Big Ben in London

Jetting off to lands afar? The English capital is sure to be on everyone’s travel hit list – and so it should be. Home to over eight million people, the city is a thriving metropolis. What’s more, you can find most anything you might fancy, which leaves you with something of a conundrum. Where on earth should you start? Luckily, we have some ideas. Here is our London city guide.

Hang Out at Foodie Markets

Rather than booking fancy restaurants – or, more likely, getting waitlisted – why not try some authentic street food? Food markets are a huge deal right now with stalls popping up all over the UK, never mind in London. If you fancy getting on board, here are some of the best places to start.

KERB Food Markets

NEW #INKERBATOR ALERT! @yunricenoodle will be joining our fifth clutch of inKERBators starting this Tuesday down at #KERBontheQuay. We discovered them a few weeks back down at Bricklane serving up these delicious Yunnan SW Chinese ‘#douhua’ rice noodles, (captial city “#Kunming’s favourite”), then David and Yaofang turned up at our #KERBWorkshop, and they’re the first people to do Yunnan cusinine on London’s kerbs • Above: savouring the angel-rope slippery soothe-tubes down on a peaceful piece of concrete with East Ldn grafitti man glaring at our bowl. Like extremely feather light udons spouting up beneath a beautiful texture-collage of warm silken tofu, simmering pork mince crunchy peanuts and YUN signature pickles – hypnotising stuff and the softest noodles we’ ve eaten, (can’t wait to see the lunch crowds trying to street-stance them down with chopstick claws) • Go ➡📷 for photos and to meet @yunricenoodle, and for one of the lovliest descriptions we’ve ever seen on a takeaway website: “if you feel sad, go and taste it, then your sadness will go with wind since it is too spicy so that all the feeling you have is spicy taste” • Coming this Tuesday to West India Quay (InKERBator Tuesdays) – for full menu & line up.

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Looking for a lunchtime bite that hits the spot? Avoiding overpriced, overcrowded chain restaurants? You can’t go wrong with the KERB Food Markets. From Camden to King’s Cross, you can find these quirky daytime street food markets all over central London.

Each market has a load of unique vendors from which to choose and the array of options couldn’t be wider. You can find food from all over the world right here. Highlights include the Taiwanese dream that is Bian Dang and the ever-popular Baggio Burger. Opening times vary depending on which area you’re visiting, so it’s well worth checking online ahead of time.

Leather Lane

Far from your typical tourist spot, the unassuming sounding Leather Lane is a must-visit place for food-loving fiends. During the week, the street is packed full of food stalls and has a truly authentic community vibe to it. You’ll find a mix of standard fruit and veg stalls nestled in among the more modern street food vendors. Plus, there are loads of cute, indie coffee shops to keep your caffeine levels at an all-time high.

Urban Food Fest

Saturdays in Shoreditch mean just one thing – the Urban Food Fest. Head down to Euro Car Parks between midday (that’s 12:00 p.m.!) until midnight and you’ll be in for a real treat. With around 15 food trucks pulling up every time and a wide variety of cuisines on offer, you’re sure to find something to fall head over heels in love with.

Of course, it’s not all about food – you’ll need something to wash it down with. Luckily, at UFF, that’s not a problem. The drink vendors change regularly, but you can usually get what you need: craft beers, wines, cocktails in jam jars. You know the drill.

Take the Road Less Traveled

You could spend your time in London hitting up the tried-and-tested tourist spotsthe London Eye, the Shard, Big Ben – but why not mix things up a little? If you want an experience that differs from every other tourist’s, you’ve come to the right place. Here are some attractions you might not have heard about already.

Magnificent Seven Cemeteries

Traipsing around cemeteries might not be your idea of a good time – unless you’re unleashing your inner goth – but the Magnificent Seven Cemeteries in London are not to be missed. These sites date back to the Victorian era, which means the architecture is just exquisite. Expect huge tombs and striking monuments.

As though that weren’t enough to pique your interest, each of the cemeteries comes complete with a whole horde of bizarre stories. Fancy a day of ghost hunting? Check out the interactive map from The Londonist for all the details and where to find each cemetery.

Ride the Mail Train

Who could say no to the “immersive underground experience” that is the Mail Train? The Postal Museum is one of London’s most underrated tourist attractions and a place you should visit if you want a unique look at the city’s inner-workings. Before you head to the museum, be sure to book your ride slot.

The Mail Train will take you on a journey back to the 1930s through stalactite-filled tunnels. With theatrical moments and surprises along the way, this unique experience is one of the best ways to learn about the history of the city while having a blast.

Visit Brockwell Lido

Planning a summer trip to the Big Smoke? While the weather in the UK is miserable around 90% of the time, the country does get the odd day of sunshine. Should your trip happen to align with some good weather, there’s only one place you should head. Brockwell Lido is a huge outdoor swimming pool surrounded by a chic Art Deco building.

While the lido has been a fixture in London since 1937, it is now part of a thoroughly modern fitness center. However, the pool has kept much of its original charm and you don’t have to be a member to use it. Just pay a small entrance fee and get swimming.

See the City for Free

Are funds a little tight? If your vacation budget is small, there’s no reason you can’t have a wonderfully cultural experience. While London is by no means the cheapest place in the world – in terms of food, drink, and general living – it is home to a whole load of free things to see and do. Here are just a few things to put on your list.

V&A Museum of Childhood

Our #curatorial team are integral to the day to day running of the Museum. They are in charge of preserving & researching the diverse objects in our collection, finding new acquisitions, & displaying our objects in a way that engages & informs visitors of all ages. #professionsMW. . Here’s a look into our stores! Assistant #Curator, Lauren von Bechmann, gives us a tour of some of the wonderful historic & beautifully crafted dolls in the Museum’s collection. The Museum stores are where objects from the Museum that are not being displayed are stored for safe keeping. . #museumweek @museumweek #museumofchildhood #vamuseumofchildhood #vachildhood #victoriaandalbertmuseumofchildhood #dolls #dollcollection #bethnalgreen #eastlondon #londonmuseums

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Over in the East End of the city, you’ll find a charmingly nostalgia-packed museum that is 100% free to visit. The V&A Museum of Childhood is just what it says on the tin – a museum that looks at what it is to be a British child. Here you can find interactive exhibits, old-fashioned toys, and even artwork. The displays tend to change regularly, which means you can never be sure what you’ll find. Plus, there’s a great cafe where you can refuel!

Regents Canal Walk

Regents Canal is a nine-mile long waterway that runs through the heart of the city. Should you wish to escape the hustle-bustle of the main streets, you can take a quick excursion along this space. Not only will you find gorgeous cobbled paths here but you’ll be able to spot canal boats and heritage buildings along the way too.

Don’t panic – you don’t have to do the whole nine-mile trek. One of the most popular walks along this stretch takes you from King’s Cross to Camden. If you take it at a leisurely pace, you should find this four-mile walk takes you a couple of hours to complete. Don’t forget to bring your camera; there will be plenty of photo ops along the way.

Grant Museum of Zoology

Imagine coming face-to-face with the skeleton of a South African zebra or a weird and wonderful collection of animal brains. It may sound odd and a tad gross but the Grant Museum of Zoology is no place for the faint of stomach. The museum is part of Museum College London and is free to enter, which makes it a cost-effective place to pass an hour.

The highlight of this attraction is something many will never have witnessed before now – dodo bones. The ancient birds have been extinct since 1681 when they were hunted into submission. The museum has a selection of bones along with a wealth of information to help us learn from our past mistakes. Intriguing and educational.