U.S. CitiesCity-Data Forum Index
Go Back   City-Data Forum > General Forums > Travel
 [Register]
Please register to participate in our discussions with 2 million other members - it's free and quick! Some forums can only be seen by registered members. After you create your account, you'll be able to customize options and access all our 15,000 new posts/day with fewer ads.
View detailed profile (Advanced) or search
site with Google Custom Search

Search Forums  (Advanced)
Reply Start New Thread
 
Old 01-14-2015, 03:00 PM
 
2,143 posts, read 3,559,991 times
Reputation: 1320

Advertisements

My girlfriend and I are planning on doing a 2 week vacation/adventure to several parts in Europe. We booked through a tour company, which we're basically using as hotel/airfare/sightseeing so that we can do things on our own. Long story short, we're doing the 2nd leg of our vacation on our own and we wanted to go to London for a couple of days before heading to Barcelona. It would be a Saturday and Sunday trip, leaving Monday.

Does anyone have any suggested things to do? Our current plan, which can always change is to do this "Free Tours by Foot" tour that covers most if not all of the major sights in London. We did this in DC when a friend of hers came for a visit and I was impressed. It's free, but you can tip towards the end which we will. It's 6 hours, we'd like to do this that Saturday and then see the British Museum on Sunday. We're obviously short on time so we wont be able to "do London" but if anyone has any other ideas that'd be greatly appreciated. I'm open to anything, I know some scoff at the notion of guided tours and such and I get that, which is why I'm looking for some advice. Thanks guys!
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message

 
Old 01-15-2015, 12:39 PM
 
3,161 posts, read 8,096,607 times
Reputation: 2385
What major sights do you plan on doing with the foot tour? With such a short amount of time you obviously aren’t going to be able to see everything. I could list things I think you “must do” but our tastes don’t necessarily align. For example, I wouldn’t waste precious London hours meandering around in the British Museum but obviously that is a priority for you.

Priorities for me would be Big Ben and Parliament (see from the outside, anyway), Westminster Abbey (do the tour), Tower Bridge (can see Tower of London from the outside), see a West End show at night (soooo much cheaper than NYC/Broadway, even if you don’t go to the TKTS booth in Leicester Square!), Borough Market (grab lunch), British Library Special Collections…
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 01-15-2015, 02:12 PM
 
2,143 posts, read 3,559,991 times
Reputation: 1320
Quote:
Originally Posted by mels View Post
What major sights do you plan on doing with the foot tour? With such a short amount of time you obviously aren’t going to be able to see everything. I could list things I think you “must do” but our tastes don’t necessarily align. For example, I wouldn’t waste precious London hours meandering around in the British Museum but obviously that is a priority for you.

Priorities for me would be Big Ben and Parliament (see from the outside, anyway), Westminster Abbey (do the tour), Tower Bridge (can see Tower of London from the outside), see a West End show at night (soooo much cheaper than NYC/Broadway, even if you don’t go to the TKTS booth in Leicester Square!), Borough Market (grab lunch), British Library Special Collections…
Yeah, I mean like I said, I'm open minded. I was talked away from doing the London Eye b/c it's seen as a tourist trap and I get that, being from DC and all. The tour covers the Tower of London, Westminster Abbey, Big Ben, Parliament, Buckingham Palace, Tower Bridge, London Underground among other things. It's a pretty extensive list.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 01-15-2015, 02:49 PM
 
10,847 posts, read 11,265,341 times
Reputation: 7586
If you have only 1.5 days, skip any museum. It will be a pity if you spend half a day looking at antiques in a museum, instead of the city itself.

