They say that once you get bored of London, you are bored of life, and if you are looking to visit the capital for short amount of time, this can pose somewhat of a challenge as to what you should be prioritising seeing during your stay. With so many options available to you, how do you pick the best things to see? We have put together an insider’s guide as to the top things to do in London, as well as the best luxury hotels within walking distance of these destinations so you can relax and recuperate in style.
If you are visiting London, it would be amiss to not visit Sir Christopher Wren’s 17th century masterpiece whilst you are in the capital. Visiting the Golden Gallery, where you will be able to experience stunning views over the Thames overlooking Shakespeare’s Globe. Also, be sure not to miss out visiting the Whispering Gallery too, where it is possible to hear someone talking over 112 feet away. The area around the Cathedral also has a number of attractions on offer.
It is worth trying to time your visit so you catch the 5pm choral evensong. If you are looking to do a bit of shopping done and getting a bite to eat in this area, you have the shopping centre of One New Change just minutes away, where there are a number of beautiful rooftop bars with breath-taking views of the Cathedral too, so you can enjoy the Renaissance beauty even after you have left.
In terms of luxury stays nearby, check out the beautiful and unique boutique hotel, The Zetter Townhouse, situated in nearby Clerkenwell. The hotel is famous for its excellent cocktails too, meaning you can enjoy a delicious tipple after a tiring day seeing all that London has to offer, relaxing whilst enjoying some of the views on offer.
It is almost impossible to not notice the glass spire that dominates London’s financial district, and it is certainly a must-see whilst in the city. Situated at London Bridge, the Shard hosts a number of different events all year round, everything from yoga to silent discos, and in the summer the Sky Deck high up this amazing building turns into a garden.
Where better to stay than the Shard itself if you want to be near it? You cannot get any closer to the tallest building in Western Europe than The Shangri-La at The Shard, which is situated on floors 34 to 52 of the building, giving guests 360-views from their bedrooms.
Of course, when visiting the capital, one cannot go without seeing the world-famous clock, Big Ben and having a picture with it to post on Instagram. If you want to be nearby to appreciate the iconic clock in all its glory, consider staying at The Royal Horseguards in Charing Cross, a stunning Grade-I listed building that hosted the original Scotland Yard and many of the secret service meetings during the two World Wars.
Westminster Abbey is considered one of the most famous churches throughout the world, being situated in the place where Queen Elizabeth II was crowned, as well as William the Conqueror. It is also the place where Princess Diana’s funeral was hosted. It is however recommended that you get there before 10am, as it tends to get extremely busy during the day, being popular with tourists and visitors to the capital.
Why not stay in the stunning Conrad St James in Victoria close by? It is a truly enjoyable hotel, steeped in political history, having previously been host to government office with decadent finishes and enthralling décor throughout, such as the beautiful marble bathrooms complete with relaxing walk-in showers.
Just a few minutes’ walk from London’s Waterloo station, the London Eye stands at a whopping 443ft tall, with over 32 ‘capsules’ that reflect the capitals 32 boroughs, providing you with some of the very best panoramic views you can get anywhere in the world. A rotation in a capsule will typically last around 30 minutes. Unsurprisingly, a trip on the London Eye is incredibly popular with tourists and therefore it can get quite busy. If you want to avoid the large crowds, it is recommended visiting on a weekday after 4.30 pm.
With so many museums to choose from in London, how do you pick between them if you only have a short amount of time in the city? If you like an amalgamation of history from all parts of the globe, then take a look at Victoria and Albert Museum for a real historical treat. If you want to experience a traditional English Afternoon Tea, then head to the historic Morris room in the building, which serves an authentic afternoon tea serve every Sunday from 3pm.
What could be more indulgent than staying at The Gore hotel in Kensington? With Venetian beds and rooms decorated in such a way that look like they’ve come straight out of the Renaissance, this hotel couldn’t be considered anything less than a luxury stay.