Located in the London borough of Richmond-upon-Thames. Bushy Park is connected to Hampton Court Palace by the Longford River. It is well known for its mix of waterways, gardens and grassland. Visitors enjoy watching the roaming herds of red and fallow deer.
At the end of the mile-long Chesnut Avenue (designed by Sir Christopher Wren) you will find the bronze Diana Fountain. Look out for woodpeckers, kingfishers and kestrels.
Bushy Park is one of London’s Royal Parks. It covers an area of some 1,100 acres.
Hampton Ct Rd, Hampton TW12 2EJ
Teddington, Hampton Court, Hampton Wick, Hampton
St James’s Park is London’s oldest park. Its splendid lake is home to some 15 species of water birds, including a colony of pelicans. The pelicans were donated them to Charles II in 1664. It has a lovely restaurant and a bandstand which is sometimes used in the summer for concerts.
It covers an area of 23 hectares in the City of Westminster. The park is bounded by Buckingham Palce, the Mall, Horse Guardes and Birdcage Walk. It meets Green Park at Queen’s Gardens and has the Victoria Memorial at its centre, opposite the entrance to Buckingham Palace.
From the Blue Bridge you can get a lovely view west towards Buckingham Palace. It is an ideal spot for Instagrammers!
London SW1A 2BJ
Nearest underground stations
St James’s Park, Green Park, Victoria and Westminster
Kensington Gardens were once the private gardens of Kensington Palace.
Beautiful gardens housing the Diana, Princess of Wales Memorial Playground and the Serpentine Galleries.
The Gardens are a fabulous place for children to visit. In the Diana Playground they will be able to enjoy the huge wooden pirate ship, sensory trail and play sculptures all inspired by Peter Pan.
London W2 2UH
Nearest underground stations
Bayswater and Notting Hill Gate
Harrods of Knightsbridge is London’s most exclusive department store. Having been established for over 150 years it is also one of London’s major landmarks.
Harrods re-opens on 15 June with social distancing measures in place.
Nestling in the heart of Knightsbridge it is a treasure trove of quality goods. Design is key at Harrods where all the world’s best designers are represented in the fashion halls.
A visit to Harrods is more like an outing to a village than a shop. The shop covers some seven floors.
The children’s toy department is a favourite, particularly at Christmas. Santa Claus is in residence every year for children to visit.
Harrods Food Hall is second to none with delicacies from around the globe. All beautifully displayed, there are often tastings on offer for shoppers.
And the in-house restaurants and bars are fabulous too. Have a pizza or burger. Enjoy an Italian ice cream. Or enjoy a typical English afternoon tea! The choice is yours.
The Tiffany Blue Box Cafe
Recently opened at Harrods of Knightsbridge is the Tiffany Blue Box Cafe. Here you can enjoy culinary delights served on Tiffany iconic blue china. And the decor is Tiffany too. It is a great place to have a real Breakfast at Tiffany’s. Croissants are served alongside crab muffins and smoked salmon. In the afternoon you can enjoy the Tiffany Tea. Dainty finger sandwiches, scones and pastries inspired by Tiffany & Co’s heritage. You can also have supper here with wines and cocktails. The fine dining menu here is a playful take on contemporary cuisine. Best to book in advance. This is Europe’s first Blue Box Cafe and is located in the lower ground floor.
Harrods is easily accessible via public transport. Take the underground to Knightsbridge on the Piccadilly line or hop on a bus.
Short stay apartments and hotels nearby
There are a number of excellent hotels and apartments close to Harrods of Knightsbridge. Whether you wish to stay for a night or a week there are options. See details >
Re-opening on 5 August 2020. To keep everyone safe a timed entry system is in place. Only a limited number of people are allowed in the galleries at one time. Safety of visitors and staff is a priority so please wear a face covering, observe social distancing and use the hand sanitiser available throughout the Museum. Pay with contactless if possible.
Protective screens are in place at key touchpoint such as cafes, shops and information desks. Face coverings are provided to staff. Some digital touch screens and hands-on exhibits will be switched off or close. Others will remain available with hand sanitiser nearby.
London’s three main museums – The Natural History Museum, Science Museum and Victoria & Albert Museum are in the same neighbourhood. All three are very easily accessible from South Kensington station on the London underground. And remember that when you come to London with children the museums are a must-see destination. The abundance of hands-on exhibits make this a fun outing to remember for the children.
The Natural History Museum
The Natural History Museum is a fascinating place to visit. Astonishingly, its collections comprise an incredible 80 million specimens. Here you and your family can all explore the history of life on earth. The diversity of the planet never ceases to amaze and delight.
The museum originally housed the items brought back by Charles Darwin and Captain Cook’s botanist Joseph Banks. And these days it combines traditional displays with contemporary hands on exhibits which are a delight for visitors of all ages.
It is one of London’s most popular museums for children. The dinosaur collection is unique and the life-sized model of the blue whale is absolutely stunning.
The museum has become over the years a hot-bed of research and employs more than 300 scientists and librarians. It is a global resource for the scientific academic community.
Family Favourites: This tour walks you through some of the Museum’s biggest sights – including dinosaurs, whales and volcanoes – and is perfect for families.
Exhibits with Impact: This tour guides you through some of the Museum’s most fascinating stories. It is aimed at adults and solo travellers.
Hidden Treasures: Even if you’ve visited the Museum before and have seen the highlights there’s still plenty to discover. This tour guides you through some of the Museum’s lesser-known treasures and is great for all ages.
See the fossil collections
In this collection you can explore the marine reptiles which existed when dinosaurs ruled the earth. They have endured the test of time and now exist as as painstakingly collection of fossils. There are very many at the Natural History Museum for you to delight in. Children love to inspect the detail of the fossils.
Wildlife photographer of the year
Running until 31 May 2020 the Wildlife Photographer of the Year exhibition is an opportunity to enjoy some of the world’s best nature photography. Over 100 displays to explore. Come along and see some spectacular captures!
You might be surprised to learn that there is an extensive after hours programme at the Museum. There, you can enjoy a range of exhibitions, talks and science demonstrations. Of course accompanied by food and drinks at night! These popular events take place on the last Friday of each month. You are recommended to book tickets in advance to avoid disappointment.
Every Friday, Saturday and Sunday the museum features Nature Live. It is a free live show held in the Attenborough Studio. Fascinating topics are presented and discussed by a host of guest speakers.
Things to do at home
The Museum is brought to you with a host of free virtual tours, hands-on activities and live online events.
Virtual Museum: 13 ways to explore from home
Delve into the Museum from home with a virtual self-guided tour of the galleries, an interactive experience about Hope the blue whale and audio guides narrated by Sir David Attenborough.
Try this at home
Find activities and ideas to occupy yourself and family at home, in your garden or local outdoor space.
Nature live online
Join the team on Tuesdays at 12.00 and Fridays at 10.30 for interactive talks featuring topical discussions with our scientists and cutting-edge research. You can ask questions during the live broadcast on YouTube.
The Natural History Museum
Cromwell Road (access at the corner of Exhibition Road): This enhance is open and has step-free access. Closest Tube station: South Kensington. This station is not step-free. Gloucester Road Tube station has step-free access.
Exhibition Road: This entrance is open and has step-free access. Closest Tube station: South Kensington. This station is not step-free. Gloucester Road Tube station has step-free access.
Queen’s Gate: This entrance is closed. Closest Tube station: Gloucester Road.
By tube: The nearest underground is South Kensington. It is on the District, Piccadilly and Circle lines. It is just 5 minutes’ walk from the Museum’s Exhibition Road entrance. You can also reach the museum easily from Gloucester Road station. It is approximately 7 minutes’ walk from the Queen’s Gate entrance. See TfL journey planner for the quickest route to the Museum and follow Transport for London’s Coronavirus safe travel guidance.
Routes 14, 49, 70, 74, 345, 360, 414, 430 and C1 stop close to the Museum.
There are cycle racks on Exhibition Road. The nearest cycle hire docking stations are outside the Exhibition Road entrance and on Thurloe Place near South Kensington Tube station.
For groups travelling by coach, the drop-off point is outside the Cromwell Road entrance.
There are no parking facilities on-site and parking around the Museum is limited.
There are lots of family apartments in the area within walking distance of this and the two other main museums. Within easy access are the popular Point West building and the Ashburn Gardens residence. Both properties are conveniently located nearby with Point West being on the Cromwell Road and Ashburn Gardens just a minutes’ walk away. And both properties offer some very nice two bedroom apartments, ideal for a family of four. Complimentary WiFi is included at both locations. All apartments have their own private kitchens and bathrooms. These properties are particularly busy during the children’s school holidays so remember to book early!
When you visit London, there are so many shops and stores to visit. But there are some which simply mustn’t be missed. And Liberty of London in Regent Street is one of those. Easily accessed from Oxford Circus underground station or by bus it is a place to see.
Liberty of London
The building of this fabulous department in Great Marlborough Street is, itself, a heritage listed London icon. And that is without even seeing the wares on offer within! Having been built in 1875 the handsome timbered building itself is a cultural icon. This West End store is renowned throughout the world for its directional design, cultural collaborations and inspiring curation. The store specialises in luxury British goods.
Beautiful luxury floral fabrics abound. And you will find the renowned Liberty prints on a vast array of stylish homeware designer fashion items and desirable sumptuous beauty products.
