I can tell you right now that this is probably the most difficult post I will write. London is such a big city and there are tons of things to do there, that I cannot describe it all here. You might want to visit the official website to find specific activities or more details about what I present here. I hope you can have a general overview with my post and then enjoy the city as much as you can.
Situated on the Thames River, London is the biggest city in Western Europe (and the EU, because UK is still there until the BREXIT is applicable). The city has about 8 million people, but all the metropolitan area has more than 14 million, and this reflects how big the city is. It is also considered the international capital of culture, music, education, politics, etc.
The history of London dates back to the beginning of time, more or less. House of British royal dynasties for centuries. Has survived through fire, invasions, plagues, and bombs. It is yet one of the most important cities in the world. After the end of Roman rules in 410, London was ruled by the Anglo-Saxons until the Norman invasions in 1066. And then London became the capital of trade and royal capital of England. During the two world wars, London suffered aerial bombing.
The city is full of nice places to visit, bars, parks, and museums. It is the most culturally and ethnically diverse city in the UK. You cannot get tired of London because this city is life. It is the center of culture, music, and history, therefore, there is always something you can do and learn from the city. In the Wikitravel, you can find a lot of detailed information about London. Here you find just a summary based on my experience.
First, you can arrive at London to 6 different airports (yes, six!): Luton, Gatwick, Heathrow, City, Stansted and Southend. From there you can always take a line to the city itself and then connect to the subway that you prefer. So, better be careful with the timing, because it might take you a long time to get to final spot using the public transport. You can also arrive by bus (Flixbus, National Express or Eurolines) at Victoria Station or by train (Eurostar, here you find a cheap option for this) at St Pancras station.
For using the buses and subway, you might want to buy the Oyster card (it’s 5 pounds and then you have to Top up). Then prices vary depending on the zones you cross, whether by bus or metro, and the distance. If you are there for short period, the deposit for the card can be refunded if you return it back (I think they only refund 3 pounds, but you better check it). Good thing is that you can top up the card at any station and even in the night shops around the city.
What to do
A friend told me once that London is a city that speaks to you, and he was right. Let the city tell you some stories.
Well, as I said, it is impossible that I tell you all the things you can do, this is just a guide based on what I’ve done on my last few visits. The city is just so you huge that I would never end up telling what you can do. It’s amazing, entertained, enjoyable, lovely! Here some tips:
- Museums are for free! So make a list and visit as many as you can. Here you find a good list: British Museum, Natural History Museum, Churchill War Rooms, V&A, Science Museum, National Gallery, Tate Modern, National Maritime Museum, etc.
- There are a lot of parks and gardens, it is very nice to visit them and have a picnic: Hyde Park, Green Park, St James Park, etc.
- Visit the Buckingham Palace and then the Wellington Arch
- Walk around Westminster Abbey
- Cross the Westminster bridge (in front of the Big Ben and the London Eye)
- Visit the Tower of London
- Get on a bus and get lost (just to see around, it’s a nice plan)
- Visit the King’s Cross station (and Harry Potter’s store) – St Pancras
- Walk around Soho, visit famous stores and bars
- Sit on a Lion in the Trafalgar Square and enjoy the live concerts
- Eat sweet chestnuts
- Eat a fish and chips dish (be careful with the prices, it varies from 10 to 20 pounds)
- Do a Graffiti-art haunt