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1 day only in London

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1 day only in London

We have one day in London - we arrive on Friday morning at 8:30 and must leave early Sat. morning for Paris. (Yes we know one days I not enough time, but it's what we have to work with.) Any suggestions on where to stay, and what to do that we can cram in to one day. Not really interested in museums as they would take too long. Would one of those hop on hop off bus tours be best? Would probably like to see Buckingham Palace/Kensington, and anything else you might suggest. We haven't decided whether to take the train from London to Paris or fly the following morning. Thank you!

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1. Re: 1 day only in London

The hop on hop off tours get mixed reviews . It the weather is poor then OK but otherwise I would mostly do central London on foot. Start off at Buckingham Palace and walk down the Mall to Trafalgar Square. Then walk down Whitehall past Horse Guards Parade with the cavalry officers on guard , past Downing St to Parliament Sq with the Houses of Parliament , Westminster Abbey and Big Ben. That will take an hour or so maybe and takes in lots of the famous sites in one walk.

Then cross Westminster Bridge to the South Bank of the River Thames. The London Eye is there and as you walk along you come to Shakespeare's Globe Theatre and good vistas across to St Pauls. Depends how far you want to go but take one of the bridges back to the north bank and perhaps head for Covent Garden for shops, restaurants and more. Or take a bus to a completely different part of London of your choice. Sit upstairs on a double decker bus for a cheap tour on your way to your chosen destination.

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2. Re: 1 day only in London

I suggest walking round the Westminster / Whitehall area for the day.

You wont see everything in London but if any area is the "heart" of London this is it - home to the centre of Government (10 Downing St and the civil service), the Church (Westminster Abbey) and royalty (Buckingham Palace).

Plenty else to see in the area and you could easily spend a day there

See this walk for an example of what you can see and do.

londontoolkit.com/walks/whitehall_walk_westm…

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3. Re: 1 day only in London

By the time you clear immigration, get into central London, check in to your hotel etc you are looking at half day max.. Not to mention the possibility you will be hit by jet lag meaning your evening could be cut short.

My advice would be pick one thing you REALLY want to see and build around that. Let us know what it is and we can advise what's close or easy to combine. If its Buckingham Palace then you can easily start at Big Ben (Westminster) walk through St James Park to the Palace then up the Mall to Trafalgar Square and Piccadilly Circus.

With regards to a hotel and on the presumption you would choose train over flight to Paris, I would stay in the Bloomsbury or Kings cross area, so easy to get to the Eurostar terminal the next day.

Edited: 28 July 2013, 21:24
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4. Re: 1 day only in London

Since it is not crystal clear in your original post--you are arriving by plane at Heathrow? And departing by Eurostar? These details will make a very big difference on how you can use your day.

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5. Re: 1 day only in London

You say you've not decided whether to take the train to Paris or fly the following morning. I'd say take the train, whichever day you make the journey. By train you arrive in the centre of Paris, walk off with your luggage and the day is yours. Fly and you have to factor in check-in time etc and then getting into Paris from the airport. IN my experience, train is overall quicker and more relaxing.

The walk described in post 1 is a good plan.

Angie

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6. Re: 1 day only in London

We haven't decided whether to take the train from London to Paris or fly the following morning

=======

If you are in London, I cant think of any reason at all to fly.

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7. Re: 1 day only in London

We spent a day in London in October 2008. We arrived by Eurostar around 11am. First thing we did was grab our tube tickets and headed to Picadilly and had some fish and chips and Guiness. After that, we took the HOHO. We did the whole tour, got off at Picadilly again and shopped for an hour and then headed back to Buckingham palace where we managed to see the queen. We saw the Thames and then headed back to the train station. All in all, it was relaxed, we got in some walking and managed to see the main sites. We made it back to Paris by 11pm.

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8. Re: 1 day only in London

We did the HoHo tour on our arrival day and it gave us a very nice overview of London.

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9. Re: 1 day only in London

Guilbert,

Thanks for the awesome link to The London Toolkit and the self-guided walk.

Excellent information. We have just a one eveniong layover in London and this is exactly what I was looking for!

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10. Re: 1 day only in London

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