The HOHO River Thames cruise is good for 24 hours, and I would probably do this a different day than you are using the bus ticket. We’ve used the London Pass on a number of visits and have written an in-depth London Pass review which you can read to help determine if the London Pass would help you save money or time on your trip. Hi Wendy, Thanks for pinning and so happy to hear you are getting a chance to visit London again next month. Elaine. Our review breaks down the features, ways to purchase, the transport option, how to calculate your cost savings, and more. Here are a few suggestions across budgets (lowest to highest): If you have less than 3 days in London, we have also written a suggested guide to spending 1 day in London as well as a 2 day London itinerary. Unless you arrived by car or are planning to drive in the UK after your visit to London, we don’t really recommend having a car in central London as it can be a headache with the traffic, lack of parking, high overnight parking rates, and congestion charges. Thanks Hugh, thanks for taking the time to comment and wishing you a great trip to London! Hi Rio, Glad you enjoyed our London itinerary and hopefully you get a chance to visit some more attractions on your next trip. Or can they be used outside of the 3 days? Other department stores in this area are Harvey Nichols and the more traditional Peter Jones. It is a Victorian bascule and suspension bridge built between 1886 and 1894, and is very photogenic with its iconic bridge towers. But you will see it from as soon as you step off the bus into Parliament Square. My son is studying abroad in Bologna and will be meeting us in London for the weekend. Here you’ll find more information about how to manage your pension if you’re already a Royal London customer. Tours include visits to the Westminster Hall, St. Stephens Hall, Commons Chamber, and the Lords Chamber. All are centrally located and within a 10 minute walk of a HOHO bus stop – all work well with the itinerary and will minimize the amount of public transport (or taxis) you’ll need to take. My husband lived in central London for a few years, and only went to a few of the major tourist attractions while he was there. 6. This post may contain affiliate links. Otherwise, you can purchase it at the Heathrow airport Information Center, but the lines here can sometimes be a bit long. I have watched The Wicked, Lion King, Phantom of the Opera and the Les Miserables at my hometown. I would look at how much time you have from arrival to when you need to depart London for Gatwick airport. Victoria was born at Kensington Palace and it was here that she learned that she was queen. London is one of my favorite travel destinations. What would you recommend doing that day? Being a subscriber also makes you eligible to enter our monthly travel and photography giveaways! Yes, it is nice a nice area of London to wander around and there is a lot to do and see while still being fairly relaxing with lots of green spaces and free museums. Thanks for all of the ideas and details – pinning this one for later! If you don’t have a London Pass I would recommend purchasing your ticket in advance here and if you do have a London Pass, I’d recommend arriving near opening time. I think our suggested 3 Day itinerary will work for you since you essentially have 3 full days with one day going to Highclere Castle. Tickets are generally released each week and can be booked up to 2 weeks in advance. London First has been working with its membership over the past two years to influence and shape the plan. This popular square is surrounded by famous buildings, including Westminster Abbey, St. Margaret’s Church, the UK Supreme Court, and the Palace of Westminster. Note, the palace currently has a very popular Princess Diana fashion exhibition (entry is included with the palace ticket but expect additional lines for this exhibition). Planning a trip to London? As it will be the afternoon, we’re trying things not included in the London Pass. Trafalgar Square is one of the most popular public squares in London and is home to Nelson’s Column (a monument to Admiral Horatio Nelson) and London’s famous stone lion statues. Harrod’s is one of the most famous luxury department stores in the world. If this is your first visit, we actually would recommend spending the full 3 days in London as there is so much to see, do, eat, and take in! Should we purchase our Oyster Pass at the airport? Thanks in advance, Ken. I could use one. Please advise which 3 stars hotel should I stay which is close to the HOHO bus so we can save transport cost. London has every type of accommodation option that you can imagine, from inexpensive hostels to self-catering apartments to 5-star luxury hotels. It is also nice for sunset views and is open late. Hope that helps and wishing you a great trip to London, Paris, & Amsterdam! For all attractions with an entrance fee, we’ve noted there is an entry fee by writing “(fee)” next to them. hi Jessica But yes for those wanting to take a Thames river cruise, to any destination, the Tower of London is a great place