After perusing maps, TA reviews and this forum, I've come up with this preliminary itinerary. My two children (ages 15, 18) have never been to London. I'd appreciate your views re whether I'm cramming too much (or not enough) in any particular day:
Monday, July 1: Tube to Westminister (hopefully early to beat crowds), visit Westminster Abbey (take Verger-led tour); photos of Parliament, Big Ben; cross Westminster Bridge, walk along the Thames path, then visit London Film Museum (my son likes the movies), Dali Universe, ride the Eye, lunch at Southbank Centre, visit shops there and at Gabriel’s Wharf, then visit Tate Modern).
Tues., July 2: Take Warner Bros. Harry Potter studio tour (will likely sign up for 11:30 entry (which, as I understand it, means being at Euston Station at 10 a.m.) I'm guessing this will take most of the day?
Wed., July 3: Tube to Victoria Station, visit Westminster Cathedral, then go to Buckingham Palace for changing of guard (will verify presumed 11:30 a.m. start time -- too bad it's not open for tours);
then visit Churchill War Rooms; walk along Whitehall to Trafalgar Square; lunch at St Martin-in-the-Fields (or perhaps in St James's Park, as we must visit Duck Island); Ben Franklin's House for the Historical Experience, then a tour of the National Gallery. Shopping and dinner at Covent Garden.
7:30 p.m.: See The Cripple of Inishmaan at the Noel Coward Theatre (my daughter will enjoy seeing the real Harry Potter);
Thurs, July 4: Tube to Tower of London (hopefully get there early), take the free tour, then visit Tower Bridge, Borough Market, then cross back over and visit St. Paul's Cathedral. Dinner at Covent Garden somewhere;
Fri, July 5: Visit any key sights we missed Mon-Thurs. Otherwise, walk to and visit British Museum, Pollocks Toy Museum; after lunch, take tube and visit Hyde Park/Kensington Gardens; on return trip to hotel, do some shopping along Oxford and Regent streets (perhaps do the shopping before Hyde Park if the stores arent open in the evening).
July 6: Fly home from Heathrow.
My kids will surely want a double-decker bus tour and a boat ride somewhere along the way. We will likely skip the Kensington area museums because, excellent as they are, we have similar museums at home.
If we're missing something obvious, or packing too much in one day, I'd love your thoughts. Also, based on these plans, I do not know if sufficient 2-4-1 discounts would be available in July to make an otherwise inconvenient visit to a rail station worthwhile to buy a travelcard. Thanks in advance for your thoughts. .