London: an ideal family destination

29/03/2019

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    My family and I are fans of this rich metropolis that Oscar Wilde humerously described as being full of fog and serious people! But do not be mistaken! The sun shines brightly on the River Thames each year, and the londoners truely know how to throw a party. The city also knows how to cater the little travellers as if they were royality, so that London has been our favorite family destination for a few years now.

     

    View of the city center of London

    Welcome to London little queens and kings!

     

    There’s not a perfect season for going to London. The city is just as attractive and likeable throughout the months. Even when the stores along Regent Street or Knightsbridge are decked out with their best Christmas decorations. Even when spring finally shows its face and you can spend a sunny weekend roaming around the Covent Garden. Even when summer is in full swing and you can spend a relaxing day as a family in one of the marvelous parks spread out throughout the city. Exciting, eclectic, and creative, London is a multifaceted city that is perfect for a family getaway. Follow the guide!

     

    The kidfriendly hotels in the capital

    It’s important to find a hotel that will welcome your entire family well. Look no further!

    London’s best kids-friendly address awaits you just a stone’s throw from Buckingham Palace: The lanesborough.

    A delightful blend of contemporary comfort and history, this iconic palace has retained its British soul while offering its guests the treasures of 21st century technology. To get there from Saint Pancras Station, it will only take you about 10 minutes in one of these delicious Black Cabs, which are already a real experience in themselves, but you can, of course, enjoy a private limousine, on request from your Little Concierge Little Guest.

    From the entrance and its monumental lobby, wonder is guaranteed: countless frescoes, period furniture, common areas and rooms covered with 23 ¼ carat gold leaf, nothing is left to chance.

    The Lanesborough has a spa that is not to be missed under any circumstances, as it was awarded the title of « Best Hotel Spa 2019 » at the World Spa Awards.

    Here, children are treated like VIPs. More than anyone else, they enjoy sleeping in their cosy nests, under the watchful eye of the hotel’s babysitting nannies, who ensure that Mum and Dad enjoy London’s nightlife to the full.

    The ultimate experience not to be missed is the Afternoon Tea, served every day and concocted by the house’s pastry chefs. Here the little ones can enjoy scones and a delicious milkshake.

     

    London-Family-Destination-The-Lanesborough

    The Lanesborough: the place to be during your family trip to London.

     

    THE UNMISSABLE HARRY POTTER

    Since J. K. Rowling gave him life in her books, Harry Potter quickly became one of the most popular London attractions. It’s impossible to refrain from going to visit the Warner Bros Company studios located in Leavesden, which is about an hour and a half from London. Before boarding the bus at Saint Pancras to head to the studios, you can start the trip with a stop at King’s Cross station, located just a few meters from Saint Pancras. There, you can find the famous platform 9 ¾ that takes you to Hogwarts, the mysterious wizarding school.

    Since 2012, the famous cinematographic production house opens the doors of its filming stages and immerses children and adults in the fantastic world of film. All you can do is marvel in front of the immense decorations, that are still pristine and impressive!

     

    FAMILY MUSEUMS

    Childhood pleasure

    Nostalgic travellers will want to go to Bethnal Green and head to the V&A Museum of Childhood. This lovely 3 floors building houses one of the larges collections of children’s games and toys in the world. Kids can participate in crafting workshops, listen to fairytails, or watch movies. My favorite department is still the magnificent Victorian era doll house collection.

    Life and sciences

    The Natural History Museum is one of the many museums that’s part of Exhibition Road in the Kensigton neighborhood. The museum includes thousands of species collected from around the world. During the visit, you can learn about the richness and diversity of the living and mineral heritage of our beloved blue planet. Many specimens were brought back by the great explorer James Cook’s numerous expeditions, as well as from the famous naturalist Charles Darwin. The museum also has life-size models of dinosaur skeletons and other extinct species.

    In Sherlock Holmes’ footsteps

    Conan Doyle’s novels haven’t aged at all. We still love being immersed in the dated ambience of when the British Empire was at its peak. You can’t miss the famous Baker Street museum: the Sherlock Holmes Museum. It’s an absolute must see for children who love crime novels. Explore the 2nd floor office, which has been preserved since Victorian times. From furniture to personal items, everything has been preserved in this room where Sherlock and Doctor Watson worked together.

     

    The Sherlock Holmes Museum in London
    A must see? Elementary my dear Watson! »

     

    GET OFF THE BEATEN PATH

    Now is the time to take you to our favorite neighborhood in London: Shoreditch, which is perfect for a family outing. Located in East End, it’s home to a colorful community that’s always evolving. For a couple of years now, there has been a growth in the creative class, who have become masters of Street Art. In this open-air museum, the urban backdrop changes week to week depending on the artists’ mood.

    Another site in the neighborhood, a little more « natural » this time, is Hackney City Farm. In this stunning urban farm, in the heart of London, they offer a large number of activities that are just as educational as they are entertaining. The activities include artisan workshops, animal and lifestyle discovery, healthy eating workshops, etc.

    Before heading back to the bustling city, don’t forget to stop at the Café Frizzante!

     

    DIRECTION: SHOPPING

    Hamleys

    You must stop by Hamleys, one of the most beautiful toy stores in the world. This unique store has managed to create a fairytail universe for all ages. More or less an experimental toy laboratory, you can find the latest toys alongside the classics. Located on Regent Street, the store created by William Hamley in 1881 is spread out over 7 floors. Don’t miss: the 1st floor set aside for stuffed animals.

    Harrods

    I don’t know anyone who hasn’t succomb to the magic of Harrods. Located on Brompton Road, in the neighborhood of Knightsbridge, this luxurious temple of refined shopping covers more than 90,000sqm! You can find everything there! The Christmas section is particulary extraodinary, but my favorite is the Food Hall, which is certainly one of the most amazing fine food markets in all of Europe.

     

    A babygirl plays with a giant teddy bear in front of the Hamleys store in London

    Nice to meet you Teddy!

     

    ALONG THE WATER

    To finish off your family adventure in London, especially if it’s nice out, I would highly recommend following the Thames Path for a walk along the River Thames, from Waterloo to Tower Bridge.

    The walk offers breathtaking views of the biggest monuments in London, such as the London Eye, Westminster, Big Ben, the Parliement, and even the Shard, the tallest sky scraper in Europe.

    On the 69th floor you can expereince a dreamy view of London, while on the 34th floor there is a lovely bar-restaurant where you can stop by at tea time.

     

     

    Catherine, married, Justine’s mom,  Paris

     

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