Are you planning a short city break in London? Here are some tips and tricks how to make the most out of your stay here. You need a well-organized plan in order to be able to see as much as possible for only 2 days. Let’s start!
- Day 1: Westminster, Big Ben, Houses of Parliament, London Eye, Thames river cruise, Tower of London, St. Paul’s Cathedral, Trafalgar Square, Piccadilly Circus
- Day 2: Green Park, Buckingham Palace, Westminster Abbey, Hyde Park, Kensington Palace, Harrods
No matter in which area of London you decide to stay, make sure that you have convenient transport connections to the city centre. When it comes to just a few days stay in big city like London, you don’t want to waste your time travelling for hours.
My best advice is to make your way to Westminster station first. As it is a big station, take the exit leading to Big Ben, which will be the first magnificent view in front of you. Only passing through the station you could hear the overwhelming excitement of many tourists who are exiting the station and see for the first time the giant clock tower, symbol of London for so many years. After admiring the beauty of Big Ben, turn left and walk over Westminster Bridge. Take a moment to stop in the middle of the bridge and to look around, what a breathtaking moment. On the one side you will still see Big Ben, next to it proudly stand the Houses of Parliament. On the other side you will find the London Eye. That is the perfect opportunity for a few photos.
If you are not afraid of heights, make sure you get to the London Eye for a spectacular panorama view of entire London. The whole round takes approximately 20 minutes. To avoid the queue, you could purchase fast track tickets. After that, head to the pier, from where you could take a really nice boat ride all the way to the Tower of London, which is our next stop. Tower of London is a historic Castle, home of the Crown Jewellery. Inside you can spend around 2 hours. Just next to it, you will see the famous Tower Bridge. The bridge that opens, so the ships can sail through. If you are lucky, you might be able to see that, they announce the dates and times when it is happening in advance.
Take the underground and make your way to St Paul’s. Such an unbelievable work of art. My advice is go inside, the cathedral is massive and again there is a spectacular view from the top. There are some nice restaurants near St Paul’s, where you can enjoy a traditional lunch.
After that you can take a bus to Trafalgar Square. Its name marks the Battle of Trafalgar, victory for Britain in the Napoleonic Wars over France and Spain back in 1805. The place nowadays is famous for the National Portrait Gallery located there and also is arena for art and music performances. From there you can have a short walk to another very famous place – Piccadilly Circus. The place that we see on many photos, advertisements and even movies. This is the Theatre-district square with giant neon signs.
After a long day like that I am sure you would enjoy a delightful dinner in Soho area, located near Piccadilly Circus.
Take an underground train to Green Park Station, which is the nearest to Buckingham Palace. You cannot miss the palace, which is the most visited place in London and the home of the Queen. Buckingham Palace is open only 3 month in summer, so if you are visiting during the rest of the year, you will not be able to go inside. Make sure you get there by 11 am to see the changing of the guard.
10 minutes’ walk from the palace will take you to Westminster Abbey. Go inside for a glimpse of absolute architecture perfection. Let me remind you that a lot of royal weddings happened exactly there.
With that kick off start of the day you will need something delicious to keep you on track. This is the time to try the famous British fish and chips, which you can find in all of the small restaurants and pubs near the Abbey. Enjoy the afternoon in the most popular park in London, Hyde Park. Walk through the many alleys and beautifully arranged gardens. You can take a boat ride all the way to Kensington Palace, another royal palace, which used to be home of Lady Diana. Currently there is an exhibition of her dresses there. The palace has beautiful gardens and a very nice café, ideal for afternoon tea.
In the late afternoon you could walk from Kensington Palace to Harrods. The most expensive shopping centre in London. Many people go there just to have a look at the latest collections of famous brands like Prada, Gucci, Versace and many more.
With all that said, I think you already got the taste of Britain, from history and architecture to traditional food and tea. Welcome back for much more. Trust me, London is a place that you could never get enough of exploring.