Located in the City of Westminster, Buckingham Palace is the Queen’s official events and receptions. It serves as the monarchy’s home and administrative headquarters. It is also a major tourist site that attracts millions of visitors all-year.
Buckingham Palace, originally known as the Buckingham House, used to be a large townhouse. It was built for the Duke of Buckingham in 1703. In 1761, King George III acquired it as a private residence for Queen Charlotte. The name was subsequently changed to The Queen’s House. Buckingham Palace only became the official London residence for the British monarch in 1837 for Queen Victoria.
Buckingham Palace has a total of 775 rooms. This includes 19 state rooms, 52 royal guest bedrooms, 188 staff bedrooms, 92 offices, and 78 bathrooms. It is a far cry from the average London flat.
The State Rooms are open to the public rooms that visitors can see during the summer opening tour. With its marble columns, gorgeous carpets, and stunning works of art, it is a must see for residents and visitors alike.
Lit by an engraved glass dome in the ceiling, the Grand Staircase of Buckingham Palace is one of the tour’s main features. This bronze staircase showcases an intricate pattern of acanthus, oak, and laurel leaves. It has some of the world’s best bronze casting work, something you don’t want to miss when you come to the palace.
One of the best parts of the tour is the Throne Room. It houses the thrones used for ceremonial events such as the Queen’s Jubilee. The Royal Family also uses the Throne Room to host balls and other events.
After a long day on your feet, the end of the Buckingham Palace Tour ends with the Garden Cafe on the West Terrace. There you can have a short break with refreshments such as tea and coffee and snacks like sandwiches and pastries. The cafe also offers gifts and souvenirs exclusively created for the Royal Collection. Some of the items you will find are homeware, china, clothing, jewellery, children’s toys, postcards, and books, among many others.
The British Museum
The British Museum is one of the largest and most comprehensive museums in the world. Set in Bloomsbury, it is home to over 8 million items that span cultural artefacts, fine art, and text from the past 2 million years. Whether you are a history lover or not, the British Museum has an astounding collection that should be on everyone’s itinerary.
The museum was founded in 1753, from the collection of Sir Hans Sloane, an Irish physician and scientist. It opened its doors in 1759 and became the first national public museum in the world. When you take a tour around the British Museum here are some of the notable artefacts.
The Rosetta Stone is the Museum’s most famous exhibit. It played a vital role in deciphering Egyptian hieroglyphs. While it is not the only one of its kind, it was the first. It paved the way for people to better understand ancient Egypt’s culture, history, and belief system.
In Room 13 of the Museum, you can find the Sophilos Dinos – a wine bowl depicting Peleus and Thetis’s wedding. It was made in Athens around 580 BC by one of the oldest Attic potters, Sophilos.
Another notable Greek artefact is the Parthenon Sculptures. These sculptures were carved over 2,500 years ago to decorate the halls and walls of the Parthenon. At one point in history, these sculptures contributed to the temple’s splendour.
Mummy of Katebet
The British Museum is also home to many preserved mummies like the Katebet, Chantress of Amun. Acquired in 1835, the Mummy of Katebet was wrapped in linen and found with a gold mask. Judging from the coffin, this mummy dates back to 1300 BC.
There are plenty of other exhibits you can visit in the British Museum. You can find the Lewis chessmen, samurai armour, Sutton Hoo ship burial helmet, among many others. Even residents report coming back and always finding something new to appreciate.
The Big Ben is one of the most iconic landmarks in London. The nickname was for the Great Bell in the Palace of Westminster or the Houses of Parliament. Over time, it became both the clock and the clock tower. However, the clock tower is called the Elizabeth Tower, in honour of the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee back in 2012.
The 150-year old clock is known for being one of the largest and most accurate four-faced striking clocks in the world. Sadly, due to extensive renovations, Big Ben was silenced in 2017. However, exceptions were made for special occasions like New Year’s Eve and Remembrance Day.
