Of all of the world’s major cities, London must be singled out for providing an unforgettable experience. The British capital is awash with history, culture and great shopping, and it also has some wonderful large green spaces in which to lose yourself and of course lots of sightseeing opportunities. We would suggest you head for central London, even if you choose to stay nearer the outskirts, as it is where everything is based, including the seat of power at Westminster and of course Buckingham Palace, the main official residence of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II. In this short article we will explore some of the more alternative things to do and places to go in the city, and describe some of the best things that you should really consider doing on your trip to London.
If you are looking for a unique shopping experience, and a fashionable one at that, you should look no further than Liberty’s, with its mock tudor exterior, its galleries and maze of rooms. Liberty has been at the heart of the fashion community for decades and only sells items that come from the centre of current fashion. It is highly eclectic and a real trend setter. This is certainly a place to be seen!
From the mock tudor of Liberty to the Tudor origins of the Globe, the home of Shakespearean theatre. You can pick up a ticket (standing room only) for just £5 and be part of the 700 standing attendees able to watch glorious theatre. England is known for Shakespeare. He invented many of the words and phrases of the current language, and this experience will be unforgettable.
Between Leicester Square and Shaftesbury Avenue you can find London’s very own ‘Chinatown’, which is packed with restaurants and all kinds of shops to do with Asian cuisine and culture. It is awash with colour and amazing smells and for a few minutes you could kid yourself that you are in Asia rather than Europe. Of particular note is the Four Seasons on Wardour Street, which is open until 4am every morning.
If you are into art then you must visit the Tate galleries. For there are two: Tate Britain and Tate Modern. Luckily, there is a boat that runs between the two, making it easy to see both Picasso and Constable in the same day. It runs every forty minutes, every day of the year. There are usually guest exhibitions which are well worth seeing, as well as the usual exhibitions.
In the heart of Bloomsbury is the British Museum which is full of intriguing specimens, including a ‘merman’, supposedly caught in Japan in the eighteenth century (of course in reality it is a fake, with the head and body of a monkey and the fish of a tail), and a treasure trove of items from Egypt. A good deal of British history is of course connected to the Empire and so it is not unusual to see items from around the world, cast as British through association.
Every weekend behind the Royal Festival Hall the most amazing mix of stalls descends to form the Southbank Centre Food Market. From Korean to Chilean, Italian to Mexican, you will find it here. Delicious and inexpensive.
Additionally, there are the famous sights to get around. On your trip, among others you should see: The Palace of Westminster, Buckingham Palace, The Tower of London, Tower Bridge, City Hall, The London Eye, The BT Tower, St James’s Palace, Horse Guards Parade, Nelson’s Column, Piccadilly Circus, Harrods, the Ritz and, if you can, Greenwich Naval College.
Have an amazing trip to London and we hope that these suggestions will come in handy.