34 of the best hidden gems in London you must see

You’ve seen the Tower of London, watched the changing of the guards and ticked off the views from the London Eye. So, what’s next?

Well, the wonderful thing about London is that once you’ve seen the the main sights and famous landmarks that is still lots to discover. There’s so much to do in fact that you could spend years exploring the UK capital and still not see everything there is to see. (If it’s your first time to London then make sure to check out this guide to the best things to see first)

If you are looking for hidden gems in London, unusual places that only the locals know about (and some that even the locals haven’t heard of!) then this post is for you.

Here we share secret spots, local venues, hidden curiosities and much more to help you get that little bit more out of your time in the city. Some are completely free to visit, others charge an admission fee and I’ve listed all details below.

Use the map to help plan your days in London and use the Citymapper app to help you get around.

Disclosure: This post may contain affiliate links. I have been or could be if you click on a link in this post compensated via a cash payment, gift or something else of value for writing this post. See our full disclosure policy for more details.

London Hidden Gems
Beautiful Kyoto Gardens in Holland Park

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Leadenhall Market

Here our top list of unusual things to do in London.

Leadenhall Market

Harry Potter fans will immediately recognise magical Leadenhall Market (it was used to represent Diagon Alley in Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone) but do you know where to find it? 

The market dates back to 1321 and is located in what was the heart of Roman London. It once sold meat, poultry and game and was also the first places in the city where you could buy cutlery! It was also one of the first places in London where women were allowed to work. Today Leadenhall Market is home to great restaurants and bars, and cool shops. 

The beautiful design was by Sir Horace Jones, the same architect responsible for designing Billingsgate and Smithfields Markets. Today it has Grade II* listed status. 

You’ll find Leadenhall Market 

Where: Gracechurch Street, EC3V 1LT. Aldgate, Moorage and Liverpool Street stations are all nearby.

Website

Open: Public areas are open 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

Cost: Free

The Mail Rail

From the 1920s until its closure in 2003 letters and parcels were transported across London via underground tunnels. The train line, which ran for 6.5 miles from Paddington in the west to Whitechapel in the east, linked six sorting offices with mainline railway stations and delivered four million letters every day! At its peak, the Mail Rail ran 22 hours a day and employed more than 220 staff.

Although the Mail Rail is no longer transporting letters, it is transporting passengers. Visitors to the excellent London Postal Museum can take a 15 minute trip, 21 metres underground, and experience the Mail Rail for themselves. Make sure to book in advance.

Where: 15-20 Phoenix Place, WC1X 0DA; nearest tube Farringdon, Russell Square, King’s Cross and Chancery Lane

Website

Open: Wednesday – Sunday, 10am – 5pm

Cost: Adult £16, young person aged 16 – 24 £11, child £9 (prices are for advanced booking. Tickets bought on the day are £1 more expensive). Ticket includes unlimited access to The Postal Museum for one year from the date of your visit and one ride on Mail Rail, valid on your first visit to the Museum. Sorted! The Postal Play Space requires a separate ticket.

Little Venice

Little Venice is one of London’s most charming neighbourhoods. Positioned between Paddington and Maida Vale in central London is a village-type area located along Regent’s Canal, hence the comparison to Italy’s famous ‘City of Water’. 

It’s a charming place to explore either by wandering along the canal paths or by hiring a GoBoat, self-drive electric boats that pottle up and down the water. Either way you’ll pass colourful barges moored on either side of the canal. Visit during the summer months and you’ll spot paddle boarders and kayakers too. 

If walking, start in Little Venice and walk along under Warwick Avenue Bridge, and end in Camden and the market. 

Where: Blomfield Road, London, W9 2PF

Website

Open: Daily

Cost: Free

Puppet Barge Theatre

The UK’s only floating puppet theatre can be found in Little Venice and is one of our favourite hidden places in London. This really is one the best places to visit in London with kids once you’ve ticked off the main sights. 

