London is one of the world's greatest cities. This buzzing metropolis is chock-full of culture, first class retailing, top-quality dining, a fascinating history and cutting-edge fashion. It's also a great place to take a family because there are attractions around every corner that will appeal to both young and old alike. Whether your kids are toddlers or teens, London offers an outstanding vacation for the entire family, and finding a hotel near the main attractions is very easy. Be sure to catch some of these must-see favorites when booking your London getaway.
Originally planned to stand for only five years, this Ferris wheel with clear spheres for the passengers travels at less than 1 mph. It takes you as high as 443 feet into the air - high enough to see Big Ben, St. Paul's Cathedral, Trafalgar Square, and, on a clear day, Buckingham Palace and far beyond. This is an outstanding "first" after arriving in London, as it gives everyone a bird's-eye view of the city and its environs.
The world's oldest scientific research zoo, the Zoological Society of London was established in 1826 and the Regent’s Park site has expanded steadily over the years. It now encompasses 36 acres and houses over 16,000 animals of more than 750 species. The zoo actually has two sites now: the original one in London's Regent's Park, and the larger, 600-acre space north-west of London near Dunstable in Bedfordshire, known as Whipsnade Zoo. The larger animals such as rhinos, elephants and giraffes are now housed at Whipsnade. missed.
Perhaps more suitable for older kids, this large shopping playground can be a bit overwhelming on a busy day for smaller children. The building covers five acres and is illuminated spectacularly every Christmas season - a must-see if you visit London in late November or during December. The store has over one million square feet of retail space on seven floors, so you won't see all of it in a day, even if you try, but do take the kids through the Egyptian Hall (Lower Ground Floor), Food Hall (Ground Floor), and perhaps Pets and Toys (Fourth Floor) or Electronics (Third Floor), depending on their ages and interests.
Tired feet are almost guaranteed when you are vacationing in London, so why not take one of London's famous double-decker bus tours? Having bought your tickets most operators allow you to hop on and off at whim, providing an outstanding way to not only get around the city, but also to visit the various attractions. The guides provide an informative and funny commentary during the ride, tailored for both kids and adults.
For kids up to 12 years old, Kensington Gardens has a wonderful playground that includes a huge wooden pirate ship. Located beside Diana's former home of Kensington Palace, this free playground can get busy on sunny days, but has enough room that a quiet corner can always be found. Try walking along some of the trails and looking for the hidden sculptures and toys scattered throughout the park. Keep in mind that unaccompanied children, glass bottles and jars, smoking and alcohol are not permitted in the park.
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