Sunday, November 27, 2011

Top 10 things to do in London

The other day a friend kindly sent me this article listing the top 10 things to do in London. I'm sorry, but whoever wrote this article has probably never been to London. The list is terrible, poorly researched (the bridge in the photo is actually called Tower Bridge), and definitely not the top 10 of things to see in London. While I appreciate that some items like the aquarium were added for the benefit of families with children, places like that are hardly unique enough to London to qualify in the top 10. If you must travel with your children, and frankly I don't see how that could ever be considered a vacation, take them to the Tower of London for pete's sake! There's enough gory history there to appease even the eye-rollingest of teenagers.

So without further ado, here are my top 10 things to do in London - catered to my own interests of course, but noteworthy nonetheless.

1) Tower of London - I have been several times, and each time I learn something new. The beefeaters are charming guides, there are numerous towers to explore, crown jewels to covet, and you get to see the place where Anne Boleyn had her head chopped off. WIN!

2) Westminster Abbey - This made it onto the list in the article, but I would give it the edge over St Paul's Cathedral. Both are beautiful, but the Abbey has lots of dead monarchs buried inside, plus the trend factor of being the church in which Will and Kate got married last year.

3) Borough Market - foodie heaven. Need I say more?

4) Regent's Park - gets my vote every spring for the most beautiful park in London.

5) The V&A museum - this has fast become my favourite museum. Excellent permanent collection, cool special exhibits, and much less crowded than the British Museum.

6) London's West End and other theatres - do yourself a favour and don't see a popular musical. Opt instead for a play like Pygmalion, or some Agatha Christie or Shakespear. The audience will consist of real Londoners and chances are there will be someone famous in the cast.

7) Westminster Palace and the riverbank - the houses of parliament are a must-see, and strolling along the river at night can't be beat.

8) Buckingham Palace - you'll have to get there early to beat the crowds before the changing of the guard, but like the Eiffel Tower in Paris or the Empire State Building in New York, it's one of those things you have to tick off your list.

9) The Churchill War Rooms - left as they were at the end of the 2nd World War (though I'm pretty sure the mannequins were placed there afterwards). Very cool history.

10) The bus - no need to take the underground, it's just full of disgruntled commuters like me. Take the bus instead and enjoy the scenery. Okay, I guess this one is pretty self-serving, but the bus does give you a better idea of where you are in the city.

1 comment:

Zoe said...

I love your list, Cait! I'm looking forward to checking out Borough Market whenever I make it back across the pond. Anything food-related is a winner in my book. And I agree with you, Regent's Park is beautiful, although I didn't get to see it in the spring.