Top Things to Do In London

With an immense amount of sights, events, entertainment and history in the capital, it's hard to know where to start. One thing to remember is that many of its world-class collections, including the British Museum and National Gallery, are free to enter. Many of London's top museums are clustered in plush South Kensington, such as the V&A and the kid-friendly Natural History Museum. It's also here that you'll find the Royal Albert Hall, which is one of many London top venues for classical music. We also love the venues for seeing the vast city from above, such as The View From The Shard and London Eye.

A few of our favourite things to see, if you are short of time, include world-class art at the National Gallery and Tate Modern and which brings out the traditional and cutting edge cerations. Of course London's nightlife is all the more special with its theatre scene where you'll find family-friendly shows such as War Horse and Matilda the Musical, plus outdoor shows in the long summer evenings. Our tip for hunting down tickets is the official TKTS booth in Leicester Square, where on the day you'll have a pick of discounted seats.

The British Museum

Unrivalled collection of antiquities, plus the Queen Elizabeth II Great Court. Huge number of permanent displays and treasures from the Roman Empire, ancient Egypt, medieval Europe, ancient Iran and India. Regular talks, evening events and performances. Sat-Thur 10am-5.30pm; Fri 10am-8.30pm.

The London Eye

This London icon is one of the world’s largest observation wheels ­– don’t forget to share your London Eye memories using #eyelovelondon. Joint tickets available with the Sea Life London Aquarium, London Dungeon, Madame Tussauds and Shrek’s Adventure. Please check for times and prices.

The National Gallery

One of the world’s greatest galleries, with works by Western European masters from the 13th to 19th centuries. Regular guided tours, talks and workshops. Sat-Thur 10am-6pm; Fri 10am-9pm. Admission free; charges for special exhibitions.

Houses of Parliament

The home of the UK Parliament is open year-round. Choose from guided, multimedia and family tours, or attend various talks and events (advance booking recommended, but not always essential). When Parliament is in session, watch debates from the public galleries; free entry on a first-come, first-served basis.

Royal Albert Hall

London's premier music hall, home to the annual BBC Proms.  28 Oct: Julio Iglesias. The Spanish singer-songwriter has performed for 60 million people in five continents. 7.30pm.

Portobello Road Market

Dozens of stalls every Sat, specialising in antiques, curios and arts. Shops open Mon-Wed 9am-6pm; Thurs 9am-1pm; Fri-Sat 9am-7pm.

The View from The Shard

Ascend the sleek Shard, the tallest building in Western Europe, in a high-speed lift. At 309m up, on a clear day you can see as far as Windsor. Try The Slide - a virtual reality experience that shows you what sliding down from the top of the Shard would feel like. Daily 10am-10pm.

All of Us

18 Mar-16 May: A new play about what defines us. Jess has a job she loves, great friends and a sharp sense of humour. So, when the life she has worked hard to build is threatened, she decides to take a stand.

Tate Modern

World-class, international modern art in the transformed Bankside Power Station. Sun-Thur 10am-6pm; Fri-Sat 10am-10pm. Admission free; charges for special exhibitions. All Tate galleries will be closed until further notice due to COVID-19. 

Wimbledon Lawn Tennis Museum & Tour

At the venue of the famous Championships, the museum's displays range from old trophies and rackets to famous tennis kits worn by recent champions, plus touchscreens to watch past greats in action.

Victoria and Albert Museum

The V&A’s outstanding collection of fine and applied arts spans 3,000 years and includes fashion, paintings, photographs and ceramics from around the world. Sat-Thur 10am-5.45pm; Fri 10am-10pm. Admission free; charges for special exhibitions. 

The Royal Observatory

Stand astride the historic Prime Meridian, where east meets west, to take your place at the centre of the world. Uncover the history of Greenwich Mean Time (GMT) and see clocks and timepieces that have completely changed how we live. Daily 10am-5pm. Adult £16; child £8. Joint tickets with Cutty Sark available.