things to do in London.
4) Cross Tower Bridge
Sure, it’s cool to walk across the Tower Bridge, but the view from within the Tower Bridge is definitely worth the entrance fee. Inside the tower, there is a glass walkway that spans the center of the bridge, offering fantastic views of central London and the Thames river below. The glass walkway can be a bit unnerving, but it offers fantastic views of the traffic crossing the bridge and the Thames river below. In addition, the glass walkway offers an unparalled viewing spot to watch the Tower Bridge raise for boats. From the walkways at the top of the bridge, you can see the Tower of London juxtaposed against the more modern glass buildings in London, and it is an amazing view!
5) Ride the London Eye
For those of you seeking an amazing view of London, the London Eye is a fantastic solution. This capsule ferris wheel was the largest in the world when it was built in 1999, and though it is now the 4th tallest, it still offers spectacular views of London. The London eye is an iconic and impressive ferris wheel, with 32 large capsules taking up to 25 people at a time over 440 feet in the air. One rotation on the London Eye lasts 30 minutes, and they offer special events and private capsules for special occasions. With breath-taking views and an overall impressive experience, the London Eye stands as one of the top things to do in London.
Are you planning a trip to London? What are you planning on doing while you are there?
Be sure to check out our article on transportation from London Heathrow to central London to find the most effective method of transportation for your trip!