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  • Things to do in London – on the cheap(ish)
  • Pieface

    Going to London this weekend for a load of sightseeing / being tourists. Have accomodation sorted but any recommendations for good stuff to do on a budget much appreciated.

    1) Figure that we can do an awful lot just walking around if weather is good, willing to travel so a rough itinerary or spots to see appreciated.

    2) If the weather craps out what to do? I know alot of galleries and museums are free but any particular reommendations?

    3) Food – Open minded but good quality budget joints wanted. No plans as to where, see points 1 & 2.

    4) Nightlife – See point 3.

    Neither of us been to London as tourists for ages. Hoping to stay in zone 1 to try and keep things simple. Staying near the City (don't ask) but doesn't really matter as will use tubes / cabs to get back.

    Arriving about 1 on Friday, leaving Sunday about 5 (St. Pancras)

    Any other advise much appreciated.


    If a Mod can change the forum of this post thats appreciated


    b r

    Science Museum


    Brick Lane market, good food round here too.


    Visit the Windsors, at Buck house and remind them how much us the payer pay them,then get arrested and spend a few nights in a cell, then sell your story to the Guardian.

    Premier Icon kimbers

    brick lane market check out old truman brewery if they have anything on
    check out the curries too

    camden and the market will keep you busy for hours

    natural history, science, british all amazing tate modern is huuuge check whats on at the globe too thats fun and cheap if you dont mind standing

    take the boat on the river if youve never done it before, check time out for random small gigs and comedy nights

    Premier Icon geoffj

    Natural history museum
    v&a for the cafe 😉
    British museum
    hummus bros for cheap decent food
    bar italia ( firth st) for the best espresso
    champagne bar at st pancras station

    enjoy, London is fantastic


    google "London free museums", go into Soho for a wander, China town (Gerrard St W1) for a meal, check last for a theatre show, escape into Phoenix Gardens WC2 for an escape from the madness & whilst you eat a sandwich n chill before plunging in again, look up at the buildings as you walk around, take the stairs at Covent Garden underground station, walk the South Bank at night, London Eye if visibility is good, people watch in Soho Square, Condor Cycles if you need a fix, 2nd Bar Italia on Frith St W1 for a coffee and celeb spot

    Premier Icon Northwind

    Science Museum
    British Museum- fantastic
    Natural History Museum
    V&A, though it's not very good
    Camden high street/market

    Premier Icon scuttler

    Take the buses if you can. The big intersections are Trafalgar Sq / Picadilly Circus and you see loads more from the top deck of the bus. The stops are easy to find and the routes simple to figure out and unless it's late at night there's no need for a timetable as they're very frequent.

    Premier Icon i_am_JC

    I believe there's a football game on at Wembley this weekend. Though you may struggle for a ticket now.

    Ye Old Axe on Hackney Road.

    Premier Icon antennae

    Some great suggestions here:

    I'd definitely recommend Borough Market & Southbank as two good options which still work when the weather isn't amazing.

    If you're into that sort of thing; Natural History Museum…


    Walk over the Millenium Bridge to the Tate Modern

    Butlers Wharf, Design Museum then go to London Bridge and visit Borough Market (Thurs, Fri, Sat only) – the Market Porter for real ale, Monmouth Coffee for err good coffee. Neals Yard for cheeses. Massive food market selling amazing high quality food. Walk down Southbank and enjoy the Thames.

    Portabello Road Market. Tube to Notting Hill Gate. Walk to Portabello Road. Antiques at the top, then food, then fashion, then junk 😉

    Spitalfields Market (covered), Dray Walk (Trueman Brewery) – Liverpool St tube. Market stalls, clothing, bike shops (Cycle Surgery, Evans, Brick Lane Bikes), food stalls, Brick Lane curry houses.

    Busaba Eatai (Wardour St, Soho) good cheap Thai food
    Brick Lane – good cheap curry. Also go to Brick Lane Bikes
    Royal China (various but Queensway is best IMO) good cheapish dim sum
    Gormet Burger Kitchen (GBK) various places – massive awesome burgers
    Wagamama – various locations
    Leon – healthy fast food – YUM 🙂

    Whatever you do. Enjoy. Its a great city and not as big as it seems. Oh just buy an Oyster card!


    The average cost of a hooker is £10 in london…..

    Premier Icon takisawa2

    Has nobody mentioned the Tate Modern… that's worth a look.



    Brick lane…over rated, over priced. Lived in bradford before so was dissappointed. Well only had one curry there but won't be going for another.


    the griffin. just round the corner from condor cycles.
    avoid camden unless you are a student or a goth.
    walk along the south bank. pint in the market porter, vino in gordons on villiers st after walking over hungerford bridge.

    Premier Icon cb

    Ten Ten Hei (sp) in Brewer Street is a good cheap japanese eating house. ANother one opposite should it be closed. Don't worry about being City based – some great walks round there at the weekends when all the b(w)ankers have gone home to their castles in Surrey. Ripper/ghost tours good fun.