Specialising in women’s, men’s and children’s clothing, make-up and perfume, jewellery, accessories, furniture and furnishings, stationery and gifts, Liberty of London is known for its floral and graphic prints.
Their dedicated in-house design studio is still at the core of the business, painting and creating their beautiful prints and reworking finds from their massive archive.
The store is spread across 6 amazing floors and the mock Tudor facade has become one of the West End’s most recognisable instagrammable destinations. The interior is wooden-floored and many of the walls wood-panneled. The store has long been associated with the Arts & Crafts movement. In years gone by they even employed designers such as William Morris to create fabrics for their collection. Sales take place each year in January so take the opportunity to pop in and grab yourself a bargain.
Liberty of London is the store of choice for the sophisticated, savvy shopper combining heritage with cutting edge and avant garde.
Liberty of London, Regent St, Soho, London W1B 5AH
Nearest public transport
Oxford Circus – Central, Bakerloo and Victoria lines
Piccadilly Circus – Piccadilly and Bakerloo Lines
Liberty of London is accessible from the following buses: 3, 6, 12, 13, 15, 23, 53, X53, 88, 94, 139, 159 and C2
Plan your visit
The City of London is a great place to work and play! Brains, brawn and hedonism all co-exist within the famous Square Mile… So you might like to start the day at 5am, have a busy day in the office then a workout and a night out clubbing at the end of it all! It is an area of contrasts.
The City is defined roughly by the walls of the Roman city. The ancient Square Mile is a curious mix. Old street and lanes exist alongside state-of-the-art corporate headquarters. And there are 38 churches!
We offer apartments in all the main areas of the City of London including Aldgate, Bank, Barbican, Blackfriars, Chancery Lane, Clerkenwell, Farringdon, Fenchurch Street, Fleet Street, Liverpool Street, Moorgate and St Paul’s. Public transport (underground, overground, DLR, bus and waterbus) serves this area very well.
Amazing attractions in the City of London include:
The Bank of England Museum
Fascinating and child friendly – and your chance to hold a real gold bar! The Bank of England Museum, Bartholomew Ln, London EC2R 8AH.
The Barbican Centre
Europe’s largest multi-arts venue offering a diverse range of art, music, theatre, dance, film and creative learning events. Opened in 1982 the centre is part of the residential Barbican Estate which accommodates some 4,000 residents. The Barbican Centre, Silk St, London EC2Y 8DS.
Bevis Marks Synagogue
The oldest synagogue in Great Britain. Opened in 1701, and incorporating architectural influences from around the world. It is a fascinating Grade I listed building and a monument of outstanding national importance. Bevis Marks Synagogue, 4 Heneage Ln, London EC3A 5DQ.
Billingsgate Roman Bathhouse
Lower Thames Street is home to one of Roman London’s most fascinating remains. The Bathhouse was discovered in 1848, and is now open for public inspection. Explore this fascinating insight into ancient life on a 45-min guided tour. Billingsgate Roman Bathhouse, 101 Lower Thames St, London EC3R 6DL
City of London Distillery
The only working distillery in the City of London. It is located behind Fleet Street in the historic Bride Lane, an area steeped with distilling history. Tours and masterclasses as well as being open as a bar in the evening. City of London Distillery, 22-24 Bride Ln, London EC4Y 8DT.
Hello, hello, hello…..
City of London Police Museum
A small but fascinating museum. The collection charts the development of the UK police service, from the earliest days, through to modern policing methods. Also, a fascinating insight into crime in Victorian London and how social changes affect the work of the police force. City of London Police Museum, 2 Aldermanbury, London EC2V 7HH.
Dr Johnson’s House
Beautiful Georgian house tucked in a square off Fleet Street which was formerly the home of the great literary figure Dr Samuel Johnson. Dr Johnson’s House, 17 Gough Square, London EC4A 3DE.
Uniquely curated game rooms designed to challenge participants’ minds and mystify their senses. Join the race to escape within 60 minutes. Working as part of a team, players must find clues and solve puzzles in their attempts to escape before time runs out. Escape Entertainment, George Yard, London EC3V 9DH.
Comprising Guildhall Art Gallery, London’s Roman Amphitheatre, City of London Heritage Gallery, Guildhall Library, Guildhall Great Hall, City of London Police Museum, City Centre and St Lawrence Jewry. An incredible range of experiences all in one location. Guildhall Galleries, Guildhall Yard, London EC2V 5AE.
A historic venue…..
Guildhall Great Hall
The Great Hall is where royalty and state visitors have been entertained down the centuries. It is open to the public when state events are not taking place. The Guildhall Great Hall, Gresham St, London EC2V 7HH.
London Mithraeum at 12 Walbrook EC4N 8AA
London Mithraeum Bloomberg SPACE returns the Roman Temple of Mithras to the location of its discovery in the heart of the City. Situated on the site of Bloomberg’s new European headquarters, this new cultural space will showcase an immersive experience of the ancient temple. It will also feature a selection of the remarkable Roman artefacts found during recent excavations. Also on display will be a series of contemporary art commissions responding to one of the UK’s most significant archaeological sites. The London Mithraeum, 12 Walbrook, London EC4N 8AA.
Experience Roman London…..
London’s Roman Amphitheatre
Step into the ruins of this stunning Roman amphitheatre, in which crowds used to gather to watch gladiatorial combats. Hidden beneath the Guildhall Art Gallery, the ruins were rediscovered by archaeologists in 1988. London’s Roman Amphitheatre, Guildhall Yard, London EC2V 5AE
A permanent reminder of the Great Fire of 1666, the Monument commemorates one of the most famous events in London’s history. Designed by Sir Christopher Wren and Dr Robert Hooke, The Monument celebrates the City which rose from the ashes. Climb its 311 spiral steps to enjoy stunning panoramic views of the City and beyond. The Monument, Fish St Hill, London EC3R 8AH.
Museum of London
Brilliant museum documenting the history of the capital from the pre-historic age to the present day. Great for all ages. Museum of London, 150 London Wall, London EC2Y 5HN
Enjoy some modern art…..
Sculpture in the City
See some contemporary sculptures amongst the high-rise buildings to the east of the City by some of the world’s most high-profile artists. Sculpture in the City, free open-air art exhibition, City of London.
St Bartholomew’s Hospital Museum
One of the oldest hospitals in the world, St Bartholomew’s, or Bart’s, was founded in 1123, and has cared for the sick and injured ever since. And The Museum tells this inspiring story. Museum highlights include: historic surgical instruments, sculpture, medieval archives, and unique works of art, including spectacular paintings by William Hogarth. St Bartholomew’s Hospital Museum, North Wing, St Bartholomew’s Hospital, W Smithfield, London EC1A 7BE
One of London’s most iconic landmarks…..
St Paul’s Cathedral
Welcoming worshippers, visitors and sightseers, the cathedral of the capital designed by Sir Christopher Wren is one of London’s most recognisable landmarks. Visit the tombs of Nelson and Wellington and test the unique acoustics of the Whispering Gallery. If you are feeling fit you can climb up to the Golden Gallery and enjoy a panoramic view of London. St Paul’s Cathedral, St. Paul’s Churchyard, London EC4M 8AD.
The world famous market still exists to sell meat.
Since 1348, the Charterhouse has been living the nation’s history on seven acres between Barbican and Farringdon. In the past it has been a monastery, a Tudor mansion, a boys’ school and an almshouse, which it remains to this day. Open Tuesdays-Sundays, there is a free museum and access to the Chapel, as well as several fascinating daily tours. Some of the tours are conducted by almshouse residents. Several of the stunning rooms included on the tour are also available to hire. It is used as a venue for classical music performances. The Charterhouse, Charterhouse Square, Clerkenwell, London EC1M 6AN
The history of the River Thames…..
Tower Bridge Exhibition
This is the most exciting way to explore the most famous bridge in the world. Contrast the modern high-level walkways and its spectacular new glass floor with the historic Engine Rooms and towers. The Exhibition reveals the fascinating story of the bridge. By explaining how and why it first came into existence. An iconic London landmark and one of Britain’s best loved historic sites, Tower Bridge is open to the public 363 days a year. Within the Bridge’s iconic structure and magnificent Victorian Engine rooms, the Tower Bridge Exhibition is the best way of exploring the most famous bridge in the world! Come learn about this incredible feat of Victorian engineering. And discover how the Bridge is raised. Enjoy stunning panoramic views across London from the high-level walkways, 42 metres above the River Thames. The Tower Bridge Exhibition, Tower Bridge Rd, London SE1 2UP.
Tower of London
Visit one of the world’s most famous fortresses. And Yeoman Warders will entertain you with tales of intrigue, imprisonment, execution and torture. The Tower of London, St Katharine’s & Wapping, London EC3N 4AB
The Royal Exchange offers one of the most lovely shopping environments in the city with a range of designer boutiques you would expect to find on Bond street.
One New Change has pretty much every high street store you might imagine! This is your opportunity to explore London’s premium shopping destination in the heart of the City. And discover restaurants, cafés and flagship menswear and womenswear fashion brands, all overlooking St Paul’s Cathedral.
And the area is well provided with fine dining restaurants. For example, try La Dame De Pic which boasts several Michelin stars.
The Horniman Museum is a great place for a family outing.
