Introduction: 1 day in London

Feeling the finer things in life

There will come a time when people need to feel and taste the finer things in life. Inhaling the air that we breathe, the weather we feel at that particular place, the place we visit, the people we see, the animals we come across and the vehicles that drive past beeping and flashing their lights. Sometimes, you have to take in all of those things to feel and taste the finer things in life.

Something clicked in me when I realised that, since 1991, many years of being in London, I took my surroundings for granted. 

I decided to spend a day in London and become a “tourist” and see what London has to offer from my own perspective.

The attractions mentioned below are recommended time to visit and it’s for you to use it as a guide. If you want to spend more time in a particular attraction be my guest. Be aware you might have to spend less time in another attraction or skip one or some altogether. Between attractions spare 1 hour for lunch and buy The London Pass.

This itinerary can be tweaked a little bit to personalise your holiday by telling you how long I took in each attraction. I will make an itinerary for a self guided tour, an itinerary with a private tour, a London Pass and tell you how long each one takes. (For 1 day, 2 days, 3 days, 4 days, 5 days, 6 days and 7 days.) But for now, let’s start with a day trip.

I suggest spending 15 minutes to half an hour in the free attractions if you don’t want to visit the attractions surrounding it or if you don’t want to have lunch there.

Time to take in attraction

 Attraction name

9 am – 9:30 am

Stroll through St. James’ Park

9:30 am – 10 am

Stroll through Green Park

10 am – 11 am

Hang around Buckingham Palace or Horseguard Parade for The Changing of the Guards

11 am – 12 am

Changing of the Guards

Noon – 1pm

Stroll through a part of Piccadilly West End London and admire the attractions around Piccadilly Circus from Green Park or stroll through The Mall to go through Admiralty Archway which leads to Trafalgar Square.

1 pm – 2 pm

15 minutes – half an hour

Lunch either in Piccadilly Circus, Leicester Square, Chinatown, Covent Garden or Soho. Hang around in Trafalgar Square. Trafalgar Square links to Leicester Square and Covent Garden

2 pm –

3 pm

Piccadilly Circus:
There are several streets you can take advantage of:
Regent Street (shopping)

Oxford Street (shopping)

Tottenham Court Road (shopping)

Soho (eating)

Chinatown (eating)

Leicester Square (eating)

Covent Garden

3pm – 3:30 pm

     Head to Whitehall through Trafalgar Square.       

     Take photos with the Queen’s horses and guards.

4 pm – 5 pm

     Head to Westminster Abbey and Big Ben.   

     Westminster Abbey takes 1 hour to view inside and costs £21 entry.

5 pm – 6 pm

     Cross over Westminster Bridge and to Southbank.
     Stroll the Southbank area.

     You will see:

     The London Eye

     London Dungeon


     Shrek The Experience

     Southbank Centre

     Underbelly Festival

     Shakespeare’s Globe

     Tate Modern

     National Theatre

     Various cafes, restaurants, bars and pubs.

(The attractions would be closed at this time so not worth visiting, unless you want to visit these attractions first thing in the morning)

     Recommend to take 1 hour for each                     attraction. 

6 pm – 7 pm

Stroll through Southbank and London Bridge area. 

Dinner time

Take photos of:

Tower of London, Tower Bridge, HMS Belfast

Beautiful at night.

7 pm – late

Hang around in Piccadilly Circus, Leicester Square, Soho or Chinatown for nightlife.

Hang around in Oxford Street, Regent Street and Tottenham Court Road for late night shopping.

Other attractions

Recommended visiting time

St. Paul’s Cathedral

1 – 2 hours

Madame Tussauds

1 – 2 hours

London Zoo

1 – 2 hours

Kensington Gardens and Palace

1 – 2 hours

Regent’s Park

1 hour (London Zoo is situated here)

Borough Market

1 hour. Opens from 10 am to 6 pm

Portobello Market in Notting Hill

1 – 3 hours 

The Shard

1 – 2 hours (beautiful at night)

Tower of London tour with Wardour tour

2 – 3 hours

Tower Bridge tour

1 hour

There are more attractions around London including the major and smaller museums such as the British Museum, the Natural History Museum, Science Museum and Victoria and Albert Museum which will take half to a full day to get lost in. It’s impossible to visit all the attractions in one day if you only have one day to spare. 

I recommend going inside two to three attractions and spend your time in the free areas like Leicester Square, Trafalgar Square, Piccadilly Circus, Regent Street, Oxford Street, Covent Garden or Tottenham Court Road. Use this itinerary to pick and choose which attractions worth paying to go inside and which free attractions are worth hanging around in.

Well, there you go. If you have any questions regarding these attractions or attractions that aren’t on the list, please contact me.

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