London holidays offer everything you might want to do from tours of the city’s iconic attractions such as Buckingham Palace, the Tower of London, and Tower Bridge to enjoying beautiful expanses of green space in the parks and gardens that are located everywhere—even in the most congested metropolitan areas. For visitors from the United States, a family holiday to London is apt to occur during the summer, Easter, or Christmas period. You might want to avoid the time during the school break periods in England, which occur generally from late July to early September. August is also a traditional vacation time in most of Western Europe, and this is when Europeans travel in force.
In addition to sightseeing in Central London, there are London holidays that concentrate on many different special interests. City walks or guided walking tours can really showcase these interests. There are walks that prowl the cobbled lanes and alleys where Jack the Ripper and the Demon Barber Sweeney Todd did their awful work. There are walks that bring the city’s history and rich literary traditions alive, including Harry Potter walks, literary walks visiting the neighborhoods frequented by Sherlock Holmes and the characters of Charles Dickens. For scenic walks, try the South Bank area of the Thames riverfront that reveals the famous London Eye and Shakespeare's Globe Theatre.
Speaking of theater, many vacation packages include tickets to the famous Broadway style theaters of the West End. Or visit Greenwich Park, with its rich maritime history, respected Observatory, and the Greenwich Mean Time clock that keeps the entire world on schedule. Or enjoy Thames River cruises through the heart of the city. Canary Wharf is one of the many world famous shopping areas in the city, and some London holidays are specifically for shopping. Antique dealers from around the world come to the shops and galleries along Portobello Road. Tourists flock to Covent Garden not just for its trendy boutiques, but also for its bars and restaurants, and to be entertained by the only licensed street performers in the city.
There are London holiday rentals available that lend themselves particularly well for small groups gathering for special events. A family holiday to London might also take advantage of these, as they can give children a place of their own where the adults don’t have to worry about bothering other guests and where money can be saved on dining out costs. Apartments and flats are available in all areas of the city. If you’re not interested in cheap hotels or Central London hostels, you will find good inexpensive London holiday rentals clustered in the area north of Hyde Park. Most of these are small and modest studios and one bedroom flats, as city center real estate comes at a premium. Venture out to the countryside of West London and North London, and you will find charming little cottages in traditional market villages.
In the south, toward Gatwick Airport, you will find large forests that once were royal hunting grounds. These are great spaces for a family holiday to London as you will find theme parks and even a former hunting lodge of Henry VIII that is now one of the region’s most historic bed and breakfasts.
A London luxury holiday can take advantage of London holiday rentals that are quite elegant and exclusive. In particular, entire mansions and townhouses are available in the posh Mayfair district of Westminster side by side with some of the most prestigious and historic luxury hotels in the city. Around the area of Canary Wharf in East London, there are modern and luxurious condominiums and resorts, including the Four Seasons Resort and Spa.