The Animal Walk
For instance, you can gofor a stroll along The Animal Walk where you will get a close up view of alpacas, goats, sheep, guinea pigs, rabbits, chickens and more. The Walk reflects Frederick Horniman’s vision of an outdoor display to bring the Museum’s collections to live. By linking the animals to the Museum’s natural history collections, visitors can see the connection between domestic animals and their wild counterparts. Have you ever wondered how and why humans can live harmoniously alongside animals? You will find some of the answers here.
Fifteen carefully curated exhibits showcase a variety of aquatic environments from around the globe. Habitats range from the simple British pond to exotic Fijian coral reefs.
You can watch South American fish, poison dart frogs and tropical tree frogs as they swim and hop around. Inspect the live coral display and watch reef fish move between and interact with their vibrant habitat. Observe the symbiotic relationship between a clown fish and its host anemone. Nature at its best! Wonder at the unusual structure and movement of pelagic jellyfish, as they move around their aquarium. Enjoy the variety of body shapes, colours and behaviours of these amazing species in their native habitats.
First opened in 1901, the design was heavily influenced by the Arts and Crafts and Art Nouveau movements prevalent at that time. Many of the original showcases remain and include taxidermy, skeletons and specimens preserved in fluid. The gallery has a unique historic feel with most specimens having been collected over 100 years ago. For instance, you might enjoy seeing the amazing taxidermy mount of a walrus. In those days, naturalists and collectors explored the globe looking for fascinating species.
The new Grasslands Garden give you an opportunity to wander through wild landscapes featuring spectacular plants from North American prairie and South African grasslands here in the heart of the capital! The garden celebrates critically threatened wild landscapes and has species flowering across the summer months, from pasqueflower to prairie dock and goldenrods to wild gladiolus. The naturalistic planting scheme was devised by Olympic Park designer James Hitchmough. It demonstrates how wild landscapes can inform urban green space design to create stunning wild flower displays that are sustainable and support local wildlife.
The Horniman Museum & Gardens, 100 London Rd, Forest Hill, London SE23 3PQ
Forest Hill. See TfL journey planner.
Arrive by bus
- 176, 185, 197, 356, P4 – stop outside the Museum and Gardens on London Road
- 122 – stops on Dartmouth Road
- P13 – stops on Underhill Road
- 363 – stops on Sydenham Hill Road
Come by bicycle
There are bicycle racks outside the Museum near the London Road entrance.
Visiting by car
We recommend you travel by public transport as parking is limited in the local area. Usefully, there is a pay-and-display car park is available locally behind Sainsbury’s (see map). There are two pay-and-display car parks at Forest Hill station (one at the front, one at the back).
For coaches, there is a drop off point outside the Museum near to the Clock Tower.
One of London’s defining venues, this circular edifice is an amazing testament to the architecture of Victorian times. Solid and majestic, the Royal Albert Hall stands proudly beside Hyde Park – a unique landmark.
The Promenade Concerts or Proms
Every year, throughout the summer, the Royal Albert Hall plays host to the Proms. Organised by the BBC, these concerts feature the stars of the classical music world playing the most amazing music. You need to get tickets in advance to be sure of getting in.
From classical favourites to contemporary world premieres and family concerts, the BBC Proms offer a stage for leading musicians, singers, orchestras and soloists from across the world with a broad programme of music. The eight weeks of concerts culminate in the famous Last Night performances including BBC Proms in the Park, full of chanting and quirky traditions.
The Afternoon Coffee Club
From 19 March to 2 December The Royal Albert Hall hosts the Afternoon Coffee Club. Older audiences come along and enjoy the tea, coffee, cake and good company in the comfortable surroundings of the Elgar Room. Here you can enjoy a live music performance. It is a very relaxed setting. There is plenty of seating. Enjoy a chat over a hot coffee or tea while hearing some lovely music.
Other Events in 2020
The Royal Albert Hall never ceases to entertain – throughout the seasons!
Cirque du Soleil
From now till 1 March you can enjoy the delights of the Cirque du Soleil.
The Royal Albert Hall
Getting there by train
South Kensington and High Street Kensington are the nearest underground stations to the Royal Albert Hall. They are approximately 15 minutes’ walk away.
The nearest underground station offering step-free access from street to train is Green Park. You will need to take the number 9 bus to the Hall from there.
Victoria and Paddington are the nearest National Rail stations, each are an approximate 30 minute walk away but offer tube and bus connections.
See the TfL website
Arriving by bus
You can reach the Albert Hall by buses 9, N9, 23, 52, N52, 70, 360, 452 and 702
There is an excellent range of family accommodation – 2 bedroom family apartments in London in the vicinity. We particularly recommend Citadines South Kensington who offer studios for couples and one bedroom apartments for the family of four travelling together. If you are looking for luxury then the Milestone Hotel has some fabulous two bedroom apartments which you might wish to consider. They even accept guests’ dogs!
London’s Chinatown is one of the most charming parts of the West End. With its ornate oriental archway in Gerrard Street marking the entrance it is like stepping into another world….. Chinatown has been London’s focus for Chinese residents since the 1950’s when a number of Chinese restaurants opened in the area. It has become one of the capital’s major attractions. You can shop at over 70 authentic Chinese supermarkets, gift shops and street stalls.
It is located in the City of Westminster and borders Soho to the north and west and London’s Theatreland to the south and east. It encompasses Gerrard Street, the lower half of Wardour Street, Rupert Street and Rupert Court, part of Shaftesbury Avenue and Lisle Street, Macclesfield Street and Newport Place, Newport Court and Little Newport Street.
Chinatown has buildings and streets decorated with Chinese symbols such as dragons, stone lions, lanterns and contemporary sculptures. You can look out for the distinctive street signs, which are written in English and Chinese. The area now has four gates, the most recent of which has been opened on Wardour Street. The ornamentation found in this area offers excellent photo opportunities and gives an insight into Chinese culture and religion. This is particularly the case during seasonal celebrations.
It is an area that is easy to access by public transport. And it is easy to get around as it covers a small area, much of which is now pedestrianised.
The Chinese New Year
This year, Chinese New Year falls on 25 January, with the main festivities taking place on 26 January. Enjoy spectacular parades with floats and lion dancers and live performances in Trafalgar Square. There is entertainment across the West End and around Chinatown, as well as many pop-up food and craft stalls. You will see red lanterns on display throughout.
The main event celebrated in London is the Chinese Near Year. London’s celebrations are some of the biggest outside Asia.
London’s Chinatown is full of good value restaurants offering delicious fare for hungry visitors to London.
As well as restaurants serving authentic Chinese cuisine you will find other oriental establishments offering Vietnamese, Malaysian, Korean and Japanese fare.
Some of the most notable restaurants in Chinatown are: Baoizi Inn (rustic street food), Four Seasons (famous for roast duck), Olle (Korean barbecue), Golden Dragon (dim sum), Leong’s Legend (Taiwanese), Bubblewrap Waffle (waffles with toppings), Plum Valley (contemporary Cantonese), Rasa Sayang (Malaysia and Singapore), Shu Xiangge (hotpots), Imperial China (Chinese), Ichibuns (Japanese and American).
Chinatown is one of the most instagrammable parts of London and offers many opportunities for photographers to click away…..
Excellent supermarkets in Chinatown include New Loon Moon and See Woo. You can shop for exotic ingredients, fruits, vegetables and spices.
Nearest underground stations
The closest underground stations to London’s Chinatown are Leicester Square and Piccadilly Circus. Tottenham Court Road is also fairly nearby.
Are you coming by bus?
The following stop nearby 14 / 24 / 27 / 29 / 134 / 168 / C2.
Accommodation in the area
Would you like to stay nearby? There are some very convenient apartments and hotels nearby for you to choose from.
Charming location renowned for its eclectic market and street theatre Covent Garden is the oldest square in London. With the Piazza at its hub, street performers entertain the many visitors to this vibrant part of the West End of London. Huge variety of good restaurants and bars.
With its shops and restaurants, it is one of the most lively areas to visit. Reflecting the rich heritage of what used to be London’s major market, planting is important in Covent Garden. And you might be surprised to know that there are over 5,000 plants across this charming neighbourhood.
The London Transport Museum
Located in the Covent Garden Piazza the Museum is one of the main visitor attractions in the area. See buses, trains, tubes and taxis from the 19th century to the present day. This fabulous museum brings to life the history of London’s public transport network. The museum is enjoyable for young people and adults alike. With lots of interactive exhibits it’s a fun day out for everyone. As well as hosting a range of historic public transport vehicles, you can see an amazing array of the transport network’s famous poster art and graphic design.
Art lovers can enjoy the exhibits and the National GalleryThe National Gallery and National Portrait Gallery nearby. Or simply stroll across the Strand to Somerset House and see the famous impressionist and post-impressionist masterpieces in the Courtauld Gallery.
For culture vultures
For many years Covent Garden has been the destination of culture vultures in London. The area boasts and eclectic, ever-changing mix of opera, ballet, theatre and drama. From highbrow to mainstream, fringe and beyond. There are more than twenty thriving theatres in the vicinity. And it is of course host to world renowned attractions: The Royal Opera and The Royal Ballet.
Covent Garden, London WC2E 9DD
You may wish to stay in a hotel or apartment nearby….. It is a great neighbourhood in which to stay. There is so much on your doorstep to see and do. Enjoy the restaurants, bars and culture just a minute or two’s walk away. Good options in this area include the Z Hotel and the Strand Palace.
