#Londondiaries: Best Places To Visit In London

Story By: Arundhati I recently went to London, and what fun did I have! My trip was for five days, and my budget was not more than 500 pounds (not including airfare). So if you are a budget traveller, looking to have fun in this historic city, then this is for you. Read on to know more about the best places to visit in London. I would strongly advise you to stay at The Walrus Bar and Hostel.

Walrus Hostel London

Walrus Hostel is situated right next to Lambeth North or the Waterloo tube stations and offers a stunning view of the London Eye from its Kitchen. This hostel has a friendly staff, who are available round-the-clock. With complimentary breakfast and a pub as the common room, Walrus is one of its kind. The accommodation is cheap, and the facilities are top notch.

walrus hostel london

With all the main tourists’ attractions situated at a walking distance from the hostel, I saved a lot of money on travel. Whether you plan to take a walk on the South or the North Bank or take a black taxi ride to Soho, this hostel is the ideal place to stay in the heart of this rich cultural city. During my stay, I had a chance to visit the following sites:

London Eye – The iconic London Eye is one of its kind. It surely tops every traveller’s list of best places to visit in London. The tickets cost ~35 pounds, but it was worth it. Make sure you go early in the morning to avoid the crowd. On London Eye, enjoy London’s skyline and spot places like Mi5 office, the Shard and the Cheese Grater Building.

Big Ben London

big ben londonImage Source: TripAdvisor

Like London Eye, Big Ben is also walking distance from Walrus Hostel. You can hear the clock chime every hour. Did you know that the bell inside the Big Ben has a crack? Once at Big Ben, do see the Parliament and the Westminster Abbey.

Westminster Abbey

Westminster Abbey Neo Travellers
This is very popular Abbey where some of the renowned people have been buried and even got married. I was particularly interested in seeing the ‘Poet’s Corner’ which includes graves of famous poets like John Milton, Alexander Pope, T. S. Eliot, and John Keats.

More recently, Prince Williams and Kate Middleton were married here. You can easily cover London Eye, Westminster and Big Ben in a single day as these are located in close vicinity. The Abbey closes by 15:30, so make sure you head straight to the Abbey after London Eye.

Tower of London – The Tower of London is a historical castle. You should at least need 3-4 hours to take a tour of this magnificent palace. From the White Tower to the Crown Jewels, the Torture Chamber and the Bloody Towers, this castle takes you back in time.

I went to the Tower of London after seeing the Royal Observatory in Greenwich. The castle is easily accessible from Tower Hill Tube station and is located on the North Bank.

The National Gallery London

national gallery places to in visit londonImage Source: TripAdvisor

The National Gallery is located in Trafalgar Square. The entry is free of cost. Make sure you spend a couple of hours here to see famous paintings of J.W. Turner, Leonardo Da Vinci and Raphael.

Trafalgar Square is also a place you can roam around for an hour. You’ll find the famous Nelson’s Column here, and the street artists here will surely keep you entertained.

Tate Gallery London

tate gallery in london tourist placesImage Source: TripAdvisor

One of the most visited art galleries in London, Tate Modern is Britain’s national gallery of international modern art. I had a keen interest in visiting this place and see some of the striking artwork of Picasso and Dali which are housed in this multi-storey art gallery. It is one of the best places to visit in London for art lovers.

Tate was a Bankside Power Station and is located on the South Bank. Offering stunning views of the London skyline, it is a great tourist attraction in London. If you walk around the building, you can still see the power station at the back of the gallery building.

The entry to the gallery is free. If you are interested, you can also buy some souvenir from the shop inside the gallery.

Tower Bridge London

tower bridge londonImage Source: TripAdvisor

One of the iconic landmarks of London, the Tower Bridge is the most famous bridge in the world. I bought a 15pound ticket to explore its iconic structure, spectacular views and Glass Floor, and atmospheric Victorian Engine Rooms. The bridge is open till 17:30 p.m., so make sure you reach there before time.

Globe Theatre

shakespeares globe theatre londonImage Source: TripAdvisor

Globe Theatre was the highlight of my trip. After doing an audio/visual tour of the theatre, I managed to get a seat for Macbeth. It was a unique time travel experience, as I felt how Elizabethans might have felt while watching the play.

St Paul’s Cathedral London

stpauls cathedral londonImage Source: TripAdvisor

On the other side of the Globe Theatre is the world-famous St. Paul’s Cathedral. This beautiful Anglican cathedral was built by Sir Christopher Wren, a famous architect who has created notable monuments in London, including the Monument and the Royal Observatory.

Known for its architecture, St. Paul’s has three galleries – the Whispering Gallery (situated just below the dome), the Stone Gallery and the Golden Gallery. I managed to climb all the three galleries during my visit, and I can vouch for the view you get from the Golden Gallery. It is simply amazing to see the London skyline from the top of the cathedral.

The total steps you need to climb to reach to the Golden Gallery is 1,161 steps. The higher you go, the passage becomes narrower, and by the time you start for the Golden Gallery, you’ll find metal ladders instead of regular steps. There are no elevators inside the church.  Ticket price is 16 pounds

Royal Observatory in Greenwich

royal observatory londonImage Source: TripAdvisor

It took me a complete day to explore Greenwich. This small district located in south-east London is home to several monuments including the Royal Observatory, Cutty Sark and the Old Royal Naval College. During my trip to this lovely place, I got a chance to explore time and space at the Royal Observatory.

Standing on the Meridian Line and taking a picture of it was the highlight of the day. It almost gave me the feeling of standing at the centre of world time or Greenwich Mean Time. The place tells the history of how great scientists mapped sea and stars and also holds a treasure trove of several iconic timepieces. The ticket is priced at roughly 10 pounds

Cutty Sark

cutty sark tourist place londonImage Source: TripAdvisor

Built in Scotland in 1869, Cutty Sark was originally designed to carry tea from China to England as fast as possible. This record-breaking ship travelled the globe and visited every major world port throughout its varied history.

Now here at Greenwich, conservation work has raised Cutty Sark three metres above ground, allowing you to walk directly underneath. Experience what life was like on board the world’s greatest tea clipper, and the fastest of her day. 13.5 pounds is the ticket fee.

Buckingham Palace and St James Park

buckingham palace londonImage Source: TripAdvisor

I was not keen to visit Buckingham Palace, but it happened by chance. While heading to my hostel from someplace I don’t remember; I happened to see the palace and the area around it. The walk alongside St. James’s Park was nothing less than picturesque.

The Monument London

the monument londonImage Source: TripAdvisor

The Monument to the Great Fire of London is a Doric column located near the northern end of the London Bridge. I had not planned to visit this place, but thank god I did. A lot of people coming to London don’t even know about this great piece of the London skyline.

The monument commemorates the great fire of London. To reach the top of the column, visitors have to climb a spiral staircase consisting of 311 steps. I managed to do it, and the coolest part, I even got a certificate saying just that! The price to get inside this breath-taking monument is just 4.50 pounds.

Other best places to visit in London

Windsor Castle, Kensington Castle, the Shard and Madame Tussauds.

I hope you find my story useful. Let me know if you have any questions about various sites in London.

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