London is one of the most popular cities in the world and attracts millions of visitors every year. The city has so much to offer. It’s hard not to get overwhelmed when you first get there. Suppose you’re visiting London for the first time. Or if you are just looking for new sights to see, this list will help you plan your trip. These are all must-see London sightseeing tours!
Tower Bridge and Tower of London
Everyone knows where the London sightseeing begins! Tower Bridge is a London landmark and the most famous of its bridges. It crosses the River Thames close to the Tower of London, a historic castle and one of London’s most popular tourist attractions. Interestingly, both sites are located on the same bank of the Thames but quite far apart. Tower Bridge has a drawbridge that rises when ships pass under it and lowers down again when they have passed. So if you want to take pictures with your camera, get ready for some quick action! Also, check out The View from The Shard if you’re going to see more than just these two amazing sights! It is also a place where you will see the famous Tower of London guards – Beefeaters.
Buckingham Palace is the official London residence of Queen Elizabeth II and the Duke of Edinburgh. It’s located on the west end of The Mall, which runs from Trafalgar Square to Admiralty Arch. It is also among the London sightseeing musts.
The palace has been a royal home since 1762 when George III purchased it from John Sheffield, 1st Duke of Buckingham. Buckingham was a Tory politician who had supported King Charles I during his war against Parliament. He was forced to sell his other properties when Parliament confiscated them after Charles’ execution in 1649. During World War II (1939-1945), Buckingham Palace was used as an air raid shelter for hundreds of people during bombing raids over London.
After inspecting the damage done by bombs and fires during these raids, King George VI remarked that “the whole place smells like an old ashtray,” according to Time magazine in 1940 This became known as “Buckingham Palace Syndrome.”
The London Eye is a giant Ferris wheel on the South Bank of the River Thames in London. It offers panoramic views of the city and the river. The full name is ‘the Helter Skelter. It is one of Britain’s most popular paid tourist attractions, attracting more than 3 million visitors annually.
It stands 135 meters (443 ft) tall, weighs over 535 metric tons (578 short tons), and carries up to 28 passengers per cabin, giving a total capacity of 1,354 persons per hour. Each cabin has floor-to-ceiling windows and an unrivaled view across central London and other major landmarks such as Big Ben & Buckingham Palace.
Big Ben and the Houses of Parliament
When London sightseeing is mentioned, a vast majority of people’s first thought is the giant clock. Big Ben is the nickname for the great clock bell at the northeastern end of the Palace of Westminster in London. It was originally called “the Great Bell” and later “the Tenor Bell” but has been popularly known as `Big Ben’ since 1846. The tower, officially known as Elizabeth Tower, was built between 1843 and 1859. The clock tower is open to visitors who will be able to see inside it and see where Big Ben hangs. You can also climb up one hundred twenty steps to walk across a glass floor 450 feet above the ground!
Royal Albert Hall
The Royal Albert Hall is a concert venue in South Kensington, London. It was founded by Prince Albert and is located adjacent to Kensington Gardens. It is the home of The Proms and has been used for many famous events, including the funeral of Lord Kitchener.
Royal Albert Hall was originally opened as an “Industrial Arts” center to hold arts and crafts classes. It became a center for music when Queen Victoria requested that her husband build such a space as part of his legacy.
Natural History Museum
The Natural History Museum is home to over 80 million specimens and is one of the largest museums in the world. The NHM boasts a diverse collection that includes many famous fossils, including dinosaur bones and even some mammoths.
In addition to its natural history exhibits, it also has a butterfly, mammal, and insect galleries where you can get up close with some incredible creatures.
The British Museum is the world’s largest human history and culture museum. It is located in the Bloomsbury area of London and was founded in 1753. The first public exhibition opened two years later. It featured a collection of antiques that included a stone sarcophagus from Egypt and China’s first printed book. Today, the museum attracts over 6 million visitors annually. It houses some 8 million objects ranging from ancient Egyptian mummies to Chinese ceramics to the Rosetta Stone—the critical artifact French scientist Pierre-François Champollion used to decipher hieroglyphics.
Victoria & Albert Museum (V&A)
The Victoria and Albert Museum (V&A) is home to the world’s largest decorative arts collection. This means that it’s a great place to go if you’re interested in learning more about everything. From fashion to furniture and even design!
In addition to its wonderful collections, the museum offers free tours every Thursday at 2:00 pm, where you can learn more about what they have on display. Tours take place every hour, so check the website beforehand if you want tickets.
The V&A is located on Cromwell Road in Kensington, so plenty of restaurants are nearby if you need a break from all that culture! If history isn’t your thing, then this might not be for you. However, some fantastic restaurants are nearby, including The Wolseley, which has been voted one of London’s best restaurants twice over (they’re open until late too).
National Gallery & National Portrait Gallery
The National Gallery and the National Portrait Gallery are two of London’s most visited museums. The National Gallery houses a collection of over 2,300 paintings dating from the mid-13th century to 1900. This includes works by Rembrandt, Leonardo da Vinci, and Titian. With over 6 million visitors annually, it’s considered one of the world’s largest art galleries.
The National Portrait Gallery is home to the world’s most significant collection of portraits. It has over 100,000 paintings on display, including those by Sir Joshua Reynolds and William Hogarth and modern-day artists Lucian Freud and Damien Hirst. Both museums are free to enter, so be sure not to miss out!
The Beatles Tour
The Beatles Tour, offered by Sherlock Holmes Tours, is a must for any Beatles fan. The tour takes you to all the places important to the Fab Four. Places like Abbey Road Studios and Paul McCartney’s childhood home. It even allows you to stand in front of John Lennon’s mural on the wall of Montague Place.
The tour also provides insights into London during the 1960s through music, movies, and art. It’s an excellent way to learn more about one of the greatest bands ever while getting a wider understanding of London.
We have listed the best London Sightseeing Tours you can enjoy during your stay in London. We hope this article will help you decide the best tours for you and your family to take when visiting London.