London, home to fancy teas, the soul of the UK. It is home to arguably the best theaters in the world and world-class museums rich with history. It has a diverse population, and it’s famous for its wild nightlife and incredible food. Furthermore, it’s unique from East End to West and looks like a jumble of the greatest and most unique cities in the world. Visiting a new city can be overwhelming, especially in a city like London which is said to be one of the most expensive cities in the world.
To help you make your journey breezy, here’s our travel guide to London.
- Country: The United Kingdom
- Country Dialing Code Prefix: +44
- Language: English (Official Language)
- Currency: Pound Sterling – GBP – £
- Average temperature: 19 °C
How To Get Around:
The Underground is also known as The Tube makes it easier to get around London. It charges you as per the zone and its fare varies as per the payment method you choose to pay or the time of the day. You can get around London while sightseeing with its famous double-decker buses as well. The most convenient way to get around London is to get an Oyster Card (Metro card) for The Tube and Buses. It frees you from worrying about carrying and having a change of the fares. The most expensive mode of transportation in London is taxis, also known as Black Cabs. Black Cabs run off a meter and most of them accept credit cards.
Neighborhoods to Know:
Shoreditch is known for its young neighborhood filled with artisan coffee shops and fine dining to chain restaurants. Wandering around vintage shops, cafés, art galleries, and clubs make you feel alive.
Then we have Notting Hill, which is famous for its antiques and vintage stores, Portobello Road Market, and high-end restaurants. Every year millions of tourists visit enviable gardens and boho atmos. The Notting Hill Carnival also takes place here every August bank Holiday which is Europe’s biggest street festival and attracts millions of people.
Soho is dotted with theaters and home to the nightlife of all stripes. Tourists love visiting Soho for late-night dinner dancing and movie. It’s Berwick Street is known to have some of London’s most interesting boutiques. You can visit Honest Burgers for plant-based and meat burgers.
How can we forget Kings Cross while we are in London? This rail station is famous for Platform 9 ¾ of the Harry Potter series, it has a photo area for visitors and a Harry Potter gift shop nearby to buy souvenirs.
Places to Visit:
Located in Westminster, central London, Trafalgar Square is famous for its free multicultural festivals and religious celebrations. These events are supported by the Mayor of London and some of the events include Chinese New Year and Pride in London. People sing carols under the Christmas tree sent from Norway every year since 1947 as a present.
In the heart of Westminster stands Buckingham Palace, which is a traditionally beautiful piece of architecture and history. It serves as the London residence and office of Her Majesty the Queen. There are 19 State Rooms in the heart of the Palace which become the center of attention of visitors on Easter with their magnificent decorations.
The London Eye:
The London Eye was built to show the most beautiful view of London, also known as the Millennium Wheelis. Regardless of being a touch expensive, it is visited by millions of tourists every year for the same reason it was built for.
If you are not necessarily looking for history, Westminster Abbey can stun you with its gothic architecture. Every coronation of an English monarch takes place here since 1066, and it is the final resting place of Queen Elizabeth I, Elizabeth of York, Geoffrey Chaucer, The Unknown Warrior, and many others.
Best Shopping Places:
Foyles is an enormous and the most impressive bookstore located in Soho, at Charing Cross. It has a vast collection of books, and readers and non-readers both visits this place for its sheer scale and gorgeous architecture.
It’s the enormous and busiest shopping area in Europe, Oxford Street. It has 300-plus shops including Topshop, Dr. Martens, Flying Tiger, Muji, and Selfridges which attracts millions of visitors every day.
Borough Market is the longest-running market in the city, famous for its street food and fresh British fruits and vegetables. It dates to at least the 12th century and was officially established in the 19th.
On the Intersection of Oxford Street, home to the flagship stores for Burberry, Kate Spade, Tory Burch, and more stands Regent Street. The original Regent Street is considered the best, and Londoners shop here for each and everything they need.
Juju’s Bar & Stage:
JuJu’s Bar & Stage is in the iconic Truman Brewery of Brick Lane. Surrounded by quirky restaurants, it is famous for its funky cocktails and killer Funktion One sound system.
If you love burgers, then BRGR.CO is a must-try. Famous for its heavenly burgers, it’s perfect for family lunches on a lazy day with quick service by friendly and polite staff.
Beaufort House Chelsea, is famous for its extensive cocktail menu and welcoming staff with a clean and relaxing atmosphere. It’s perfect for breakfast, lunch, dinner, or even business meetings, but you might want to watch out for the price if you are traveling under a fixed budget.
The Botanist Sloane Square offers an eclectic wine list and a cozy atmosphere. Its cocktail menu is limited considering some other Botanists, but the staff is efficient, and the food is fabulous.
Fish and Chips:
Delicious batter-coated fried fish and chips are a must to have while visiting London. It can be eaten as a main course or a snack and is available in gourmet restaurants and food stalls around London.
The English Breakfast:
If you are a breakfast fan, then try the well-balanced English Breakfast or “Full English Breakfast”. It contains bacon, eggs, sausages, black pudding, tomatoes, baked beans, mushrooms, and toast served with tea or coffee.
It is typically served on Sundays at most pubs. It includes roasted meat, mashed or roasted potatoes, stuffing, gravy, mint sauce, and Yorkshire pudding.
Sticky Toffee Pudding:
Sticky Toffee or sticky date pudding is an indulging British dessert with moist sponge cake made with chopped dates. It is served with vanilla ice cream or vanilla custard, drenched in a buttery, creamy toffee sauce.
In the heart of London, the ever luxurious The Connaught has been owned by many in its 205-year history. A restaurant and bar run by two Michelin stars Chef Hélène Darroze was awarded Europe’s Best in 2019.
It’s a small hotel with 26 rooms with at least one working fireplace. It has a Michelin-starred eatery with seasonal offerings, and you can choose a room ranging from standard to lofts and suites.
The Trafalgar St. James:
On the Trafalgar Square of St. James SW1, with 131 bedrooms including 3 exquisite suites, The Trafalgar it is a historic building with venues to eat, drink, work or play.
A once abandoned bank building turned now with ten restaurants under its roof, The Ned found was founded in 2012 as a five-star luxury hotel. It has a spa featuring treatments from massages to vitamin IV drips, and it is great for a young couple or a group of friends.
If you are visiting London for the first time, consider staying for at least 3 days. As there are tons of things you can do in London, from visiting historical places to vintage shops. And from staying at luxurious hotels to trying traditional food at local restaurants or wild nightlife, time flies rather quickly.