1st March, 2018
London, one of the most tourist friendly, classy and expensive places in the world assures visitors an unforgettable holiday. London’s spread of fine dining, stay and experiences spoil the visitors for choice.Easily accessible by all modes of transportation, this place boasts of a rich culture and warm hospitality.
On our way to Portugal, we decided to do a pit-stop of 3 nights at London. We always had this place on our bucket list since a few years but never got a chance to visit.
MIRINDA suggests! – 3 nights is a very short duration for London and given a chance I would surely recommend a minimum of 5 nights if you have the time (&money!!) Go for it !
We tried to squeeze in as much a possible in this short trip… so if you have a similar trip in mind, a family holiday to London can be as exciting as it can get. Undoubtedly, you would like to cover everything- famous landmarks, monuments, restaurants, shopping and of course the nightlife.
But when you have been 3 allotted days, the plan has to be comprehensive, leaving some of the places for the next visit. So, here are some of the unavoidable things in London that you must see to overcome the typical dialogue coming from your friends and colleagues, ‘How could you miss that!’ a few must-dos are listed below which will not be too hard on your pocket.
Natural History Museum
If you think, Natural History Museum is just another gallery stuffed with ancient artifacts, historical information or stories of great achievements then you are making a mistake. This museum exhibits 80 million items and specimens from various segments of natural history. Natural History Museum is particularly famous for its exhibition of dinosaur skeletons and ornate architecture.
It has free entree and the experience received the moment you enter the hall is stunning. An enormous Diplodocus skeleton cast is present inside a Victorian architecture based building leaves you in a state of awe irrespective of your age.
MIRINDA fun facts! – Once a month the museum opens late for the night. Music plays in the main hall, drinks are served, extra talks and events are held, and the atmosphere in general is great. We thoroughly recommend the event to anyone visiting London at that particular time.
Yet another museum, you just cannot miss this when you are travelling to London, because of its amazing collections. There are nearly 8 million objects that are worth looking at. However, mummies take the attention of the visitors here. These dated back to 2686 B.C, representing ancient Egyptian view on death and the afterlife. British Museum enlightens you about the world from its very young age.
If you are coming for the first time then do not miss the Lindow Man, Rosetta Stone, the Sutton Hoo ship burial and the Lewis Chessmen. There is so much to see that you need to visit a couple of times to complete your museum trip. So, select the ‘must see’ rooms that can make your London visit memorable.
MIRINDA fun facts! – The Egyptian Book Of The Dead went on display at the British Museum in 2010. Containing a collection of ‘spells’ thought to guide the dead through the dangers of the afterlife, the collection is over 3,000 years old.
Visitor Oyster Card
We highly recommend that as soon as you land in London, purchase the visitor oyster card. Its the quickest and easiest way to pay for travel on public transportation in London (which we are assuming you will have to use, given the exorbitantly expensive Black cabs!)
What is a Visitor Oyster Card?
A Visitor Oyster card is a smartcard. It’s a quick and easy way to pay for journeys on bus, Tube, tram, DLR, London Overground, TFL Rail, River Bus and most National Rail services in London.
How much does a Visitor Oyster Card cost?
You can visit : https://tfl.gov.uk/travel-information/visiting-london/visitor-oyster-card#on-this-page-2 for all information regarding the perfect plan for you.
MIRINDA suggests ! – We highly recommend you buy the Oyster card from the Airport instead of pre booking it online as there are many other available options at the Airport and the sales executive customizes it as per your duration of stay, etc.
Tube Mobile Application
This being our first time in London, we were extremely anxious and scared about the public transportation and how we will manage understanding it in such a short time. But to our relief we found someone who told us about this Mobile Application ” Tube Map – London Underground” (of course there are many more similar apps I am sure.. but we used this and was super convenient !)
MIRINDA fun facts ! – We used to plan our journey in our apartment and the best part was it worked offline while travelling…
So basically what this Application did is it not only showed us the routes in the map, but it also helped us plan our journey online and offline. Not only that, it compared for us our journey time, costs, delays and the cheapest way to get around London.
Both my husband and I are Biggggg Foodies .. so we had to try out the Borough Market which is Food Paradise of London.