The Puppet Theatre Barge has been putting on puppet shows on a converted barge for over 30 years. The theatre can house over 50 people and there’s even a small bar serving refreshments during the interval. Performances use long-string marionettes and last for just over an hour. 

Check what’s playing via their website. 

Where: Puppet Theatre Barge, Blomfield Road (opposite 35), W9 2PF. Nearest tube Warwick Avenue

Website

Open: Check website for details

Cost: Adults £13, children £9

House of Dreams Museum 

Located in East Dulwich is the most fantastical House of Dreams created by artist and designer Stephen Wright. The entire house – both inside and outside – has been covered top to bottom in found objects alongside hand-written memory boards that recall important event in his life. 

The House of Dreams is only open to visitors on certain dates (roughly once a month) so make sure you book well in advance. 

Where: 45 East Dulwich, London, SE22 8RG

Website 

Open: Limited dates, check website for details

Cost: £12 adults, £7 children 

Neal’s Yard Covent Garden

Tucked away in Covent Garden is one of the most colourful corners of London. Today Neal’s Yard is no longer so secret but it’s still a great place to visit and deserves a spot on our list of hidden gems in London.

Despite its popularity today, it wasn’t that long ago that this corner of Covent Garden was a dark, rat infested yard home to a handful of warehouses that housed stock for the fruit and vegetable market. It was definitely not somewhere that a local – let alone a tourist – would want to visit.

However, when Nicholas Saunders was looking for a location for his Whole Food Warehouse he came across Neal’s Yard (it was known as King’s Head Court at the time) and thought it the perfect place to set up shop.

Today the walls of this tiny neighbourhood are covered in brightly coloured murals and is home to Neal’s Yard Remedies, Neal’s yard Dairy and a handful of other cafes and restaurants including the excellent Homeslice Pizza. There’s also a very good and cheap hair salon called Hair By Fairy.

To find Neal’s Yard head off Monmouth Street and down a narrow cobbled passageway that is Neal’s. Yard.

Where: Covent Garden

Open: Neal’s Yard is open daily, opening hours for shops and restaurants vary.

Cost: Free

London Hidden Gems
The tomb of Karl Marx in Highgate Cemetery

Pétanque in Cleaver Square 

Cleaver Square is not only one of the prettiest residential squares in London (we would seriously love to live here) but it’s also where you can play pétanque. Cleaver Square was laid out in 1789 and was the earliest such residential squares south of the Thames. The centre of the square was originally a grazing ground and then a garden. Today it has a large boules pitch in the centre. 

You can bring your own pétanque kit or you can put down a deposit at the Prince of Wales pub on the corner and borrow a set. The square gets busy during the summer so make sure you leave ample time to play a game or two! 

Where: Cleaver Square, Kennington, SE11 4EA

Website

Open: 24 hours

Cost: Free if you bring your own boules set or £5 to hire from the Prince of Wales of which £1 is donated to a local charity. A £10 deposit is required.

No 10 Adam Street

If you’re hoping to get a photo in front of 10 Downing Street (one of London’s most famous streets) then you will be disappointed as it’s closed to visitors; a gate and police guard stand at the entrance.

But the good news is that there’s 10 Adam Street, which looks almost identical to the home of the British Prime Minster complete with a distinguished black front door. Snap a photo here and tell all your friends that you were invited to see the PM for tea! 

Where: 10 Adam Street, just off the Strand

Open: Always!

Cost: Free

Sir John Soane’s Museum

Sir John Soane was a British architect responsible for designing buildings including Holy Trinity Church and the Bank of England. Tasked with creating such notable buildings you might think that he would take it easy when at home but instead Sir John Soane obsessively collected art, furniture and architectural paintings and models. 

In the 19th century he opened his house up as a museum to ‘amateurs and students’ and still today the home is open to all. Highlights include the Sarcophagus of the Egyptian pharaoh Seti I. There are Family Trails for kids to discover the collections.

