London is quite simply a city like no other. Culturally rich and historically fascinating, London is the epicentre of everything that is trendy and modern yet it manages to conserve tradition in a way that marks the city out as being the pinnacle of civilisation. Tourists are in awe of the countless things the city has to offer.
With a history going back as far as 2000 years, London has experienced conquest, terrorist attacks, a great fire, plague and other travesties affecting its standing and yet it remains one of the world’s economic and political strongholds, not to mention its consistently high ranking status as one of the world’s most fashionable cities.
Where to Stay
Situated in Trendy Clerkenwell, the Zetter Townhouse offers contemporary stylish rooms in the traditional setting of an old Georgian terraced house. Centrally situated and close to a range of the city’s best restaurants, this hotel has its own fashionable cocktail bar.
London is not short of luxurious hotels on offer, but Claridges is a great choice. Located in the heart of Mayfair, London’s classiest district, guests can choose from a variety of different rooms ranging from luxury to even more luxury.
An equally indulgent choice is the Ritz. Sitting in the heart of the city, on Piccadilly, the hotel’s surroundings are as buzzing as the hotel’s interior is calm and peaceful.
There are an endless number of things to do around this centrally located hotel, which offers grand majestic rooms and excellent service to all its guests.
London is host to many travellers and so if you’re looking for somewhere to stay with a limited amount of cash, then head to the Smart Russell Square hostel. Centrally located, this hostel is clean and tidy, offering very friendly service, and it won’t break the bank.
A good mid-range option is the Strand Palace Hotel. The location is unbeatable, being only a stone’s throw away from the theatre district and many of the city’s finest restaurants, bars and clubs.
This hotel also offers particularly convenient services such as a 24 hour reception, a laundry and dry cleaning room, and services for disabled people.
What to Do
Any trip to London is incomplete without a turn around the London Eye. Visited by over 3.5 million people annually, it is the most popular tourist attraction in the UK. Visitors can glimpse panoramic views of the cityscape when they reach the top.
London offers an array of fantastic museums, but a particularly noteworthy one is the British Museum. Exhibiting a selection of ancient art, architecture and artefacts from the antique civilisations of Greece, Egypt and Rome, the display is breathtaking and can be enjoyed by adults and children alike.
The National Gallery, situated in the heart of Trafalgar Square showcases the best of the nation’s art, and the works of international artists. The gallery has a permanent collection but also has changing exhibitions.
London is infamous for its fantastic retail opportunities, so shopping enthusiasts should head to Oxford Street. Home to the flagship Topshop amidst many other great high street and designer shops, London’s most famous street is a purchaser’s paradise.
A great place to go to escape the bustling city atmosphere is Hampstead Heath. Situated to the north of the city, this beautiful park features wide open spaces and an abundance of wildlife and is perfect for an inner city retreat.
Where to Eat
The Dollar Burger Bar serves up great American style hamburgers for very affordable prices. Choose from an extensive range of fillings and sides to go with your delicious 100% beef burger.
Owing to its large Indian community, London is home to some great curry houses. Head to Brick Lane where you can eat curry to your heart’s delight. Aladin is particularly good, and has been hailed by the BBC as “One of the world’s best curry houses.”
There’s nothing better than a bit of top notch English pub grub. For a great Sunday Roast, head to The Peasant on St John Street, an atmospheric traditional English pub serving great food.
London has a variety of different food markets to boast about and a particularly good one is Borough. Get there early on a Friday or Saturday morning and you can pick from a terrific range of fresh meats, cheeses, vegetable dishes, cakes and chocolates. Food can be bought and taken away to cook at home or can be prepared right in front of your eyes.
For a really classy choice, head to Sake No Hana on St James Street. Serving exquisite sushi in a very stylish ambience, visitors eat as though they were in Japan, sitting shoeless on the floor round the table.
When to Visit
To experience the best weather London has to offer, visit in the summer months from May – September, though this is the peak tourism period, so expect prices to be slightly higher.