MIRINDA suggests ! – If you have arrived London on Friday, try to visit the market on this very day because it gets crowded on Saturdays.
This place is known for gourmet goodies, which are not only ample but fresh and healthy. You would find heaps of fresh fruit and vegetables, cheese wheels, crisp organic breads, sea food platter and every another tempting ingredients that a food lover would love to have.
MIRINDA fun facts ! – There are lots of fun events which take place inside the Market. We highly recommend you go through the event calendar before visiting the market so that you don’t miss out all the fun things to do . You can visit the following link for all event information: http://boroughmarket.org.uk/events
So, if you are planning to have a short meal in the morning, enjoy the burger, hog roast, falafel, raclette at affordable rates.
After you are done with the museums and monument sightseeing, how about spending some time with the nature? Make your way to Regent Park, which is considered as the finest open space in London covering 410 acres of land.
Regents Park has to be one of my absolute favorite spots in London. Spanning from Camden to Warren Street this park is full of greenery and flowers which take you out of the hustle and bustle of city life. Take a walk along the English flower avenues or a pedal boat across the mini lake as this park is full of activity and things to see.
MIRINDA fun facts ! – Initially this was only for the royals but later it was opened for the public. Originally, this was the hunting ground for Henry VIII and today the park host number of shows, festivals and attractions, which are impossible to miss. Various food and music festivals pitch up here over the summer and rowing boat hire, bandstands, beautiful rose gardens (with some 30,000 roses and 400 varieties), tennis courts, ice-cream stands and eateries (including the delightful Garden Café) complete the picture.
London Zoo is right next to this place, if you are travelling with a child, he or she would love the visit.
Now that you are in Regent Park, what is your plan for dinner? If you are ready to try out something different, Indian platter can be a great option.
MIRINDA suggests ! – There are number of Indian restaurants in London and Veeraswamy is a renowned one among them. It is situated in a prime location overlooking Regent Park. Being an old, you would get a royal feel and the beautiful interior adds more flavour to the classical Indian cuisines that has been served to the guests, since 1926 in London.
Hop-on Hop-off bus
Sightseeing by bus is a must-do in London and the city offers 3 different hop-on, hop-off tours operated by well-known brands. There are a fantastic range of tickets for 1 or 2 days plus combinations with some of London’s most famous attractions like London Eye, Tower of London, Madame Tussauds and many more. Most London Hop-On, Hop-Off Tours include a river cruise and a walking tour but there is also a fantastic low priced option for those who just want to explore by bus.
MIRINDA fun facts ! – The bus offers various routes such as The Yellow Route, Purple Route, Blue Route, Orange Route, Black route and Green Route cover some of these attractions which are the best ones in London :
Buckingham Palace, Westminster Bridge, St Paul’s Cathedral, Kensington, Palace Gate, Cromwell Gardens, Trafalgar Square, London Bridge, Royal Albert Hall, Big Ben, Hyde Park.
We used the following link to book our tour : http://www.hoponhopoffplus.com/?gclid=Cj0KCQiA5t7UBRDaARIsAOreQtjRo0QwlUK-VnBE0ZSfguF2q07mypDWkyXWz34A2dSafFXC2vxlVO8aAq-JEALw_wcB
Bus tickets are also available at most of the bus terminals, so if you have forgotten to pre-book your bus ticket you can do so there on the spot (it might be a tad expensive than booking online, which offers multiple discount coupons and options)
The Change of Guards – Buckingham Palace
The last stop before we say Adios to London had to be the very famous “The Change of Guards” at Buckingham Palace.
MIRINDA fun facts ! – The gates of this palace remain forever crowded, the reason being “The Change of Guards”. The age-old traditional ceremony has attracted scores of visitors over the years. At 11:00 am the old guard from the Buckingham palace changes to the new guard from St. James Palace. The ceremony is free to watch and currently takes place every Monday, Wednesday, Friday and Sunday.
There is so much to see and experience in London, 3 days might seem less. But when you are getting an opportunity to travel, why not see the best things of the royal city.
Coming up next…… Day Trip to Oxford !
Follow us on www.mirindatravels.com to know all about our Oxford trip….