to do it as the boat stops just a short walk from the Tower. This tree is a cross between two sycamore species: Platanus occidentalis (American sycamore) and Platanus orientalis (Oriental plane). From The Shard. I wonder what I would think of Stonehenge, but hey, why not? I’ll try to incorporate public transportation into our plans. There is a café located within the park if you need a tea or coffee break or a light lunch. Once a week, The Victoria & Albert Museum also serves a formal Victorian afternoon tea that recreates the afternoon tea experience of Queen Victoria, and for this one you do need to book in advance. Hi Cindy, Yes, I think getting the Oyster Card at the airport make sense and then you can start using it right away. With 2 younger kids and a group of 6 people, it is going to take you longer and you’ll need more breaks. Good views both during the day and the evening. Around sunset is a nice time to do this ride. For tips on using the public transit in London, you can read thisLondon public transport guide. Grocery stores, Marks & Spencer, Greggs, Pret a Manger, fast food, etc. For your time in London, I’d recommend the Oyster Card if you are looking for a transport card. Where did you purchase them? The Changing of the Queen’s Guard ceremony takes place on most days at the forecourt of Buckingham Palace around 11am, and lasts about 45 minutes. If you like the itinerary and you only have 2 days, I would just do Day 1 and Day 2 of the itinerary as that covers most of the central highlights of London. 3 days of London Pass validity? How helpful was this page? Read the current London Plan in its entirety. Guided tours of the main sections of the Abbey are also possible for a small extra fee (currently £5/person), check at arrival or on the Abbey website for tour times. Today we recommend exploring the City of London. It is your last night in London so plan something you’ll enjoy and remember. We are also keen in the following: Is it possible to squeeze into the above? The dome of the cathedral is a recognizable feature of the London skyline and the church has long been seen as a symbol of the spirit of the British people, especially during World War II. Is it for sale there? Most things are not time specific except for things like the Changing of the Guard so you will want to take that into account when planning our your days. If you are driving to London, I’d park your car when you arrive in the city and then use public transport to get around the city. If you still have time and stamina you might want to continue on across the Westminster Bridge to where you’ll find several attractions located along the Thames, including the London Dungeon and the London Eye. The London Pass allows you to be flexible as it sounds like you don’t want to pre-purchase your tickets for attractions in advance? Is it worth getting the London Pass or would it be better to pay as we go in case our wants exceed our endurance. Fund information. We are going to be in London 2 days prior to a Princess Cruise around the British isles. Is this too late to start with the day 1 itinerary? Would like your suggestion of how best to make the most of 2 these days. We arrive Heathrow, June 4 @ 6:45am and will be staying 2 nights 6/4 & 6/5) at the Grange Tower Bridge Hotel. We really like the London laminated Streetwise map (it also includes a central Underground Tube map), but you can also probably find a free paper map at your hotel or at a visitor center. We are staying a total of 6 days in London and 3 in Edinburgh- London 4 days, Edinburgh 3 days and London 2 days. You can check the latest prices and purchase the London Pass at the official website for the pass here. Since you will have a later start, you won’t be able to go inside too many places, so prioritize any of the sites you want to visit the interiors, but there is lots to see by just following the walking tour. Your 3-day itinerary gave me the idea to add London to our trip to Italy this fall. Piccadilly Circus doesn’t have any clowns, but it is a famous circular road junction well-known for its neon signs and advertising. Yes, it is very easy to get around London using public transportation and you can check out this guide to London public transit for some more information and tips. Best, Jessica. We did a ton of walking and feel like we packed so much in. If you are flexible about the performance you see, a good way to save money is to check in at the TKTS booth in Leicester Square which offers half-price and discounted theatre tickets or you can go directly to a theatre’s box office on the day for cheap standby tickets and returns. Existing customers Existing customers ... Get help and support to change your details, make a claim, complain to us or find a lost Royal London plan or policy. But New Year’s Day shouldn’t be too bad as most people in the UK are off work and sleeping in as it’s a public holiday. As noted before, there are several locations you can purchase the regular Oyster Card at Gatwick. If you only have 3 days in London you certainly won’t need to leave the city for want of things to