We are all in the post-Christmas lull where it feels like it is the longest month. The days are short and the nights are cold, with many of us looking to plan some time away later in the year and find the sunshine and peace.
If you are looking for something fun to do in the UK though in the first few months of the year, how about a day out in London? With so much to see and do, it is clear to see why it is hugely popular with families and adults alike.
There is so much to do, it may be a little hard to narrow down a day there. If you are looking to attend something a little different such as a comedy show or even a festival, Skiddle has a great selection of London events to pick from. It is a great place to book something to do in the evening after a day exploring all that London has to offer.
For those who want to do more of the tourist trips, here are our top 5 picks of things to do in London.
Explore the British Museum
Visit one of the world’s largest and most comprehensive museums, housing over 8 million artifacts from ancient civilizations to modern art. Marvel at iconic pieces like the Rosetta Stone and the Elgin Marbles.
The museum’s charter declares that it should be open free of charge to all those curious people who are interested in learning more. So, come spend a day wandering through the eternal, labyrinthine corridors, exploring and discovering some of the greatest works of mankind’s cultural accomplishments, and some take in some of the greatest relics of the Egyptian and Greek empires.
Take a stroll in Hyde Park
This iconic green space in the heart of London offers a peaceful escape from the bustling city. Enjoy leisurely walks, rent a paddleboat on the Serpentine Lake, or visit the beautiful Kensington Palace and Gardens nearby.
Visit the Tower of London
Discover the rich history behind this medieval fortress. Take a guided tour to learn about the famous Crown Jewels, explore the White Tower, and hear stories about the tower’s use as a prison and execution site.
There are several compelling reasons to visit the Tower of London:
- Rich History: The Tower of London is an iconic landmark that has stood for almost a thousand years. It holds a significant place in British history, having served as a royal palace, prison, armory, and treasury. Exploring the tower allows you to immerse yourself in the stories and events that have shaped the country’s past.
- Crown Jewels: The Tower of London is home to the spectacular Crown Jewels of the British monarchy. This collection includes crowns, scepters, orbs, and other precious items used in royal ceremonies. Visitors can admire these glittering treasures and learn about their historical significance.
- Architecture and Views: The tower boasts impressive medieval architecture, including the iconic White Tower. Visitors can marvel at its grandeur and explore its various chambers and exhibits. Additionally, the tower offers breathtaking views of the surrounding cityscape, providing a unique perspective of London.
- Yeoman Warder Tours: Known as Beefeaters, the Yeoman Warders are iconic figures at the Tower of London. They conduct tours throughout the day, sharing fascinating stories, historical anecdotes, and legends associated with the tower. These tours provide an entertaining and informative experience for visitors of all ages.
- Ravens and Ceremony: The tower is also home to a group of ravens, which are known as the guardians of the Tower. According to a legend, if the ravens leave, the Tower and the monarchy will fall. Witnessing the daily Ceremony of the Keys, where the tower is locked and secure for the night, allows visitors to witness this historical ritual firsthand.
By visiting the Tower of London, you can delve into the fascinating history, marvel at the crown jewels, engage with friendly guides, and experience the unique rituals that make it a must-visit attraction
Experience the bustling markets
London is known for its vibrant markets offering a wide variety of goods and bustling atmospheres. Here are some of the best markets to explore in the city:
- Borough Market: Located near London Bridge, Borough Market is one of the oldest and most renowned markets in London. It is known for its wide selection of fresh produce, artisanal food, baked goods, and international cuisine. The bustling atmosphere, delicious aromas, and sample tastings make it a top destination for food lovers.
- Camden Market: Situated in the trendy Camden Town, Camden Market is a treasure trove of alternative fashion, vintage clothing, handmade crafts, and unique artwork. This market attracts a diverse crowd and is famous for its quirky finds, street food stalls, and live music performances.
- Portobello Road Market: Located in the vibrant Notting Hill area, Portobello Road Market is famous for its antiques and vintage items. This market stretches over two miles and offers a delightful mix of stalls selling clothes, accessories, books, and fresh produce. On Saturdays, the antiques market is particularly popular, attracting collectors and bargain hunters alike.
- Columbia Road Flower Market: If you have a love for flowers and plants, Columbia Road Flower Market is a must-visit. Open on Sundays, this market is lined with beautiful and fragrant blooms, potted plants, and gardening accessories. The colourful atmosphere, friendly vendors, and street musicians make it a joyful and Instagram-worthy experience.
- Brick Lane Market: Set in the vibrant East End, Brick Lane Market is a multicultural hub offering a fusion of cultures, cuisines, and vintage finds. It comprises various markets, including the Sunday UpMarket, which features art, crafts, fashion, and street food. Additionally, the area is known for its curry houses and street art.
These are just a few examples of the vibrant and diverse markets to explore in London. Each market has its own unique charm, and visiting them provides an opportunity to immerse yourself in the city’s culture, discover hidden gems, and experience the lively atmosphere.
Enjoy the view from the London Eye
Take a ride on the iconic Ferris wheel on the South Bank of the River Thames. From the top, you’ll enjoy breathtaking panoramic views of the city, including landmarks like Big Ben, the Houses of Parliament, and St. Paul’s Cathedral.
Drawing nearly four million visitors each year, the London Eye has become one of the most popular sightseeing attractions in the world today. This gigantic wheel stands almost 135 meters over the entire city of London and is presently considered to be one of the tallest observation wheels in the world.
This wondrous creation of modern engineering permits tourists to view all of London with an entirely new perspective, allowing them to see parts of the city that are generally not visible from the ground. Visiting the London Eye has been described as an ‘enchanting and inspiring experience’ and no vacation to London is complete without visiting this monument.
Remember to check the opening hours and any necessary reservations or tickets before visiting any of these attractions.
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