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Tower Bridge, London |© Kashif H / WikiCommons

How To Discover London In 24 Hours

Picture of Jessica Buck
Jessica Buck
Updated: 23 October 2016
There’s no way you can see everything that London has to offer in just a day, but our handy travel guide showcases all the major highlights you need to see while on your whistle stop, 24-hour tour of the British capital.

Start early with a Westminster wander

Kick-start your day in London with a spot of walking; build up your appetite for the day and head to Westminster where you’ll see the beautiful Westminster Abbey, Big Ben, and of course, the Houses of Parliament. Admire the sights from the pavement and gaze towards the London Eye as you walk across Westminster Bridge before making your way to the trendy Southbank.

You’ll be spoilt for choice in Southbank, with its colorful array of tourist attractions including the London Dungeons, Sea Life Aquarium and Shrek’s Adventure, and not to mention the London Eye. The London Eye is an absolute must for any visiting tourist; the panoramic views across the city stretch as far as 20 miles on a clear day.

After your feet have touched the ground once again take a wander through Jubilee Gardens alongside the River Thames and cross over the Jubilee Bridge, heading towards Embankment Pier. You’ll then head down Northumberland Avenue before finding yourself in the centre of the action at the wonderful Trafalgar Square.

City of Westminster, London, SW1

 

Stop for lunch on The Strand

After all that walking you’ll be hungry for some lunch so why not make a pit stop along The Strand, one of London’s best known roads. You’ll find various high street chain restaurants, fast food outlets and cafés aplenty; perfect for recharging your batteries and satisfying your appetite.

The Strand, London, WC2

 

Head down The Mall for an afternoon stroll

After leaving The Strand, head down The Mall where you’ll follow what seems like a never-ending road with St James’ Park and 10 Downing Street on one side and Green Park and Piccadilly on the other side. Eventually you’ll end up at the world famous Buckingham Palace, where you can see the Changing of the Guard ceremony if you plan your timings right.

Afterwards, stroll down Constitution Hill towards Hyde Park, one of the biggest green spaces in London. Wander through the park past the Serpentine River where you’ll pass Speakers Corner and end up at Marble Arch, another iconic landmark.

The Mall, London, SW1

Enjoy afternoon tea in Covent Garden

So, by now, we’re sure you’ll be ready to sit down and relax, and what better way to re-energize than by enjoying a spot of afternoon tea? From Kensington, cut through the bustling streets of Soho towards Covent Garden. No visit to the capital is complete without trying one of its world famous afternoon teas, and Covent Garden provides the perfect backdrop in which to simply unwind and watch the world go by.

Covent Garden, London, WC2

 

Hit the West End for a fancy evening out

When you’re back on the go again catch the tube to Leicester Square, with its theaters and bustling restaurants and bars, to enjoy a lively night out on the town. There are so many restaurants in this area serving everything from Italian pasta dishes and Indian curries to good old English pub grub; with tastes to cater for every palette there’s something on the menu for everyone.

If you’re early enough, or you’ve booked, you could catch a show at one of the West End’s many theaters; no trip to London is complete without watching a live stage show. Most shows start around 7.30pm and finish around 10pm but be sure to check your tickets for full confirmation.

West End, London, WC1

 

Take on a bar crawl and finish the night in style

Why not finish your trip to London with a pub crawl around the West End or visit one of the many bars around the area to enjoy some live music? Enjoy cocktails around Covent Garden and Soho or drink a few beers at one of the many traditional English pubs around the area. If you’re feeling particularly extravagant why not head to The Ritz or The Savoy and order champagne from one of their luxurious bars.

West End, London, WC1

Rise and shine, it’s morning!

After yesterday’s hectic schedule you’re more than likely wanting to sleep for a few hours, but when in London you’ve got to make the most of every second. Wake up to a fantastic full English breakfast, either at your hotel or at one of the area’s quirky cafés, before jetting off to your next destination. What a way to spend 24 hours in London.