12 Must-Do Experiences in London

London’s cultural, historical and culinary wonders distilled to a list of 12 must-do, must-see experiences. Wander through the city’s best museums, hunt down London’s literati on foot and walk a little-known path through the city. Use London’s iconic Tube to discover cool neighbourhoods, trendy shopping districts, historic sights and world-class theatre venues. An evening boat trip along the Thames is one of the best experiences in London.

Tower Bridge, United Kingdom
This is a landmark that is so familiar, so often seen, that to visit it -- even for the first time -- feels almost ordinary. You know the Tower Bridge. You’ve seen it in storybooks and on movie screens. You get it. Right? Nope. Because even if it feels ordinary at first, even if you can recognize its pillars from a mile away, the great thing about standing on the Tower Bridge is that everything around it keeps changing. Watch the city’s buildings, the boats on the Thames, the crowds on its edges, or the clouds in the sky: When you’re on the Tower Bridge, the perch may be the same, but the sights are always just a little bit different.
Cromwell Rd, South Kensington, London SW7 5BD, UK
These are the museums that all British children within schooltrip distance of London have visited at some point, and they’re just as much fun for adults. The Natural History museum, Science Museum, and Victoria & Albert museum are clustered around the bottom of Exhibition Road where it meets Cromwell Road. Taking in all three in a day is possible, if daunting. Covering everything from prehistoric creatures to the latest space missions—via the art and design of Britain and her erstwhile empire—these three museums are Britain’s answer to the Smithsonian, and a half day in them is enough to blow your mind with things you never knew. The Science Museum specializes in hands-on exhibits that are great for kids, and the dinosaurs at the Natural History Museum are a must.
Hampstead, London NW3 2QD, UK
Hampstead Heath is a legend: 800 acres of wide-open space dotted with ponds, woods, walking tracks, and the odd stately home. North Londoners take pride in this place, where you will find dog walkers, picnickers, Saturday soccer players, and hardy outdoor swimmers at all times of the year. It brings a touch of true wilderness to the city, and it’s also home to a lido, a stately home with an unrivalled art collection (at Kenwood House), and the famous bathing ponds established by the Victorians (and thus separate for gentlemen and ladies). Parliament Hill also offers one of the best views in London.
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