London Calling

Exchange rate issue aside, London is a terrific destination, and there are plenty of ways to ease the cost of vacationing in Mother England.


The first unchaperoned overseas trip I ever took was to London, England. It was a graduation gift to myself with three girlfriends in tow. That was 20 years ago. I’ve been back to London many times since, but that first visit remains special and the most memorable. (Save for the time I saw Roger Federer play at Wimbledon four years ago, but I digress.)

The city has changed a lot in 20 years: formerly sleepy or gritty neighborhoods are gentrifying (such as Spitalfields and Battersea); several new museums have opened (my favorite is the Tate Modern); a building boom started long before the city was awarded the 2012 Summer Olympic Games; and the food and restaurant scene has vastly improved. Shopping remains a favorite pastime of mine in London, even though the pound is killing the dollar. But I’ve visited at other times when it’s been 2-to-1 and still managed to find deals. I’ve shared a few favorite shopping places in a Street Shops and Flea Markets article.

London Package

There’s plenty else to see and do to for visitors of all persuasions, whether you’re looking for a fun-filled fashion and club-hopping adventure, a traditional historic trip, or are taking the kids along for a family vacation. Our resident expert Anne Marie Roos, who teaches at Oxford, has shared her in-depth and extensive knowledge of not only what to see and do, but how to get around too in her London feature. She also suggests 6 London day trips from the city and five of her favorite British beaches, for those exploring other parts of the United Kingdom.

Nichole Beauchamp, who wrote much of our Buenos Aires and Argentina coverage a couple weeks ago, spent 16 years in London before moving to South America last year. She’s written about London theater for children and an article on 7 engaging sights for teenagers. And if that expensive pound has got you down, check out David White’s tips for saving money on your London vacation. He took his family on vacation to London every year for several years and managed to write a guidebook about it, Let’s Take the Kids to London, which is included in our London book review this week by Kim Foley MacKinnon.

Additional Articles 

Other features not to miss include John Higham’s piece on his family’s Oxford excursion, while his daughter Katrina writes about her family’s Great Wall of China hike. Debbie K. Hardin reviews the New Children’s Museum in San Diego; Amy L. Hatch tackles retail therapy while on vacation; our third in a series of six amusement parks articles was written by Cindy Richards, who had a chance to preview the new Hard Rock Park with her daughter; a round-up of fun festivals taking place in Traverse City, Mich.; and a look at how to make your “staycation” a luxury break in our new Luxury Travel column. And our update wouldn’t be complete without our weekly Travel Deals column by intern Rebekah Tsadik, who graduated last week from Northwestern University—congratulations Becky!

As always, we hope you enjoy the editorial content and find it useful. Please remember to add your ratings and comments to any articles that may inspire you, and to bookmark the pieces for any future trips you’re planning to take in our TravelMuse Planner. Or feel free to write to me directly at Your feedback is always welcome.


Donna M. Airoldi
Editorial Director

p.s. Next up: A special July 4 Americana Issue. 

Destinations: London

Themes: Family Travel

User Comments

Tate Modern I could spend a week in the Tate Modern and not get bored. London is like fine wine; she only gets better and better as the years go by.

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