The ultimate weekend in London

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London is one of those great cities where you can find pretty much what ever experience you’re looking for. Whether you want to immerse yourself in the history of the place, wander through the galleries and museums and soak up the culture, see a show, live music, or just have a banging night out on the town – whatever you’re into, whatever your budget, London has it going on. If you’ve only got a couple of days and you’re looking for the ultimate weekend in London, then you’re going to need to be fairly targeted and strategic. London is a big city and you’ll get more out
of it if you focus on a specific part of the city or neighbourhood. In this article we suggest three neighbourhoods where you can have yourself a cracking London weekend.

Inner East

The neighbourhoods of Shoreditch, Hoxton, and Bethnal Green form a little triangle of coolness just on the inner-east edge of the central business district (officially known as the City of London). Stay somewhere classic like the Ace Temple Hotel, explore the boutiques,markets, bars and curry houses of Brick Lane, dine at Les Trois Garcon, drink cocktails at the Zetter Townhouse, and spend Sunday morning at Colombia Road Flower Market. This area is a fascinating slice of London – fun, quirky, and always fashion-forward.

West End

The classic London weekend is to hit the town to see a show, and the West End is where it all
happens. Dine at The Delaunay, call into Joe Allen’s after a show for a late night supper or a drink (you’re bound to run into most of the cast of whatever show you’ve just seen), hit the shops of Covent Garden, feast on steak and cocktails at Hawksmoor. There are always ticket offers available – although you’ll generally need to book well in advance for the hot new shows.

Knightsbridge

For a high-end London experience, you can’t beat Knightsbridge. There is plenty of shopping to be had – all the big names are here plus the iconic department stores Harrods and Harvey Nichols, and many of the top hotels serve high tea. For a special occasion you could dine at Heston Blumenthal’s “Dinner” restaurant in Knightsbridge. It was named the 5th best restaurant in the world in 2014. A meal for 2, without wine will set you back about GBP150. If the weather is good then Hyde Park and Kensington Gardens are just on your doorstep – check out the Serpentine Galleries (within Kensington Gardens) which always have interesting contemporary art exhibits on display. Alternatively head to nearby South Kensington which is where you’ll find the extraordinary Natural History Museum and also the Victoria & Albert Museum with its stunning art and design collections and inspiring exhibitions. For example, until March 2015 it is showing an exhibition of wedding dresses from 1175 to2014.

It doesn’t get much better than a weekend in London. Don’t try and do everything at once, pick a
great location and make the most of everything that your chosen corner of the city has to offer.

Image by Joel Suss under Creative Commons license. Colombia Rd Flower Market.

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