London

Family days out in London

The bustling streets of London are jam-packed full of intriguing attractions, fascinating museums and fun-filled days out that instantly create beloved family memories. It’s hard to turn a corner without stumbling into something that gets the whole family jumping for joy and hurriedly buying tickets.

Here are just some of our favourite family days out in London to get your holiday itinerary started.

 

Warner Bros. Studio Tour London

Hundreds of letters falling from the ceiling in the set of the Dursley's living room at the Warner Bros. Studio Tour in London

Let’s not beat around the venomous tentacular, whether six or 60 years old, chances are somebody in your family is a fan of Harry Potter. At the Warner Bros. Studio Tour, you can leave muggle life behind as you enter a world of magic and wonder. Kids (and adult kids) will love walking through the wizarding world they’ve grown up with, ogling as they go at the incredible sets and marvellous costumes or stopping for a foaming glass of Butterbeer. Booking tickets in advance is a must with this popular attraction but as soon as you step into the great hall it will be worth it.

wbstudiotour.co.uk

 

London Zoo

Two giraffes standing together at London Zoo

At London Zoo, you can go nose-to-nose with some of nature’s incredible animals and wander through the animal kingdom learning as you go. An array of cafes and restaurants are scattered around the zoo, enabling you to spend the whole day exploring London’s wild side. Want to create an extra special memory? London Zoo has a variety of animal experiences you can get hands-on with. Who hasn’t dreamed of becoming a giraffe keeper for a day!

zsl.org/zsl-london-zoo

 

Natural History Museum

Looking down on the whale skeleton at the National History Museum in London

From the current natural world to the past, the Natural History Museum is one of many fascinating museums in London that are sure to keep everyone entertained. As soon as you enter the museum and come face to face with Hope, the incredible blue whale, you’ll never want to leave as every corner reveals a new and eye-opening secret (as well as numerous cafes and restaurants for refuelling). There’s something for all in this historical and cultural treasure trove, including an audio tour of Hintze Hall by Sir David Attenborough himself - who better to walk us through the animal kingdom! 

Is the pooch joining the pack for the holiday? We’ve picked out some great dog-friendly activities in London here so you can get the whole family involved.

nhm.ac.uk

 

Tate Modern

When you think of child-friendly days out in London, the Tate Modern might not be on the top of your list so we’re here to change that. You can enjoy a cultured jaunt around the exhibitions whether you have the little Picassos in tow or not thanks to the Tate’s superb tips on viewing art, which are as thought-provoking for adults as they are for kids. The Kitchen and Bar also holds a special place in our hearts and acts as the perfect place to discuss your favourite pieces over their menu of Kasuma inspired drinks. Discover more of London’s top galleries here and curate your very own erudite day out with the family.

tate.org.uk/visit/tate-modern

 

Madame Tussauds

A wax figure of Barack Obama at Madame Tussauds in London

From superheroes to celebrities, get ready to be star struck at every turn at one of London’s top attractions. Madame Tussauds has been entertaining big and little kids alike for decades with its unmissable immersive experiences and scarily lifelike figures. Where else can you take selfies with Tom Hardy, Darth Vader and Freddie Mercury all in one place? With the all-inclusive ticket, your London escape will want for nothing else as you gain access to Madame Tussauds, the London Eye and Sea Life.

madametussauds.com/london

 

London Dungeons

One for the older kids and those who are strong of heart, London Dungeons is a spooktacular visit that’s sure to get the blood pumping! Jump at shadows and live actors as you embark on this whistle-stop tour of London’s scary past with an outing that gets all the senses involved (yes, we’re afraid to say smells are included in this one). You’ll get to meet and learn all about some of London’s most notorious historical figures from Jack the Ripper to Guy Fawkes as they test your bravery underneath the streets of London.

thedungeons.com/london

 

Big Bus London

A red double decker tour bus driving through the streets of London

Anywhere else in the UK, hopping on a bus is just a normal part of getting from A to B but here in London, it’s about the journey as well as the destination. Explore London from the top of one of the city’s iconic red double-decker buses, ticking off all the top landmarks as you go. Big Ben, the London Eye, Covent Garden, London Bridge, the Tower of London, Buckingham Palace… and so much more. Hop off and explore each site or sit back and enjoy the view from up high.

bigbustours.com/en/london/london-bus-tours

 

Science Museum

At the Science Museum in South Kensington, scientists in the making can let their minds run wild. Watch fascinating documentaries on the big screen, walk through thought-provoking object galleries and take part in fun-filled events from gaming through the decades to interactive displays and simulations (we’re particularly big fans of the flight simulator for an experience like no other). If you want to get the kids (and grown ups) excited about science, this is the place to go.

sciencemuseum.org.uk

 

London Eye

The London Eye towering over the London skyline at sunset

Not only is it an iconic addition to the London skyline, the London Eye also offers visitors the chance to see London from a different angle – in fact, it lets you see London from every jaw-dropping angle! Take to the skies for incredible 360-degree views that never fail to impress. Play the world’s hardest game of eye spy or use the far-reaching views to help plan the next stop on your inner-city tour. When you return to the ground, head over to the Jubilee Park and Garden for a serene picnic. 

londoneye.com

 

Hamleys

When it comes to putting smiles on children’s faces, nowhere does it quite like the ‘joy emporium’. Seven fabulous floors filled with all things fun welcome families for a shopping experience like no other. Toys for all ages can be found throughout the ‘finest toyshop in the world’ along with a multitude of games to play with. We’ll admit, even as adults we get swept away in the fantastical store. And with its position in Regent Street, you can pair your shopping experience with some superb restaurants. Who doesn’t love a shopping and brunch trip!

hamleys.com

 

Buckingham Palace

People standing in front of the impressive gates and front of Buckingham Palace

Another must-see on the London list is none other than Buckingham Palace, the most famous of London’s gems. Before you amble through the impressive State Rooms, linger outside to catch the Changing the Guard. This impressive show of British pageantry never fails to capture the imagination of onlookers as the Queen’s Guard march out from Wellington Barracks with a musical accompaniment as if they’re acting out a scene from your favourite regency era film. Complete the visit with an afternoon tea in one of the nearby restaurants and you have a perfectly regal afternoon out in London.

rct.uk/visit/buckingham-palace

   

Sea Life

From the vibrant streets of London to the even more vibrant ocean floor, Sea Life provides the chance to roam the deep blue sea and is one of our favourite rainy day attractions as you can easily spend a whole afternoon here. From the UK’s largest living coral reef (we were surprised to find it in the midst of London, too) and a trek through the Amazonian (complete with crocs and crawlies), Sea Life has lots of fascinating displays and exhibits so the whole family can learn more about what lies beneath the waves we love so much. While Sea Life doesn’t have a cafe on-site, there are some great restaurants in the area that enjoy glorious river views.

visitsealife.com/london

 

Kew Gardens

The impressive windows of the greenhouse at Kew Gardens in London

It’s not just indoor attractions that beckon in London for family-friendly days out. The swathe of parks, gardens and green spaces in London is often surprising to most, offering perfect spots for a picnic and a wander. One such place is the mesmerising Kew Gardens where you can find over 50,000 living plants, making it one of the most bio-diverse places in the world – and it’s in the middle of London! Stroll around this UNESCO World Heritage site with your little saplings in tow and turn your city break into an escape into nature.

Continue your tour of London’s beautiful green spaces with our guide, which proves once and for all that London isn’t just streets and buildings.

kew.org/kew-gardens

 

Feeling inspired? Take a look at our luxury getaways in London here.

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