The Velopark at London’s Lee Valley is one of the most stunning sporting facilities in the whole of Europe. Get your two-wheeled thrills at this amazing centre. It offers track cycling, road racing, BMX and mountain biking. The first place in the whole world to be able to do all four disciplines.The hub of the facility is the award-winning 6000 seat velodrome where famous Olympians and Paraolympians set the London 2012 Games alight.
Whether you are a beginner or an elite cyclist the VeloPark will cater for you. It is not even necessary to bring along a bike. You can hire everything you need for your fun on two wheels.
The velodrome (located indoors) is the fasted cycling track in the world. You can enjoy a one hour track cycling introduction. Or, if you already know what you’re doing then you can go through the four-stage accreditation course.The remodelled Olympic BMX track is a great idea for adrenaline junkies. It has over 30 bumps, jumps and berms.The road circuit is one mile long and floodlit – it is a leisurely options.
And for aficionados of off-road cycling there are 8km of traffic-free mountain bike trails.
The venue exists for everyone – amateurs and world champions.
Velodrome taster sessions
The Velodrome offers experience sessions where bike and helmet hire is included in the price. This is a great way for you and your family/friends to find out how it feels! It is a fun experience where you will get to ride the Olympic Velodrome track yourself! Sessions are one hour long and offer an exciting introduction to track cycling. You will be coached in the use of a fixed wheel bike and acquire basic skills.
Friday night party sessions
When you can bring along friends or colleagues for an evening of track cycling with timed laps. Spend an hour getting to know the bike and track with expert coach before you challenge each other with timed laps. Refreshments can be added to your package for afterwards. Please call the VeloPark to book on 020 8221 7709.
Velodrome and BMX Taster sessions
For those aged 12 and older this is an action packed day allowing you to experience the two London 2012 tracks for yourself. Take part in a Track Taster session and learn the key techniques of riding the Velodrome before trying the BMX track and all its features. And at the end of the session you can relax in the cafe.
Mud, Sweat and Gears – 29 March 2020
Your chance to go to the VeloPark and join in the Mountain Bike Cross County Olympic race series. Covering 2.7 miles using Lee Valley VeloPark’s mountain bike trails and connecting paths . It is expected to be fast paced! Click for details >
The London Olympics has left a fantastic cycling legacy with Track, Circuit, BMX and MTB all on the one site. The trails here were designed and built by MTB Trail legend Dafydd Davies of Coed Y Brenin fame utilising rubble from the site clearance…. This is what Re-Cycling is all about!
Education is an important feature of the facilities. There are programmes offered for people new to cycling, schools, clubs and community groups. Please contact the VeloPark before you travel to confirm your requirements.
The VeloPark also plays hosts to the world’s top cyclists. The 6 Day London and the UCI Track Cycling World Championships take place here.
The Lee Valley VeloPark, Abercrombie Rd, London E20 3AB
London and its Parks
If you are a nature lover heading to London you won’t be disappointed. There are numerous fabulous parks. Flora and fauna abound. Whichever season of the year you decide to come, you will love the parks. In spring the trees are showing signs of new leaves. Plants are displaying their most vivid colours. And in summer the parks are to be enjoyed in their full glory. Magnificent specimens of trees are revealed in all their lush splendour as the foliage is abundant. Then in autumn the colours are fabulous. The parks are illuminated by the sight of red, orange and yellow foliage. And in winter, denuded of leaves, the trees remain beautiful – silhouetted against the cool winter sky.
With its many thousands of stunning trees and plants, Hyde Park is a wonderful place to stroll with your family and friends throughout the year and enjoy the natural London vibe. With the adjoining Kensington Gardens, these two magnificent spaces form one of London’s largest green areas. And there is plenty of accommodation nearby. Perfect for jogging and strolling alike, Hyde Park offers you the chance to escape the hustle and bustle of the city and go back to nature.
Boating on The Serpentine: in Hyde Park there is a fleet of rowing and pedal boats for visitors to enjoy gliding across the lake. A great way to spend an afternoon. The Serpentine is London’s oldest boating lake and is home to ducks, coots, swans and tufty-headed grebes.
For refreshments, the Serpentine Bar & Kitchen, inspired by English country living, is a retreat for both Londoners and visitors alike serving a wide variety of tasty hot meals and snacks, sandwiches, salads, cakes, puddings and drinks.
The Diana Memorial Fountain: Built from 545 pieces of Cornish granite, the design aims to reflect the mercurial Diana’s life with water flowing in two directions, cascading, swirling and bubbling before meeting in a calm pool at the bottom. There are three bridges where you can cross the water and go right to the heart of the fountain.
The Lido Bar and Cafe offers stunning views of The Serpentine and has a large alfresco dining area – a wonderful space to relax and enjoy Hyde Park with your family.
In the Kensington Gardens area, The Serpentine Galleries comprise two contemporary art galleries – The Serpentine Gallery and The Serpentine Sackler Gallery. They are within five minutes’ walk of each other and linked by the bridge over the Serpentine Lake from which the galleries get their names. And of course the Princess Diana Playground is great for families with young children.
The Diana Playground
The Diana, Princess of Wales Memorial Playground opened on in June 2000, in memory of the late Princess Diana. Located next to the Kensington Palace home she occupied during her marriage. Its centrepiece is a huge wooden pirate ship – a fitting tribute to the child-loving Princess. Inspired by the stories of Peter Pan, the design includes an area where less able and able-bodied children can play happily together.
The playground encourages children to explore and follow their imaginations and learn whilst they play. It is estimated that over 70,000 children enjoy this free playground each year, playing, exploring, dashing about, and letting their imaginations soar in this magical space. There is a sensory trail, teepees, a beach and various toys and play sculptures; all set against a lush backdrop of trees and plants. There’s also plenty of seating so the grownups can relax too and enjoy a coffee in the playground while their children rush around and use up their energy in imaginary games!
Hyde Park Corner – London’s site of protest
Speakers’ Corner: a famous, traditional site for public speeches and debates since the 1800’s when protests and demonstrations took place in Hyde Park. Historic figures such as Karl Marx, Vladimir Lenin and George Orwell often used the area to speak to the gathered crowds. This is the place to exercise your democratic right to free speech! On a Sunday morning, it is not unusual to find hordes of people converging on Speakers’ Corner to listen to enthusiasts expounding their views on the latest issues of the day. Anyone can turn up unannounced to speak on any subject, as long as the police consider their speeches lawful.
Wildlife: Hyde Park provides a unique habitat for a diverse variety of species of flora and fauna. And positive changes in management practices have encouraged new species to adopt the park as their new home! The creation of the meadow area gives a flavour of how Hyde Park once looked in the past. And this area has become more diverse year on year since its creation. Of special delight to visitors is the sight of butterflies feeding from the native wildflowers in the meadow.
Trees, shrub beds and an abundance of herbaceous plantings provide rich habitats for song birds including robins, dunnocks and tits. Look out for small groups of long tailed tits that hop from tree to tree looking for insects and nesting materials. Sadly, over feeding of feral pigeons and squirrels threatens the native song birds. They are not able to compete with these robust pests.
Goose Duckling: The Serpentine attracts a large number of wildfowl, many of which are winter visitors to the park. Look out for the exotic looking great crested grebes and their spectacular mating rituals. The lake also attracts a large number of insects that and thereby provides a perfect feeding ground for bats. The best place to view bats is on Dell Bridge around dusk and also close to Serpentine Bridge.
Much of the wildlife in the park goes unnoticed by the majority of visitors. This includes a large number of ‘minibeasts’ such as beetles, bees and a host of ground foraging insects. These insects are a vital component of the park ecosystem. So the creation and protection of their habitats is very important for the overall health of the park.
Look out for other exotic and unusual visitors which descend on Hyde Park from time to time. Recent sightings have included a black swan, a buzzard and egyptian geese.
Sports in Hyde Park
Sports: The Hyde Park Tennis and Sports Centre is located at the western end of the Sports Field at the junction between West Carriage Drive and South Carriage Drive. There are 6 tennis courts, a 6 rink lawn bowling green and a 9 hole putting green. And usefully, a cafe and changing facilities.
Tennis: There are 6 high-quality tennis facilities, accredited by the Lawn Tennis Association, at the Hyde Park Tennis and Sports Centre. Visitors to the park are encouraged to turn up and play. For regular players who live nearby, a range of membership options are available. Coaching courses are run for children and for adults. Tournaments are organised and teams can also play in local tennis leagues.
Lawn Bowls: The Hyde Park Tennis and Sports Centre has a well-maintained 6 rink flat green bowling green. The bowling green (or an individual rink) is available for hire from May-October (weather dependent). Pre-booking required. Bowls of all sizes are available for hire.
Putting Green: The Centre also has a challenging and well maintained 9 hole putting course, popular with both groups and families.
Hyde Park is open from 5:00 am until midnight all year round. Times may vary during lockdown.
Getting to Hyde Park
Hyde Park is highly accessible by public transport, both by underground and by bus. There is also limited car parking available but we recommend that visitors come to the park by public transport. The general postcode for the park is W2 2UH, but it covers a large area so we suggest you plan your journey carefully. See TfL website.
