How To Spend 2 Days in London: An Itinerary of Things You Shouldn’t Miss
Cristina Reina is a travel blogger and content creator that helps travelers explore hidden gem destinations and have more authentic and meaningful experiences in Spain, the UK, and beyond by sharing insightful and local tips. Find out more
If this is your first time visiting London, there are undoubtedly countless attractions on your radar. From the famous- like Big Ben, Buckingham Palace, and the London Eye– to more unique experiences like going into the dome of St Paul’s Cathedral or climbing on top of the Millennium Dome.
As London has so many amazing attractions, you may be wondering which are really worth visiting. Here are some of my favorite things to do on a whistle-stop tour, to help you make the most of your 2 days in London itinerary.
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Day 1 in London
No 2-day London itinerary would be complete without seeing Buckingham Palace. It’s the Queen’s London home and one of the city’s top attractions.
The palace is also surrounded by impressive gilded monuments and two lush green parks you may want to visit: St James’s Park and Green Park.
If you want a truly British experience, then you must watch the Changing of the Guard ceremony which happens most days at 11:00 AM. In summer, you can also take a tour of the palace.
Westminster Abbey, The Houses of Parliament, and Big Ben
Arguably the UK’s best-known landmark is Big Ben, so there is no doubt why so many travelers want to get up close for a photo on the picturesque Westminster Bridge. This impressive clock tower at the north end of the Palace of Westminster is a must-see.
If you would like to dive deeper and learn about the political system in England, as well as explore one of the most beautiful churches in London, book this fully guided tour of the Houses of Parliament and Westminster Abbey.
The London Eye
If you are after beautiful panoramic views of London, you will love going to The London Eye. When it opened in 2000, it was the world’s tallest observation wheel and sparked copycat versions around the globe.
Visiting The London Eye is a unique experience. Contemplate the city from a different perspective as you enjoy many photo opportunities.
There are many ticket options for the London Eye, including a time-saving fast-track ticket. This combo ticket also includes entry to Madame Tussauds and SEA LIFE Centre London Aquarium, which is opposite the London Eye.
Although The London Eye is an amazing attraction no matter what time you visit, book your ride for just before sunset if you want the ultimate experience.
Other fun activities to consider on the first day of your 2-day London itinerary
- Have a picnic in Hyde Park.
- Take a photo in Trafalgar Square and visit the National Gallery
- Go shopping on Regent Street and Oxford Street
- Have afternoon tea, or combine one with sightseeing on an afternoon tea bus tour
- Explore Soho in the evening for dinner and nightlife
Day 2 in London
The Tower of London and Tower Bridge
Start day 2 of your London itinerary by visiting the City of London, the historic financial district where you will find other must-see attractions like The Tower of London and Tower Bridge.
The Tower of London, an iconic castle and UNESCO World Heritage Site, is a must-see. While you’re here, take in the views of Tower Bridge, which is the most photographed bridge in London. You can also go inside the bridge to learn more about its history and structure, as well as enjoy breathtaking views. Don’t forget to walk across its glass floor 140 feet above the Thames for a unique experience.
You can combine both attractions by booking a joint guided tour with a local guide.
St Paul’s Cathedral
Are you an architecture lover? If so, be sure to add St Paul’s Cathedral to your London itinerary. Beautiful inside and out, this building is one of the most impressive architectural masterpieces in London. It has played host to iconic weddings and events too, like the wedding of Prince Charles and Diana.
While St Paul’s Cathedral is free to enter for worship or to attend a service, buying a sightseeing ticket to St Paul’s Cathedral allows you to enter its crypt and galleries, and enjoy brilliant views of London from its dome.
Whether you love a good view or a unique dining experience, you will want to visit The Shard. The UK’s tallest building, it is the most prominent building on the London skyline and the views from its viewing platform are unrivaled. For a longer visit, head to the chic bar on the same floor, or book dinner at one of the restaurants on its lower floors.
Taking in these spectacular views of London is one of the most popular activities in London, especially during sunset hours, so book your tickets to The Shard in advance to avoid any disappointments. There is no better way to end the day than looking out on panoramic views of the city with a cocktail.
Other fun activities to include on your second day in London
Top tips for 2 days in London
Use these tips to help you create the best 2 day London itinerary for you:
- Check out the London Pass. Whether you are visiting London for 1, 2, or more days, the London Pass can help you save money. It includes access to more than 80 of London’s most popular attractions, a 1-day hop-on hop-off bus tour, and a digital guide.
- Plan your days based on areas. The best way to make the most of your days in London is by grouping all the activities and attractions that are close to each other, or pre-planning a route. Avoid wasting time traveling back and forth between attractions.
- Feeling tired of walking or have limited time in London? Take the London hop-on hop-off sightseeing tour, a fun and informative way to explore London’s main attractions.
- Have a look at the weather forecast a few days before your trip. The weather in London can change very quickly, so it isn’t always easy to plan accordingly, but if you have many outdoor activities on your itinerary it’s good to check. Always take an umbrella or light raincoat, even in summer.
Cristina Reina is a travel blogger and content creator that helps travelers explore hidden gem destinations and have more authentic and meaningful experiences in Spain, the UK, and beyond by sharing insightful and local tips. Cristina lives between Spain and the UK, and London is one of her favorite cities to explore. Check out her tips for traveling to London for the first time to enjoy the city at its best.
You can also follow all her travel adventures on Instagram.