Big Ben and the Elizabeth Tower is one sight you don’t want to miss. Millions of tourists admire its architecture and striking presence in the London skyline. While there isn’t much to do with the bell itself, there are plenty of exciting activities when you are in the area. Stop by the public galleries in the House of Commons and the House of Lords. Visitors are also welcome to watch debates and committee hearings for free.
Westminster Abbey is a large gothic church in London. It is west of the Palace of Westminster and is a walking distance from Big Ben. The abbey is a UNESCO World Heritage Site that has hosted many historical events. Whether you are religious or not – the church is a popular destination for all.
Westminster Abbey was founded in 960 AD but the current church was constructed later on in 1245 under the orders of King Henry III. Since then it has been the site of many royal weddings and funerals. It is also the memorial and burial site for some of Britain’s most renowned people.
One of the notable spots in Westminster Abbey is the Poet’s Corner. Here you can find the memorials and burial grounds for over a hundred poets. Many of the names are familiar to literature lovers. You can find memorials for William Shakespeare, Jane Austen, Charles Dickens and the Bronte sisters.
While you are at the abbey, you cannot miss the coronation chair. Commissioned by King Edward I, the coronation chair was made to hold the Stone of Destiny. For over 700 years, this wooden chair is where British monarchs would sit when crowned on their coronation day. It remains to be one of the most valuable pieces of furniture in the world.
When you are in the East Cloister, you can see the historic Chapter House. It is an octagonal-shaped building for meetings between the abbot and the monks. Prayers, punishments, and all kinds of activities happen here. While visitors have little use for the space, it is known for its beautiful wall paintings that depict scenes from Revelations.
Visitors can also stop by the oldest surviving part of Westminster Abbey – the Pyx Chamber. It is off the East Cloister near the old Chapter House. The Pyx Chamber is a low vaulted room built around 1070. Two massive oak trees at the entrance that date back to the early 14th century. Inside the room, visitors can see medieval tiled floors with some tiles dating back to the 11th century.
Last but not least, you can visit the National Gallery in Trafalgar Square. It is an art museum that houses some of the most notable paintings in the world. It has over 2,300 pieces to date, making it a must-see for visitors.
The National Gallery was first established in a Pall Mall townhouse owned by John Julius Angerstein in 1824. It started with an initial collection of 38 paintings. Over time it quickly expanded and moved to Trafalgar Square in 1838.
Set in the heart of central London, it is one of the top sights in the city. A bonus is that it is free to the public. People can just pop by and visit the permanent and temporary exhibits displayed throughout the year. It also offers free activities for families and young children.
So what will you find in the National Gallery? In a word – a lot. It is one of the most extensive galleries in Europe. It showcases different collections ranging from French Impressionism, Italian Renaissance, to the British medieval period, among many others.
You can find works from well-known French Impressionists like Edgar Degas, Claude Monet, Pierre-August Renoir, Paul Cezanne, and Edouard Manet. Some of their notable pieces like “The Water Lily Pond” by Monet and “Lakeside Landscape” by Renoir are featured in the gallery.
You can also find post-impressionism work from Vincent Van Gogh. The gallery has some of his famous pieces like “Sunflower,” “A Wheatfield, with Cypresses”, “Farms near Auvers”, and “Head of a Peasant Woman.”
Another tourist favourite is pieces from the renaissance period. You can find the Leonardo Cartoon or the Burlington House Cartoon in the National Gallery. It is a large sketch by Leonardo da Vinci for his painting “The Virgin and Child with St Anne and St John the Baptist. While the sketch is in the gallery, the main painting is in the Louvre.
Besides Da Vinci, you can also spot paintings from Sandro Botticelli. The most famous one in the collection is “Venus and Mars.” It is a painting that depicts the Roman god and goddess. Mars lies asleep and unarmed, while Venus is wide awake.
These points of interest only scratch the surface of what you can see and experience in London. Even when you visit the same haunts, again and again, visitors are sure to find something new and interesting.