do. Note, this is not the current version of the plan. If I were to go back, I’d love the side trips. The London Pass will definitely save you money on your time in London if you do all the above. Thanks for letting us know! Other non-shopping options is to book a day tour to some place like Stonehenge, Stratford-upon-Avon, Kent, Cambridge, the Cotswolds, etc. It may also make sense for a group of this size to split into 2 if there are differences in interests (e.g., one wants to spend the day in museums and one wants to go shopping). London is home to some really classic luxury hotels like The Ritz, The Dorchester, Brown’s, and The Savoy, but it also has a number of mid-range and budget friendly chains like Holiday Inn Express, Travelodge, Best Western, Premier Inn, and Ibis. In the summer boating is popular and you can rent a rowing or pedal boat to enjoy the Serpentine Lake or you can take a ride on the solar-powered Solarshuttle. London has great Indian food! I’m not an expert on good fish n chips, but I would just do a search online depending on where you are and you’ll find lots of recommendations. Subscribe to our monthly newsletter. London is one of the world’s largest and most exciting cities, offering visitors thousands of things to do, including museums, royal palaces, beautiful parks, historical sites, and world-class theatre. This area was named “Londinium” by the Romans and you’ll find an interesting mix of the city’s oldest landmarks and most modern buildings here. You can see schedule here. UK residents can contact their local MP or a Member of the House of Lords to arrange a free tour. Both are included with your London Pass if you have extra time that day. Working drawings for the Royal Institute of British Architects, 66 Portland Place, London: plan of existing stairs on 4th floor and cross section A-A through stairs from existing 4th floor up to new 5th and 6th floors. A number of top London attractions and landmarks can be found here including HMS Belfast, the Tate Modern, The Shard, Southwark Cathedral, the Imperial War Museum, and Borough Market. For the above reasons, and to avoid the crowd, we are actually considering the option of taking a day trip to Bicester Village on New Year’s eve for some shopping. Next to London Bridge is the The London Bridge Experience (fee*) which tells the darker history of the London Bridge over time through the use of interactive exhibits and theater and is geared towards families and young adults that don’t mind a bit of a scare. If you are more into antiques, you’ll want to head to Church Street where you’ll find a number of antique stores like Andrew Nebbett Antiques and Designs, Alfie’s Antique Market, The FM Gallery, and Church Street Antiques. I miss it so much , Hi Katherine, I hope you get a chance to get back to London soon Laurence also used to live in London but saw very few tourist attractions while in London so he enjoys returning with me and seeing all the museums, historical attractions, etc. We woud like to see Buckingham Palace, Changing of the Guard, the Mews, Kensington Palce, Tower of London, Windsor Castle, Westminster Abbey, Parliment Houses, Harrods and Portobella Markets and a cruise on the Thames. View the technical and research reports that we used to prepare the current London Plan. This itinerary is amazing. You can see more about this here. Then you can just add data to it as required, and they come with unlimited texts and minutes. What days’ itinerary would you suggest for Friday, Saturday and Sunday. Given time, you probably only have time to admire them today, but both do have associated attractions if you want to visit them. If you are wanting to go to a West End theater performance, you can book tickets in advance online before your trip (recommended if there is a specific performance you want to see) or try to find a deal once you are in London if you are flexible in what you see. The Shard also has several other restaurants and bars, reservations recommended or required for meals. DAY 4 – 1) St. Paul’s Cathedral, 2) Tower of London, 3) Tower Bridge, 4) Shakespeare’s Globe Theatre, 5) Borough Market, 6) View Check out our article on visiting Blenheim Palace and the Cotswolds, as it goes over the various options in how to get to Oxford and the Cotswolds from London (car, train, bus, guided tour, self drive). Another way to enjoy the view is to head to the GŎNG Bar on Floor 21, and while not as high as the viewing platform, still offers sweeping views of the city for the price of a cocktail. You can read all about that in our Stonehenge day trip post. Fittingly, outside of Kensington Palace is a large marble statue of Queen Victoria, designed by her daughter Princess Louise, that depicts her at the age of 18 in her coronation robes. The Tower of London and other iconic sights were faves as well. Yes, I would probably leave yourself 3 hours for everything just to be on the safe side for everything as it is hard to predict time it takes for security etc. Kensington Palace (fee*) is a grand 17th century home that was first used as a royal residence by King William II and Queen Mary II. It was rebuilt by Christopher Wren in the English Baroque style, but a church dedicated to St. Paul has been on this site since the 7th century! Hi Jessica, thank you for your quick reply. 