London Needs to be on Your Travel Bucket List – Couple’s Guide to London
If you haven’t been to London yet, add it to your bucket list! It’s one of my favorite places to visit. London is a bustling city, full of excitement and energy. It’s a fast-paced kind of city, and not the same vibe as a tropical island by the sea, but there are still lots of things for couples to see and do, especially for city lovers like myself and my hubs, Gregg.
This major city tops the list of places many people want to visit, and for good reason – boasting a vibrant history, gorgeous old architecture, and endless shops, restaurants and neighborhoods to explore, you won’t grow bored when you visit London. On the contrary, you’ll probably struggle to narrow down your to-do list to fit your itinerary!
Here are some of the places you’ll want to check out when you go.
Couple’s Guide: Where to Stay in London:
The Shard – For an unforgettable view of the city you won’t find anywhere else, you need to plan a stop at The Shard. Boasting the title of the tallest building in the United Kingdom, this skyscraper offers an incredible glimpse of London below from one of its viewing decks. We stayed at the Shangri-La London, a hotel inside the Shard for our honeymoon, and the views were out of this world incredible. Not a budget place, but definitely worth doing at least once in your life!
Notting Hill – Consider finding a hotel in London’s scenic Notting Hill neighborhood. Considered one of London’s most beautiful areas, you won’t struggle to see why. Notting Hill is home to brightly-painted row houses, charming shops and storefronts, and cozy cafes, making it the perfect place to enjoy a quiet afternoon stroll or wind down after a long day of exploring. Book a room at upscale Portobello Hotel, or find a picture-perfect room to rent on Airbnb or VRBO.
Kensington – Alternately, look for a place to stay in the Kensington area. Home to Kynance Mews, arguably one of the most gorgeous streets you’ll find in London, you’ll find it hard not to fall in love while walking hand-in-hand through these streets, admiring the historic buildings. Consider splurging on a room at the Egerton House Hotel in the nearby Knightsbridge district for a real treat.
Couple’s Guide: What to Eat in London:
Chinatown – I’ve been to Chinatown in both Los Angeles and San Francisco, but they don’t compare to London’s Chinatown! It’s very clean and pretty. It’s laid out in a way so that you can browse the shops and restaurants without feeling like you’re going to get hit by a car (not so much in LA)! You can get all kinds of different Chinese cuisines – high end or casual. I even found a restaurant named after me! Gregg is obsessed with hot and sour soup, so we went to Chinatown a few times while we were on our honeymoon to get him his fix.
Borough Market – There are a million and one cuisines to discover at the Borough Market. We stumbled across this market since our hotel was nearby, and went back a couple of times. We were amazed at all the fresh foods available, as well as vendors selling ready-made meals. We also walked over to a nearby pub to have a more comfortable, sit-down meal while watching the people in the market below. There’s also a Neal’s Yard Remedies store that natural beauty lovers can check out (they have great bath salts and massage oils for a relaxing evening after shopping all day).
Peggy Porschen – There’s a reason this bakery is a hot spot in London – amazing cupcakes plus a beautiful pink building COVERED in flowers. While we were there, it was decorated for Halloween with pastel skulls and garlands of flowers and greenery. There was a line of women taking photos in the doorway (Instagram hot spot y’all!). It’s a small place, so there may be a wait. There are only a few tables inside, but you can sit outdoors and have yourself a little tea party if the weather permits.
Clos Maggiore – If you’re looking for a little romance in London, skip the fish and chips shops and find something a little more upscale. Clos Maggiore is a great choice, especially if you’re out to celebrate an anniversary or another important milestone in your relationship. Home to a menu of French-inspired classics and decor that’ll make you feel like you’ve stepped onto a movie set, you’ll find it hard not to fall in love with this dreamy restaurant.
Nobu – For something a little different, make a reservation at Nobu, which offers exciting Japanese and South American fusion fare. With three locations around London, you can’t go wrong at any of them. All feature incredible service, stunning decor and delicious drink pairings to accompany your meals – and a price tag to match.
Couple’s Guide: What to Do in London:
Cruise on the Thames – We took a City Cruises dinner cruise on the Thames River while on our honeymoon, and it was one of the most memorable things we did on our trip. It was cold because we went during October, but still very much worth it! The interior part of the boat is warm and cozy, and we had our very own table right by the window. We went on the upper deck periodically to get some amazing photos and time-lapse videos of the lights of the city set against the dark night. We had a full four course meal with bubbly, and there was wine and a full bar available. There was a live singer, and even lights and dancing toward the end of the evening. Gregg and I had the best time, and we kept saying, “why don’t we do stuff like this more often?”
Buckingham Palace – Can you really go to London without seeing the palace? There’s so much history here. If you want photos without a million tourists, it’s best to go early in the morning.
Trafalgar Square– It’s hard to miss Trafalgar Square on a trip to London, as it’s located in the middle of the city next to some major attractions. Home to regal sculptures, impressive monuments, and two stunning fountains, the square hosts many events and festivals throughout the year.
Tower Bridge (or any beautiful London bridge) – One of the most recognized landmarks of London, you’re sure to make everyone back home jealous with a perfect photo of Tower Bridge. It can be challenging to snap a good shot of the bridge while you’re standing on it, so for the best Instagram photo possible, see what kind of angles you can capture from the nearby walkways and riverbanks.
Want more? While simply walking through London hand-in-hand at the end of the night can be an incredibly romantic experience, there are plenty of things you can add to your agenda to do as a couple while you’re in town.
- Explore Little Venice, where you’ll find canals filled with houseboats and excellent waterfront cafes to check out.
- Grab a cocktail and watch the sunset from the Darwin Brasserie or the Aviary, a stunning rooftop bar and restaurant offering amazing views of the skyline.
- Want to shake things up and have some fun? Challenge your partner to a game at a retro bowling alley – an unexpected find in London.
- Admire nature’s beauty with a romantic stroll through the Chelsea Physic Garden.
While there’s really no bad way to spend your time in London, a little thought and planning for your next trip as a couple can make a big difference. These are just a few recommendations for places to stay, restaurants to enjoy, and things to do together when you’re in town.
Have you found something super romantic to see or do in London that didn’t make my list? Leave a comment and let me know!
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