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Looking for the top London attractions? Here is an epic list of the most iconic and impressive attractions the city is known for, from Buckingham Palace, The V & A, Kew Garden, London Eye and the Shard. This list covers them all.
London, England is a city known for its iconic and impressive attractions. In fact, some of the world’s most recognisable landmarks and locations are found here.
These sites, monuments, and experiences brilliantly showcase London’s fascinating culture and history. They highlight all the wonders of the city in a unique way.
If you’re planning a trip to London, I’ve put together a detailed list of the top London attractions.
I’ve decided to bypass the usual top 10 London attractions, and give you 13 instead. After all, the best way to discover a new city is by exploring the things it’s known for.
Buckingham Palace and the Changing of the Guards
Buckingham Palace is one of the most iconic London attractions, making it an absolute must-see.
The palace is steeped in royal history and possesses an elegant, grand aesthetic. During the summer months, when the Palace is not in use for its official functions, the State Rooms are open for guests to tour.
The Changing of the Guard Ceremony takes place in front of the palace every day. It lasts for approximately 45 minutes and is quite a sight to see.
It’s a quintessentially British experience and easily one of the most popular tourist attractions in London.
Watch in amusement as the Queen’s Foot Guard march in front of the palace. This experience can get quite crowded. Make sure to arrive early to secure a spot with a good vantage point.
To book a tour of Buckingham Palace’s State Rooms, click here.
The Victoria and Albert Museum
The Victoria and Albert Museum gets its name from Queen Victoria and Prince Albert. It contains the largest collection of applied and decorative art found anywhere in the world.
The permanent collection alone houses over two-million objects.
As typical with London museums, the items are thoughtfully laid out and provide excellent insight and information.
Wander the museum at your leisure and see the different exhibits. Browse displays related to fashion, architecture, photography, painting, sculpting, jewellery, and much more.
Whether you’re looking for rainy day activities, or just keen to learn something new, this museum is a great spot to check out. Even better – it’s free!
Piccadilly Circus is one of the most iconic London tourist spots. It’s located in the West End and is considered London’s entertainment district.
Similar to Times Square in New York City, this area is illuminated with giant screens. And, as you can imagine, these lights are even more fascinating at night.
Bask in the glow of the Piccadilly Lights as you wander this happening entertainment hub.
You’ll also be right around the corner from Trafalgar Square, another one of the most famous places in London. This square features important statues, monuments, museums, and more.
The National Gallery and the National Portrait Gallery are both located in Trafalgar Square.
These are two of London’s most popular galleries. Admission to both of these attractions is free!
The Tate Modern is an art gallery that houses some of the world’s greatest art displays. It’s filled with international modern art, as well as the national collection of British art.
You will find pieces ranging from the 1900s to the present day.
The rooms in the museum are organised according to themes or subjects. The permanent collection contains priceless pieces by world-famous artists.
Among these are Dali, Picasso, and Matisse. There are also ever-changing temporary exhibits showcased in the museum.
The building itself is an architectural masterpiece and is located on the Thames River. It offers exceptionally scenic and picturesque views.
When you’re visiting the museum, make sure to swing by The Millennium Bridge. This steel suspension bridge serves as a pedestrian crossing bridge and connects the Tate Modern Museum with St Paul’s Cathedral. You can easily visit three famous London sites in one go.
Tate Modern is one of the most popular central London attractions, and general admission to the museum is free.
Westminster Abbey is easily one of the most interesting places to visit in London. Construction for the church started in 1065.
The history of the country is deeply embedded inside the abbey’s walls.
It’s a signature staple of London and has hosted many coronations and weddings. It also serves as the burial site for many past English royals.
Step inside and admire the masterful Gothic architecture and learn more about the British Monarchy. Marvel at the intricate stained-glass windows and ornate interior design.
See the historic Coronation Chair. This iconic piece of furniture has hosted the coronation of every single British monarch since 1066. It’s still used for its original purpose to this day.
An audio guide is included in the price of admission which dives deep into the country’s past. Upon entering, guests are free to explore the abbey as they wish.
Read my blog for more things to do in Westminster London.
Book Here | Your Westminster Abbey entry ticket
Churchill’s War Room
The Churchill War Rooms is a fascinating museum dedicated to Winston Churchill and WWII in the U.K. As soon as you enter the museum, you’ll feel as if you’ve been transported back in time.
The rooms where Churchill ran the war effort look exactly as they did back when they were in use.
See the original wartime bunker that sheltered Churchill and his government during the London Blitz.
The actual underground war rooms, complete with living quarters have been recreated. Learn about how Churchill planned and executed his government during wartime.
In addition to exploring the War Rooms, you’ll also learn more about Churchill’s life. An audio guide is included with your admission ticket that details his early years through to his life in public service.
Hyde Park and Speakers Corner
Hyde Park is one of the most famous landmarks in London. It’s also one of London’s Royal Parks and has a wonderfully scenic aesthetic. It’s located in central London, near Buckingham Palace.
