Explore the vibrant city of London in 2024 and uncover the “Top 10 Things to Do in London.” Immerse yourself in the rich history and contemporary charm that the city has to offer. Marvel at iconic landmarks such as Buckingham Palace and the Tower of London, indulge in culinary delights at renowned eateries, appreciate world-class galleries, and take leisurely strolls through charming neighborhoods. There’s so much to discover and experience in this incredible city!
1) Tower of London
A UNESCO World Heritage Site, the Tower of London provides visitors and history buffs with an unparalleled tour of England’s rich past, spanning from the Norman conquest to the present day.
- The Tower of London’s White Tower dates back to the 11th century, making it the oldest section of the fortress.
- The Crown Jewels hold the title for the most precious collection of jewels worldwide.
- The princes in the tower were allegedly murdered at the Bloody Tower.
- Once the residence of English monarchs, the Medieval Palace holds significant historical significance.
- Tower Green witnessed the execution of numerous notable individuals, such as Anne Boleyn and Catherine Howard.
Here are some hotels near the Tower of London:
- ibis budget London Hounslow
- Premier Inn London Hendon (The Hyde)
- Park Grand London Heathrow
- Best Western London Highbury
Explore the Tower of London for three hours, wear comfortable shoes, enjoy cafes and restaurants, take a free guided tour, and consider a Tower of London Annual Pass for multiple visits.
2) London’s Finest
London, known for its rich history and impeccable service, is renowned for its exceptional afternoon tea experience, making it a must-visit destination for British culture.
- Claridge’s, a historic and elegant establishment, serves a modern take on traditional afternoon tea, complete with finger sandwiches, scones, and delicate pastries.
- The Ritz’s Palm Court provides a luxurious afternoon tea experience with a stunning glass dome, live music, an extensive menu, and impeccable service.
- The Thames Foyer at The Savoy offers a grand atmosphere with a glass-domed atrium, ideal for afternoon tea with classic favorites and modern touches.
Here are some hotels near the London’s Finest:
- Hilton London Kensington
- Ramada London North M1
- Heston Hyde Hotel
- Premier Inn London Wembley Stadium hotel
Afternoon tea in London is popular, so make a reservation in advance. Choose loose-leaf teas wisely and consult the menu. Afternoon tea attire is required in some hotels. Take in the atmosphere, conversation, and overall experience.
3) Buckingham Palace
The Changing of the Guard at Buckingham Palace is a well-known London tradition that draws large crowds from all over the world and provides a glimpse into British history.
Arriving early is recommended if you want to secure a good spot for the popular changing of the guard event. Here are a few popular spots where you can enjoy the ceremony:
- The forecourt of Buckingham Palace offers the closest view, but it tends to get crowded.
- The mall provides ample space to watch the march and soak up the atmosphere.
- St. James’s Park offers a beautiful backdrop and a less crowded environment.
Here are some hotels near the Buckingham Palace:
- DoubleTree by Hilton London
- St. James’ Court, London, A Taj Hotel
- The Rochester by Blue Orchid Hotels
- The Washington Mayfair Hotel
Arrive early, dress comfortably, bring sunscreen and a hat, and be mindful of guards.
4) London Eye
The London Eye, a stunning landmark with panoramic views of the River Thames, is a must-see for any visitor to the city, providing an unforgettable experience.
- Experience London’s stunning cityscape from a unique 135-meter vantage point, marveling at iconic landmarks such as Buckingham Palace, the Houses of Parliament, Big Ben, Tower Bridge, and the River Thames.
- Enjoy a 360° rotation of the observation wheel to see the city from every angle.
- Each capsule is air-conditioned and has interactive touch screens that display fascinating information about the landmarks you see.
- The London Eye is a great activity for people of all ages.
Here are some hotels near the London Eye:
- Park Plaza, County Hall, London
- The Royal Horseguards Hotel
- Strand Palace Hotel
- Club Quarters Hotel Trafalgar Square
Arrive early, dress for windy conditions, charge your phone or camera, listen to audio commentary, and enjoy refreshments at the Lastminute.com London Eye Bar or Champagne Bar for an unforgettable experience.
5) British Museum
The British Museum is a must-see for travelers seeking knowledge and wonder, with a vast collection of artifacts dating back over two million years and representing every corner of the globe, providing a one-of-a-kind opportunity to explore the diverse tapestry of human civilization.
