London is one of my favorite cities in Europe because there is so much to see and do. But what if you only have one day in London? Here are six awesome, trendy things you can do if you’re only in town for a day. Fair warning though, these aren’t just your typical touristy things to do, there are some quirky ones in here too!
How to get the most out of one day in London
1. Enjoy a 5-course meal while you sightsee
London might not be synonymous with food like other culinary destinations in the world but the Bustronome is here to change that. As the name implies, its a bus. But this is no ordinary bus, ladies and gentlemen. This bus serves you up a delicious 5-course meal while you experience London in a completely unique way.
You’ll get on Bustronome’s double-decker bus like other tourists in the city but once you head upstairs to the glass-encased dining room, your experience is anything but common. Each table is innovatively designed to prevent anything from moving around or causing any spills while the bus is in motion. As you eat your delicious courses that are served by an amazing staff, you’ll get to see all the iconic sites of central London.
You can book your tour for lunch, high tea, or dinner and each is truly worth it. For a romantic date, the dinner option is sure to dazzle! Just be sure to reserve your spot in advance and make sure you are on time. This isn’t a hop on and off kind of bus, so you don’t want them to leave without you.
Departure: Lunch 12:15 pm, High Tea 3 pm (Wednesday, Friday, Saturday only), Dinner 7:15 pm
Cost: £65 – 150
Location: Victoria Embankment, London, WC2N 6PB
Duration : 1h45 – 2 hours
2. See graffiti at Leake Street tunnel
You guys know I love graffiti and murals. And when it comes to all things street art, London does not disappoint! Most of the time I just wander a city in hopes that it will show me some great pieces of street art. Like NYC, London has some places that are known for street art, like the Leake Street tunnel.
If you are going to be near the London Eye, this nearby tunnel is a street art lovers wonderland. The tunnel is below the Waterloo station and was started by the legend, Banksy.
The walls are an ever-changing canvas so don’t be surprised if you see artists putting some finishing touches to one of their new pieces.
3. Explore God’s Own Junkyard
With a name like that, how can you not visit? This neon wonderland is the personal collection of late neon artist Chris Bracey. And let me tell you, this collection has more than just neon history to it. You’ll find everything from sings Bracey made for Soho sex clubs in the 1960s to the pieces he worked on for the big screen. You can .see pieces that were used in ‘Captain America’, ‘Eyes Wide Shut’, and ‘Byzantium’ just to name a few. This neon wonderland is a fun way to get in touch with a different type of art in London.
4. Take in the international flavors of Brixton Market
There is nothing I love more than a good market! From Istanbul to Colombia, I always always always opt for spending time in a market because you get to experience some amazing flavors and genuine culture. Brixton Market, my friends, is a good market. The kind that will transport you as flavors waft through the air. From street food to art and from coffee to booze, it really does have everything you could think of!
This up and coming neighborhood is fun and trendy (it gets a shout out on Taylor Swift’s song, London Boy, of her most recent album, Lover). Its one of those neighborhoods that use to be a little iffy but has come of age with a lovely mix of immigrants and young working professionals. Now, you’ll find awesome street art and markets you don’t want to miss.
If you’re looking for a fun place to end your night, head to Pop! Brixton. This super cool and happening spot is made up of a bunch of shipping containers and each one is different, be it a shop, bar, or restaurant.
5. Eat your way around Borough Market
So, I might have lied earlier when I said there is nothing I love more than a market… because there is one thing: a historic market! Borough Market is London’s oldest food market dating back to the thirteenth century! You’ll want to make sure you visit on an empty stomach though because there are so many yummy samples of gourmet treats like bread, cured meats, cheeses, pastries, and so much more! And even though the market is now mainly used to highlight local produce, you can still find a smörgåsbord of traders and international food options. From Tuscan porchetta to French confit duck sandwiches and from Ethiopian stews to Scotch eggs, it will be hard for you to not try one of each. And if you can handle more food, this area is home to some of London’s best bars and restaurants. So, undo the button on your pants and grab a fork! If you have one day in London, this is one place you shouldn’t miss.
Pro tip: Arrive early to beat the crowds! You can grab a coffee from Monmouth on the south side of the market before you start shopping.
6. Visit Platform 9 and 3/4 at Kings Cross Station
Is it really a trip to London if you don’t visit Platform 9 and 3/4 from Harry Potter? The answer is no. Even if you aren’t a wand-carrying-know-your-house-motto-super-fan, you can still appreciate what Harry Potter means in the realm of pop culture.
The truth is that you can do quite a bit of Harry Potter themed things in London, depending on how much time you have. You can go to the Warner Bros. Studio for an official set tour, do a muggle walking tour where you can see sights from the books and movies, and even stay in a Hogwarts Themed room at the Georgian House B&B. The easiest though is visiting the famous platform, especially if you are only in London for a day.
One last thing…
If you’re trying to figure out what to do when you have one day in London, it can be overwhelming if you’eve never been before. Look at how much time you have and your interests to really make the most of your time there. Don’t forget to read our first-time guide to London with tips and helpful information to make sure you have the best time in London, check out our post. London is a wonderful city and I hope you have a great visit!