If you only want a flavour of everything in London, I'd say 1.5 days is doable.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 01-15-2015, 03:22 PM
 
Location: SF Bay Area
13,343 posts, read 17,411,228 times
Reputation: 19654
If you like art, check out the National Gallery at Trafalgar Square.
If you like buildings/architecture, have a gander at St Paul's Cathedral.
Attending a concert in Royal Albert Hall is a nice experience as well.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 01-16-2015, 09:11 AM
 
3,161 posts, read 8,096,607 times
Reputation: 2385
Quote:
Originally Posted by DomRep View Post
Yeah, I mean like I said, I'm open minded. I was talked away from doing the London Eye b/c it's seen as a tourist trap and I get that, being from DC and all. The tour covers the Tower of London, Westminster Abbey, Big Ben, Parliament, Buckingham Palace, Tower Bridge, London Underground among other things. It's a pretty extensive list.
I thought the Eye was a complete tourist trap but was coerced into going on it...loved it and glad I went! I hit it on a weekday as soon as they opened so the line was reasonable.

It sounds like the tour you looked at may cover all of the bigger attractions. Are you just seeing them all from the outside and not actually touring all of those places in 1 day? Although I don't see how that would even be logistically possible to go inside and tour each and every place in that limited amount of time.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 01-16-2015, 09:51 AM
 
Location: NoVa
2,126 posts, read 2,911,538 times
Reputation: 2929
For British Museum, if you're going to DIY since it's free, I highly suggest you research extensively before you go and map out a route for the exhibits you'd like to see in there. It's HUUUUUGE and you will easily get lost if you don't research and prioritize your route. Or you can take the British Museum highlights tour, this is paid and it's like 12 bucks or something (check their website). Tickets can be bought on the spot. It's a guided 90 minutes tour of all the highlights at the Museum and the highlights change daily based on who's guiding the tour.

If you like markets, when you're in Southwark area, check out Borough Market for their food. Saturday will be crowded especially in the afternoon but you can feast on different things from fish & chips, pies, gellato (there's one near the entrance that's quite authentic and it's run by Italians. The mascarpone or pistachio are to die for!), paella, fresh oysters, etc, etc. I love food so this is one of my favorite places to be when in London, more so than the royals thing.

Edited to add: skip the London Eye. Not worth it. I'd do a river cruise instead since you get to see the sights at river level and get to give your feet a rest too.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 01-16-2015, 09:56 AM
 
Location: NYC, CHI, UK
466 posts, read 430,761 times
Reputation: 744
I recommend the Ripping Yarns Jack the Ripper night tour. The guides are all Yeoman Warders.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 01-16-2015, 10:10 AM
 
2,143 posts, read 3,559,991 times
Reputation: 1320
Quote:
Originally Posted by mels View Post
I thought the Eye was a complete tourist trap but was coerced into going on it...loved it and glad I went! I hit it on a weekday as soon as they opened so the line was reasonable.

It sounds like the tour you looked at may cover all of the bigger attractions. Are you just seeing them all from the outside and not actually touring all of those places in 1 day? Although I don't see how that would even be logistically possible to go inside and tour each and every place in that limited amount of time.
If it's anything like the one in DC, you don't go into any of them but pass them by, be there for about 15-20 minutes to take pics, explore, get the history behind it, etc. But the DC one was 2 hours and I live in DC so anything over that would be overkill for me, this would be 6. The tour is also rated 14th on Trip Advisor and is highly recommended.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 01-16-2015, 10:51 AM
 
Location: SF Bay Area
13,343 posts, read 17,411,228 times
Reputation: 19654
I walked past the Eye on my way to the Tate Modern ... I say skip it as well.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Please register to post and access all features of our very popular forum. It is free and quick. Over $68,000 in prizes has already been given out to active posters on our forum. Additional giveaways are planned.

Detailed information about all U.S. cities, counties, and zip codes on our site: City-data.com.


Reply
Please update this thread with any new information or opinions. This open thread is still read by thousands of people, so we encourage all additional points of view.

Quick Reply
Message:

Over $104,000 in prizes was already given out to active posters on our forum and additional giveaways are planned!

Go Back   City-Data Forum > General Forums > Travel
Similar Threads
Follow City-Data.com founder on our Forum or

All times are GMT -6.

© 2005-2019, Advameg, Inc. · Please obey Forum Rules · Terms of Use and Privacy Policy · Bug Bounty

City-Data.com - Archive 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35 - Top