| But Westminster Abbey is the most awesome place Iíve been to in my entire life. The history and, especially, the people buried there took my breath away.
We saw a couple shows at West End and that was fun. The Tower was fun. Didnít go on the big Ferris wheel thing but Iím sure kids would love that.
| - First take the London tour buses (Original Tour or Big Bus), you can get them almost everywhere. What this does is give you a couple of hour tour of central London so you get a feel for the layout and sights. You can get off and on as you like. Also for the rest of your stay you can use these buses as transit for free' just jump on and jump off.
- You can actually do a walking tour from Trafalgar Sq, down the Buckingham, Westminster Abbey, Parliment/Big Ben, and back in 3 hours all on your own (stopping at pubs all the time).
- Definitely hit up some West End London plays. Its like off Broadway, maybe better. I believe there are 60 or so different play houses, all with famous plays and stars
- Definitely do a tour of the Tour of London. You can get off from the Bus Tours (See above), of for a really spectacular ride take a boat down the Thames to it. You pick them up from Big Ben.
- For an offbeat thing to do visit the London Dungeon. IT is a walk through the seedy side of London history. IT talks about the Tower of London and when it was a jail, torture tactics of the mideviel times, the fire of 1666, and Jack the Ripper. It ends with you being hanged.
- The War Museums are fantastic if you are in to that stuff
- The High Class shopping area is Regents Street (think live models, etc.). So if you're into this go here
- For a sports bar go to Rileys Sports Bar on Haymarket. Two floors, lots of TV's. Shows soccer and rugby in the morning, then NFL in the afternoon
- Chinatown is behind Leicester Sq (actually behind the casino), so if you want that food go there.
- The Tube goes everywhere. You can go anywhere in Zone 1 (central London) for 5 pounds).
- See a soccer match, its wilder than football. Arsenal, West Ham, Chelsea, Crystal Palace, and Tottenham are all Premier League teams in London
- Covent Garden is a nice outdoor shopping area to go to.
- All the pubs are great, some have really good food too. The pubs close at 10-11, then the clubs open. Some, like the Zoo Bar is Leicester Sq, offer both. So if you are in the Pub then you can go downstairs to the club.
- Pubs are all over the place, too many to discuss. Every corner has one.
I'm sure I'm forgetting a lot.
| How old are they? What is their stamina, their tolerance for walking, their interest in... history, the arts, pop culture, etc.? For most of their lives, it was almost impossible finding things that would work for the four of us because our two daughters (and my wife and I) are so dissimilar in these kinds of situations. Even though our daughters are only 2 1/2 years apart.
My older and I have similar interests, and when she was in 8th grade we spent 2 weeks in England and Wales, and we loved it. In London, some of the highlights for her were: 1) hop-on/off Big Bus tour 2) 3-hour walking tour of all the places where Harry Potter stuff was filmed, 3) walking across the Millennium Bridge from St. Paul's Cathedral to the Globe theater (and tours of both places), 4) touring the Royal Mews (carriage house) at Buckingham Palace -- from carriages to royal claret colored Bentleys... 5) Royal Museum 6) British Museum, 7) National Gallery. If my wife and younger daughter had been with us, the only thing among these that they would have enjoyed, would be the Royal Mews.
Again, it depends on your children. My 8th-grade daughter and I probably would say the top two things we saw were the John Harrison clocks at Royal Observatory in Greenwich (where you can stand in both hemispheres) and the lifeboat that Shackelton used in the greatest rescue in the history of exploration. (The James Caird, at his public school, Dulwich.) But she is a sponge for all things geeky. She LOVED the Harry Potter walking tour, too, though I was bored.
Know thy children, and plan accordingly.