The park spans 142-hectares and is filled with plenty of green space, towering trees that offer shade, and a small lake.
It has a lovely, welcoming environment and it is the perfect place to wander and enjoy the fresh open-air of London – far away from the busy streets.
If you’re trying to decide what to do in London during winter, make sure to check out Winter Wonderland.
This buzzing Christmas market takes place inside Hyde Park and is definitely the most festive place in the city.
While you’re here, make sure to stop by Speakers’ Corner, located on the north-east edge of the park.
This area has served as a traditional site for public speeches and debates since the mid-1800s. It represents the importance of free speech in England.
Whether you’re a solo traveller, or on a family holiday, checking out Hyde Park is one of the best things to do in London.
Covent Garden is a hot spot for shopping and entertainment in London’s West End district. It’s one of the city’s most lively areas and stays busy with tourists almost all hours of the day.
It’s a great place to spend a fun night out in London. You’ll find plenty of pubs, clubs, and restaurants.
Whether you’re looking for a relaxing night out with a couple of drinks or a lively club for dancing, you’ll have many exciting options to choose from.
The Covent Garden Market is a must-see when you’re in the area. It’s a great spot with lots of fun things going on.
There are plenty of trendy shops and places to eat and drink. Read more about the top things to do in Covent Garden.
The London Eye
The London Eye is one of the more modern London tourist attractions. This towering Ferris wheel has slowly rotating capsules that provide a birds-eye view of the city.
This attraction runs through the day, and late into the evening. If you visit during the day time, you’ll see many of the top sights in London as you glide in a slow circular rotation above the city.
Admire the Tower of London and Tower Bridge from above. See the full scale of how impressive Big Ben and Parliament really are.
Catch an evening ride and watch the sunset from an epic vantage point. Or, wait till dark and see London lit up in twinkling lights. This attraction will take your London sightseeing to the next level, literally.
The Shard is London’s iconic skyscraper that sits in the centre of the city. It rises 95-storey’s up and offers unparalleled views.
The viewing deck of The Shard provides guests with a beautiful scene of London. The best part is, there is no time limit to stay on the viewing deck. You can spend hours marvelling at the fine city of London.
If you’re on a budget trip to London, The Sky Garden is similar to the Shard, but the entrance is free. After taking an elevator to the top of the skyscraper, you’ll have 360-degree views of London’s landmarks.
There are also food and drink options available from the bars and restaurants housed within the Sky Garden.
To visit the Sky Garden, you’ll need to reserve your tickets online ahead of time. To book your free visit, click here.
London is known for its incredible market scene. These local handouts are scattered throughout the city and serve as cultural hubs. This is definitely the best place to explore the local life in London.
The Borough Market is one of London’s oldest and most popular food markets. You’ll find an amazing selection of speciality foods from all over the U.K. and Europe.
Among the stalls, you’ll find vendors selling fresh produce, gourmet cheeses, freshly baked bread, ready-made meals, and much more.
The atmosphere is amazing and the stalls are always buzzing with a wide selection of varying food. Whether you’re a vegan, vegetarian, or carnivore, you’ll find plenty of great options.
This is one of the top London attractions and the best place to try out the food and delicacies available in the city.
Located on the banks of the Thames River, the Greenwich district is known for its maritime history.
The Cutty Sark is one of the area’s most popular attractions. This British clipper ship was used for the tea trade in the 19th-century. Guests can climb aboard this restored ship and experience the days of ocean exploration.
The National Maritime Museum is another must-see for fans of maritime history. Admission to the museum is free and it’s designed for both children and adults to enjoy.
The Greenwich Market and Greenwich Park are other top attractions worth checking out.
This area is filled with so many fun stops. If you want a nice break from the crowds of London, Greenwich is a wonderful place to pay a visit.
Kew Gardens contains the world’s largest living collection of plants, making this attraction one of the top things to see in London. Explore more than 121-hectares of stunning landscaped gardens, greenhouses, water features, and galleries.
Step inside the greenhouses and discover diverse species from around the globe. Admire the lush greenery of over 14,000 trees in the Arboretum.
Visit the Victorian-era Palm House and see palms and tropical species of plants.
Leave the busy city behind for a few hours and visit this enchanting oasis. Wander the immaculate grounds at your leisure and take in the natural beauty of your surroundings.
These vast and eclectic gardens are one of the most unusual London attractions. It’ll provide you with hours of entertainment. It’s the kind of unique space that is fun for people of all ages and interests.
Conclusion of the Top Attractions to Check Out When You Visit London
London is an exciting capital city that blends the past with the present in a uniquely fascinating way. From monuments to museums to markets, and more, London has the perfect offering of eclectic attractions.
Even better, these attractions can be visited over and over again and still spark a new sense of enjoyment. The sites and landmarks around London are so impressive and masterful you’ll want to visit them over and over again.
The city’s lively squares and markets are always changing. The museums and art galleries are filled with an abundance of displays and information.
Each one of these attractions is guaranteed to make your trip to London that much more memorable.