London

London Travel Guide

Credit :

Andreas Bleckmann

You can't blame other cities if they cast a covetous eye upon London and grumble, “It isn't fair.” How can a 2,000-year-old settlement with such a deeply entrenched history—and such familiar-to-the-point-of-predictable iconography—stand at the leading edge of design, architecture, fashion, cuisine, fine art, and pop culture? By embracing international styles and influences (and people) as much as its own. The city's millennial resurgence resulted from a blend of clear-eyed preservation, savvy reinvention, and bold innovation. Only here could a brash new landmark like the Tate Modern so swiftly find its place in the old cityscape; only here could the cutting-edge gastro pub (an alien term less than 20 years ago) so readily slip into local parlance and routine. Perhaps that's because behind all this novelty, the London that always endures, unperturbed by these curious new arrivals or just slightly bemused. Each year, millions of tourists travel to London to experience its modern-day renaissance. Let Travel + Leisure’s London travel guide point you to its best and brightest spots.

Things Not to Miss in London

• Experiencing Parliament’s House of Lords and House of Commons in rowdy action from the public galleries.
 • Meandering the South Bank river walk and absorbing the glorious vistas—a promenade best strolled at sunset for optimal romantic appeal.
 • Seeing at least one West End or National Theatre play or musical; Shakespeare would’ve insisted on it.
 • Taking a turn on the London Eye for a bird’s eye view of its historic city center.

When to Go to London

No matter the time of year, London travel brings with it a taste of bustling city life. England’s temperate climate means rain showers throughout much of the year, although temperatures remain mostly comfortable. Tourist numbers hit a high between April and September, and again around Christmas time, when the nights are long, but holiday decorations provide extra sparkle. Opt for travel dates in the spring and fall for brisk days and nights, plus a little more breathing room.

DON'T MISS

  • Experiencing Parliament’s House of Lords and House of Commons in rowdy action from the public galleries.

  • Meandering the South Bank river walk and absorbing the glorious vistas—a promenade best taken at sunset for optimal romantic appeal.

  • Seeing at least one West End or National Theatre play or musical; Shakespeare would’ve insisted on it.

RECOMMENDED LINKS

Articles about London

As the Chelsea Flower Show packs up for another year, visitors looking for a floral fix should head to one of these lush garden restaurants. The Ivy Chelsea Garden: A new outpost of the celebrity hotspot recently opened in up-market Chelsea. In...
As the Chelsea Flower Show packs up for another year, visitors looking for a floral fix should head to one of these lush garden restaurants. The Ivy Chelsea Garden: A new outpost of the celebrity hotspot recently opened in up-market Chelsea. In...
In 1994, Jo Malone opened her first store on Walton Street, where she would grow her London-based brand into a global company. “I’ve always been around this neighborhood, so it feels very much like home,” she says. She sold her business to Estée L...
Most Londoners rarely have cause to visit Knightsbridge. But most can recount stories of the curious things that happen there—tales of old money mixing with new, of rich wives keying their neighbors’ Bentleys during “an alleged parking rage incide...
This spring, The Goring reopened with more than just a structural facelift. Another major change: those staying in suites now have a dedicated footman for the duration of their stay (and, sometimes, beyond). Under the watchful eyes of a head conci...
TripAdvisor just unleashed its new Vacation Value Report, thereby unveiling the 10 most-searched destinations across the web. Even better: the travel site also shared the best dates to travel for the best deals. Each of the destinations comes w...
As if we needed another travel temptation, English luggage company Globe-Trotter has introduced another luggage set inspired by London’s The Goring Hotel—a.k.a. the posh accommodations Kate Middleton and her family stayed before the royal wedding....
Beatles fans have long been posing for pics on Abbey Road’s zebra crosswalk, but few have ever seen the interior of the legendary studio, until now. Earlier this week, Google launched Inside Abbey Road, a virtual tour of the famed music space. ...
How do you take your tea? Cream? Sugar? How about at 800 feet above ground? This May, London's iconic, Renzo Piano-designed skyscraper The Shard is launching Sky-High Tea, basically a luxury picnic where guests enjoy finger sandwiches, scones, ...
I don’t know what London’s coming to — the higher the buildings, the lower the morals,” wrote Noël Coward in the 1930s, and he would be right, once again, in 2015 as London’s skyline bristles with a new class of mega-towers rearing up from every ...