Dog Calling London or London Dog Calling or ....

I'm headed to London for some meetings in August 2010, and it's my first time setting my paws ashore in the U.K. Since I have a few extra days (August 19-21) planned to explore London or surrounding areas, I'm seeking help in crowdsourcing my visit. What should I see, do? Where should I stay? What should I not miss? Thanks for helping out!

"When a man is tired of London, he is tired of life." via @BryanAlexander

A friend set up, its got a lot of stuff on it.

What Should I do in London?

  • Neal's Yard, near Covent Garden
  • Charing Cross Road. Bookstore heaven.
  • London Eye (really is worth it) I rode it at night!
  • The Tate (Tate Modern's got an exhibit I didn't get to, but you might like: Exposed: Voyeurism, Surveillance and the Camera) -Tate Modern is essential, Sir Dog. And it was- I saw a brief bit of the surrealism exhibit the forst day, but saw the Exposed exibit on my last day. Yes, it was essential!
  • Have breakfast with the Queen (yeah right)--but tea at the Orangery near Kensington Palace is devine, pricey, but totally worth it! She ignored my tweets!
  • British Museum ( Yes!--most definitely!! This was close to the place I stayed, but I only managed a 40 minute walk through. The mummies are cool!
  • Covent Garden Market ( Camden Market
  • Camden Market rocks.
  • St Kathrine Docks (
  • Monopoly pub crawl - most people I know have only managed 2 or 3 stops but this is a possible instead -
  • Theatres if you wish - Globe or Menier Chocolate Factory - you can get meal+play cheap tickets and take your drinks in with you
  • Some good curry places are in Shoreditch, one in Tooting but its out of the way a bit
  • Drink a KilKenny! Found in most London pubs.
  • Picadilly Circus
  • Tower of London--Their new Fit for a King amour exhibit was awesome, oh, yeah, they have the royal jewels, but I didn't care about that as much!! (Gothic goodness) I walked by but was too late to go inside; but wow, that is a CASTLE
  • Walk along the River Thames - some great markets there
  • Take the 3 hour Chunnel ride to Paris
  • Go to Hyde Park, see Speakers' Corner. Speak! (Definitely do this, and have someone record it. Preach it, brother!) I walked by. Chickened out ;-)
  • If you have time, take the train to Bath (2 hours) and look around. Amazing place. Climb up Solsbury Hill, just like Peter Gabriel. I rode the train to Bristol for a meeting, and saw Bath... there was no place there to store luggage on the way back. It looked rather cool to explore.
  • You must see a play while you're there. The New Globe is a great experience. Be on the lookout for smaller theatres too--check out the reviews and find the sleeper hits. We saw A Winter's Tale at a small theatre on the South Bank. Amazing actors, imaginative staging, very intimate theatre, very powerful experience. Autolycus the clown came and sat next to Jenny and sang to her.
  • Hamley's Toy Store is fun to visit.
  • Westminster Abbey tour. Poet's Corner is one of my favorite places on Earth.
  • Take the Quadrophenia Tour in Brighton: Ah well, looks like they don't do it anymore. Perhaps a self-guided tour?
  • Eat bangers and mash. Shepherd's pie. Pub food is the food to get--or Indian. (Indian for taste, pub for... the experience) Toured a few pubs in SoHo, missed the bangers
  • Visit the British Library--usually a cool exhibit there.
  • Trafalgar Square is how I know I'm in London. Spend some vibe time there. The National Gallery is right across the street, and the Tower of Big Ben/Houses of Parliament/Westminster Abbey are down the street from there. Agreed! It was a human spectacle! I also managed to walk through at 12:30AM at night, a whole different crowd.
  • A boat ride on the Thames is great fun, especially at or near sunset. It was! Road the taxi ferry to London Tower Bridge and got perfect light, also rode down to Greenwich
  • Day trip to Oxford.
  • Tower Bridge (it is right next to the London Tower if you do it) I walked by but was too late to go inside; but wow, that is a CASTLE
  • Consider getting a one or two day London Pass to do things cheaper
  • I've liked the Imperial War Museum both times I've visited (this year & two years ago)
  • Buckingham Palace will be open/available for tours while you are visiting; I enjoyed the Queen's Gallery (right next door) with the Victoria & Albert Love & Art exhibit; I also enjoyed the Royal Mews, next door to the QG. (London pass makes Queens Gallery & Mews free!)
  • The Churchill War Rooms are definitely worth a trip. An underground bunker, used by Churchill during WWII as a command center. It's set up, as it was found, and looks as though they all just left and will be right back. Really interesting.
  • Take a boat ride on the Thames to Greenwich, visit the national maritime museum and stand on the Prime Meridian. Got there too late to stand on it!
  • See St. Paul's Cathedral Saw it in great light; returned to go inside, but it was mobbed. Plus they said no cameras
  • free bike hire for first half hour available now, shiny new bikes: My instincts to look in the wrong traffic directions made this a dangerous idea
  • Nice atmosphere and drinks at Jrink Soho (now Nighthawks) -

Where Should I Stay?

Got locations for a not to pricey but not too shabby a dog house? Something with character and not chain like?
  • is a good place to start with regards to rooms (narrow location down to London W1 in search)
  • is lovely but not easy to get a room
  • I stayed at - it's the hall of residences for the London School of Economics. The rooms are basic but cheap (I think I was paying 45 pounds a night) and REALLY central - it is literally half a block from Trafalgar Square and the tube. The small drawback was that it doesn't appear to have free wifi. Otherwise I'd totally recommend it - Scott
  • We've stayed at The Avalon a couple of times. Friendly place but a bit run down. Good prices.

UPDATE: Thanks for suggestions- Scott I was close to going for Northumberland, but found a nice hotel/B&B in Bloomsbury on with wifi and less than 100 Pounds per night.

Anyone Want to Hang Out with the Dog?

Meetup? contact me cogdogblog at gmail dot com or leave a contact/twitter handle/swiss bank account number
  • be good to meet up for a beer and I could probably round up a few folk - had a good night with Brian and Scott after UKOER10 @jukesie
  • @jukesie - there's a meetup being planned for the 19th Aug (ping @GianninaRossini if you fancy joining us!)