Weekend in London (focused on historic icons and attractions)



Coming to London for a weekend? Are you too busy or maybe just a bit lazy to plan the whole weekend? Well, that's OK. Living in London for more than 8 years we put together some great tips what do in London, what galleries, museums and Royal palaces are worth to visit, where to eat and much more.

We have 2 versions of weekend program in London. The first is more focused on historic icons and attractions (see below), the second on museums and galleries and London markets (read more here...).


WEEKEND IN LONDON (FOCUSED ON HISTORIC ICONS AND ATTRACTIONS)

Transport: we recommend you to buy Oyster card ( click here for more info about London public transport).



Weekend in London (focused on historic icons and attractions)



YOUR SELF-GUIDED TOUR STEP BY STEP // >>> map... follow blue line <<<


TIMING


MORE INFO, LINKS


SATURDAY

The Tower of LondonTOWER OF LONDON

Our self-guided tour starts at the Tower of London (Tower Hill tube station, Circle Line). Avoid long queues and visit the Tower between 9-10 am.

If you feel a bit lazy and walking whilst sightseeing is not the option for you, we recommend you London sightseeing buses: Original London Sightseeing Tour - www.theoriginaltour.com or Big Bus Tours - www.bigbustours.com. Hop-on & hop-off ticket costs around £25.

If London sightseeing bus is not for you we hope you will find below tour interesting.
Visit the Tower between 9-10 am. Find more info about the Tower in London historic icons and attractions guide

Buckingham PalaceCHANGING OF THE GUARD AT BUCKINGHAM PALACE

From Tower of London take the bus number 15 to Trafalgar Square (that's where the Nelson's Column is). You will be passing around The Monument, St Paul's Cathedral, Royal Courts of Justice, Somerset House and hotel Savoy.
Get off at Trafalgar Square, The Mall will lead you to Buckingham Palace. The guard change at Buckingham Palace has an official start time of 11.30am, however the guards start arriving with music at 11.15am. The official timing of the ceremony is 30 minutes finishing at 12 noon. During the summer you should arrive much earlier if you want to get close to the railings.

If you finish late at Tower of London do not go by bus but take the tube instead. Go to St James tube station (from Tower Hill, Circle or District line). It will take you 10 minutes to get to Buckingham Palace from the station.
The guard change at Buckingham Palace has starts at 11.30am. The ceremony takes 30 minutes.Find more info about Buckingham Palace, Changing of the guard, The Monument, St Paul's Cathedral, Royal Courts of Justice, Somerset House and hotel Savoy in London historic icons and attractions guide

More info about Changing of the Guard

Portobello Road MarketPORTOBELLO ROAD MARKET

Once the ceremony ends we recommend you to visit Portobello Road Market (the world's largest antiques market).

How to get there: Having Green Park on your right, go to Hyde Park Corner (tube station close to Hyde Park). From there take a bus number 148 to Notting Hill Gate. Follow the crowd or market signs.

There are plenty of good restaurant around Portobello Road Market. It is a good spot for lunch.
Market visited and lunch enjoyed you should finish by 3pm.

If you want to visit Westminster Abbey or galleries and museums we would recommend you to skip the market.
Find more info about Portobello Road Market in London markets guide

Big BenPARLIAMENT, BIG BEN AND WESTMINSTER ABBEY

After lunch take the tube direction Baker Street (Circle or Hammersmith & City line) and visit Madame Tussaud's. Then take the tube again direction Westminster tube station (Jubilee line). There you can visit Westminster Abbey, take a picture of Parliament and Big Ben or enjoy great view from the London Eye.

The best photos of the Parliament and Big Ben are from Westminster Bridge.
Visit of the Madame Tussaud's will take you around 1 hour.