Where: Sir John Soane’s Museum, 13 Lincoln’s Inn Fields, London, WC2A 3BP

Website 

When: Open Wednesday to Sunday, 10am – 5pm. Last admission 4.30pm 

Cost: Free. No need to pre-book, you can walk in on the day.

St Dunstan-in-the-East

One of our favourite secret places in London is this hidden garden, set within the bombed-out ruins of St Dunstan’s church (it was suffered badly during the blitz and the Great Fire of London). The church is named after a 10th century monk Saint Dunstan who, according to legend, survived black magic, leprosy and even the Devil himself to become Archbishop of Canterbury (he was also an abbot of Glastonbury Abbey, a bishop of Worcester, a bishop of London before being later canonised as a saint).

In 1967 the City of London turned the ruins of St Dunstan into a public park and today it’s a wonderful and peaceful green space in the middle of the city.

Where: St Dunstan’s Hill, London, EC3R 5DD; nearest tube Monument and Tower Hill

Website

Open: 8am to 7pm or dusk

Cost: Free

Kyoto Garden

In one corner of Holland Park, a 22-hectare park in west London, is Kyoto Gardens. The beautiful gardens were donated by Kyoto’s Chamber of Commerce in 1991 to commemorate a long friendship between Japan and the UK and today offers visitors a beautiful escape in central London.

The space was designed as a ‘kaiyushiki’ (stroll garden) with tiered waterfalls, Japanese maple and sakura trees (cherry blossom) and a large pond filled with koi carp. Keep an eye out for the peacocks! 

Holland Park itself is home to an excellent playground. Combine a visit here with a trip to Leighton House Museum (below).

Where: Ilchester Pl, London W8 6LU. Closest tube Holland Park

Website

Open: Daily from 7.30am; closes 30 minutes before dusk

Cost: Free

Leighton House Museum

The former home of leading Victorian artist Sir Frederic Leighton is one of the most extraordinary houses in London. From the outside it looks like a very nice Kensington townhouse, but nothing out of the ordinary. Inside, however, the home is spectacular. Not lease because it has recently reopened following £8 million of restoration works, which opens a new wing previously unseen by visitors. 

The most famous room in the house is the Arab Hall, which Leighton created following his visit to Syria in 1873. So inspired by his travels, he decorated the hall using antique tiles from Damascus – it even boasts a working fountain. 

Visit and explore on your own or join an in-depth 90 minute guided tour (for over 18s only). 

Where: 12 Holland Park Road, London W14 8LZ. Nearest tube stations: Kensington (Olympia), High Street Kensington

Website

Open: Daily 10am – 5.30pm (closed Tuesdays)

Cost: Adult £11, child (6-18 years) £5

London Hidden Gems
Old apothecary bottles in the Old Operating Theatre

The Café in the Crypt

Although more well known now than it used to be, this cafe beneath a church is still on of London’s best hidden gems. Located on Trafalgar Square, in the heart of central London, the crypt is now a welcoming spot for a coffee or even a meal. Make sure to look up at the vaulted brick ceiling above your head and the historic tombstones at your feet.

Where:  Trafalgar Square, London WC2N 4JH

Website

Open: Open daily from 10am (11am on Thursday and Sunday) to 6pm Monday, 7pm Tuesday, 5pm Wednesday, 8pm Thursday and Friday, 8.30pm Saturday and 5pm Sunday. 

Cost: Free

God’s Own Junkyard

Brighten up the darkest of winter days with a trip to God’s Own Junkyard in Walthamstow. While the warehouse might not look like much from the outside, inside it’s filled with countless Technicolor handmade neon lights and vintage signs. Teens will love it!

The founder of God’s Own Junkyard was Chris Bracey, who started out making signs for Soho’s strip clubs and brothels before being spotted by Hollywood where he made props for movies including Tim Burton’s Charlie and the Chocolate Factory and Eyes Wide Shut with Tom Cruise. 

The good news is that many of the neon signs are sale too so you can take one home with you (spoiler: they don’t come cheap!). 

