How to spend 48 hours in London
You can’t do everything in London in just a day. To make sure you don’t leave the capital undiscovered, we’ve put together a local guide of some ways you can make the most of two days in London!
In this guide of how to spend 48 hours in London, you will find:
Where to Stay in London
It’s important to plan where you’ll be resting your head after a busy few days exploring London. If your itinerary covers a wide proportion of London, the best places to stay will usually be in a central location like Shoreditch, Kensington or Mayfair. For a slice of luxury, you can’t go wrong with the iconic Ritz London. Or, if you’re travelling on a budget, Point A Hotel King’s Cross is ideally situated near King’s Cross Station.
How to get Around London
The tube is a popular mode of transport for locals and tourists alike to travel through London. Or, above ground, many people prefer the efficient bus system. For an easy, relaxing way to travel while seeing incredible London landmarks, The Original Tour bus has got you covered! See breathtaking London attractions with our 48-hour ticket, which allows you to hop-on and off our buses as much as you like and includes a free Thames River cruise and free walking tours.
Where to Eat in London
With over 39,000 restaurants to choose from in London, you won’t be short of options when it comes to searching for a delicious meal. During your two days in London, you’ll want to keep energised between sightseeing, tours and attractions.
Day One Itinerary
1. Breakfast at The Hoxton
Breakfast is the most important meal of the day. So head to The Hoxton Hotel in Shoreditch and give breakfast the attention it deserves. The Hoxton boasts an all-day bar situated in the trendy East End. Generous bowls or fruit & granola, buttery pastries and full English breakfasts can be found on their breakfast menu. Don’t worry if you’re not an early riser as food is served until late.
2. Visit The Natural History Museum
Start your London adventure by heading to South Kensington to marvel at great artefacts and exhibitions in the Natural History Museum. Luckily, this London attraction is just a short walk away from the Victoria and Albert Museum and the terrific Science Museum. All three museums boast magnificent architecture and are free to enter! It’s also just a 10-minute walk to Hyde Park so head there after to admire the beautiful scenery.
3. Lunch at Zuma
Just a 13-minute walk from The Natural History Museum sits Zuma, a traditional Japanese izakaya restaurant with a twist. If you’re looking for theatrical dining, there is no place better. Watch the chefs in action behind a huge granite counter as you wine and dine in style. Open for lunch on weekdays from 12-3pm, enjoy delicious sushi, sashimi and a range of scrumptious robata grill dishes at this unique place to eat in London to fuel the rest of the day.
4. Visit Greenwich
Home to the National Maritime Museum, the Cutty Sark and the Royal Observatory, there is plenty to keep you occupied in Greenwich. Greenwich itself offers breath-taking views and impressive Georgian and Victorian architecture. So, whether you decide to check out the museums or amble gently along the riverfront, it’s certainly worth your time.
You can get to Greenwich by taking the free Thames River Cruise when you book a 48-hour ticket with The Original Tour.
5. Have a wander around Borough Market
Hop-on the river cruise from Greenwich back to Tower Pier and head to Borough Market. Selling a mix of hot and cold food, raw ingredients and sweet treats, Borough Market is London’s ultimate foodie heaven. The market embodies the city’s multiculturalism, offering culinary delights from across the world. Just a 14-minute walk across Tower Bridge to the The Tower of London and a 12-minute walk to the Tate Modern, you’ll be surrounded by London’s greatest attractions .
Receive a discounted visit to The Tower of London when you book a tour bus ticket with The Original Tour.
6. Dinner at GOAT in Chelsea
Existing once as a tavern, GOAT has kept a traditional, vintage vibe with distressed decor which comes to life with luxurious furnishings. There is something for everyone at this sophisticated Italian restaurant, from impressive wood-fired pizzas to delicious grilled meats and fish. Famous for their gorgeous selection of wines and cocktails, don’t miss your chance to unwind in this quirky, refined restaurant.
7. See a musical or West End Show in London
What’s better than finishing off your day at the West End! It’s a good idea to plan ahead and see what’s available for the time of your visit, but you can always be spontaneous and head to a booth or box office to buy tickets on the night. There is plenty of choice when it comes to picking a show. With the likes of The Lion King, Mamma Mia!, Phantom of the Opera and The Book of Mormon, there really is something everyone.
