Often billed as the best city in the world, London is a vibrant hub of creativity, history and culture. Whether you’re in town to check out some of the wonderful free museums, take a trip on the London Eye or to hit the shops, here’s our guide to what’s what in London…
When to visit?
The good news is that London is great to visit all year round. In colder months it helps to wrap up warm and come prepared with an umbrella — it rains a lot! In summer, most of London lolls in fabulous city parks and drinks on roof terraces to keep cool.
Best way to get there?
- There are lots of airports. Choose from
- Gatwick, Heathrow, Luton, Stanstead and City
- Apart from City, most airports are outside of London but there are regular shuttles and trains to central London for around £30
- A Taxi from Heathrow or Gatwick costs anywhere between £40 – £100
- Language: English
- Currency: British Pound £
- Time zone: GMT
- Dialling code: +44
Where to eat?
London is jam packed with an ever increasing amount of exciting, delicious and often daring eateries. From world famous restaurants to chic cafes and pop ups, here are the eating experiences not to miss.
Atlantic Road, Brixton, London SW9
Take a culinary trip round the world without leaving SW9! Brixton Village Market is full to the brim with interesting mini restaurants, stalls and cafes. With a global vibe, you’ll find tasty treats from China, USA, Italy and more
287 Upper Street, Islington, London N1 2TZ Tel: +44 207 288 1454 www.ottolenghi.co.uk
Self-confessed foodies flock to Ottolenghi’s on trendy upper street to sample the Mediterranean influenced menu and mouth-watering cakes
55 Shoreditch High Street, Shoreditch, London E1 6JJ Tel: +44 20 7729 1888 www.pizzaeast.com
If a pizza is what you’re looking for, head to Pizza East for an easy, casual vibe. It’s wall to wall with young, hip diners and you’re more than likely to spot a celebrity or 2
4-6 Russell Street, Covent Garden, London WC2B 5HZ Tel: +44 203 301 1155 www.balthazarlondon.com
Keith McNally’s New York institution, Balthazaar has made it across the Atlantic and set up shop in Covent Garden. Book well ahead and make sure you’re hungry for the French bistro style fayre that’s on offer
2-4 Boundary Street, Shoreditch, London E2 7JE Tel: +44 207 729 1051 www.theboundary.co.uk
If it’s sunny in London, the wise and the hungry flock to Boundary to soak up the sun on their incredible roof. If you’re not lucky with the weather, inside is fabulous too. Expect a mainly French and English menu and BBQs in the sun
70 Charlotte Street, Marylebone, London W1T 4QG Tel: +44 20 7637 7770 www.bubbledogs.co.uk Open: Tuesday-Wednesday, 11.30am-11pm & Thursday-Saturday, 11.30am-midnight
London’s obsession for fast food with a twist has expanded into the hot dog market. Join the queue outside Bubbledogs and get ready tuck into posh ‘dogs’ paired with fine champagnes. A concept that works!
The Granary Building, 1 Granary Square, king’s Cross, London N1C 4AA Tel: +44 207 101 7661 www.caravankingscross.co.uk
If you’re after an amazing Bloody Mary, head to Caravan where you’ll be in awe of the industrial space and artisan coffee on offer in this one forgotten about corner of Kings Cross.
32 Rivington Street, Shoreditch, London EC2A 3LX Tel: +44 20 7749 0478 www.chickenandsteak.co.uk
Keeping things simple, Tramshed serves only 2 things; Chicken or steak. Both are excellent and can be enjoyed in a roomy ex-warehouse under the watchful eye of a huge Damien Hirst commissioned art piece
160 Piccadilly, Mayfair, London W1J 9EB, Tel: +44 207 499 6996
Somewhat of an institution, the Wolseley is a great go-to for an elegant brunch or lunch. Dripping in Art Deco influenced décor with a relaxed but refined vibe, head here when you want to impress
The Zetter Townhouse
49-50 St. John’s Square, London EC1V 4JJ, Tel: +44 207 324 4545 www.thezettertownhouse.com
If you like your cocktails the proper way in classic glasses, head to the small but plush lounge at The Zetter Townhouse. There are plenty of tasty small dishes and you can stay over too!
La Bodega Negra
9 Old Compton Street, Soho, London W1D 5JF Tel: +44 0207 758 4100 www.labodeganegra.com
Tucked away behind a *ahem* neon Soho window that will make you question if you’re at the right place, La Bodega Negra is a cave-like space with candle lit tables and incredible wall art. We recommend the scallop Cevice
Gordon’s Wine Bar
47 Villiers Street, London WC2N 6NE Tel: +44 020 7930 1408 www.gordonswinebar.com
If you consider yourself to be a real vino lover, be sure to visit the oldest wine bar in the capital. Remember to stoop as you head into the quirky cellar – the low ceiling can be a painful surprise – and take a seat amongst the traditional candlelit surroundings
What to See?
Southwark St, London SE1 1TL
If you’re a food lover, this one-stop food extravaganza just south of the river is a must-see. From delicious street food to homemade cider, hours can drift by browsing the stalls and sampling the delights
Although renowned for its culinary delights, Brick Lane is worth a trip even if you’re not hungry. Packed full of an endless choice of Indian establishments serving up authentic dishes, it is the overall experience to all the senses that leaves a lasting expression. Flashes of neon, crowds of East London hipsters, all-night bars and an infectious atmosphere make it a unique location well worth the visit
The National History Museum
Cromwell Rd, London SW7 5BD
Whatever your age, the Natural History Museum is a worthwhile stop off to add to your London itinerary. The giant Diplodocus dinosaur skeleton offers an impressive welcome in the main hall and with regular special exhibits taking place throughout the year, there is always plenty to see. A great place to take the kids or even an unusual venue for a date, and if you have the time, look out for when their next sleepover is taking place for a one-off experience!
Do you have a favourite place to visit in the Big Smoke?