As one of the most well-known cosmopolitan hotspots of the world, London receives an average of 21 million visitors each year, contributing over £2.104 million to the UK economy. As a cultural metropolis, London offers a huge variety of entertainment, from traditional British sightseeing to the best restaurants, bars, theatres, casinos and so much more.
Located on the River Thames, the river is at the heart of London’s centre and much of what goes on in the city revolves around the water. While it’s so easy to find something to do in London, if you’re looking to get out of the hustle and bustle for a while, an activity on the water could be the ideal solution.
Water activities have recently sparked interest since the topics of wellness has arose everywhere. It is proven that water related activities can give you physical and mental relief from stress and prolongs a healthy mind and body for people of all ages!
Below, we’ll take a look at the best activities, including the ones that will get you out on the water around London over 2022.
What are London’s main attractions?
There is a plethora of main attractions to see in London, in which visitors will likely need a week of more to see everything that London has to offer. Some of the top attractions that can’t be missed include:
The Tower of London
Steeped in a dark history, the Tower of London has guarded royal possessions for over 500 years and is home to the Ceremony of the Keys, one of the oldest military rituals in the world. The tower is well known for a number of historical royal beheadings too, including Jane Boleyn, Catherine of Aragon, and Robert Devereux, Earl of Essex in 1601.
No trip to London is complete without a visit to the home of the Queen of England. As her main residence, Buckingham Palace is an iconic place where visitors can pre-book tours to look around the palace and learn more about the British monarchy. Be sure to catch the ceremony of the changing of the guard too, happening at 11.30am every day. This attraction has become even more monumental since the passing of the Queen this year.
The British museum
No city break is complete without a visit to a museum, and the British museum has so much to offer. Displaying one of the world’s finest collections of antiques, guests of the British museum can expect to see artefacts from across the world, including China, Europe, Assyria, and Babylonia. There’s also a well stocked on-site book shop, featuring titles on ancient history, archaeology and art history. The museum is great for kids too, offering a variety of activities to keep them entertained around the museum.
Piccadilly Circus and Trafalgar Square
As two of London’s best known tourist spots, line the entrance to London’s lively restaurant and theatre district in Soho and are filled with unique boutiques, European style cafes, ice cream stores and more on traditional cobble pathing stones that make it a treat to wander around these areas.
Getting around London
Covering over 607 square miles, getting around the city can take time, especially in the height of the tourist season where traffic is heavy and tube stations and hot and crowded. While a weekly pass for the Underground train or an Oyster card for both the trains and busses are an option, there are a variety of alternatives that could make your journey around London a little more pleasant. The River Thames is an ideal transport system to get around London, with there being a number of water taxis across the city, offering a cooling and scenic journey in the spring and summer months.
There’s also the option of chartering a boat, not only offering an easy way to get around London but some unique accommodation too. This is a great option for still having luxury accommodation while being in the centre of everything London has to offer. With the rise of hotel and Airbnb prices, chartering a boat is more value for money than just staying at a regular hotel in central London which has limited space and not a great view. Companies like Borrowaboat.com offer some great options for boat charters, with choices for every budget.
The best things to do on the water in and around London
The River Thames runs centrally through London, passing some of the most iconic spots and places to be. As such, it makes it one of the best places to be for staying and getting around the city. If you’re looking for some activities to keep you entertained on the River Thames, check out the following ideas below.
An art gallery tour
Some of London’s best art galleries are located up and down the River Thames, including the National Gallery of Modern Art, The Tate Modern, and Tate Britain. These art galleries feature world class exhibits that are not to be missed.
Dine among the city lights
If you’re chartering a boat, there’s no need to worry about reserving a swanky dinner spot weeks in advance, simply have the crew serve you up a feast on the top deck as you cruise down the river, taking in the sights of London after dark. There’s a variety of rooftop bars and legendary cocktail venues you can stop off at to finish off the evening too.
If you don’t have a boat of your own, there’s plenty of options for romantic dinner cruises on the river, with many also offering live jazz performances to make the evening extra special. The benefit of chartering a boat in London is the aspect of a bespoke experience. You have full control to decide on activities and destinations that truly cater to your preference as well as the privacy that comes with it. The worry of other people hearing your conversations are gone and you do not need to be queuing for anything. Once you book online and establish what you would like to do, it will all fall into place once you are on the boat. To anybody, this sounds like the ultimate dream!
Overall, London really is one of the most iconic cities in the world. Seeped in a rich amount of history and a thriving international culture, visitors will never get bored as they soak up the historic sites of the city or enjoy the latest cosmopolitan entertainment.