Where: Gods Own Junkyard, Unit 12, Ravenswood Industrial Estate, Shernhall Street, London, E17 9HQ

Website

Open: Friday and Saturday 11am – 10pm, Sunday 11am – 6pm. The Rolling Scones is open for food and drinks all weekend.

Cost: Free

Highgate Cemetery

A cemetery might not be an obvious place to visit but in Victorian England, cemeteries made for a great day out, especially when they were part of the ‘Magnificent Seven’.

Overcrowding in parish churchyards in the early 19th century caused Parliament to pass a law allowing large cemeteries to be built on the outskirts of the city of London. One of these – and arguably the most well-known – is Highgate Cemetery in North London. 

Some 50,000 graves sit in the East and West cemeteries and include notable names such as television presenter Jeremy Beadle and the writer Douglas Adams. The most famous grave belongs to Karl Marx

Visit on a self-guided tour or join a tour of the West side with a knowledgeable volunteer guide. 

Where: Highgate Cemetery, Swain’s Lane, London N6 6PJ

Website

Open: Daily from 10am to 5pm. (4pm close from November – February) Closed Christmas Day and Boxing Day.

Cost: Entrance is by timed ticket which must be booked in advance.

Eel Pie Island

Eel Pie Island is a true hidden gem in London and one that even locals don’t know about. This tiny island sits in the middle of the River Thames, a mudflat sandwiched between Richmond and Twickenham. But don’t let its small size fool you, this island has a rich and colourful history.

Legend has it that the island was once the site of a monastery, other historians argue that it was where Henry VIII used to meet his many mistresses. Day trippers started to visit in the 17th century, partly for the eel pies served by the island’s inn.

In 1830 the Eel Pie Island Hotel opened and by the early 1960s, the hotel was a hotspot for musicians with visitors travelling to the island to see the likes of Mick Jagger and the Rolling Stones, Rod Steward and The Who play.

The hotel eventually closed and was used by squatters before burning down in a mysterious fire. Today the island is a bohemian commune home to 26 sculptors, inventors, craftsmen, potters and painters. Most of the time the island is closed to visitors but twice a year the residents open their doors to guests as part of their Open Studios weekend. Make sure to check for dates.

Where: Eel Pie Boatyard, Eel Pie Island, Twickenham Embankment, Middlesex, TW1 3DY

Website

Open: Two weekends a year, check the website for upcoming dates.

Cost: Free

The Old Operating Theatre

Housed in the attic of St. Thomas Church is the oldest surviving surgical theatre in Europe. The operating theatre dates back to 1822 and predates anaesthetics and antiseptics, the only pain relief patients received were alcohol, opiates and chloroform. They would also be given a wooden cane to bite down on to muffle the screams.

This is where the poorest of patients came for treatment and apparently many died of infection with only one in three surviving amputation.

The operating theatre was rediscovered in 1956 and opened as a museum six years later. Today it’s a fascinating insight into medicine and medical procedures from time gone by and displays herb garrets used by the apothecaries, instruments used during procedures including cupping, bleeding and skull-driving, and information on the history of the church and hospital itself.

Note that access to the museum is via a narrow 52-step spiral staircase

Where: 9a St Thomas Street, London, SE1 9RY

Website

Open: Thursday – Sunday from 10.30am until 5pm (last entry 4.15pm). Note that the museum will be closed from 11 December 2022 to April 2023 for renovation work.

Cost: Adults £7.50, children £4.50. Children under 5 are free

London Hidden Gems
The Memorial to Heroic Self Sacrifice in Postman’s Park

Chelsea Physic Garden

Located on four acres of land on the edge of the River Thames, the Chelsea Physic Garden is London’s oldest botanic garden. It was first established by the Worshipful Society of Apothecaries to grow medicinal plants and today is home to a living collection of some 4,000 edible, useful and medicinal plants.

