The British capital is a vibrant melting pot in the south-east corner of the country, drawing in the crowds from far and wide to visit its world-famous sights. From the Houses of Parliament and Big Ben, to Buckingham Palace, the Tower of London, and the winding River Thames, London's rich history is everywhere you look, contrasting with the city's ultramodern backdrop. The sleek glass skyscrapers of the financial district and Canary Wharf, the iconic London Eye, and the glistening Shard (the tallest building in the UK, might we add), all put this city on the map as a vibrant centre for innovation; but it's also a fascinating historic destination. Take a trip to the top of the Shard and see this mix of old and new for yourself, or if heights aren't your thing, hop on the River Bus to get a feel for the city from the water.
Most of the museums around town are free to enter, and offer a great opportunity to explore some outstanding artwork, or get to grips with a huge array of historical moments and cultural topics. The range of museums and galleries to visit in London is so broad, with offerings including classical paintings at the National Gallery, a huge range of animal specimens at the Natural History Museum, fashion exhibits at the V&A, and contemporary art at the Tate Modern.
Despite its nickname 'The Big Smoke', London also boasts some amazing green spaces for a moment of zen away from the bustling streets; in fact, wherever you are in the city you're never far away from one of its 3,000 public grassy areas. Of this total, there are eight Royal Parks offering trimmed lawns and beautiful flower gardens; the perfect spot for a summer picnic or chilly winter walk. In central London, head for Hyde Park, one of the largest in the city, or for some time away from the busy centre, why not check out the views of the city from the top of Greenwich Park?
Although there's enough to keep anyone entertained in this city for an infinite number of hours, just strolling through London's streets is enough to get a feel for its charm. The red post boxes, double-decker buses, black cabs, and bearskin-clad guards all make London so unique, and so very English.