London has a bit of magic and something for every traveler. The city has been the backdrop to various famous movies including Notting Hill, Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy, Snatch and Bridget Jones Diary. The city offers a wide range of activities. From seeing a play at the London Theater to riding the London Eye to taking a stroll in Portobello Market to going out in Soho, there’s plenty to do in just 48 hours.
Last year, 2017, the city welcomed 19 million people, setting a new record for the number of foreign visitors to visit London. While European citizens can currently visit London without a visa, citizens of many other countries are required to obtain a visa or a EVW UK before traveling to the city. The EVW UK can be obtained by completing an online application with your personal details and your passport information. Make sure you have a valid passport to travel to London. If you’re thinking about visiting London for a weekend and are wondering what to see, we’ve created a list with the best of London in 48 hours. Get yourself ready, this will be one hell of a ride!
A little comedy at Soho Theatre
Laughter is the best medicine, and a great way to start your trip in London is to stop by the Soho Comedy Theatre. The theater has multiple rooms, late shows and a bar. On Friday nights you will be able to choose from several stand-up performances including established and new comedians from the UK and other countries. If you want to grab a bite to eat before a show, there are plenty of restaurants in the area. Try the Peruvian Ceviche Soho or the smokehouse Temper.
Spend Saturday morning at Maltby Street Market
Maltby Street Market opened in 2010, and it’s a great spot to have a good breakfast to start your day and fill up your belly. Located in south-east London, it is set under the railway arches in Bermondsey. You can also do a bit of grocery shopping, you will find gourmet products, plying coffee and gin.
A bit of art at Tate Modern
After breakfast, you can head to the modern and contemporary art museum, Tate Modern. You will be able to explore the incredible permanent collection for free. The museum features temporary exhibitions from various artists all year round. To end your round at the museum, sip a coffee or tea at the Tate Cafe while enjoying river views. If you are feeling like a bit more art, take the boat across the river to Tate Britain, the original gallery founded by Sir Henry Tate.
Explore the Southbank and London Eye
Another great alternative is to take a trip to The Shard for panoramic views across the city. If you head to the river you will have views of St. Paul’s Cathedral and Tower Bridge. Follow the road towards the west and pass by the Globe Theatre and that way you will reach the Tate Modern. If you keep going west you will get to the London Eye. Once there, you can ride the London Eye for spectacular views. You will also find the London Dungeons which is great for kids. To save time, book your London Eye ticket in advance, queues can get really long during the day.
Visit Big Ben, Houses of Parliament and have a picnic in Green Park
Across the River Thames you will see Big Ben and the Houses of Parliament. Once you’ve crossed the Westminster Bridge you will be able to take a closer look at these magnificent buildings. From this point, you can walk up to 10 Downing Street and meander into St. James’ Park to get a glimpse of the Buckingham Palace. If the weather is nice you can go have a Picnic in Green Park. Another option is to walk to Piccadilly where there are numerous restaurants and cafés.
End your night with a cocktail at Dandelyan
Dandelyan was named best bar in the world in 2017. To end a very cool day in London forget going on an ordinary London pub crawl and head to this bar located in the South Bank instead. The bar itself is in the Mondrian Hotel. Cocktails are made with fun and unique ingredients like ‘chalk bitters’, ‘crystal peach nectar’, and the ‘dandelion capillaire’. You will be pleasantly surprised by all the flavors. Dress nicely and enjoy your night out.
Spend some time at the Natural History Museum
On your second day in London you could visit the Natural History Museum, a Romanesque cathedral that houses several fascinating details. Since 1905, the 26-meter-long replica of a dinosaur skeleton hanged at the gran Hintze Hall. Last year, however, it was replaced by a diving blue whale skeleton. In the museum, you will find creatures from all over the world. If you had fun learning about evolution and biology, you will probably love the Science Museum and the V&A, both near the Natural History Museum.
While in London have some tea
A perfect way to end your stay in London is to indulge in an afternoon tea at one of London’s prestigious hotels. The Ritz is one of the best alternatives serving delicious scones, cakes and finger sandwiches. After your tea, hop on a scenic boat tour. City Cruises operate from Westminster Pier and have several tours along the Thames. London awaits! There’s so much more to do in this fabulous cosmopolitan city. You can do some shopping, try the famed fish and chips, or hang out at a pub to get to know some locals.