Unless you really know your plants, it is well worth joining a guided tour. These are run by trained and very knowledgeable volunteers during the main season (Tuesday – Friday and Sundays from April to October). Tours run roughly once an hour. These tours are best suited to teens and adults.

The Chelsea Physic Garden runs regular activities for children during school holidays, including Christmas holidays. Past workshops include Father Christmas storytelling and making Willow Christmas Sculptures.

Where: 66 Royal Hospital Road, Chelsea, SW3 4HS

Website

Open: 11am – 4pm, closed Saturday

Cost: Adults £10, children £8.50 (these fees includes a voluntary donation)

Sky Garden

These days the Sky Garden is a popular alternative to the London Eye for locals wanting great views of London but it’s still relatively unknown to visitors.

Located in London’s Walkie Talkie building, this is the city’s highest public garden with 360-degree views over the city. It’s also home to two restaurants, two bars and an outdoor terrace. Visits to the Sky Garden are free but you do have to book in advance and weekend tickets do tend to sell out quickly. Tickets can be booked up to three weeks in advance.

Where: The Fenchurch Building, 1, Sky Garden Walk, London EC3M 8AF

Website

Open: Free tickets are released every Monday morning (excluding bank holidays) three weeks in advance.

Cost: Free but tickets must be booked in advance

Museum of Brands

This quirky London Museum definitely doesn’t get as much attention (or visitors) as it should. Located in west London, the Museum of Brands tracks the history of consumer culture from Victorian times through to the present day.

It was started by consummate collector Robert Opie, who started collecting packages and items as a child until he had amassed a big enough collection of hot this own exhibition. The Pack Age exhibition was shows at the V&A in 1975. 

The bulk of the museum’s collection is housed in glass cabinets that form the Time Tunnel. Starting in Victorian times, the tunnel winds its way through the ages showcasing the objects and brands that have shaped consumer culture over time. 

It’s a fascinating look at how British history is reflected in everyday packaging and is guaranteed to have you saying ‘oh, I remember those!’. 

Where: 111-117 Lancaster Rd, London W11 1QT

Website

Open: Monday – Saturday 10am – 6pm, Sunday 11am – 5pm

Cost: Adults £9, children £5, family ticket £24

Cartoon Museum

Another museum that’s slightly off the beaten track is the Cartoon Museum in Fitzrovia. Home to over 6,000 original cartoon and comic artwork and a library of over 8,000 books and comics this is the place to come if you have an interest in comic and cartoon art.

Where: 63 Wells Street, Fitzrovia, W1A 3AE. The closest tube is Goodge Street.

Website

Open: Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday 10.30am – 5.30pm, Thursdays open until 8pm, closed Mondays

Cost: Entry is £8.50 per adult. Under 18s are free but teens require proof of age ID.

Word on the Water

There are lots of great bookshops in London but one of the more unusual ones can be found moored along Regent’s Canal towpath.

Word on the Water is a bookstore located on a 100-year-old Dutch barge near Coals Drops Yard in Kings Cross. Expect used classic, cult and contemporary fiction as well as a large selection of children’s books. Word on the Water also hosts regular talks, occasional gigs and even the odd poetry slam.

Where: Regent’s Canal towpath, Kings Cross; nearest tube Kings Cross

Website

Open: Daily 12pm – 7pm.

Cost: Free (unless you buy a book!)

London Hidden Gems
St Dunstan-in-the-East

Charles Dickens Museum

Sure, lots of locals might have heard of the Charles Dickens Museum, but how many have actually been? This really is one of our favourite cool places to visit in town and is interesting to visit no matter how many Dickens books you’ve read (or even if you’ve read none at all!).

Located in the house where Dickens lived from 1837-1839 the museum is set up as if Dickens was still living there and represents a typical middle-class Victorian home with furnishings, portraits and decorations that belonged to Dickens. Also on display are works by Dickens; it was while living here that he finished writing The Pickwick Papers, and wrote Nicholas Nickleby and Oliver Twist

The museum runs regular events and activities for children as well as self guided activity trails for families

Where:  48 Doughty Street, London, WC1N 2LX; nearest tube Russell Square

Website

Open: Wednesday to Sunday, 10am – 5pm. Last entry 4pm.