Brixton is a part of the Lambeth Borough and is a district of South London. Some of the neighbouring areas are Stockwell, Clapham, Streatham, Camberwell, Balham, and Herne Hill.
Known for its cultural diversity, Brixton is a fun and trendy place to live. You are sure to find a wide range of people and businesses in the area.
Generally, Brixton is a residential district with a prominent street market and retail sector. Most of the main offices of Lambeth are in Brixton. If you are looking for a place with great job opportunities and an exciting social scene, Brixton is the place to be.
Electric Avenue is one of the most iconic places in Brixton. Established in the 1880’s, it was the first market street in the UK to be lit by electric lights. Sadly, the Victorian canopies are no longer there, becoming collateral damage to the Second World War.
Only a couple steps away from Electric Avenue, visitors can see the Brixton Market. The Brixton Market is a favourite shop for fresh fish, meat, handicrafts, vinyl, antiques, and cookware. It also has an eclectic range of items. If you are looking for new furniture for your flat, this is the place to be.
Pubs and Clubs
Brixton is marked as one of the best places for nightlife in London. From old-school cocktail bars to modern pubs, Brixton offers a lot of options. Florence, Commercial, Crown & Anchor, and Naughty Piglets are some local favourites.
Self Storage in Brixton
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Notting Hill is a wealthy district in the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea in West London. It has excellent transportation links with the Central Link, District Link, and the Circle Line. It has one of the most central tube stations in the district.
Notting Hill Carnival
Most might recognise Notting Hill from the movie of the same name. But for other London residents, there is so much more to the area. It is a cosmopolitan and multicultural neighbourhood with Instagrammable areas and great events. One of the world-famous events in the area is the Notting Hill Carnival.
The Notting Hill Carnival celebrates the Caribbean heritage and culture of the area. It is Europe’s biggest street festival, and people from all over the county come to visit. There is plenty of food, music, and dancing. Tourists and visitors are sure to have a great time!
The Portobello Market, just along Portobello Road, is a popular tourist destination. It is one of the largest antique markets in the world with over 1,000 vendors. It has everything ranging from vintage furniture and clothes to all kinds of collectable items. Visitors can discover tons of unique souvenirs along with other great finds.
Museum of Brands
While there is no shortage of museums in London, Notting Hill is home to one of the more interesting ones. The Museum of Brands displays over 12,000 items and even images of iconic brands that evolved over time. It covers 200 years of consumer culture and is a very nostalgic trip. You probably won’t recognise some of the household brands in the Museum from 30 years ago.
The Gate Theatre
Although small in size, The Gate Theatre is an interesting place to visit. It is at the centre of Notting Hill’s entertainment scene. It has a global reputation for nurturing new local theatrical talents and staging some of London’s favourite shows.
Besides the Gate Theatre, you can also stop by The Coronet Theatre or the Print Room. It is another award-winning arts venue that hosts live performances. For concerts and other theatre shows, you know where to go!
Self Storage in Notting Hill
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Head east on Cornwall Cress toward Ladbroke Grove. Follow Ladbroke Grove and Harrow Road to Wrottesley Road. Then take Harlesden Road and Pound Lane to High Road and Dudden Hill Lane to Lennox Gardens. Continue driving to Dollis Hill Lane and then to Humber Road, there you will see the nearest Henfield Storage facility in London.
Hampstead is one of the wealthiest and sought after areas to live in London. It manages to get a bit of calm and quiet while still being close to central locations. This balance makes it one of the most expensive areas in the city.
Hampstead Heath is definitely a breath of fresh air. It houses an ancient parkland and has many other green spaces. It also displays some of the best views of London.
Golders Hill Park
The Golders Hill Park is one of the more notable green spaces in Hampstead. It has an impressive pergola and hill garden that is perfect for small get-togethers. Besides being a green space, it has a zoo, butterfly house, and an open-air lido. The Golders Hill Park has some of the best facilities with swimming pools, sports pitches, athletic tracks, and playgrounds. It is one of the more family-friendly places to visit in London.
