Each visit to London is more rewarding than the next. This cultural city center is packed with history and art, parks and beauty. You can absorb a lot just by driving through the city streets in a taxi cab, but make sure that on your vacation you visit these ten places on foot before you leave.
1. The British Museum has millions of items and artifacts to peruse. What started as Sir Hans Sloan’s collection of 71,000 items in 1753 has blossomed into one of the biggest storehouses of ancient artifacts in the world. Best of all, admission to this venerable museum remains free of charge.
2. Saint Paul’s Cathedral is one of Great Britain’s most beautiful spiritual centers. Although it is a historic building (rebuilt in 1666 after the Great London Fire), it is still home to modern weddings and funerals. Living members of British royalty and national leaders have held ceremonies there.
3. The Tower of London is a fascinating step back into time. Here, you can be horrified by the dungeons and you can marvel at the Queen’s Jewels. Try not to imagine too much of the Tower’s deadly history though, or you might have nightmares.
4. The Natural History Museum is a great place to take children, because of its treasure trove of dinosaur bones. Kids and adults alike will love roaming the halls of this museum, checking out its many collections in its gothic hallways.
5. Westminster Abbey is one of London’s most famous and beautiful churches, but it is most famous for its dead residents. Take a walking tour of the abbey and hear about all the famous literati who are buried within its walls.
6. The Tate Modern is the best place to see modern art in London. The Tate houses paintings by such 20th century masters as Matisse, Warhol, Bacon, and many more.
7. The London Zoo houses over 12,000 animals within its gates. This is not one of the world’s most famous zoos for no reason. There are so many animals, that you cannot see them all in one day. Plan on taking a few trips to absorb all the fauna.
8. The British Airways London Eye is an observation wheel high above the city that allows visitors to London to get a bird’s eye view of the landscape below. The Eye is host to millions of visitors a year and is the best way for a tourist to get the lay of the land. Sightseeing will be much more fun once you have seen the whole city from above.
9. The National Gallery is a museum of both ancient and modern masters. You can spend hours roaming through the halls of this 19th century museum. Its location is also ideal – you can find the National Gallery in the center of Trafalgar Square.
10. The Madame Tussaud’s Experience is one that can’t be missed when you travel to London. This is as close as a tourist can get to living history. Historical people and events are recreated in wax and animatronics. Be prepared to be surprised and enthralled by their realistic qualities.