There is so much to do in London. But if your only here for a long weekend or an extended layover, here are the best things to do in 72 hours.
Day 1 – From the Air
Day 1 – From the Map
1) The London Eye
Starting the day off at one of my favourite attractions is The London Eye. The London Eye is a giant Ferris wheel on the south bank of the River Thames (South side of the river in Waterloo between Waterloo and Westminster Bridges). The London Eye is not for those who don’t like heights at 443 feet tall it gives great views of London. The Ferris wheel takes about 30 minutes to complete the rotation.
Tip: Book before your trip to save money.
There are lost of different packages available and great saving to be had if booking tickets for other attractions. Prices Start at £22.00 per adult. Click here for more information.
2) Westminster Abbey
A short 5-10 minute walk across Westminster Bridge and will take you to the 2nd and 3rd stops of the day. Westminster Abbey’s website states “ Westminster Abbey is one of the world’s great churches, with a history stretching back over a thousand years and an essential part of any trip to London.”
But most people want to see it as it is where Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip of Greece were married, as were Prince Charles and Princess Diana of Wales and most recent the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge Prince William and Katherine Middleton.
Queen Elizabeth II also had her coronation at Westminster Abbey.
Fact: Since the coronation of William the Conqueror in 1066, all coronations of English and British monarchs have been held in Westminster Abbey.
3) Big Ben & the Houses of Parliament
A short walk across the road will bring you to Big Ben & the Houses of Parliament. Big Ben is known the iconic clock tower attached to The Palace of Westminster aka The Houses of Parliament. The Clock Tower was renamed The Elizabeth Tower in 2012 to celebrate the Queens Silver Jubilee. Big Ben is the name of the bell in the Elizabeth Tower.
The Palace of Westminster is the meeting place of the House of Commons and the House of Lords.
4) Downing Street
A short walk up Whitehall may take you past some demonstrations and also Downing Street. Downing street is the official residences of The Prime Minister at 10 Downing Street and The Chancellor of the Exchequer at Number 11.
Tip: It’s a great photo opportunity to take a photo with some armed police, but don’t expect to see the Prime minister.
5) Horse Guards Parade
A short walk up further up Whitehall and you will reach Horse Guards Parade. Horse Guards Parade is a large parade ground off Whitehall in central London. It is well-known for the Changing the Life Guard and the Four ‘O’ Clock Parade.
Changing the Life Guard, takes place daily at 11:00 weekdays and 10:00 on Sundays. Check here for more details and to confirm times and dates as they do vary.
The Four ‘O’ Clock Parade, also known as the Dismounting Ceremony takes place at 16:00 hours in the courtyard within the Horse Guards building.
The Queen’s Life Guard is normally provided by men of the Household Cavalry Mounted Regiment which consists of a Squadron of The Life Guards, who wear red tunics and white plumed helmets, and a Squadron of The Blues and Royals with blue tunics and red plumed helmets.
Tip: Great opportunity to take a picture with a royal guard on a horse.
6) Trafalgar Square
Take a short walk up Whitehall to Trafalgar Square. Here you will find Nelson Column, the fountains, the Lions, 4 Plinths and the National Gallery and National Portrait Gallery. Here you can spend a few minutes taking pictures or a few hours in the Galleries. It’s totally up to you.
By now you must be starving, so have a break for lunch. In London you have so much choice of food I would suggest eating somewhere close by in the strand or Covent Garden.
7) Covent Garden
From Trafalgar Square take walk up the strand or through the side streets to Covent Garden.
Covent Garden is famous for its piazza and cobbled square, the area is great for shopping and food. So spend a few hours taking it all in.
Then have a pre-theatre dinner in one of the many restaurants.
8) Theatre Land
In the areas local to Covent Garden are Shaftesbury Avenue, Dury Lane and the Strand, also known as theatre land. London has many award-winning shows, with loads to choose from, you would be mad not to.
Tip: Pre book tickets for great savings.
I love London, which means I’m very lucky as it is my home town (well city). I hope you liked Day 1 in London and check back here next week for Day 2.