Tube stations close to Hyde Park are:
Lancaster Gate (Central Line), Marble Arch (Central Line), Hyde Park Corner (Piccadilly Line), Knightsbridge (Piccadilly Line).
- North : C2, 6, 7, 10, 16, 19, 23, 36, 52, 73, 82, 98, 113, 274, 390, 414
- South : 2, 36, 137, 148, 159, 436
- West : 9, 10, 14, 19, 22, 52, 74, 94, 148, 414
- East : 8,15, 23, 30, 38,274
Hyde Park – make sure you visit when you come to London!
There are many cycle hire docking stations located throughout the park.
Accommodation in the area
There are lots of accommodation options close to Hyde Park, both hotels and apartments. If you wish to stay in a hotel then there are some excellent 5* hotels bordering on the park, especially along Park Lane.
The delightful West End and Oxford Street area features some of the most expensive and luxurious property in London. With an intricate network of busy streets and garden squares, the area is awash with the buzz of visitors. You can enjoy the department stores, restaurants, nightlife and entertainment on offer.
The renowned “West End” includes Oxford Street, Mayfair, Marylebone, Piccadilly Circus, Soho and Bloomsbury. And here, you will find London’s best theatres and some of the major attractions including the British Museum, the National Gallery, Covent Garden Market, Hyde Park, the Royal Opera House and Selfridges.
You can enjoy a stay in a serviced apartment within walking distance of Europe’s longest and most famous shopping street. Extending over 1.5 miles (2.4 km) the stunning department stores and luxury boutiques of London’s Oxford Street will enable you to “shop till you drop”.
Enjoy a stroll through the cobbled Covent Garden Piazza where you can enjoy a meal or a drink in one of the many bars and restaurants that abound. You can take in the sights and sounds of Leicester Square and visit Piccadilly Circus and Trafalgar Square. An enjoy bustling Chinatown where you will see the roasted ducks and pork hanging in the restaurant windows. Theatre fanatics should get a seat at one of the award-winning West End shows, such as The Lion King or Phantom of the Opera, before retiring for a well deserved rest!
Art and culture…..
Enjoy a wander round the National Gallery, an art museum in Trafalgar Square in the City of Westminster. Founded in 1824, it houses a myriad collection of over 2,300 paintings dating from the mid-13th century to 1900, altarpieces to the Impressionists. It is open daily and you can enjoy a daily guided tour on (Monday to Friday). It houses The Espresso Bar, as well as The National Dining Rooms which offers stunning views across Trafalgar Square and boasts a menu that showcases the best of British produce.
A shoppers’ paradise…..
Oxford Street is the world’s biggest high street, a shoppers paradise offering a mile and a half of retail opportunities in the City of Westminster in the West End of London. It runs from Tottenham Court Road to Marble Arch via Oxford Circus.
It is Europe’s busiest shopping street, with around half a million daily visitors visiting some 100+ flagship stores and shops.
Whether you are looking for fashion, beauty, technology or homeware you will not be disappointed.
You can shop the very best high-street brands such as Topshop, Gap, H&M, the American Niketown, the young and hip River Island, Primark (cheap fashion) and the UK’s iconic department stores including the world famous Selfridges where luxury goods are beautifully displayed, the quality retail store of John Lewis & Partners (good for fashion and electronics), Debenhams, House of Fraser and the flagship store of the ever popular, conservative Marks & Spencer.
With over 500 restaurants within five minutes’ walk, you’ll have plenty of dining opportunities.
Getting to Oxford Street is easy, with Marble Arch, Bond Street and Oxford Circus stations all serving this lively hub. The bus service is very good in this area. Much of Oxford Street is pedestrianised and there are, of course, plenty of black cabs around.
Most shops and department stores are open Monday to Saturday from 9 am to 9pm and Sunday from 11.30 am to 6pm. Oxford Street can be quite busy at times. So to avoid the crowds it is probably best to avoid the street during the week between 5 and 6.30 pm and on Saturday afternoons. The queues to pay in shops and to access the underground are normally more dense at that time.
Nearby Regent Street…..
Leading from Oxford Street you can also enjoy the luxury shops of Regent Street. And walking towards Piccadilly Circus you can take a stroll through Carnaby Street and experience a taste of London’s cool and trendy 60’s heritage.
And Piccadilly Circus…..
Piccadilly Circus is one of London’s most popular tourist destinations. It is located in the City of Westminster in London’s West End. Here, you can sit by the famous Shaftesbury Memorial Fountain, otherwise known as Eros, and watch the world go by. His naked statue cast in aluminium stands atop the fountain, in the centre of glamorous Piccadilly Circus. And then have your photo taken in front of the iconic advertising screens. The videos and animations, along with a host of neon illuminated signs, have dominated the landscape for over a century. For instance, Coca Cola has had a sign here since 1954!
From Piccadilly Circus, you can easily walk to Piccadilly, Leicester Square or Shaftesbury Avenue. The closest Underground station is Piccadilly Circus, which is served by the Bakerloo and Piccadilly lines. This station is one of the very few on the London Underground to have no buildings on street level and everything here is subterranean.
Nearby Fitzrovia is a diverse residential area where grand 18th and 19th century apartments abound. Well situated for the West End theatres, Fitzrovia has many hotels, galleries and old-school pubs. Charlotte Street is lined with lively bistros and cafes. And many of the quiet streets here are home to new media, advertising and architectural companies. Art galleries abound. The iconic BT Tower is in the centre of the neighbourhood and dominates the skyline.
Accommodation in the neighbourhood
You may wish to stay in a hotel or apartment nearby….. It is a great neighbourhood in which to stay. There is so much on your doorstep to see and do. Enjoy the shopping, restaurants, bars and culture just a minute or two’s walk away. Good options in this area include the Montcalm and the Hard Rock Hotel.
Columbia Road Flower Market is a lovely place for a Sunday morning jaunt. And the earlier you get there the better. By mid-morning on a fine day you will find yourself in the middle of a crowd.
As you approach the stalls, you will be struck by the numbers of people leaving the market with bouquets, plants, trees and more besides. It is colourful and vibrant. You can buy all things horticultural at great prices.
A stunning oasis of flowers, foliage and folk transform the street into a very special place. You can buy bedding plants, flowers and plants of every possible type imaginable. Actual growers attend this market to sell their wares. And others are being sold by vendors who have imported them from all over the world.
The sounds of buskers and musicians on the streets compound the city village atmosphere of the flower market. The perfume of flowers pervades the area – a treat for the senses. And the sound of the London barrow boys offering their blooms completes the backdrop.
Stall after staff offer a fabulous array of colour and beauty at this fabulous market.
And there are some 60 independent shops in the street selling things other than flowers! You will see art galleries, cake shops, antique shops and vintage clothes stores. Delis and cafes serve delightful English fare. And there is a wealth of restaurants and pubs for you to enjoy.
It is a fabulous place to people watch. Take a table in the window of one of the pubs, cafes or restaurants and you will enjoy the scene.
Columbia Flower Market is well worth a visit. A great place to meander on a Sunday. And a super place to take photographs.
Columbia Road Flower Market, Columbia Rd, London E2 7RG
How to get there
By underground: Bethnal Green
Nearest train stations: Bethnal Green, Cambridge Heath, Hoxton
Plan your journey by visiting the TFL website.
You may wish to stay in a hotel or apartment close to the Columbia Road Flower Market….. It is a cosmopolitan neighbourhood with much to see and do. Good options in the vicinity include the Town Hall Hotel and Apartments and the Shoreditch Montcalm.
Since 1348 The Charterhouse has been many things: a monastery, private mansion, boys school and an almshouse.
Even today, in 2020, The Charterhouse is still an almshouse. The almshouse provides a home and care for single people over 60 years old. It is specifically aimed at people who are capable of living independently but are in financial and social need.
The Charterhouse is custodian of a wide range of historic objects. Acquired over the course of seven centuries, the collection includes a rich body of historic museum, archive and library material. Much of it is cared for and displayed on-site.
The museum houses some 120 objects, starting in the present day and working backwards through time. The displays reveal the fascinating history of the site through a lovely collection of curated objects.
An array of archaeological material has been revealed when successive changes have been made to the site.
Over the years, the gardens and buildings of Charterhouse have inspired an abundance of visual representations. A collection of over 1000 paintings, photographs, postcards, prints and drawings are in their care. There are portraits of 17th century Governors and there is an extensive collection of 19th and 20th century photographs and postcards.
The three library collections illuminate the lives lived and lost at The Charterhouse over the centuries.
A guided tour will bring you face to face with the fabulous collection of historic silver.
Since opening its doors to the public in 2017 an increasing number of visitors have discovered a connection to the Charterhouse in their family tree.
The Charterhouse, Charterhouse Square, Barbican, London EC1M 6AN
Located in a fabulous Neo-Classical building with a huge dome, the National Gallery is situated adjacent to the National Portrait Gallery. The Gallery overlooks Trafalgar Square.
The Gallery boasts one of the world’s finest collections of European art. It features masterpieces fromm the mid-13th century to the early 20th century.
The National Gallery, Trafalgar Square, Charing Cross, London WC2N 5DN
Nearest underground stations
Charing Cross, Leicester Square
Nearest train station
It’s great to stay near where it’s all happening in London. There are some excellent apartments close to Trafalgar Square.
