The capital is a place where you can easily fill a whole day, seeing the sights, having lunch and going shopping. But what if you only have an hour or two to kill – what can you do with a spare hour in London?
Over the last few months I’ve been up and down the country from Yorkshire (where I live) to London for various social events and business meetings. The social events are easy because I’m going to the city to see something or someone specific but the business meetings are scheduled in at certain times and afterwards I find that I may have a spare hour before I have to get my train. If I don’t need to eat… how do I fill it?!
By my second business trip back in March, I had exhausted the usual pastimes I do when I visit London and had to think about how I could spend a spare hour. Here’s what I came up with.
1. Covent Garden. If you are near this area, it’s a lovely way to spend time. There are street entertainers to watch and loads of little shops but people watching is the best thing about this area. You never know what or who you’ll see. Take your camera so you are prepared. I wasn’t, back in the 1990s and I walked right past Kylie Minogue in her Neighbours heyday – walking round the piazza!
2. Walk Waterloo Bridge. This bridge offers great views of Big Ben and the London Eye and is often less crowded than the neighbouring Westminster Bridge. It is only 5 minutes from Covent Garden and right next to Somerset House and whilst the bridge itself is not architecturally interesting, the views it offers are fantastic.
3. The National Gallery. This museum is free to enter and houses more than 2300 paintings from the 13th to 19th centuries. There’s something for everyone to see and after you’ve seen enough they have a cafe, dining room and espresso bar for refreshments!
4. The Bank of England Museum. This little known museum is free to enter and a great way to spend an hour, surrounded by money! I went along after one meeting and just got in – it closes at 5pm and accepts the last entry at 4.30pm. When I was in there I picked up in my hand, a gold bar worth more than £300,000 that day! I even tweeted it and the Bank of England museum favourited my tweet which I liked!
I'm at the Bank of England! I've just lifted a gold bar worth £300,000! *actually lifted*- not shoplifted!!! pic.twitter.com/d22zIv91zg
— Nadine Hill (@businessmum) March 10, 2016
5. Harrods! This Knightsbridge emporium is a London institution and the most famous store in the world! See the doormen at work (but they won’t let you in wearing ripped jeans) and once you are in – have access to 330 departments selling everything from books to furniture to Krispy Kreme donuts! A great way to spend an hour although whereas my other suggestions are free – this one could cost you money!
What do you do with a spare hour in London? Let me know so I have ideas for next time I’m there!