Hampstead Blue Plaques
Since Hampstead is such a desirable address, it is home to several prominent people. Generations of artists, writers, political figures, and celebrities lived in this area. You are sure to find plenty of blue plaques.
You can find blue plaques all over the UK. They usually pop up to commemorate influential figures. Hampstead has its own version to honour the people who lived in the neighbourhood. These people have been celebrated figures in politics, business, science and the arts. There are around 75 of them outside their homes. Some of the names you might find in Hampstead are Anna and Sigmund Freud, Robert Louis Stevenson, and Harold Winston. If you are interested in spotting them all, there are free walking tours that cover them.
If you are more interested in real stars, visit the Hampstead Observatory. While it is challenging to catch the stars in a city like London, the observatory offers unobstructed views. During the observing season (September to April), people are welcome to come over every Friday and Saturday night to stargaze.
Self Storage in Hampstead
Hampstead is undoubtedly an ideal place to live in. If you ever find yourself needing extra storage space in Hampstead, Henfield Storage in London has your back. The fastest route is about 3 miles when you drive through the A5 and then turn to Humber Road.
Mayfair is a high-end neighbourhood in West London. It is surrounded by popular streets like Oxford Street, Regent Street, Piccadilly, and Park Lane. It is one of the most expensive neighbourhoods in the country and the world.
Mayfair is home to luxurious hotels, fine dining options, and pricey boutiques. From food to fashion, everything here screams money. The neighbourhood has more Michelin-star restaurants than any other district in London. If you are looking for a night out, Mayfair has a great selection of night clubs and cocktail bars you can try.
Shopping at Mayfair is just as impressive. It has tons of designer brands, luxury perfumes, and jewellery shops. You are sure to spot the latest trends when shopping at Mayfair.
Royal Academy of Arts
There are several galleries and museums you can visit in Mayfair. The Royal Academy of Arts in the Burlington House is one of the favourites. It is an art institution first established in 1876. Ever since its creation, its main goal is to exhibit and promote British art and design. You can find the works by David Hockney, JMW Turner, Sonia Boyce, and Cathie Pilkington, among many others.
Handel and Hendrix London
Another museum you can drop by is the Handel and Hendrix London, also known as the Handel House Museum. It is along Brook Street, not too far from Hanover Square. It commemorates the lives of 2 notable artists – George Frideric Handel and Jimi Hendrix. The exhibits include tapes of their live music performances and collections of objects. It is a must-see for classical and rock music lovers out there.
Self Storage in Mayfair
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Our storage is an only 20-minute drive away. From Berkeley Square, all you need to do is drive to Brompton Road and on A4. Head to Great West Road to Shield Dr in Brentford. Continue driving to Shield Dr to reach our Henfield Storage in London.
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Stratford is a significant cultural and economic centre in East London. It is the second-biggest business area right next to Canary Wharf and is only 15 mins away from the London City Airport. It also has excellent transportation links in the area. When you settle in Stratford, you should have no problem getting around.
Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park
While Stratford may seem like a business-oriented place, it actually has plenty of parklands and leisure spots. One of these leisure spots is the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park, the venue of the 2012 Summer Olympics. There are so many activities you can do in the area. It offers boat tours to learn about the park while exploring some of the waterways that run through it. Remember to keep an eye out for the different wildlife species that live in the 560-acre park.
If you are looking for some hair-raising fun, you can stop by The ArcelorMittal Orbit, the world’s longest tunnel slide! Measuring 178 m, the ArcelorMittal Orbit is ready to let you glide at about 15mph in 40 seconds. When you are at the highest point of the slide, you can see a stunning view of the London skyline. It is a great destination for a day of fun with family and friends.
Self Storage in Stratford
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London is not for the faint-hearted. There is so much to do, see, and experience – it can be quite overwhelming. With this list, you can get to know 5 popular tourist sites and 5 sought-after neighbourhoods. If you find yourself in a small flat, remember that Henfield Storage is never too far away!