Initially built by Henry III in 1245 the royal Westminster Abbey is one of the most important Gothic buildings of England. It is a fabulous example of medieval architecture on a grand scale. At first home of Benedictine monks, the coronation church since 1066 and the final resting place of 17 monarchs. It stands on the south side of Parliament Square. It contains a treasury full of paintings, stained glass, pavements, textiles, books and various other artefacts plus the most significant collection of monumental sculptures of the UK. In the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Galleries in the Abbey’s Triforium you can explore over 1,000 years of history in this truly unique space, high above the Abbey floor.
Queen Elizabeth II’s coronation was held here in 1953.
In 1997 Princess Diana’s funeral took place here.
And in 2011 the wedding of Prince William to Catherine Middleton took place here.
The Tomb of the Unknown Warrior
When you visit the abbey you will be able to see the Tomb of the Unknown Warrior. Here lies the body of an unknown soldier from the World War I battlefields. He was buried here in 1920. His grave serves to represent all those who have lost their lives in war.
Westminster Abbey, 20 Deans Yd, Westminster, London SW1P 3PA
St Paul’s Cathedral
Welcoming worshippers, visitors and sightseers, the cathedral of the capital designed by Sir Christopher Wren is one of London’s most recognisable and historic landmarks. It was completed over 300 years ago in 1711. It is a true masterpiece of Baroque architecture that dominates the City skyline.
Although it is a Protestant cathedral, the exterior resembles in some ways St Peter’s in Rome, particularly the ornate dome. The dome is one of the largest in the world. It is an amazing 111m high and weighs 65,000 tonnes. The galleries at the top offer great views of London and beyond.
It boasts one of the largest bells in Europe, Great Paul. The hour bell, Great Tom strikes the hour and marks the death of royalty. The acoustics in the cathedral are good and it is renowned for its music. Choristers are drawn from nearby St Paul’s Cathedral School.
Visit the tombs of Nelson and Wellington, test the unique acoustics of the Whispering Gallery and climb up to the Golden Gallery to enjoy a panoramic view of London.
St Paul’s Cathedral, St. Paul’s Churchyard, London EC4M 8AD.
Unfortunately, Buckingham Palace will not be opening to the public in summer 2020.
The official London residence of Her Majesty The Queen is open to tourists during a couple of months each summer whilst she and Prince Philip are spending time in Balmoral in Scotland. Buckingham Palace is one of the world’s few remaining working palaces and the Buckingham Palace Tour gives you a window on the world of British royalty in the 21st century. This magnificent building is an amazing 108 metres wide and an imposing 24 metres high. And it boasts 775 rooms!
This is where to watch Changing the Guard.
You can take a tour. Highlights of the Buckingham Palace tour include the 19 beautiful State Rooms which are lavishly decorated and used for receiving guests and official ceremonial functions. See the regal splendour of the Throne Room often used as a backdrop for royal photos. Marvel at the magnificent Grand Staircase. And enjoy seeing the fine art including works by Canaletto, Rembrandt and Vermeer.
A new special exhibition is housed in the Palace every year. The special exhibition for 2020 will feature the Royal Family’s love of animals. Notably, the Queen has been a lifelong dog lover. She was given her first corgi, Susan, for her 18th birthday and has since owned more than 30. The exhibition will feature photographs of many royal pets through the ages.
The Palace also boasts a magnificent garden in which you can stroll. It is a walled oasis in the middle of the capital. It has over 350 different species of wild flowers and a beautiful lake. Her Majesty the Queen hosts annual garden parties in this “largest private garden” in London as well as large functions to celebrate major royal milestones. Jubilees and “big” birthdays are celebrated in style. There is a helicopter landing pad as well as a tennis court in the garden.
A standard entry ticket will give you entry to the State Rooms and Buckingham Palace. Or, the slightly more expensive option available which allow you to visit the Royal Mews and The Queen’s Gallery.
The Royal Mews is located just adjacent to the Palace and houses the royal carriages including the Gold State Coach. The coach was built in 1762 and has been used for every coronation since George IV. The coach horses used on ceremonial occasions are also housed here.
If you are visiting London outside the summer months then you might like to go along and watch the Changing of the Guard. You will hear the band playing and the soldiers marching. The pageantry is stunning. It is a great place to take photos and people watch.
Enjoy a visit to Buckingham Palace – it will give you memories to treasure.
Buckingham Palace, Westminster, London SW1A 1AA
Travel by underground: The nearest tube stations are Victoria, Green Park and Hyde Park Corner.
Take a bus: Several buses stop nearby.
By coach: To Victoria Coach Station which is only 10 minutes’ walk away.
The Palace is generally accessible but please visit the accessibility section of the royal website for further details before you plan your journey.
There are some good family apartments nearby. Accommodation close to Buckingham Palace…..
There are many places to enjoy nature in London, but the London Zoo must be one of the best. It is a great place for children of all ages to visit. Wildlife conservation is the priority for ZSL London Zoo. The various animals and educational exhibits give a fascinating insight into nature in the world today.
Set in leafy Regent’s Park amid heritage-listed buildings and beautiful gardens, the Zoo is an oasis in the heart of the capital. With over 750 amazing animal species to discover, as well as live shows and fantastic, immersive exhibits, this is an unmissable attraction.
The Zoo’s biggest experience, Land of the Lions, gives visitors the chance to get closer than ever before to the mighty Asiatic lions. Sadly only only 400 remain in the wild. Visitors can explore three walkways covering the 2,500m2 exhibit with thrilling, immersive themed areas to explore. You will be able to see the Asiatic lions roaming around a recreation of the Gir Forest. The forest is skirted by a miniature Indian village which enhances the experience.
Embark on a journey through an Indonesian habitat at Tiger Territory, where you can come face-to-face with one of nature’s most awesome predators, learn about the natural behaviours of Sumatran Tigers at the daily Tiger Talk and discover the conservation issues these creatures face in the wild.
View animals in a different light at Rainforest Life (London’s only living rainforest), and go on a journey high into the treetops to meet a variety of amazing rainforest species. Then head down below to meet the creatures who only come out in the dark in the amazing nocturnal experience, Night Life.
Visitors can head down to the beach and watch London’s largest colony of Humboldt Penguins dive, swim, frolic and feed, meet the Monkeys in their natural habitat – with no boundaries between animals and visitors in a walk through enclosure, step Into Africa and observe the elegance and grace of the giraffes from the viewing platform and move through lush forested pathways when Gorilla Kingdom brings the African rainforest to the heart of London.
In June and July you can enjoy a Sunset Safari.
You can also enjoy displays, feeding times and talks at no extra cost!
How to get there
There are so many ways to get to London zoo….. It is located on the northern side of Regent’s Park.
Camden Town (16 mins / 0.8 miles walk from the Zoo)
Camden Town station (Northern Line) is the nearest Underground station.
Chalk Farm (18 mins / 0.9 miles walk)
Camden Town station can get extremely busy, especially at weekends. Chalk Farm (Northern Line) is an ideal alternative, approximately the same walking distance from the Zoo. It has lift access and this route offers a pleasant walking route through Primrose Hill’s pretty residential streets and beside Primrose Hill park.
Baker Street (21 mins / 1.1 miles walk) / (14 mins via 274 bus)
Walking from Baker Street (Bakerloo, Circle, Metropolitan and Hammersmith & City Lines) is via Regent’s Park.
Or take the 274 bus northbound.
Regent’s Park (24 mins / 1.2 miles walk)
The Zoo is an easy walk from Regent’s Park station (Bakerloo Line). Once out of the station and across Marylebone Road, the route is signposted through leafy Regent’s Park. Or take the 88 bus northbound from nearby Albany Street (exit Regent’s Park tube station to the right) to approximately halve the walking distance.
By London Overground
Camden Road station (21 mins / 1 mile walk from the Zoo)
London Overground makes travel to the Zoo easy from southwest, north and northeast London. The Zoo is an easy walk from Camden Road station, or catch the 274 bus towards Camden Town.
Nearest National Rail stations to ZSL London Zoo
Euston (Virgin Trains, London Northwestern Railway or London Overground).
Fro Euston, the fastest route is to take Northern Line tube from Euston to either Camden Town or Chalk Farm.
Marylebone (Chiltern Trains)
From the main entrance of Marylebone Station walk left to Baker Street, then either follow Baker Street tube walking directions, or take the 274 bus northbound, which leaves every 12 minutes. See map of 274 bus.
Please note, if you are travelling over school or bank holidays, your journey may be affected by planned engineering works. Check your journey at National Rail.
88: Northbound, towards Kentish Town: Alight on Albany Street at Prince Albert Road.
88: Southbound, towards Great Portland Street: Get off on Albany Street at Regent’s Park Barracks.
These stops are just a few minutes’ walk from the Zoo. See map.
274: Northbound and Southbound: Get off on Prince Albert Road at ZSL London Zoo. See map.
Plan your journey with the TfL Journey Planner.
ZSL London Zoo’s car park is on Outer Circle, Regent’s Park. At present the Zoo is outside of the congestion charging zone. Sat nav: NW1 4SX. The car park is chargeable. For more details please see full parking information.
A disabled parking bay is available in front of the Zoo entrance, with other dedicated spaces on the main road (up to four hours) and in the main car park.