You should be by Big Ben around 5pm.
Find more info about Parliament, Big Ben and Westminster Abbey in London historic icons and attractions guide

Find more info about Madame Tussaud's and London Eye in London attractions guide

National GalleryFROM BIG BEN TO NATIONAL GALLERY

There is Churchill's war rooms museum very close to Parliament. It's worth a visit. From there head to Trafalgar Square along Downing Street - number 10 (official residence of the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom) and Horse Guards.
Visit the National Gallery on Trafalgar Square. Founded in 1824, it houses a collection of over 2,300 paintings dating from the mid-13th century to 1900. The Gallery is huge; probably you will not have enough time to see all its expositions. Visit Gallery website and plan what you want to see in advance.
Find more info about National Gallery and Churchill's war rooms museum in London galleries and museums guide

Admission to National Gallery is free.

National Gallery explored go to Leicester Square where you can buy half priced and discounted theatre tickets at TKTS (www.tkts.co.uk).
After the long day you deserve a good dinner. There are plenty of restaurants around Leicester Square, in Chinatown and in Soho.
You can close the day in one of the London famous clubs or with a nice evening walk along the river Thames - highly recommended.
Musicals and theatres normally start around 8pm, finishing at 10pm.Find more info about London night life in London arts, music and culture guide

Find more info about top London restaurants in Food and drink guide in London guide

SUNDAY

Camden Lock MarketLONDON MARKETS AND BRUNCH

It's going to be another long amazing day in London, so we recommend you to start with hearty breakfast or brunch. Brunch is a meal eaten in the middle of the morning, in between the normal time of breakfast and the normal time of lunch, as a substitute for both of these meals.

Good places to eat are around Camden Market, Columbia Road flower market, Spitalfields market or Brick Lane.

London markets can be very busy during weekends so get there by 11am.
From 9am to 1pm.Find more info about Camden Market, Columbia Road flower market, Spitalfields market in London markets guide

The British MuseumBRITISH MUSEUM

From Camden Market or Columbia Road flower market and Spitalfields market take the tube to Tottenham Court Road station (Central line). From there walk to British Museum. Admission is free.

The British Museum is widely considered to be one of the world's greatest museums of human history and culture. Its permanent collection, numbering some eight million works, is amongst the finest, most comprehensive, and largest in existence and originates from all continents, illustrating and documenting the story of human culture from its beginnings to the present.
Finish your visit of the Museum by 3pm.Find more info about British Museum here: London galleries and museums

Globe theatreTHE MONUMENT, TOWER BRIDGE, HMS BELFAST, GLOBE THEATRE, TATE GALLERY, LONDON EYE, BIG BEN AND PARLIAMENT

From British Museum walk back to Holborn tube station and travel to Bank station. Using tube underground tunnels go to Monument station. You will find there The Monument to the Great Fire of London.
Then cross the London Bridge. End the end turn left for HMS Belfast, Tower Bridge, Tower and Design Museum or right for Globe Theatre, Tate Gallery, London Eye, Parliament and Big Ben. From the Parliament head to Trafalgar Square along Downing Street - number 10 (official residence of the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom) and Horse Guards.

You can eat in Chinatown or Soho or you can try some Indian food in Brick Lane (close to Liverpool street station on Central line).
Suggested walk along the river with a visit of Tate Gallery for example will take you around 2-3 hours.Find more info in London historic icons and attractions, London galleries and museums and London attractions

From the Parliament head to Trafalgar Square along Downing Street - number 10 (official residence of the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom) and Horse Guards.

You can eat in Chinatown or Soho or you can try some Indian food in Brick Lane (close to Liverpool street station on Central line).
You will reach Trafalgar Square around 7pm.Find more info about Downing Street - number 10 in London historic icons and attractions

St Paul's Cathedral ST PAUL'S CATHEDRAL

Finish the day by a evening walk along the Cathedral. Take the bus number 15 from Trafalgar Square, it stops next to St Paul's.
Find more info about St Paul's Cathedral in London historic icons and attractions


Updated on 05/2012.



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