The Insider’s London Travel Guide

It’s time to discover London.

London Map

Alternatively, you can save this London tourist map, which has all of the main sights and attractions from my London guide saved onto it. Simply save on Google Maps, offline and go. 

How to Plan a Trip to London: Before You Go

London Eye

The Changing of the Guard
The Narcissus Hall ©Leighton House Museum, RBKC. Image courtesy of Will Pryce

The Narcissus Hall ©Leighton House Museum, RBKC. Image courtesy of Will Pryce

Interior at Bob Bob Ricard
Cocktail at Oriole Bar

Pubs, secret bars, exuberant clubs – London’s drinking scene is well and truly alive. You can barely walk a few places without coming across somewhere to whet your whistle – but not all of them are worthy of your time. Avoid the chain pubs and bars and go for something a little more interesting. 

  • Upstairs at Rules – The bar upstairs from London’s oldest restaurant is a passage back in time, complete with classic cocktails and a member’s club feel. The striking winter terrace is one of my favourite places to drink in the city. 
  • Oriole – Little sister to the world-famous Nightjar (included on many a list of the best bars in the world), Oriole is an exercise in fin-de-siecle decadence and the cocktails are to die for. 
  • Ye Olde Mitre – Said to be the most difficult-to-find-pub in the city, Ye Olde Mitre dates back to the 16th century. 

Read More: Secret Bars and Speakeasies in London or The Insider’s Guide to The Oldest Pubs in London 

Day Trips from London 

There’s much more to the UK than London – and if you have time, you should go and explore. Here are a few ideas: 

  • Oxford – The beautiful university city is an easy one hour train ride from London Paddington. Climb the tower of the Church of St Marys to see the city of dreaming spires in all its glory. 
  • Cambridge – Smaller than Oxford (some also say prettier but I beg to differ), Cambridge is also an easy day trip from London thanks to frequent trains and tours. 
  • The Cotswolds – If you conjure up a picture of a bucolic English village, chances are it’s going to look exactly like those in The Cotswolds. Take a tour or hire a car to see them all at their best. 

Read More: 20 Unmissable Day Trips from London 

In need of more London day trip inspiration?

London Travel Guide: Basic Tips and Tricks for Making the Most of Your Stay 

Tips for Travelling to London 

  • Pick up an Oyster Card – Paying for London’s Transport with an Oyster Card (or contactless card but watch out for international bank charges) is an easy and cheap way to get around town. 
  • The London Pass – Consider buying a London Pass if you’re planning to visit many of the city’s attractions – it’s expensive but will work out as a cost-effective option if you go to more than a few paid attractions. 
  • Download Citymapper App – Citymapper is the best app for helping you navigate London’s complex transportation system, and will tell you the fastest way to get from A to B. 

Read More: 40 Things You Need to Know Before You Travel to London 

Tipping In London 

London doesn’t have a big tipping culture – tips are around 10-15% (though more is always appreciated) and you’re perfectly entitled not to tip if the service has been bad. A service charge of 12.5% is often added to the bill in many bars and restaurants. 

Read More: Tipping in London – A Complete Guide

Read More London Travel Guides

Looking for more London guides for planning your trip? Here's where to start.

The Best Places to Eat in London: An Insider’s Food Guide

Where to eat in London - 12 brilliant food hotspots.

Secret Bars in London

Drink your way around the best secret bars in London with this indispensable guide.

The Best Time to Visit London - An Insider’s Guide

Plan your trip to London with this step by step guide.

Tipping in London: A Practical Guide

When, how and how much to tip in London.

London Travel Blog: More Tips

More London tips from the blog.

Any questions or suggestions for this free London travel guide? Drop me a comment below. 

Discover London

Planning to travel to London? Check out my in-depth London guidebook to help you plan your trip and discover the very best of my hometown. 

From cool things to do, must-visit landmarks and London’s hidden gems plus a wealth of insider tips and suggested itineraries – you’ll find everything you need to know before you go.

Love this London Travel Guide? Save for later and share on Pinterest! 

Simply hover over any of the images to save it for later. Or follow my London Tips and Guides board for more London inspiration.

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