Please note that parking space in the Zoo’s main car park has been significantly reduced due to Thames Water/HS2 works.By bike
Cycling to the Zoo is easy. There is a public bike shed in the car park opposite the main Zoo entrance.
And there are two TfL Barclays Cycle Hire scheme docking stations nearby.
Camden Lock to Little Venice Waterbus
The London Waterbus Company runs a scheduled service along the Regent’s Canal between Camden Lock or Little Venice and ZSL London Zoo.
If you are bring your family to London and wish to stay near the zoo, rent an apartment nearby. Whether you wish to rent an apartment or stay in a hotel there are some excellent options available. The Melia White House Hotel is a particularly good option, being close to Great Portland Street underground. It is located on the south side of Regents Park. It has on-site restaurant and bar, as well as a gym.
If you are coming to London to see in the New Year there is only one place to be on New Year’s Eve and that is the Southbank.
The best viewing spots are sectioned off and only available to visitors who have tickets so it is best to buy tickets in advance. You can choose from several viewing areas along the Thames and on Waterloo and Westminster Bridge.
Bring along your camera to take home your memories of the evening.
Tickets are essential for this amazing spectacular. Click here >
Thames Riverside, Central London, SE1, United Kingdom
There are some lovely family apartments close to the Southbank but you need to book early to avoid disappointment.
The London Eye is temporarily closed.
Located on the South Bank of the River Thames, a flight on the iconic Coca-Cola London Eye is an essential journey for all visitors to London – whatever their ages. The Eye resembles a spoked bicycle wheel rising high above the river. It is the world’s tallest cantilevered observation wheel.
You will be able to enjoy superb 360 degree views round the London skyline from your pod! Bring your camera with you and spot London’s major landmarks from on high. The wheel offers great opportunities to take breathtaking shots of London. As it moves so slowly you will have plenty of time to take photos and videos from many different angles. At 135m this stunning cantilevered observation wheel is the tallest of its kind in the world! It is a stunning feat of engineering built to celebrate the Millennium.
And the wheel is operational throughout the year; the times vary according to season. Therefore we recommend that you make a reservation in advance. The slow rotation of the 32 capsule wheel takes approximately 30 minutes and gives you an ever changing perspective of London. Capsules are bookable for special occasions and amazingly can each accommodate 28 people! You can even get married in the London eye! They are ideal for spending time with family and friends and you can even arrange to dine in private in the seclusion of a capsule.
The Wheel towers over the Thames opposite the Houses of Parliament. On a clear day you can see up to 25 miles away.
The London Eye, Lambeth, London SE1 7PB
How to get there
By tube: Underground stations nearby include Waterloo, Westminster and Lambeth North.
By riverboat: There are a number of services which stop at Coca-Cola London Eye Pier travelling from the O2, Bankside, Embankment, Blackfriars, London Bridge, Tower, Canary Wharf, Hilton Docklands, Masthouse Terrace, Greenwich, Royal Arsenal Woolwich, St. Katherine’s or Westminster Piers.
By bus: Various routes including the 211, 77 and 381.
By train: The closest rail stations are Waterloo and Charing Cross. Waterloo is about 5 minutes walk. Charing Cross is about 15 minutes walk across Hungerford Bridge.
By car: Please note that The London Eye is in the Congestion Charging Zone.
The London Eye welcomes guests with accessibility needs. Please click here for full details before making your reservation for this amazing attraction.
Where to stay nearby
Visitors to the capital are amazed to learn that there are so many free London options. It is a magnificent city with so much to do, see and photograph!
Many of the London Museums offer free entry. But you may have to pay if you decide to go and see one of the special exhibitions.
Natural History Museum
Come face to face with a roaring T-Rex! The fabulous Natural History Museum exhibits a vast range of specimens from various segments of natural history. Located in Exhibition Road in South Kensington the nearest underground stations are South Kensington and Gloucester Road.
You can enjoy emerging stars of the Royal Opera House performing for free most Monday lunchtimes. The performances last approximately 45 minutes. It is best to book in advance to secure your place. Tickets are released some six weeks in advance of each performances.
Sir John Soane’s Museum
Examine lovely treasures at the 19th century townhouse. This house museum is formerly the home of the neo-classical architect John Soane. It is situated adjacent to Lincoln’s Inn Fields. It plays host to many drawings and models of Sone’s projects. And it houses the collections of paintings, drawnings and antiquities he assembled during his lifetime. The nearest underground is Holborn.
Museum of London
Explore London’s fascinating history by paying a visit to this charming Museum.
The Bank of England Museum
Your opportunity to hold a genuine gold bar! The Bank of England Museum, Bartholomew Lane, London EC2R 8AH
The Victoria & Albert Museum
Meander round this lovely exhibition and be inspired by the beautiful objects on display. There is always plenty to see. The nearest underground station is South Kensington.
Museum of London Docklands
Learn all about the history of the river Thames. Nearest stations on the DLR are Poplar and Westferry. And the nearest underground station is Canary Wharf.
The William Morris Gallery
Discover the life and works of one of Britain’s most inspiring designers. The William Morris Gallery, Lloyd Park, Forest Rd, London E17 4PP
The National Maritime Museum
Head to Greenwich to swing by the Queen’s House and the National Maritime Museum.
The National Gallery
Housing masterpieces by renowned painters such as van Gogh, Renoir, da Vinci and Michelangelo, the National Gallery is home to one of the world’s most impressive art collections. And over six million visitors enjoy the gallery every year. You can avoid the crowds by visiting the gallery on weekday mornings or Friday evenings. And it is useful to know that wherever you go, the permanent collections are always free for visitors. The nearest underground stations are Charing Cross and Leicester Square.
Changing the Guard at Buckingham Palace
This world famous ceremony is a great opportunity to see British pageantry at its best. Get there early to have a good view of the proceedings.
Free walking tours
You can join a free walking tour when you come to London. There is no charge but please tip the guide if you have enjoyed the tour! There is so much to see and do in London. If you’re young and fit, or young at heart this is a great option to see London at street level.
The Tate Modern
Tate Modern is one of London’s best loved attractions. The collection is housed in what was once Bankside Power Station on the south bank of the River Thames. And for free, you can enjoy the permanent collection, which includes works by Pollock, Warhol, Matisse and Picasso. The cafe on the top level offers wonderful Thames views, and the building itself is one of London’s major landmarks. The Tate Modern, Bankside, London SE1 9TG
There are many street performers in Covent Garden entertaining visitors throughout the day and evening. It is a great place to stroll. The old Covent Garden market is full of quaint stalls and shops for you to enjoy as you meander through this historic part of the city. Covent Garden is a great place for people watching.
With its thousands of stunning trees and plants, London’s beautiful Hyde Park is a wonderful place to stroll with your family and friends throughout the year. So with the adjoining Kensington Gardens, these two magnificent spaces form one of London’s largest green areas. Perfect for jogging and strolling, you can escape the hustle and bustle in Hyde Park and go back to nature.
Boating on The Serpentine: in Hyde Park there is a fleet of rowing and pedal boats for visitors to enjoy gliding across the lake. A great way to spend an afternoon.
Sports: The Hyde Park Tennis and Sports Centre is at the western end of the Sports Field at the junction between West Carriage Drive and South Carriage Drive. There are 6 tennis courts, a 6 rink lawn bowling green and a 9 hole putting green, a cafe and changing facilities.
Tennis: There are 6 high-quality tennis courts at the Hyde Park Tennis and Sports Centre. Visitors to the park are encouraged to turn up and play and a range of membership options are available. And coaching courses are run for children and for adults. Tournaments are organised and teams can also play in local tennis leagues.
Lawn Bowls: The Hyde Park Tennis and Sports Centre has a well-maintained 6 rink flat green bowling green. The bowling green is available from May-October (weather dependent) to individuals, families, groups of friends or established clubs to hire and can be pre-booked. Bowls of all sizes are available for hire.
Putting Green: The Centre also has a challenging and well maintained 9 hole putting course, popular with both groups and families.
The Serpentine Bar & Kitchen, inspired by English country living, is a retreat for both Londoners and visitors alike. They serve tasty hot meals and snacks, sandwiches, salads, cakes, puddings and drinks.
The Lido Bar and Cafe offers stunning views of The Serpentine and has a large alfresco dining area. It’s a great space to relax and enjoy Hyde Park with your family.
In Memory of Princess Diana
The Diana Memorial Fountain: Built from 545 pieces of Cornish granite, the design aims to reflect the mercurial Diana’s life. Its water flows in two directions, cascading, swirling and bubbling before meeting in a calm pool. There are three bridges where you can cross the water and go right to the heart of the fountain.
In the Kensington Gardens area, The Serpentine Galleries comprise two contemporary art galleries – The Serpentine Gallery and The Serpentine Sackler Gallery. Usefully, they are linked by the bridge over the Serpentine Lake from which the galleries get their names.
The Diana, Princess of Wales Memorial Playground children’s wonderland opened on in June 2000, in memory of the late Princess Diana. Located next to the Kensington Palace home she occupied during her marriage, a huge wooden pirate ship is the amazing centrepiece of this fitting tribute to the child-loving Princess. Inspired by the stories of Peter Pan, the design includes an area where less able and able-bodied children can play together.
