London has more tourist attractions than any other city in the world, so good planning is required to see as much as what you want to see as you can.
If you are only in London for one day we suggest either walking around central London, using a Hop Off/Hop London Bus tour or navigating around the city using London's excellent public transport system. There is still a lot to see in a day.
Using the Hop off/Hop on bus can be reasonably expensive around £30 per person than if you bought a daily travel card which would cost you around £13 for unlimited travel or £7.00 using a contactless card in zones 1-2.
The benefit of the Hop on/Hop off bus is you can listen to an automated tour guide to give you information and you dont have to navigate yourself around London.
They will take you to main sights such as Buckingham Palace, London Eye, Westminster, Trafalgar Square, Covent Garden, Tower of London as well as the major museums (Science, V & A, Natural History Museum), Harrods etc.
We suggest doing the Itinerary tips for
other Highly recommended days scroll below Windsor Castle, Hampton Court Palace, Harry Potter
Windsor Castle is the oldest and largest occupied castle in the world having been founded by William the Conquerer in the 11th century. Providing an awe-inspiring backdrop to the quaint village of the same name this is an attraction well worth the trip out of London. You may also want to consider doing a river cruise to explore the picturesque surroundings.
To get there you can either catch the train from Paddington to Slough and then catch a train from Slough to Windsor & Eton Central alternatively you can catch a direct train from Waterloo via Putney/Richmond to Windsor Riverside.
Lego Land is nearby if travelling with young children.
If travelling on a Friday during summer you can do a tour (needs to be pre booked) of the world famous Eton College a short distance from the Castle.
Windsor in the morning and either Twickenham stadium, Richmond or Kew Gardens in the afternoon. You would need to catch the train to/from Waterloo to do this.
Hampton Court Palace has the majestic grandeur we imagine a King/Queen should live, surrounded by beautiful gardens that include a maze and sitting on the Thames, it has the added intrigue of once being home to the infamous King Henry VIII.
To get there you can catch a train from Waterloo or Wimbledon stations.
Visit Wimbledon All England Tennis Club: On way to/from Hampton Court Palace. Catch District line tube to Southfields. The tennis club is about a 15 minute walk away. Then catch district line to Wimbledon station and the train to Hampton Court from there.
Visit Twickenham Stadium Rugby fans may tour the famous Twickenham Stadium. To do this catch the R68 towards Richmond and get off at York St bus stop. The walk to stadium is about 15 minutes and you will need to walk back up towards Twickenham station or catch the 281 towards Hounslow. This journey will take about an hour. If doing this spend the afternoon/evening in Richmond.
Morning Hampton Court Palace - Afternoon Richmond - Richmond is home to arguably the prettiest place on the Thames and nothing is more relaxing than enjoying a drink overlooking it as one of the many bars/restaurants. To do this catch the R68 bus from Hampton Court which should take around 45 minutes. Get off at Richmond Bridge. You can walk back to richmond Station via the High Street shops or Richmond Green and catch a overground train to Waterloo or Underground District line via Earls Court.
Warner Bros Studios- The Making of Harry Potter is a must for fans of the book with the studios based on the outskirts of London. Make sure you book your ticket there in advance.
To get there catch a train from London Euston to Watford Junction where you then catch a shuttle bus to the Studios.
Itinerary tip: Your trip to Warner Bros Studios from London Euston can also be tied in with a visit to Platform 9 3/4 for a photo opportunity at nearby Kings Cross Rail Station, where there is also a Harry Potter shop.