0333 800 1010 info@planningguide.co.uk Great news, most customers who took out a pension plan with Royal London since 2004 - or previously with Scottish Life - can use our online service. It’s difficult to cram so much in a short time. One thing I did that was not on your itinerary was take the Thames Clipper (you can use your Oyster card) from the Tower of London to Greenwich. Grab sandwiches and snacks from places like Boots or Marks & Spencers during the day – most UK grocery stores and convenience stores offer grab-and-go meals deals around £10 which include sandwich or pasta, side or snack, and drink. It is only intended to deal with things of strategic importance to Greater London. You can book ahead but they also take walk-ins at the bar. Very well organized, the information is fantastic. Find out more about the Minor Alterations to the London Plan 2015-16 (MALPs). Also if you can help me out or give me some suggestions. all have affordable snacks. Here is a guide to getting online while traveling that might be helpful. I am not sure about mobile WiFi hotspots, but you can certainly rent them if you need to. Hopefully most will fall within the main highlights (Tower of London, Buckingham Place, etc.) We’re going to start off our itinerary at Parliament Square which is a well known public square in Westminster that is easy to get to via public transport and is a stop on all the main sightseeing buses as well. You can then walk to St. Paul’s (about 15 minutes) or take the Underground from The Monument stop to the St. Paul’s Cathedral stop. But if theater and musicals are not your thing, there are a number of nighttime performances in London every day, from rock concerts to opera to films to comedy shows. DAY 3 – 1) Sky Garden, 2) Imperial War Museum, 3) Westminister Abbey, 4) Churchill War Rooms, 5) Thames River Boat Cruise Here gomy questions. We’ve visited the War Rooms twice, once with a guide and once without and found it interesting both times. The London Dungeon (fee) is a popular interactive walkthrough attraction that uses costumed actors, special effects, and rides to share some of London’s darker and more gory history and provide some laughs and screams along the way. Help with online service. We’d recommend getting on a train to Windsor at least 3 hours before closing time (it varies by season so check the website) to ensure you have enough time to visit. Roman baths) you could probably do it without a car if you wanted and rely on public buses and day tours. We’d recommend allowing 1 hour to travel to the castle and at least 2 hours for the visit. If not, would it better if I just buy a standard Oyster Card at Gatwick airport’s concierge counter upon arrival? However the London Pass is not a good fit for all travelers, and if you are not sure if it is a good fit or not, read our full review of the London Pass to help you decide if it is worth it. Hi Jessica, I think this was my post to you from January. So convenient, and it’s so nice to be able to visit as many locations as you wish without any limits, unlike Nashville. If you are heading off to Windsor Castle this afternoon, you may not have time go inside and can just admire it from the outside. Jessica, Thanks for this awesome article! We love Christmas! Also send me the latest blog posts by e-mail, Independent Travel Cats Monthly Newsletter, Logos, images, and content all protected by copyright. Hope that helps, and let us know if you have any specific questions as you continue planning your trip to London! The London Mithraeum, also known as the Temple of Mithras, Walbrook, is a Roman mithraeum that was discovered in Walbrook, a street in the City of London, during a building's construction in 1954.The entire site was relocated to permit continued construction and this temple of the mystery god Mithras became perhaps the most famous 20th-century Roman discovery in London I am having a hard time deciding on how to plan out our days. Th next day we will try to see a lot!! The more you plan ahead, the more you’ll be able to see. Picadelly Circus, Day 2 (we start the London Pass) It will apply to purpose-built blocks of flats rather than individual houses, a ministry official said. If you want a spot to watch part of the Changing of the Guard with fewer people, you might consider watching from in front of Friary Court in front of St. James Palace (the Old Guard normally lines up and starts here). Given the number of places you want to see, I would suggest that you’d probably save money with a 3 day London Pass. We are coming from Canada. If you have any specific questions about how to modify the itinerary, let me know! Stonehenge is far from London so you cannot use your Oyster Card or take the Tube. If we make it to he museum well, if not we will just take time to walk around and enjoy the evening by Picadelly Circus. The 2008 London Plan, consolidated with alteration since 