Cost: Adult £12.50, child £7.50, under 6s Free 

Jack the Ripper Museum

Best suited to teens and adults is this museum tells the story of the infamous Jack the Ripper. Set out over six floors in a Victorian house in the heart of Whitechapel, the museum explores the unsolved crimes that took place in London in 1888.

Learn about the lives of the victims, the main suspects in the murders, the police investigation and what life was like in the east end of London during this time. Once you’ve gathered all the clues, see if you can solve the mystery of who was Jack the Ripper.

Where: 12 Cable Street, London, E1 8JG

Website

Open: Daily 10am – 5.30pm

Cost: Adults £10, children £8

Little Ben

Hidden in plain sight is one of London’s lesser known sights. Located just outside Victoria Station is Little Ben, a shrunken version of Big Ben, which sits atop the Houses of Parliament.

Little Ben has stood in the same spot in Victoria since it was first erected in 1892 and is definitely worth visiting. Don’t rely on Little Ben to tell the time year-round, however, the clock sticks to British Summer Time.

Where: Opposite Victoria Station; nearest tube Victoria

Open: Daily

Cost: Free

Flying Trapeze School

Every summer a trapeze school sets up in Regent’s Park allowing wannabe circus performers the chance to fly through the air. The school offers two-hour classes and is open to anyone – the youngest student they have had was 8 years old, the oldest was 78!

Classes involve a warm up followed by practicing on a low bar before moving on to the high swinging bar. By the end of the class you might be able to do a trick or two!

Where: Gorilla Circus, Regent’s Park, Outer Circle, London NW1 4RT

Website

Open: Gorilla Circus will open again in the spring, sign up for the newsletter to be kept updated with opening dates

Cost: Prices for 2023 have not been released yet

Postman’s Park

Located to the north of St Paul’s Cathedral is a pretty garden peppered with benches popular with workers at lunchtime. But this is no ordinary garden, the park is home to the Memorial to Heroic Self Sacrifice

This memorial is the work of Victorian artist George Frederic Watts (1817-1904) who wanted to create a monument to commemorate “heroism in every-day life”. The memorial contains 54 plaques, each dedicated to someone ‘ordinary’ who did something extraordinary helping the lives of others. 

These include a stationer’s clerk who died while trying to save a man from drowning in 1889 and Amelia Kennedy who saved her sister from their burning house in 1871. The earliest dedicated is to Sarah Smith, a pantomime artist who died in 1863 and the latest is Leigh Pitt who drowned in 2007. 

So, where does the name Postman’s Park come from? Well, apparently not long after the park opened in 1880 it quickly became popular with post office workers from the nearby old General Post Office. 

Where: King Edward St, London EC1A 7BT

Website

Open: Daily 8am – 4pm

Cost: Free

London hidden gems
London’s Museum of Brands

Camden Passage

Everyone’s heard of Camden market but what about Camden Passage? Admittedly if you visit this Instagram-friendly cobbled pedestrian street on a weekend you’ll be fighting for space making it feel less like one of london’s hidden gems and more like popular Portobello Market but the truth is, many visitors to London don’t know about this street.

Located a short walk from Angel tube station, off Upper Street in Islington, the lane is lined with cafes, restaurants, independent boutiques and antique shops. Visit on a Wednesday or Saturday and you’ll get to experience the market too.

Some of our favourites include The Breakfast Club for brilliant breakfasts and brunches, the design and lifestyle store In-Residence, the Antique Paper Company who sell antique maps, and the vintage homewares at Modern Times Vintage.

