## **An Introduction to London**
London, capital of the United Kingdom, has a rich history, international diversity, and a prominent arts and food culture. It’s also home to royal sites such as The Tower of London and Buckingham Palace. By the Thames River, you can hop on the London Eye for stunning views of the city. English is the official language and the currency is the British pound. London has something for everyone and the path to discovering London is a never-ending one.
## **Top Things To Do in London**
No visit to London is complete without hopping on the London Eye, a massive Ferris wheel on the South Bank by the Thames River to catch panoramic views overlooking the city. (Adult tickets are USD $34.)
The Tower of London is another one of London’s top attractions on the North Bank of the Thames River. This structure is the official historic castle, royal palace, and fortress of the Queen of England, but the real royal living and administrative headquarters lie at Buckingham Palace, another must-visit spot.
If you need to escape to a green space, Hyde Park is the largest of the four great Royal Parks in London. It’s the perfect place to take a stroll, people-watch, and enjoy current events.
London is also home to multiple renowned museums and galleries such as the Tate Modern and the Natural History Museum. Most offer free admission.
[![Cheap flights to London](https://content.skyscnr.com/026aacf1839bdf7cd73b1636c7e451dc/GettyImages-465881802.jpg “Cheap flights to London”)](https://www.skyscanner.com/flights-to/lond/cheap-flights-to-london.html)
## **Unique Must-Do Spots**
The London Dungeon (from USD $28) is a distinctive place to learn about the darker history of London. Macabre and humorous, you’ll enjoy the fun of learning with live actors, rides, and special effects.
For another fun twist, at the Madame Tussauds Museum, you’ll find incredibly realistic wax recreations of celebrities and famous historic icons. Standard admission is USD $40.
In Greenwich, London’s South East borough, you’ll find the Cutty Sark, the last surviving British clipper ship built in 1869. It used to speedily transport tea from Asia to Britain. While you’re in Greenwich, you can also check out the planetarium at the Royal Observatory, the Queen’s House, and the National Maritime Museum.
Tip: Most attractions in London offer discounts if you buy your tickets online.
## **Food and Drink in London**
London is no underdog when it comes to food options. Thanks to its multiculturalism, you can find excellent food from cuisines around the world suitable for all budgets.
One place not to miss is Borough Market in Southwark, one of London’s oldest food markets offering wholesale and retail food.
While you’ll find delicious Indian food at Dishoom Shoreditch ($$), and mouth-watering upscale modern Chinese food at Hakkasan Hanway Place ($$$$), you’ll have to try London’s iconic dish: fish and chips. Poppies ($) is the place to order this dish made with fresh fish in a British kitsch, 1950s atmosphere.
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## **Nightlife and Entertainment in London**
London is fun during the day, but it does not quiet down at night. For higher end nightlife, the Kensington Roof Gardens ($$$) offers a space to enjoy a restaurant, nightclub, and gardens on the seventh floor.
If you’re looking for live music and DJs, XOYO ($$) is a nightclub in Shoreditch with street art decor and offers free entry before 10 p.m.
For a tropical theme and famous cocktails, explore the Mahiki cocktail bar and club ($$$). Cafe de Paris ($$$$) is a famous nightclub in London with 1920s theatrical style showcasing comedy, burlesque, and cabaret. And The Roxy ($$) is a no-frills nightclub and bar in Central London for a good time with friends.
When it comes to entertainment in London, you must catch a live theater performance at a West End theater like the Apollo or Dominion. From plays and orchestras to dance and Broadway shows, everyone can enjoy something here.
London also has a big cinema culture, and many movie theaters including the Edwardian Electric Cinema, which screens both art house and mainstream movies with sofa seating plus a bar and food. Modern multiplexes include the Cineworld Cinema in Leicester Square (USD $21-USD $27.50) showing the latest international blockbusters.
[![Cheap flights to London](https://content.skyscnr.com/fac8c5ac91d58475a311068eb0ceb370/GettyImages-529835485.jpg “Cheap flights to London”)](https://www.skyscanner.com/flights-to/lond/cheap-flights-to-london.html)
## **Transportation in London**
One of the best parts about visiting London is the ease of transportation. Skip the taxis and make use of the efficient public transportation in London. The Tube is the underground subway that can take you anywhere with many stops across the city. The bus system is a great option for late hours when the Tube closes. Don’t miss the ride on the double-decker London buses.
To avoid waiting at stations for a ticket every time you go somewhere, get the Visitor Oyster Card, a rechargeable transportation card that gets you in and out all of London’s public transportation including the Tube, bus, tram, DLR, and more. The card costs only about USD $4 and is preloaded with pay-as-you-go credit.
Tip: Buy your card online and have it delivered to your home address before your trip.
[![Cheap flights to London](https://content.skyscnr.com/673ff419ad0d007daad06e390d41c918/GettyImages-496994295.jpg “Cheap flights to London”)](https://www.skyscanner.com/flights-to/lond/cheap-flights-to-london.html)
## **Climate in London**
London’s climate is temperate, making it pleasant year-round. Highs during the summer are modest, and lows during winter rarely go below freezing. Some snowfall can occur, but rarely deeper than a few inches. Rain is quite common, but most of the time it doesn’t come down too hard; however, carrying a compact umbrella may be a good idea.
## **Best Time to Go to London**
London ranks as one of the most expensive cities in the world. The most popular time is May to mid-September and December, with lower periods of visitation in January and February.
The best time to get [cheap flights to London](https://www.skyscanner.com/flights-to/lond/cheap-flights-to-london.html) is during September and October, and midweek flights also tend to be cheaper. The highest prices are usually during June through late August.
[Hotel prices in London](https://www.skyscanner.com/hotels?na=1&sd=2017-07-26&ed=2017-07-27&s-f_iplace=LOND&fileName=London) are lowest during the off-season: November and January through March.
However, summer is the best time to visit the royal sites as they are open for visitors (they’re mostly closed during the winter). For example, the State Rooms at Buckingham Palace are available to tour in late July through September.
Additionally, tickets to West End shows are easier to find during the January and February tourism lull. During this time, you’ll also find shorter lines and smaller crowds at London’s many museums and galleries.
[![Cheap flights to London](https://content.skyscnr.com/8d11511304fb419976fed3e522133516/GettyImages-164484408.jpg “Cheap flights to London”)](https://www.skyscanner.com/flights-to/lond/cheap-flights-to-london.html)
## **Flying To London**
Flying to London is easy as the city has five major airports: London Gatwick, London Heathrow, London Luton, London City, and London Stansted. Whether you’re flying from a nearby European country or from across the Atlantic, you can find tickets from your departure city any day and time of year.
Spontaneous trips to London also pay off. [Skyscanner’s latest report](http://www.skyscanner.net/bttb/best-time-to-book-flights-full-report) determines that booking your flight only two weeks in advance can save you money.
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