    Imperial War Museum (free), followed by food and fantastic German beer at Zeitgeist in Vauxhall/Lambeth.


    Premier Icon rootes1

    Transport Museum at Covent Garden is good – you can get a bag from there made from the same fabric as seats on old route master buses!

    if you want a cheap decent meal and your are near Victoria / Buck Palace then Noodle Noodle (on buck palace road) is good – Chicken Noodle soup is massive.

    Also Sam Smith pubs good for cheap beer £1.90 a pint (bitter) and £2.30 for apline (man in a box) lager.

    Also a good way to see london is from the river – you can get use Oyster Card on the Thames clippers (river bus) now – a good one to get is the one that goes between Tate Britain and Tate Modern.

    Tate Modern building is interesting, but displays often not – Hayward Gallery is more interesting both architecturally and for what is on display.

    City is also a good place to walk round at weekend to see buildings etc

    make sure you get an pay you go Oyster – far the cheapest way of using public transport if you need to even with the £3 deposit.

    Premier Icon simon_g

    South Bank is good for a wander on the weekend. Most of Tate Modern is free to wander around, then you can go over the Millennium Bridge towards St Pauls. Otherwise head for the plethora of other free museums and attractions.

    If you fancy seeing a show and aren't too fussy about which, the tkts booth in Leicester Square is good – they sell off unsold seats so you can usually get good seats way cheaper. Or there's several comedy clubs you can go to on a fri/sat night and they're only about a tenner.

    Time Out do a "cheap eats" feature every so often, available online: I'd add if you fancy a curry out towards Brick Lane way, head away from the pushy restauranteurs and down Leman Street to the Empress. Else Hummus Bros, as mentioned, are good and there's chains like GBK, Wagamama everywhere. I like Sacred cafe off Carnaby Street for coffee and lunch but there's good places all over – just take a look at time out or other review sites and note some likely places near where you'll be.

    Premier Icon mogrim

    Some more ideas:

    Walk down from Trafalgar Square to the Embankment, over Waterloo Bridge then down to the Tate, then back over the Millenium Bridge to St. Pauls.

    V&A / Science / Natural History (depending on which you like best), then stroll down the road to Harrods (the ground floor, at least, is worth a visit)

    Have a meal in Soho, then walk to the British Museum, then have a pint at the Tavern.

    The Imperial War Museum is great, if you have time.


    MrSmith – The Griffin. LOL. Nice, send him to a titty bar!

    Premier Icon timmys

    I'll second the suggestions of Tate Modern, definitely just go and have a look at the turbine hall even if you don't fancy the art. Make sure you walk in down the ramp from the western end for the full effect rather than the entrance in the middle of the building facing the river.

    Borough Market is also a must do if you are in that area and have even the slightest interest in food. It gets hideously busy on a Saturday though so worth getting there pre-10am if you are genuinely interested in checking it out (it opens at 8am on a Sat).

    Avoid getting a curry on Brick Lane, they are absolutely nothing special. The clue is in the fact they have to stand outside the doors hassling you to try and get you to come in. If you do want to have decent curry you have to head 5-10min further away from Brick Lane. The absolute best curry (IMHO) in London is from Tayyabs but it gets pretty rammed. The huge queue moves quickly but is usually around 30 min. You can book but it's somewhat random, basically it just puts you nearer the front of the queue. Order a mixed starter – the star if which is the lamb chops and for main make sure you get the dry meat curry, it is to die for. Wash it down with Mango Lassi. The other curry option is a newer place called Needoo opened by the former a manager of Tayyabs just round the corner. The food is very similar but it's less well know so slightly less rammed and stressed and has a less random booking system.


    Check out the malmaison hotel in charterhouse square, if you google it up they are doing a meal offer for 2 £30 including a bottle of wine and its lovely. well worth the tube trip from your digs.

    St Pauls,is worth a look,then walk across the Milenium bridge to the Tate Modern,than along South Bank.

    Premier Icon kimbers

    new henry moore sculture exhibit at the tate modern opens this week too

    Brick lane…over rated, over priced. Lived in bradford before so was dissappointed. Well only had one curry there but won't be going for another.

    What a silly comment. Brick Lane has hundreds of curry houses, you tried one, so have decided that they must all be rubbish.

    Some of them are good, but you need to do research to find out good ones. If you aren't fussy about wanting to drink with your meal, Maida, just off the end of Brick Lane is very good, and pretty cheap for the portion sizes (plus amazing milkshakes for pudding).


    A couple of more obvious good places to eat in London. They are both smallish chains, but really good for the price.

    Tas – has branches near Borough Market, one near the Tate, and a couple near Waterloo. Very good Turkish food, quite cheap, big portions, lovely freshly cooked Turkish bread.

    Masala Zone, nice cheap Indian food, branches handy for Covent Garden, Oxford Street, Camden Town, Picadilly etc.


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