2004. Feel free to share any highlights from your own trip or tips for future readers visiting London as I know a lot of other visitors only have a few days to explore. My friend and I are going to London Sept 14-18. We are both in our 60’s. Although I didn’t have a very good impression of London on my first day there, it was raining, windy, and there was tons of some sort of debris in the air that kept blowing into our faces. This includes the castle’s magnificent State Rooms which were mostly designed and built in the 19th century. So if you find yourself with spare cash, you could add it to your plan. The draft Environment Strategy also offers some interesting previews of the content of the new London Plan, including the intention to introduce ‘the Agent of Change principle […] through the new London Plan and puts the noise mitigation requirement onto the person or business responsible for making the change rather than penalising existing businesses’ (Policy 9.2.2a – box 35 ES). But if you want a more luxurious experience, you’ll want to make a reservation in advance. The best one I’ve seen while researching my London trip next week. Wishing you a wonderful trip to London! ... Information for guests looking to book tickets and those with existing tickets. Or you can instead use this day to visit sites of interest to you that didn’t make it into our 3 day itinerary, such as the British Museum (free), Kew Gardens (fee*), the London Zoo (fee*) or a tour of the FC Chelsea stadium (fee*). As a native Brit I only visited the Tower of London last year and still have yet to visit The Churchill War Rooms (it was closed the last time I was there). Many attractions are closed certain days (Westminster Abbey closes on Sunday) so I would just plan as you would any other trip. I enjoyed walking around Greenwich, visiting the market and a pub there, and of course see the Royal Observatory and standing on the Prime Meridian! It’s a beautiful green space and we recommend a little wander if the weather is nice. Note that the castle can get very busy, especially in the summer months. I would expect that London will be busier than usual that weekend as many people, locals and tourists, will be enjoying a long weekend in the city. I’d book your train ticket in advance to Bath to save money and also ensure a seat reservation. The reconstruction of The Globe was the dream project of American actor/director Sam Wanamaker. Indulge in a particular passion or just enjoy a leisurely day of shopping or pub hopping. Great help. We are in London from 4/19-4/23 but are going on a day trip to Highclere Castle on 4/22. Free audioguides are provided to London Pass holders at the National Gallery. Then after your visit you can see how much time you have left. It turned out to be one of the best trips I’ve ever taken! The palace is not open to the public in March but you can visit the next door Queen’s Gallery (royal art gallery) and the Royal Mews (royal carriages). I would call in advance just to double check their times and what they have available if you need to purchase something there and you can find all the phone details here: https://www.gatwickairport.com/at-the-airport/shopping-eating/shops/airport-concierge/. Let me know if you have questions as you put together your itinerary. Glad you finding our London itinerary helpful in planning your upcoming trip. Some temporary exhibitions are also free but there is generally a fee to enter the major ones. I read up online and it seems that the train play (can’t remember the name) has finished? Tours must be booked in advance. 2. So I’d definitely pop in for a visit if you have a London Pass, but may not be worth it for others, especially if you have already visited the London Eye and/or Sky Garden which both also offer good city views. The Tower of London (fee*) was first built by William the Conqueror in 1078 as a royal castle and defense tower. You can buy the London Pass at Gatwick Airport at the travel concierge and reservations desks. As far as I know there are not sales on the Oyster Card as it is a transport pass. Since it sounds like you have about 3 full days, I’d just modify the 3 day London itinerary into how it fits your time in London and interests. Hope that helps, and wishing you a great trip to London & Paris! Also went to a couple other museums can’t remember names of! Coronavirus latest: What you need to know about London's Tier 3 restrictions. We've also got a mobile app once you've registered. For the discounts with the Visitor Oyster Card, you can see them here. Want to keep up to date with us and our latest travel tips? Each GPO exchange had its own three-digit code, so that a 387- number was in the Euston area. The pass covers free entry to over 60 attractions and museums, plus a number of discounts on tours, restaurants, souvenirs, and theater tickets. It continued to be used as a royal residence by a British monarch through the reign of King George II. Also a few to consider in nearby Mayfair (west of Hyde Park) are The Ritz, The Dorchester, and Claridge’s. 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