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4 Days in London Itinerary

Our final day in London and we had a checklist of places we still wanted to see before our flight to Edinburgh. Enter the hop on-hop off bus! Follow along for a complete list of everything we did, what we ate, the sites we loved, and the tips we learned.

Checked into our hotel in Mayfair

Strolled through Hyde Park

Toured Kensington Palace and Gardens

Took Afternoon Tea at the Palace Tea Room

Dinner at a local pub

Learned how to navigate the Underground

Visited the Tower Bridge

Toured the Tower of London

Took the Thames Walk to Millennium Bridge

Checked out the art of Tate Modern

Walked through St. James Park

Saw the sites of Westminster - Horse Guard Parade, Big Ben, Westminster Abby, Parliament Square, and Trafalgar Square

Bustronome Dinner Experience

Enjoyed a guided tour of Westminster Abby

Learned about Churchill in the War Rooms

Took in the views of London from the London Eye

Experienced the art of the National Gallery

Dinner in the West End

Hamilton at the Victoria Palace Theater.

Day 4

Experienced the Changing of the Guard

Rode a Hop On and Off Bus Tour

Lunched in Borough Market

Shopped at Harrods

Saw the Rosetta Stone at the British Museum

Checked out the night life in Trafalgar Square, Piccadilly Circus, Covent Garden, and Leicester Square

We started the day with the Changing of the Guard from St. James Palace.

  • Insider tip...plan to watch the beginning of the ceremony in front of St. James Palace. We were told to arrive about 30 minutes prior to the start of the ceremony to claim our place. So with coffee in hand, we arrived at 9:30am anticipating the 10am start time. For thirty minutes, we basically sat on the curb directly across from the courtyard of St. James Palace drinking our coffee and snacking on a pastry. In the end, we had front row seats to the start of the Changing of the Guard ceremony. Once the band started marching towards Buckingham Palace, we were able to follow directly behind (our own little parade!) along the mall. The King's Guard completes the parade along the mall to Buckingham palace arriving around 10:45am for the 45 minute ceremony. The experience was a great way to start our final day in London.

For the rest of our final day, we had several sites we really wanted to see, however, they were in opposite directions of each other. So we decided to use the "Hop-On-Hop-Off" bus system to easily get from location to location. While it was more expensive than walking or using the underground at approximately $48 (usd) per person, it did get us to each of the locations faster and included a recorded narration of the sites we were passing. The added bonus was the ability to see London and it's sites from a new vantage point.

From the upper level of the double decker bus, we enjoyed the views and listening to the narrated content about London's most popular sites. The bus does provide ear buds but we could also have plugged in our own to hear the recorded narration. Although we rode the whole route, we chose to exit the bus for the following three stops.

  • Harrods - We were totally overwhelmed by this place! Harrods has more than one million square feet of shopping and includes 330 different shopping departments. It is crazy! We were so overwhelmed that we basically wondered around for a bit and left with some chocolates and a Christmas ornament. At least we can say we shopped in Harrod's.

  • Borough Market - The Borough Market is London's oldest and largest food market with over 100 vendors. It is busy and crowded and could also feel overwhelming (but in a totally different way). We had planned to eat lunch here so we wondered through the market and chose several dishes to share. The really big crowd pleaser, and what is often seen photographed, are the chocolate covered strawberries...YUM! It is important to note that standing while eating is not permitted and the security will ask you to move along. Lesson learned! We were able to find a place to sit down at the top of the "stairs." The "stairs" are essentially built to serve as a place for people to sit. At the top, there are more benches and a handful of tables. If you are struggling to find someplace to sit, be patient as people seemed to move along quickly.

  • British Museum - The British Museum is free to enter although timed tickets are available to reserve online. We did not have reserved tickets so we did have to wait in the queue. Probably the most famous item within this museum is the Rosetta Stone. We didn't have much time so we used this list on the museum's website to ensure we saw their recommended top treasures.

At this point in our trip, it was time for us to wing our way to Edinburgh. So while technically we were on our way to Edinburgh, if you are spending four days in London, we would recommend heading to Trafalgar Square, Covent Garden, Piccadilly Square, and Leicester Square. These locations are walkable to one another, contain multiple dinner options, and are a fun way to end your final evening in London. Be aware they are all crowded! On our final night in London, we loved listening to the buskers and people watching before we easily found a table at a local pub for dinner.

Know Before You Go:

Before leaving the States

  • Have the City Mapper App on your phone. This app was so helpful navigating the various transportation options (including walking). The app was easy to use and quickly mapped out the best route for us. Even allowing us to pick which type of transportation we planned to use - bus, taxi, underground, bike, walking, etc.

  •  While reservations in local pubs aren't a must, I do recommend planning ahead on the weekends. Also, it is customary to leave a 15% tip for meals in restaurants, unless a service charge has been added. It is not necessary to tip for drinks in pubs.

  • You should plan to tip black cabs and licensed mini cabs as well as the porter at your hotel. Our hotel allowed us to add a % to our final bill for all hotel staff.

  • Don't forget to pack a Type G power adapter

  • Plan ahead! Many of our tours required tickets to be purchased prior to arrival.

  • Pack and dress in layers. Although the forecast didn't predict it, it was un-seasonably warm when we were visiting. We experienced temperatures in the 80s in October. I am so glad we had layers as many of the buildings were very warm!

  • Don't forget to also pack an umbrella and a small backpack or tote. We noticed many Londoners were wearing backpacks or carrying totes. We used a tote to carry our water bottles, an umbrella, and any purchases made throughout our day. It wasn't a problem entering any of the public spaces.

  • Take full advantage of my love of travel and planning skills, connect with me here to book your travel and/or free quote for my planning services.

Is London Safe?

Yes! London is generally a safe city - even at night. You will likely not find yourself alone as the city is always bustling. Public transport runs 24 hours a day. 

When traveling in any city, we always recommend taking the typical city precautions – don’t walk alone at night, stay in well-lit locations, ensure valuables are stored out of sight, be aware of your surroundings, keep your bags/purses close to your body, and be aware of pick pockets in large crowds.


We stayed at the Chesterfield in Mayfair. It was perfect! The service was top notch, the hotel was quaint, charming and very clean. The location was walkable to pubs, shops, the park, as well as close to the underground.

Getting Around:

There are many ways to get around in London. I highly recommend having the City Mapper App on your phone. This app was so helpful navigating the various transportation options (including walking). The app was easy to use and quickly mapped out the best route for us. Even allowing us to pick which type of transportation we planned to use - bus, taxi, underground, bike, walking, etc.

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  • I have traveled in 36 states, 15 National Parks, and to Italy, England, Scotland, Ireland, Mexico, Canada, and Costa Rica.

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