- Experience the mysteries of ancient Egypt with iconic exhibits such as the Rosetta Stone, the Mummy Rooms, and the colossal bust of Ramesses II.
- Witness the splendor of ancient Greece and Rome, with magnificent sculptures such as the Parthenon Marbles and the Temple of Artemis.
- Explore the rich cultures of Mesopotamia and Asia through exhibits highlighting the ancient civilizations of Assyria, Babylonia, and China.
- Explore the diverse cultures of Africa and Oceania through collections of masks, sculptures, and everyday objects.
- This newly opened gallery displays the museum’s collection of scientific instruments and artifacts from the Enlightenment period, providing insights into the age of reason and discovery.
Here are some hotels near the British Museum:
- DoubleTree by Hilton London, West End
- Staunton Hotel
- Grange Clarendon Hotel
- Grange Beauchamp Hotel
The British Museum’s app provides guided tours, interactive maps, and exhibit information. Visitors can take free tours, listen to audio guides, relax in the gardens, or consider purchasing a membership.
6) Houses of Parliament and Big Ben
The Houses of Parliament and Big Ben are iconic British symbols of democracy and history, making a visit to them a must-do on any London trip.
- Witness the oldest part of the complex, which dates back to the 11th century and was the site of historic events such as King Charles I’s trial.
- Admire the ornate hall, which features statues of famous statesmen and intricate mosaics.
- Live debates in the Houses of Commons and Lords allow you to see how British democracy works firsthand. Because public access to debates is limited, check the schedule ahead of time.
- An informative guided tour of the Houses of Parliament will immerse you in their rich history. Tours are available in a variety of languages and provide access to areas that are not normally accessible to the public.
- Climb the Elizabeth Tower (formerly Big Ben) for spectacular views of London (limited availability and age restrictions apply).
- Admire the intricate engineering of one of the world’s most famous timepieces, the Great Clock.
- Hear Big Ben’s iconic chime, which sounds every hour throughout the city.
Here are some hotels near the Houses of Parliament and Big Ben:
- The Sanctuary House Hotel
- The Z Hotel Victoria
- Hub by Premier Inn London Westminster Abbey
Visit the Houses of Parliament app for a virtual tour, attend a parliamentary debate, shop for souvenirs at the Parliament Shop, and take a boat ride on the River Thames for breathtaking views.
7) Hyde Park
Hyde Park, a tranquil oasis in London’s urban landscape, provides visitors with a variety of activities, including a peaceful escape, a leisurely stroll, and a glimpse into the city’s rich history, making it an ideal destination for all.
- Rent a rowboat or pedal boat and glide across the calm waters, taking in the scenery of the surrounding parkland and city skyline.
- Immerse yourself in the formal beauty of the Italian Gardens, which feature vibrant flowerbeds, statues, and a cascading waterfall.
- Witness the long-standing free speech tradition at Speakers’ Corner, where anyone can stand on a soapbox and address the public.
- Pay your respects to the beloved princess at the memorial fountain, which features cascading water and a peaceful atmosphere.
- Smell the enticing fragrance of over 4,000 blooming roses of various varieties and colors.
- Swim in the open-air Serpentine Lido, which is surrounded by deckchairs and sun loungers.
- Admire the ornate Gothic Revival Albert Memorial, a tribute to Queen Victoria’s husband, Prince Albert.
- Explore contemporary art exhibitions and installations at the Serpentine Gallery, which is housed in a one-of-a-kind park pavilion.
Here are some hotels near the Hyde Park:
- The Lanesborough
- The Mandarin Oriental Hyde Park, London
- Smart Hyde Park Inn
Wear comfortable shoes and bring sunscreen, water, and snacks to enjoy Hyde Park. Download the app for maps and take advantage of the free amenities.
8) West End
The West End, London’s iconic theater district, offers a diverse range of shows, from classic plays and musicals to contemporary dramas and experimental productions, attracting audiences from all over the world.
- Iconic productions such as “Les Misérables,” “The Phantom of the Opera,” “The Lion King,” and “Wicked” have captivated audiences for generations.
- Investigate contemporary productions that push boundaries, challenge assumptions, and highlight the talent of emerging artists.
