Visiting London with kids is an unforgettable experience, and when planning a trip to London with children you will definitely want to make the most of the long list of things to do with kids that London has to offer for your little ones.
Keep this list handy and make sure to capture their smiles when you surprise them with all the lovely things they will discover in the greatest city of all.
30 things to do in London with kids
No matter how old they are, surprise them with a visit to London’s most famous toy store. This has to be our number one plan to do in London with kids. This famous toy store was established in London over 250 years ago, and it’s kid’s paradise. 6 whole levels of interactive fun as well as hundreds of toys to choose from, we just know they will not leave empty handed.
2. London Eye
If you are visiting London with kids you have to go on the London Eye. It is one of London’s most famous attractions, and you know they will ask to go on it when they see it. At its highest point, 135 meters, the views over London are simply spectacular, and you”ll undoubtedly be able to take some of the best photos of your trip from here.
We highly recommend that you buy your tickets in advance to avoid the queues.
» More information: London Eye
3. Take them to one of London’s Best Museums
Who said museums were boring? Most of London’s museums are super child friendly, and the most likely thing is that they won’t want to leave. Try the Natural History Museum for dinosaur fun or the Science museum for a whole interactive world. These two museums are located right next to each other in South Kensington, but you can easily spend an entire day easily wandering around one of these museums, so make sure you have plenty of time to to spend in one of these fascinating museums.
Another highly recommended museum to visit with kids is London Transport Museum in Covent Garden, it really is a fascinating and interactive museum ideal for kids.
» More information: London’s Best Museums
4. Open Top Bus Tour and River Cruise
If it’s your first time in London with kids, an open bus-tour is a good way to easily see London’s most important landmarks and keep the children happy, especially if they have a camera of their own! You can hop-on and hop-off as many times as you wish to do so on any of their routes, and you’ll get a free river cruise for everyone, one of the best things you can do in London with kids.
» More information: Bus Tour and Free River Cruise
5. Kew Gardens
If you say to your kids “We are visiting The Royal Botanic Gardens of London today” they will most likely say that they don’t want to go, as it does sound as if this place could be boring for children, but in fact, it’s one of the best places to take the kids in London and it’s one of the places where Londoners choose to take their children frequently for the day out. Not only can you tell them about all the different species of plants and look at all the different flowers, but there are several playgrounds for children and a fantastic treetop walk, making Kew Gardens a fantastic day out in London with kids. Cafes and restaurants that face a beautiful park, ideal for a picnic if the weather is nice.
» More information: Kew Gardens
6. HMS Belfast
Anchored on the Thames is the HMS Belfast, a fantastic ship-museum that took part in World War II. It’s absolutely wonderful and I can guarantee that it will blow their minds even if they’re not into boats. It is more suitable if you have slightly older children though, as some places can get a bit narrow and there are lots of steps. And the best thing? Children under 16 enter for free.
» More information: HMS Belfast
7. KidZania London
Let your kid become a firefighter, a surgeon, or the next acting sensation at KidZania London on this half-day experience. This is the UK’s first educational entertainment experience where children can learn real-life skills in a child-sized city.
» More information: KidZania London
8. Tower of London
The Tower of London is undoubtedly one of London’s must-see attractions, and it’s a good place to take the kids too. There’s so much to show them here, they will in no doubt love the royal armor collection, and don’t forget to tell them the scary stories that the bloody tower has to offer, or show them the Crown Jewels… The legend of the crows is also another interesting to talk to them about.
» More information: Tower of London
9. Go to a Musical
London’s theatres always have something on for kids. Some of the best musicals in London are fantastic for kids, such as the Lion King or Wicked, and they are on all year round. Adults will also love going to a musical, and with two sessions a day it’s really easy to pick what time suits your family best. During the Christmas period, there are also pantomimes dotted around in different theatres in London, and who doesn’t love a Christmas panto?
» More information: London’s Top Musicals
10. Shakespeare’s Globe
When you visit the Shakespeare’s Globe Theatre, there is a fantastic exhibition which is great for kids, and they often have different activities available for children. It’s located on the South Bank, so it can be a very entertaining visit for children during a pleasant walk alongside the river Thames.
» More information: Shakespeare’s Globe
The Legoland theme park is definitely an option if what you want is an unforgettable day for your little ones. A fun-filled day with more than 55 rides and attractions in one place, where the incredible LEGO models cannot be missed! As it’s out of London, travelling by coach from the city centre is often the easiest way.
» More information: Legoland
12. Shrek’s Adventure
Take your children to the kingdom of far far away (next to the London Eye!) for a fun filled day with Shrek and all his friends. With great reviews, this new attraction in London is already becoming one of London’s favourites.
» More information: Shrek’s Adventure
13. Harry Potter
Harry Potter fans should not miss the opportunity of visiting the Warner Brothers Studios. A magical tour through the scenes of the Harry Potter films, and the opportunity to see the actual costumes worn by Harry, Ron and Hermione. You’ll be able to walk along Diagon Alley and ride the Hogwarts Express at Platform 9 ¾.
» More information: Harry Potter Tours
14. Hyde Park
Hyde Park and Kensington Gardens offer loads of different possibilities to spend a few hours in London with kids. You can look for the statue of Peter Pan and visiting Princess Diana’s playground is a must when visiting London with kids, there is a giant wooden pirate ship surrounded by sand, ideal if you need them to burn a bit of energy. The friendly squirrels in London’s famous parks always want something to eat, so make sure you take something suitable, such as peanuts. They will most likely eat out of children’s hands, but for safety reasons we advice that you ask your kids to throw the food on the floor just in case!
