Planning a day trip in London? A fun-filled day out in the city can offer amazing experiences for all the family, including: beautiful parks, tourist trails, historic landmarks, delicious food markets and world-class theater shows.
We advise not to cram too much in one day, and aim to cover just a few key locations so you have enough time to really enjoy them all. At London Perfect, we can help you plan out the perfect itinerary for your vacation. Also, make sure you check out our list of things you should know when organizing your trip. These little-known facts about London attractions are sure to help you save time, money, and ensure the most memorable day out for all the family.
Buckingham Palace timed ticket system
Touring Buckingham Palace and watching the time-honored tradition of the Changing of the Guard is a must-see. What you may not know is that the palace works on a timed-ticket system with a new round of tourists entering every 15 minutes.
If you buy tickets when you get there, you’ll wait in line and likely have to wait around for your assigned time to arrive. Tickets can sell out, fast. To say it’s a popular attraction is an understatement.
Our tip? Plan ahead and purchase your tickets online through the Royal Collection Trust before you go and avoid hanging around.
Catching a West End show requires spontaneity
Unlike Buckingham Palace, if you want to see a show at the West End, spontaneity is key. From musicals like An American in Paris to classics such as The Phantom of the Opera, there’s a show to meet every taste or age group. If you are flexible with times, you’ll snag the best deals, too.
There are plenty of ticket shops in the Soho and Piccadilly Circus area that sell discounted tickets. You’ll pay a fraction of the price and still be able to score great seats for a show.
Of course, if you would like to plan ahead you can book theater tickets ahead of time here.
Afternoons are best for bargains at Borough Market
This trendy foodie spot in London is one of the busiest and oldest markets dating back to the 13th century. Locals and tourists alike love this gourmet market near London Bridge. There is a fabulous community around the market and it’s a buzzing area to browse the goods or eat a casual lunch or dinner.
While the market is far from a hidden secret, there are two ideal times to go, depending on your preferences. If you want to avoid the crowds, go before 10am. If you want to bag a bargain, go around 4pm when many vendors discount their goods before packing up for the evening. You’ll also want to bring cash as most of the vendors don’t accept credit or debit cards.
Consider buying fresh vegetables, fish and a tasty pastry and make yourself a homemade dinner in your kitchen at your luxurious London Perfect home.
Borough Market isn’t the only market worth planning a trip to, of course. Here’s a list of other markets to check out while visiting London.
Big Ben isn’t open to the general public
The giant clock tower known as Big Ben is an icon in London, but you won’t be wandering around inside. In 2010 security concerns meant there was a shutdown at the interior of the famous clock and adjoining Houses of Parliament. UK residents are allowed in if they submit their request in writing and a member of parliament approves it.
While you can’t go inside, it’s still a picturesque place to walk around and take pictures. Other attractions like Westminster Abbey and The London Eye, are just a short walk away.
For your next stay in London, our friendly reservations team are on hand to help you select one of our stunning family vacation rentals.