- Be swept away by captivating music, dazzling dance routines, and unforgettable performances in popular musicals such as “Hamilton,” “Mary Poppins,” and “Six.”
- Explore the world of drama. Experience the power of storytelling through poignant plays that explore complex emotions, human relationships, and our current social fabric.
Here are some hotels near the West End:
- The Ritz London
- The Henrietta Hotel
- Z Hotel, Tottenham Court Road
Arrive early, turn off your phone, be respectful, participate in the performance, consider purchasing a program, and share your feedback to help the theater community and the storytelling.
9) Churchill War Rooms
The Churchill War Rooms, formerly known as the Cabinet War Rooms, are a hidden world in London that exemplifies resilience and leadership during WWII. Visitors can now walk in the footsteps of Winston Churchill and his team, experiencing the pivotal events that shaped the world.
- Explore the dimly lit Map Room, where Churchill and his commanders plotted the course of the war using maps and charts.
- Imagine the tension and urgency as Churchill communicated with President Roosevelt directly in the tiny Transatlantic Telephone Room, a disguised secret room.
- Witness the historic Cabinet Room, where important decisions were made and nations’ fates were at stake.
- Explore Churchill’s bare bedroom and study, where he worked tirelessly throughout the war.
Here are some hotels near the Churchill War Rooms:
- The Langham, London
- The Z Hotel Victoria
- The Wellington by Blue Orchid Hotels
- YHA London Central
Arrive early, download the app for interactive maps, use free audio guides, relax in the cafe, and consider museum membership for exclusive benefits when visiting the Churchill War Rooms.
10) Harry Potter Studio Tour
The Warner Bros. Studio Tour London: The Making of Harry Potter is an immersive experience that takes you behind the scenes of the beloved film series, showcasing the incredible sets, costumes, props, and special effects.
- Admire the magnificent Great Hall, where Hogwarts students congregated for meals and ceremonies.
- Diagon Alley’s cobblestone streets are lined with shops like Ollivander’s Wand Shop and Weasley’s Wizard Wheezes.
- Board the iconic Hogwarts Express, enter Platform 9 (34), and relive the Hogwarts journey.
- In the Forbidden Forest, you’ll come across magical creatures like Buckbeak the Hippogriff and Aragog the Acromantula.
- The Ministry of Magic transports you to the heart of the wizarding government, complete with talking portraits and Daily Prophet newspapers.
For interactive maps, exhibits, and behind-the-scenes content, go to Warner Bros. Studio Tour London. Think about guided tours, comfortable clothing, a camera, and Studio Shop souvenirs.
What should you skip while in London?
You’ll be amazed by the breathtaking view on a sunny day! From Buckingham Palace to St. Paul’s Cathedral, the Tower of London, and even Windsor Castle, you can see it all. Keep in mind that this incredible sight is London’s top paid tourist attraction, so make sure to secure your tickets in advance to avoid missing out.
Will London have any famous events or festivals in 2024?
Throughout the year, London offers a lot of festivals and events. To remain informed about festivals, concerts, and special events going on while you’re exploring, check out the official London events calendar for 2024.
What are the best places in London to explore local arts and culture?
For a thriving arts and culture environment, think about visiting places like Notting Hill, Camden, and Shoreditch. Street art, independent galleries, and unique stores are well-known in these neighborhoods.
What are the top London attractions for families to look forward to in 2024?
A stroll around Hyde Park, a visit to the Warner Bros. Studio Tour London, the Natural History Museum, and an exploration of the Science Museum are all family-friendly activities.
What new places or activities do you definitely have to try?
Check local tourism websites to be informed about new experiences or attractions. London frequently adds new displays, performances, or events, so it’s worth keeping an eye out for the most recent developments.
Where in London can I have the greatest nightlife?
Check out places like Soho, Shoreditch, and Covent Garden for a lively nightlife. There are a variety of bars, pubs, clubs, and live music venues in these neighborhoods to suit different preferences.
What areas of London will offer the best locations to shop in 2024?
Oxford Street, Regent Street, and Covent Garden are great places to shop. Discover exclusive products at markets like Portobello Road Market and opulent boutiques in Mayfair.
What is a good amount of time to spend in London?
A journey to London should last as long as it suits you, depending on your interests and preferences. To see the main sights and gain a sense of the city, it is generally advised to stay for at least 4–5 days.