15. London Dungeons
Experience the darkest side of London at the London Dungeons… A 1.5 hour tour which will take you through London’s past and give you the chance to enter Sweeney Todd’s barber shop or discover the truth about the Jack the Ripper…. You may have to run at some point, so make sure you wear good shoes! A perfect plan to get your kids adrenaline rushing!
» More information: London Dungeons
16. Sea Life London Aquarium
London’s Sea Life Aquarium is located right next to the London Eye, and it is the place to admire one of the Europe’s largest collections of marine life. The whole family will have a whale of a time seeing the sharks, turtles and tropical fish, including the famous clown fish, children’s favourite!
» More information: Sea Life
17. Visit London Zoo
London Zoo is another great thing to do in London with kids, you can spend a whole day among tigers, penguins, giraffes, elephants, exploring the reptile room or having your face painted.
» More information: London Zoo
18. Visit Richmond-Upon-Thames
Richmond Upon Thames is a fantastic place to take a break from London’s city centre. A large number of shops, restaurants and cafes that will keep parents happy, but also a lovely surprise when you get down to the river, with boat rides and icecream vans in nice weather. Richmond Park is a must if you’re in the area, as deer-watching is bound to keep them entertained!
19. Walk around Covent Garden
This central London square is often filled with street entertainers and live music, making it a very entertaining place for the whole family. Covent Garden is also home to the London Transport Museum, one of the best places in my opinion to take the kids in London!
20. Rainforest Cafe
If you want a completely new and unforgettable experience you need to make a booking to eat at the Rainforest Cafe. This is certainly not a normal restaurant, as you’ll be sitting in the middle of the rainforest to have your meal, and lightning and thunder is on its way….
» More information: Rainforest Cafe
21. M&M’s and LEGO Stores
The giant M&M’s store is located in Leicester Square, 3 colourful levels of fun and M&M’s with the possibility of buying anything you could think of, and also of taking photos of your kids sitting in an M&M’s car, next to some of the most famous M&M’s… They will certainly not be able to leave empty-handed! And when they do leave the shop, prepare yourself, as the largest LEGO shop of the world is right opposite the M&M’s store! So… how much time do you think you will need when you visit Leicester Square?
22. South bank
Walking along the South Bank is one of the best ways to do some sightseeing of London as well as keeping the children entertained. From the London Eye you can walk all along the South Bank of the river Thames to Tower Bridge. As mentioned before, the Sea Life Aquarium is located next to the London Eye, as well as Shrek’s Adventure and the London Dungeons. Seasonal events, such as markets and funfairs, also take place next to the London Eye. Several child-friendly cafes and restaurants along the way will also keep you fuelled if you’re spending the day out.
23. Winter Wonderland
During the Christmas period Winter Wonderland is a place that cannot be missed, especially if you’re looking for authentic Christmas Spirit. There is something for every age range in Winter Wonderland, there are Christmas Markets, a beautiful Ice-Skating rink, a special Santa themed park for smaller children and rides and funfair attractions for older children (and adults alike!). Several food stalls will serve you anything from a filled Jacket potato to a hot chocolate or a beer, and the restaurants and bars are a success for adults and office christmas parties. You’ll also be able to get tickets for the Circus or for an Ice Sculpture exhibition. All of this, in Hyde Park.
24. Regent’s Canal: Cruise and Puppet Barge
For a relaxed day, take a stroll along Regent’s Canal and discover Little Venice. You can take the kids on a boat ride to Camden Lock, and explore Camden Lock Market, or take them to a puppet show on the Puppet Barge. Definitely something different to do in London if you want to escape the crowds.
25. Hire a bike
If your kids are over 14 year old, you can hire Santander bikes for all the family and go for a ride around Hyde Park for example.
26. Take the cable car
The London Cable Car crosses the Thames at the famous O2, offering some impressive views over the capital. You can use your normal oyster card too, so you don’t need to get special tickets.
27. Free workshops at Somerset House
On Saturday afternoons the iconic Somerset House offers free workshops for children aged 6 to 12, a perfect plan if you’re in London with kids during the weekend.
» More information: Somerset House
Spending the day at Greenwich is a perfect plan for all the family with lots of things for children to enjoy. First of all, you can explore Greenwich centre and its market, and then go for a pleasant walk along the river where you will find the famous Cutty Sark and numerous restaurants. Afterwards we recommend that you visit Greenwich Park and the Royal Observatory, the home of space and time and see the Greenwich Meridian Line.
» More information: Royal Observatory Greenwich
29. Ripley’s Believe it or not
The fascinating Ripley’s Believe it or Not! is an incredible museum, with 6 floors of interactive exhibits and more than 700 artifacts this museums celebrates the weird, the wonderful and the bizarre in all its forms, right in the middle of central London’s Piccadilly Circus. One of our favourite places to visit with kids in London!
» More information: Ripley’s
30. Urban farms
We all know that children love farms,but who thought that visiting a farm was possible in London? Well, as it turns out, London actually has several urban farms dotted around especially for children. Their aim is for children to have a great time, but also to teach them importance of animals and agriculture. With fun workshops and activities for little ones, it’s definitely an option to have in mind if you’d like some farm animal time.
Hello! We moved to London (Yes, the best city in the world) in 2010, and since then we have been discovering everything that this fantastic city has to offer. We regularly plan our friends’ trips to London, so we thought we would create PlanTripLondon.com and share our suggestions with the world for everyone to be able to plan the perfect trip to London!