Day Two Itinerary
8. Enjoy pancakes for breakfast
Despite being established in 1958, My Old Dutch sells modern, innovative and totally delicious food. With stores in Holborn, Chelsea and Kensington, you won’t be too far away from pancake-heaven. Why not try The Breakfast Club, a retro all-day brunch cafe serving American style pancakes. Only a 10-minute walk to Oxford Street, head for a shop after breakfast at London’s most iconic stores.
9. Visit Big Ben and the Houses of Parliament
An easy way to begin sightseeing is to start at Westminster Abbey before heading to Big Ben and the Houses of Parliament, which are only 3-minutes apart. Don’t miss out on securing an iconic photo of Britain’s largest clock and take a fascinating tour around the Houses of Parliament to learn more about London’s history and culture. You’ll also find the Coca-Cola London Eye a short walk over Westminster Bridge.
10. Have a Picnic for lunch at St James Park
Take the concept of a picnic in the park to the next level. Only a 9-minute walk away from Big Ben, St James Park is a lovely space to have a wander. If you don’t fancy taking a picnic, you can enjoy the impressive views of the lake and fountain from the café. It’s a 7-minute walk to Trafalgar Square, so why not head to the National Gallery next for a burst of culture!
11. Visit The London Dungeon
Delve into London’s dark history and come face to face with Sweeney Todd, Guy Fawkes and more key figures in The London Dungeon. With 19 exciting live shows to enjoy, learn about the capital’s petrifying past and be whisked away by this spooky attraction! With plenty of landmarks to see in this location, such as the Coca-Cola London Eye, travel with ease using the Yellow or Blue Routes of The Original Tour.
Receive a discounted visit to the The London Dungeon when you book a tour bus ticket with The Original Tour.
12. Retrace the steps of Jack the Ripper
Join us for a chilling tour as we share gruesome tales of the life and crimes of London’s most iconic serial killer. In 1888 London became haunted by five brutal murders in the area of Whitechapel, a story that has gone down in history and continues to captivate the world. If you want a fun spine-tingling experience, book your tickets now… if you dare!
Enjoy the Jack the Ripper Walking Tour for free with your 48-hour Original Tour bus ticket.
13. Dine at Eat Native
Advocates of locally-sourced, seasonal ingredients, it’s not difficult to see why Native is so popular. Through innovative cooking teamed with a rustic country edge, this place can take you on a tasty adventure through all four seasons. Reasonably priced and located near London Bridge you should definitely treat yourself by dining Native style. After, why not take a 15-minute stroll to St. Paul’s Cathedral and marvel at the striking architecture.
Receive a discounted visit to St. Paul’s Cathedral when you book a tour bus ticket with The Original Tour.
14. Have a drink at Mother's Ruin
Before resting your head for the night, head to Mother’s Ruin and unwind to reflect on your wonderful 48 hours in London! If you’re a gin lover, the Mother’s Ruin Gin Palace is definitely a place you need to check out. Using home-grown ingredients, Mother’s Ruin produces uniquely flavoured gins and liqueurs.
Don’t try and cram too much in. You don’t want to be rushed off your feet so much that you can’t enjoy it. Always give yourself enough time and flexibility in between plans and take travel time into account.
Don’t know where to start? The river is a great place. Many London attractions line the River Thames, like Tower Bridge, the Houses of Parliament, Coca-Cola London Eye and St Paul’s Cathedral. Our Thames River Cruise is perfect for sightseeing and is free with our 48-hour bus ticket!
You’ll see more on one of our buses than you would on a tube. It’s stress-free, unlike trying to navigate the busy underground stations, and sitting on the top deck ensures fantastic views of landmarks. Check out our 48-hour hop-on hop-off tickets!
You don’t have to cram all of your sightseeing into the day. London is just as beautiful at night where top landmarks are lit up to create wonderful spectacles. Many museums and galleries often have special late hours too.
Book in advance to save you stress, money and time. Make the most out of your visit by planning ahead and deciding which attractions and activities are at the top of your list. Our 48-hour ticket includes a free Thames River cruise and 3 free walking tours to save you money!
So that’s one way to spend 2 days in London! There are still so many exciting things to see and do to fill up your time, so check out all the free things to do in London.
To save you the stress and worry of travelling around the busy city, explore our range tours and attractions to get the best of your stay in London and book your tickets below.