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Travel guide to flights & holidays in London.


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London Holidays Overview

Most people would associate London with its afternoon showers, afternoon tea, an ancient culture, old world architectural wonders and a bustling metropolis. In fact, a number of people believe that they can explore the various sights that the city has to offer simply by walking along the River Thames and exploring the sights that pass along the way. Now, this might offer tourists with access to a number of attractions of sights, but getting a true picture of the city is another matter altogether. Despite the steeped history that the city is blessed with and the presence of mesmerizing architectural wonders, there is a lot more to London that meets the eye.

London, famous as one of the most visited cities in the world, offers tourists with too much of everything. From art and architecture to dining and nightlife to history and culture, London boasts of having endless sights that cater to all sorts of whims and fancies. London is also known to have two cities within its boundaries Ė one that boasts of an urban dynamism and beckons the adventure driven traveller to embark on high intensity, non stop tours and explore as many regions as they possibly can and the other that offers lush green expanses, beautiful gardens, ancient treasures and mesmerizing arts from all over the world and forces the tourist to stop and stare at the breathtaking sights on display.

The Buckingham Palace, the Piccadilly Circus, the beautiful double-decker buses and the breathtaking museums might leave tourists with quite a handful, but the true beauty of this bustling metropolis lies in its diversity. London is essentially a conglomerate of 32 distinct villages with each village contributing portions of its character to the overall city culture.

You might get overwhelmed with the striking array of things to do and places to see in the city, but make sure that you donít miss out on sights like the National Gallery, the Big Ben, Cabinet War Rooms, Westminister Abbey and the British Museum. And no matter what you do, donít get disheartened by everything that youíve heard about the bland British food Ė the cuisines and dining scene in the city is simply fabulous.

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London holidays - Top Places To Go

1. Madame Tussauds
Marylebone Road
What is it? Madame Tussauds is the most famous wax museum gallery in the world, with more than 400 life-sized models of stars, famous politicians, royals and sportsmen, as well as the most infamous criminals the world has known. Inside the Museum the 'Spirit of London' ride will take you through the city's history, introducing you to those figures that have shaped the London of today, while The Chamber of Horrors challenges visitors to enter and be terrified. Also at the site is Tussaud's Auditorium, one of the biggest in the world, ready to amaze visitors with its views of the universe. Hours of Operation: Monday to Friday 9.30am to 5.30pm, Saturday and Sunday 9am to 6pm (off peak) and daily 9am to 6pm (peak). Auditorium: weekdays 12.30pm to 5.30pm, weekends 10.30am to 6pm Phone:(0)870 999 0046



2. The Tower of London
Tower Hill
What is it? The Tower of London is perhaps as famous for its traditions as its imposing structure. It is guarded by a special band of Yeoman Warders, known as Beefeaters, and dotted with several large, black birds - the Ravens. Legend has it that if the Ravens ever leave the Tower, a great tragedy will befall England, and to this day the birds are protected by Royal decree. The Tower's history dates back to the 11th century, and each new Monarch has played a role in its growth and development. It also houses Britain's crown jewels, a spectacular display of some of the world's finest gems and workmanship. The Tower is next to Tower Bridge, another famous London Landmark. Hours of Operation: Tuesday to Saturday 9am to 6pm, Sunday and Monday 10am to 6pm (March to October); Tuesday to Saturday 9am to 5pm, Sunday and Monday 10am to 5pm (November to February). Closed Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, Boxing Day and New Year's Day Phone:(0)870 756 6060



3. The Houses of Parliament
What is it? Originally built for Edward the Confessor more than 1,000 years ago, the Houses of Parliament, or Palace of Westminster, remained the principal residence of Britain's monarchs for the next 400 years. Thereafter it became the administrative centre of the country. In 1834 the great fire burnt everything except Westminster Hall, and the present Gothic building was completed in the 1840s. It is perhaps most famous for the clock tower, St Stephens, which is commonly, but mistakenly called Big Ben, after the name of the bell inside. Although Parliament is closed to visitors during session, it is still a popular attraction to tourists for its exterior architecture. Hours of Operation: Open during summer recess, usually between August and October, with tours departing every few minutes. It is advised that visitors check the website for opening times, but generally tours are offered daily except Sunday between 9.15am and 4.30pm Phone:(0)20 7219 3000