The playground encourages children to explore and follow their imaginations and learn through play. Some 70,000+ children enjoy this free playground each year, playing, exploring, dashing about and letting their imaginations soar. There is a sensory trail, teepees, a beach, various toys and play sculptures; all set against a lush backdrop of trees and plants. There’s plenty of seating so the grownups can relax too. You can enjoy a coffee in the playground while their children rush around and use up their energy in imaginary games!
Hyde Park – a natural habitat
Wildlife: Hyde Park provides a unique habitat for a diverse variety of species of flora and fauna and positive changes in management practices have encouraged new species to adopt the park as their home! The meadow area gives a flavour of how Hyde Park once looked in the past and this area has become more diverse year on year since its creation and of special delight to visitors is the sight of butterflies feeding from the native wildflowers in the meadow.
Trees, shrub beds and and an abundance of herbaceous plantings provide rich habitats for song birds including robins, dunnocks and tits. Look out for small groups of long tailed tits that hop around from tree to tree looking for insects and nesting materials. Sadly, over feeding of aggressive feral pigeons and squirrels threatens the native song birds as they are not able to compete with these robust pests.
Goose Duckling: The Serpentine attracts many wildfowl, many of which are winter visitors to the park. Look out for the exotic looking great crested grebes and their spectacular mating rituals. The lake also attracts a large number of insects providing a perfect feeding ground for bats. The best place to view bats is on Dell Bridge around dusk and also close to Serpentine Bridge.
Much of the wildlife in the park goes unnoticed by the majority of visitors. Keep your eyes peeled for a large number of ‘minibeasts’ such as beetles, bees and ground foraging insects. These insects are a vital component of the park ecosystem and the creation and protection of their habitats is very important for the health of the park.
Look out for other exotic and unusual visitors which descend on Hyde Park from time to time. Recent sightings have included a black swan, a buzzard and egyptian geese.
Hyde Park is open from 5:00 am until midnight all year round.
Where to stay
We offer some great family apartments close to Hyde Park.
Getting to Hyde Park
London’s beautiful Hyde Park is highly accessible by public transport, both by underground and by bus. There is limited car parking available but we recommend that visitors come by public transport. The general postcode for the park is W2 2UH, but it covers a large area so we suggest you plan your journey carefully.
Tube stations close to Hyde Park are:
Lancaster Gate (Central Line), Marble Arch (Central Line), Hyde Park Corner (Piccadilly Line), Knightsbridge (Piccadilly Line).
North : C2, 6, 7, 10, 16, 19, 23, 36, 52, 73, 82, 98, 113, 274, 390, 414
South : 2, 36, 137, 148, 159, 436
West : 9, 10, 14, 19, 22, 52, 74, 94, 148, 414
East : 8,15, 23, 30, 38,274
Hyde Park – make sure you visit when you come to London!
On a Sunday
Speakers’ Corner: a famous, traditional site for public speeches and debates since the 1800’s when protests and demonstrations took place in Hyde Park. Historic figures such as Karl Marx, Vladimir Lenin and George Orwell used to speak to the gathered crowds and exercise their right to free speech. So on a Sunday morning, it is not unusual to find hordes of people converging on Speakers’ Corner to listen to enthusiasts expounding their views. Anyone can turn up unannounced to speak on any subject, as long as the police consider their speeches lawful.
Richmond Park – London’s largest Royal Park where deer have roamed freely since 1637.
Richmond is a lovely place for a family visit. You can witness nature in the raw during the rutting season which takes place from September to November. But beware – those lively stags have been known to show a bit too much interest in park visitors. You can drive through large parts of the park but its 2,500 acres are also a great place to walk, hike and cycle.
Well deer are plentiful – but they can be shy so keep your eyes peeled. The stags in Richmond Park are magnificent. If you choose to visit in the autumn during the rutting season you will see their massive antlers draped with lichen, moss and leaves when they are trying to attract females. Red stags and fallow bucks compete for the females and the sound of roaring males barking and clashing antlers is frequently heard at this time. Equally you will learn where the phrase doe eyes comes from!
From May to July the young appear but they tend to be hidden amongst the bracken and long grass, carefully protected by their mothers.
Over the three centuries that the deer have grazed in the park they have contributed to an evolving landscape. See if you can spot the distinctive “browse line” of the trees where grazing deer have eaten all the leaves and twigs growing below about 1.5metres. They devour young seedlings and saplings and this contributes to keeping the grassland open
Please be aware that deer are wild animals. You are advised to keep at least 50 metres away from the deer so that you do not threaten rutting stags or a mother and her calf…
Nature abounds thoughout the park with its huge range of flora and fauna.
Food and Drink
Richmond is a great place for a picnic. Bring your own and sit beside one of the lakes and enjoy being at one with nature.
Enjoying a great vantage point overlooking Richmond Park, this stunning listen Georgian mansion provides a range of refreshments and meals – ideal after a long walk round the park. The Lodge is a great place to hire for an event and has become one of London’s leading wedding venues.
You can also enjoy ice creams, tea and snacks at the Roehampton Cafe. Indoor and outdoor seating available. Open daily.
Richmond Park is a great place for cycling. You can either bring your own or rent a mountain bike from the Parkcycle centre near the Roehampton Gate. There are some lovely traffic free trails in the park so it’s a great place to bring the family for a cycle. The rides are graded – some are hilly whereas others are flat – so you can choose the terrain and pace that suits you.
For pre-school children the Kingston Gate Playground is the ideal place to go. Designed for younger children, it is located adjacent to the Kingston Gate Car Park and features timber sculptures (fairy pergola and tractor are two favourites), a bark pit, a hammock and children’s tables and seats.
For children of all ages the Petersham Gate playground is great. Featuring a sandpit area, bark pit with climbing frame and jumping lily pads, balancing blocks, a hammock, an elephant piano (xylophone), a see-saw and a water play feature. A timber pergola provides shade. Seating provided.
Travelling to the park
By public transport: Richmond Park is easily accessible by public transport so we suggest you plan your journey by visiting the Transport for London website.
Driving to Richmond Park: There are car parks available in Richmond Park, although they do get rather busy at time. See Parking in Richmond Park.
If you are using a mobile device, the park covers a large area so the postcode for guidance is TW10 5HS.
Travelling by tube/train: Richmond Station – National Rail or District Line (and then catch the 371 or 65 buses to the pedestrian gate at Petersham).
Arriving by bus:
190, 391, 419, R68. Northside – 33, 337, 485. Southside 85/N85, 265, K3, Eastside 72, 493, Westside 65, 371.
You may like to stay close to the park with your family. See apartments nearby…..
One of the timeless London landmarks of the city skyline you need to visit! Take a walk across the upper walkway (with its glass floor) and enjoy magnificent views along the Thames and across the City of London from St Paul’s Cathedral to Canary Wharf and beyond. And also see the pedestrians and traffic some 42metres below! Inside the bridge you can enjoy the magnificent Victorian Engine Rooms that house the beautifully maintained coal-driven engines that once powered the Bridge Lifts. If you get your timing right you can view the Bridge Lifting below from the overhead glass floored walkway to allow the River traffic to pass through. Tower Bridge is a great experience.
You can enjoy a 90 minute tour.
Yoga lovers can participate in a monthly yoga session on the glass walkway! A unique sunrise experience.
Built in 1894, Tower Bridge celebrated it’s 125th anniversary in 2019.
In its early days, the Bridge was constantly being raised and lowered to allow sail and steam ships bring in cargo to the Pool of London. Having sailed across the seas to the nations of the British Empire, this was the final stage of the gateway from Asia.
In those days, when the bridge was open, pedestrians wishing to cross the river had to climb up and down the 200 steps of the towers to cross.
It is one of London’s leading tourist attractions with visitor numbers in excess of 2 million every year.
The Tower Bridge Engine Rooms
Explore the new exhibition and learn about the unsung heroes who kept the icon in motion over the decades. See the original steam engines, coal burners and accumulators that once powered this majestic Bridge. And hear the fascinating histories of cooks, coal stokers and engineers. In its heyday, some 80 people were required to operate and maintain the bridge. And when first built, the bridge was raised some 20-30 times a day.
The vibe is very atmospheric. You will be able to have fun with interactive display exhibits, watch newly commissioned films and see never before displayed photographs. This carefully curated exhibition explores and explains the role of this dynamic workplace at the heart of the iconic Tower Bridge.
Tower Bridge, Tower Bridge Rd, London SE1 2UP
How to get there
The main entrance and ticket office is located at the North West Tower of the Bridge. The entrance to the Victorian Engine Rooms is located on the south side of the Bridge on Shad Thames. Follow the painted blue line on the ground to connect the two parts of the attraction. The exit is via the shop.
Tower Hill station (District and Circle lines) to the north side of the Bridge.
London Bridge station (Northern and Jubilee lines) to the south bank of the River Thames a short walk away.
The following bus routes will take you to Tower Bridge: 15, 42, 78,100, 343
Reach Tower Bridge from London Bridge, Fenchurch Street or Tower Gateway DLR Station.
Just a short walk from Tower Bridge riverboats stop at St Katherine Pier and Tower Pier on the north bank and at London Bridge City Pier on the south bank.
Cycle hire docking points available nearby. See docking station map >
The bridge is an accessible venue. Please click here for full details of accessibility before setting off.
Some of the most luxurious apartments overlook London’s tower – imagine enjoying lovely views from your own terrace as the glowing evening sun sets over the River…. See apartments nearby >