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Day and a half in London

Given that I only have about 36 hours in such a huge, exciting city, I just want to hit the big boys.
What should I see?
What should I not see, because it's a waste of time?

Also, I would like to stay at a hotel but I don't have much cash to spend... are there any clean budget hotels???

Thanks in advance,

Posted by
8700 posts

There are lots of "big boys." What to absolutely not miss and what is skipable in a short stay depends upon your interests. What are they?

If you're willing to give up the privacy a hotel room affords to get a cheap bed in a very good B&B, consider the Arran House Hotel in Bloomsbury. The regular rooms are not cheap, but there are dorm-style rooms at hostel-like prices. And you get a full English breakfast. See here:

Posted by
7 posts

Basically, I'd like to see a lot of the beautiful architecture (e.g. Parliament)... and the one or two best museums. I don't need to see 4 museums while there.

Is a boat tour on the Thames worth the time?

I will be there during the week, otherwise I'd try to catch a football (soccer) game.

Posted by
53 posts

I just had to give my brother very similar advice because he is spending today and tomorrow in London for the first time. We've been living in England for the past year and have been able to visit London quite a few times. Here's what I'd recommend
for a short visit - Westminster Abbey (do the verger tour!), British Museum and the National Gallery.

I've done two Thames boat rides and would say that it's worth doing to get a different view of London. Tower Bridge to Parliament is the classic route and included in the hop-on/hop-off bus tours (if you're considering that).

We stay at Travelodge everytime we go to London. It's by far the best clean budget hotel, some locations are newer and therefore nicer than others (Euston and City Road for example). Rooms are as cheap as £19 if you book in advance or during one of their sale periods (sign up for e-mail notifications to learn when their sale periods are). We've never paid more than £49.

Posted by
55 posts

I would say start with a hop-on-hop-off bus tour and end at the Tower of London. Take a boat to Westminster and see Parliment and the Abbey. Walk to Trafalger Square and see what you can of the National Gallery[if you luck out it will be one it's late nights]. Next day see the British Museum or the Library. It's a good start!

Posted by
43 posts

I agree with Jan. Hop on Hop off bus tour, Tower of london, Westminster Abbey and St. Paul's Cathedral. Those are Must-see's as far as I'm concerned.

Probably one of the cheapest rooms in London but CLEAN is at cherry court hotel. A block or so from Victoria Station. Extremely convenient and easy to find. Friendly hosts and a fruit basket as well as coffee/tea-making facilities that works for breakfasts. The Sainsbury grocery in Victoria Station has sandwich makings that allow you a good sandwich and crisps for £2.50.

Posted by
43 posts

Oops. And yes, by all means, make sure you see the British Museum. It's amazing!!

Posted by
3428 posts

With only 1 1/2 days, personally, I'd skip the museums. I'd take a look at Parliment, Westminster and Buckingham (you can do that in 2 hours total). Visit Covent Garden and Leciester Square. Do a quick trip out to Windsor. Tower of London is marvelous- but takes a bit of time.

Posted by
158 posts

Matt, if you take a Big Bus tour around the will see the architecture...........

Then you can pick and choose what you want to spend time visiting......