Buckingham Palace

Top 6 Places to Visit in London

They say the best way to capture a moment is to pay attention and that the traveler sees what he sees and the tourist what he comes to see. So, which one are you? Are you the kind of person who gets satisfied with a brief glimpse at something as you pass by, or do you take time to appreciate the beauty of it?

If you’re the latter, we might have just the thing for you – a comprehensive list of London’s popular attractions so close together that you can explore the city’s heritage on foot.

Explore the Buckingham Palace

Buckingham Palace is one of the few remaining royal palaces in the world. The iconic residence is steeped in centuries of tradition, with magnificent rooms full of treasures from all over the world.

You can visit Buckingham Palace throughout the summer, from November to December, and on select holidays like Easter. While you’re at it, make sure to visit the 19 staterooms and explore The Royal Collection with paintings by famous artists like Canaletto, Rembrandt, and Rubens.

And, in case you don’t want to wait till summer, you can always visit The Queen’s Gallery and The Royal Mews for breathtaking views and depictions of true English culture. If you make it by 10:45 a.m., you’ll get to see the Changing of The Guard, which is quite a spectacle.

Westminster Abbey

Take the Bridge Walk to Westminster Abbey

Just 14 minutes away from Buckingham Palace lies one of the most incredible architecture in England. Dubbed a UNESCO Heritage Site, Westminster Abbey is Britain’s primary coronation church and the final resting place of 30 British Monarchs, including Queen Elizabeth I, King Edward the Confessor, and King Richard II.

Once you’re done exploring the beautifully curated gardens, step inside the Lady Chapel and check out the awe-inspiring vaulted ceiling. And, if you’re an art lover, make sure to check out ancient murals at the Chapter House as well as the Queen’s Window, designed and curated by world-renowned artist David Hockney.

You can visit Westminster Abbey on weekdays from 9:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. and 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. on Saturdays. It’s open for worship on Sunday, so opening and closing times may vary depending on the events taking place there.

Visit the Churchill War Rooms

Who doesn’t like a good war story? Take a six-minute walk from Westminster Abbey to the Churchill war rooms and discover the original cabinet war rooms. This marvel of engineering sheltered Churchill and his cabinet in WWII during the Blitz as Hitler’s bombs blanketed the city with fire and destruction.

Experience the City From Another Angle From the London Eye

Sitting 135 meters from the ground at its highest point, the London Eye provides an unobstructed, 360-degree view of the city, enabling you to see up to 40 kilometers away on a clear day.

Take a ride in one of its 32 pods, each representing a borough in London, and experience the city’s beauty from above. The ride takes about 30 minutes, going about 0.9 km/hour to give you ample time to take it all in.

Take a Detour at the SEA LIFE London Aquarium

Right next to the London Eye lies one of the most magnificent aquariums in the world. Located in the County Hall building on the south bank of the river Thames, SEA LIFE London Aquarium provides breathtaking views of the marine world, enabling you to see some of the most majestic sea creatures in close view.

While you’re there, take a stroll through the Glass Ocean Tunnel and experience life beneath the sea. You’ll get to see piranhas, crocodiles, sharks, and other marine life, including penguins, rays, starfish, and clownfish.

Test Your Nerves in the London Dungeon

If you’re a fan of live horror or like a little thrill and excitement every once in a while, you’re definitely going to love this part. Not for the fainthearted, the London Dungeon is home to Britain’s worst horror stories.

The walkthrough experience recreates what life must have been like for medieval prisoners. You get to see live actors act out some pretty scary stories and discover other horrible stories, including the true identity of Jack the Ripper.

Unfortunately, you may not be able to take your younger children with you as the venue has a strict age limit of 12. Additionally, anybody under 16 must be accompanied by an adult.

The Bottom Line

Walking is by far one of the best ways to explore London. Popular tourist destinations like the ones mentioned above are pretty close to each other, so you don’t have to worry about wearing yourself out. But, if you’re not up to it, you can always take a taxi or hop on a tour bus with other enthusiastic sightseers.

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