Where: 1 Camden Psge, London N1 8EA; Nearest tube Angel

Website

Open: 9am – 5pm Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday; 8am – 6pm Wednesday, Saturday and Sunday

Cost: Free

Silent Disco Walking Tours

For a tour with a difference join a Silent Disco Walking Tour and dance your way around secret London. The company run a handful of themed walking tours including the West End Musical Tour and the Drag Queen Disco Diva tour. During the West End Musical Tour, participants wear headphones and then sing and dance along to the greatest show tunes as you tour the streets of London and discover new musicals.

The Drag Queen Disco Diva Tour takes in London’s iconic Soho and China Town districts as you listen to Disco Diva tunes. 

Where: The tours take place in different locations across

Website

Open: Check website for dates

Cost: Tours start from £19 for kids and teens and £24 for adults. Check the website for details.

Clink Prison Museum 

You may well have heard of the London Dungeon but what about the Clink Prison Museum? This was once the most notorious medieval prison in London where extreme punishments took place – including making prisoners stand in water until their feet rotted. Yep, not a nice place! It houses prisoners from the 12th century up until 1780.

Today the Clink Prison Museum explores the brutal past of the prison through audio stories, themed rooms and replica artefacts including torture tools. Join in a guided tour…if you dare!

Where: The Clink Prison Museum is located on London’s South Bank. The closets underground station is London Bridge, the closets train station is London Bridge Rail Station. 

Website

Open: Daily 10am – 6pm

Cost: Adults £8, children £6, family ticket £23

Need to know: The museum is not wheelchair accessible. You are recommended 1hr 15 minutes for your visit. The recommended age is 7+ years.

Mudlarking tour of the Thames

If you’re looking for a truly quirky thing to do in London then join a tour ‘mudlarking’ on the riverbanks of the Thames.

Mudlarking is the art of scavenging through river mud for lost items of historical significance or value and has become increasingly popular in London. This is because twice a day the tidal waters in the River Thames rise and fall revealing centuries of treasures as they go.

You can find little pieces of history everywhere in the shape of bits of clay pipes, shards of Delftware crockery or maybe even a Victorian table fork.

Where: On the banks of the River Thames

Website

Open: Check the website for dates and times

Cost: £25 per ticket (for adults and children aged 8+) for 2 hours on the river foreshore with an archaeology guide.

The Original Cockney Museum

George Major, the Pearly King of Peckham, had long had a dream of opening his own museum and now he has. The Original Cockney Museum is located not, as you might expect, in East London but in Epsom and is a fascinating tour though London’s past and the history of the Pearly Kings and Queens. 

Where: Rear of 31, Stoneleigh Broadway, Epsom, KT17 2JE

Website

Open: Daily 10.30am – 3.30pm closed Mondays.

Cost: Adults £7, children £4. Call / email and book in advance.

London Hidden Gems
Colourful Neal’s Yard in Covent Garden

Cuppapug

Forget Big Ben and Buckingham Palace, what you want when you visit London is the chance to cuddle some pugs. Well, that’s what my daughter thinks anyway and the great thing is that in London it is possible!

Cuppapug is a cute, pink-themed cafe in east London where you can play with a gorgeous grumble of pugs. The resident pugs have all grown up together and have free reign of the cafe playing with each other – or you if you’re nice and buy them pug-friendly treats! Pug owners can also bring their own dogs along.

Where: 5 Ability Plaza, Arbutus Street, London, E8 4DT

Website

Open: Thursday – Sunday, 11am-7pm

Cost: £12 for 1 hour; children under 5 free

Need to know: Bookings must be made in advance. Cuppapug limits bookings to 6 people every 30-minutes in hour slots so they can manage the welfare of the pugs.

A night at the museum

If you’ve ever dreamt of spending the night at a museum then you’re in luck. Some of London’s best museums offer kids the chance to sleep with Hope the Whale at the Natural History Museum, alongside a sculpture of Tutankhamumn in the British Museum or even on board the Golden Hinde, the English Galleon best known for circumnavigating the globe between 1577 and 1580.

Dates and places are limited so make sure to book in advance.

Where: Various museums; see this post for more details

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Things to do in London in February

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