London holidays - Top Events


1. Chinese New Year

From 2007-02-18

To 2007-02-18

What is it? The Chinese New Year is celebrated every year in London's Chinatown, which is located in Soho. As the Chinese calendar is based on lunar and solar movements, this festival takes place on a different date every year. The festival consists of numerous parades, which often snake their way through to Covent Garden. The celebrations give rise to a variety of food stalls in the area, serving Chinese cuisine, and visitors and tourists are always welcome to watch and participate. English is still the second language for many Chinese in London, so visitors should remember to wish them a happy New Year in their own language. In Cantonese it is Gueng Huei Fa Zuai, pronounced gwung-hway-fa-tzoo-eye and in Mandarin it is Gong Xi Fa Cai, pronounced gong-she-fatsai. In 2007 begins the Year of the Pig. Where is it? Chinatown, Trafalgar Square and Leicester Square



2. Flora London Marathon

From 2007-04-22

To 2007-04-22

What is it? The Flora London Marathon is a 26.2-mile (42km) race from Greenwich Park to the Mall, via the Cutty Sark, Canary Wharf, the Tower of London, Buckingham Palace, and Big Ben. Around 30,000 professional and amateur runners compete every year, many dressed in fancy dress to raise money for charity. The route is lined with spectators, and has a very festive atmosphere. Where is it? Starts in Greenwich Park and ends in the Mall



3. Chelsea Flower Show

From 2007-05-01

To 2007-05-31

What is it? The Chelsea Flower Show is an annual event organised by the Royal Horticultural Society and since its inception in 1913 has been recognised as the foremost show of its kind in the world. An immensely popular event, the show draws crowds of thousands every year with its colourful and beautifully sculptured displays. Experts from the Royal Horticultural Society are on hand, ready to impart gardening advice to the show's many visitors. Tickets can be bought via the website and visitors are advised to book early to avoid disappointment. Where is it? Show grounds at the Royal Hospital, Chelsea



4. Trooping the Colour (Queen's Birthday Parade)

From 2007-06-16

To 2007-06-16

What is it? The ceremony of the Trooping the Colour (or Queen's Birthday Parade) takes place each year on Horse Guards Parade on the Queen's birthday and dates back to the time of Charles II in the 17th century. Although the Queen was actually born on 21 April, her official birthday is celebrated in the summer, when the weather is better. The parade begins with one of the Foot Guard regiments of the Household Division escorting their regimental colour, before giving the Queen a salute in front of Buckingham Palace, and is followed by a march of the Massed Bands before the Queen is escorted back home by the Household Cavalry Mounted Regiment on their magnificent black chargers. Where is it? Horse Guards Parade



5. London Mardi Gras

From 2007-07-01

To 2007-07-01

What is it? The London Gay & Lesbian Pride and Mardi Gras consists of three main events, the Pride parade, the Mardi Gras Arts Festival, and the Mardi Gras Festival. Details of these events are released in the run up to Mardi Gras, which is usually held in June. For the Pride parade London's gay and lesbian community takes to the streets with a morning celebration of costumes, floats and music. The Mardi Gras Festival is then usually held in the afternoon in one of London's bigger public venues, with dance tents, stalls, a funfair, bars and many other attractions. Tickets for the Pride Parade can be bought by telephone: (0870) 1200 722. Where is it? Hyde Park




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About This Page

Information on London Holidays, London Hotels, Holiday Packages in London (city breaks, short stays, all inclusive and luxury deals). Also provides links and resources to Air Travel, Flights and London Car Hire Options

Holidays Travel Guide content part sourced rom, copyright © Globe Media Ltd. By its very nature much of the information contained in the travel guide is subject to change at short notice. Travellers are urged to verify information on which they're relying with the relevent authorities. We cannot accept any responsibility for any loss or inconvenience to a person as result of information contained above.