A RAINY DAY IN LONDON
London is a great city, so much to see! But so much of it is outdoors… For a city that sees on average 106.5 rainy days, it can be a bit daunting not knowing what to do once those clouds are forming. However, there are lots of exciting activities for when the problem arises.
Immerse yourself fully into a fantasy land at the BFI Imax Cinema. Located close to Waterloo Station, just few minutes walk from the Southbank, sit back and relax whilst you watch your favourite movie on the biggest screen in Britain. You can even hire out the whole auditorium if you want to.
London hosts an array of interesting museums and galleries, perfect for adults and children alike.
Why not take your little ones to the natural History Museum, where they can stand in awe at a 26 metre dinosaur before having a peek at a life size blue wale…or the 40 million year old spider! Located in South Kensington, you are a short walk from the Science Museum, so why not hit them both at the same time? Both museums are free of charge so won’t blow the budget either.
The Museum of London is one of my favourites, also free of charge, discover London through the ages. Accessed easily from St Paul’s, Moorgate or the Barbican, spend a few hours browsing through the exhibitions. This one is probably more suited to older children and adults.
If you don’t mind travelling a little further out, check out the royal Museums in Greenwich, East London. Learn about the rise of Britain before visiting the Royal Observatory and standing either side of Greenwich Meantime. Greenwich is a full day out, if there is a break in the rain then check out Cutty Sark!
London has some of the greatest shopping in the world, unfortunately the most famous shopping street, Oxford Street, is open air. However, no need to worry, there are some epic shopping malls under cover…
This shopping centre occupies nine different postcodes, need we say more? 46 acres, Westfield London was the largest shopping centre in Europe when it opened in Autumn 2008. With around 265 shops there is something for everyone, a long with shops you won’t find on your average British High Street, including Oxford Street. When you want a break from shopping, stop for lunch and dinner in one of fifty impressive eateries.
On the opposite side of London, most people will chose between the two, dependent on their location. Perfect for those residing in the East of England, or staying in East London or Kent. Westfield Stratford City is a little newer than it’s sister mall in Shepherds Bush. Built on the 2012 Olympic site, this mall is host to over 300 retail stores, including Primark and John Lewis (both absent from Shepherds Bush). A slightly younger vibe in Stratford, but still a very impressive place, and so easy to get to from the Jubilee Line, Central Line, National Rail, and the DLR.
Up there with some of the most famous shop names in the world, Harrods is a must see for anyone visiting London. A huge department store in London’s upmarket Knightsbridge, whether you are purchasing or just window shopping, you could spend all day getting lost amongst the different boutiques. This well known store has been in business for over 160 years, which is probably why they get it so right. Impeccable customer service, beautiful surroundings, and the finest products, Harrods even has a spa.
Not our favourite shopping mall to visit, but convenient for those staying in North London and Hertfordshire. Brent Cross is a huge undercover shopping centre (with free parking!), opening in 1976. The shopping centre is still thriving, and currently under plans for a huge redevelopment. A great place for those seeking out popular high street fashions, such as Oasis, French connection, H&M and Topshop, as well as those wanting those trusty department stores – John Lewis and Fenwicks.
THE LONDON DUNGEONS
Want to learn about London’s scary past without actually having to go back in time? The London Dungeon moved from it’s home on Tooley Street to the South Bank in 2013. Walk through a stinky alleyway at the venues entrance and you will already feel like you have transported back in time.
The dungeons offer a living museum experience, walk through and hear stories based on some of London’s nastier historic memories! This place is not for the light hearted and easily scared, there are live actors all around, ready to make you feel like you are back in plague ridden London, torture and murder and all!
This place is better for children over twelve, although there are no age restrictions. It is a fun day out but only if you are ready to be spooked!
32 years after being founded in Paris, Madam Tussauds made it’s way to London in 1802.
The exhibition is now a host to over 300 A list figures, including Brad Pitt, Angelina Jolie, and David Beckham. This venue is more than just a home to waxworks, go down into the Chamber of horrors, before taking a pod through London’s history.
Located on Baker Street, you can even have a glimpse at the former home of Sherlock Holmes along the way.
Why not take in a matinee production? London’s West End is world famous for it’s shows.
Which to see? Well that is up to you… Les Miserables is one of the oldest running West End musicals, closely followed by Phantom of the Opera in it’s 25th year. Neither of these comes close to The Mousetrap which has been running for a staggering 59 years.
EMBRACE THE RAIN
If none of the above takes your fancy, why not just enjoy the trusty British weather? No one visits London expecting wall to wall sunshine anyway….