The Perfect 5 Day London Itinerary (UPDATED 2019)

travel-guide-5-days-in-london

For everyone planning to travel to London, whether it’s your first time in London or your fifth, please know that I am envious already – so please share your pictures with me. I want to start by saying that I know London isn’t for everyone, but to me, it has always been everything. That’s why I wanted to compile this 5-day London itinerary for you so that you hopefully fall in love with the city as much as I did or at the very least provide you with a rough guide to seeing the city as efficiently as possible. London is definitely a city you need a bit more time in so I personally think 5 Days in London is perfect.

The nice thing I think about this London guide is that you don’t need to follow it exactly, you can do the days in any order, cut days out and split the days up if you caught up in something else.  So, without further ado, here is how I would spend my 5 Days In London.

PS: Also, I have food recommendations as well, cause my goodness was the food in London was amazing.

Day 1 in London: Markets + Museums

5 Days in London, Free Things to do in london: Notting Hill

Have Breakfast in Notting Hill

You could really do one of two things. (1) Grab a quick bite at any local coffee shop or (2) Wait to have an Instagram-worthy breakfast at Granger and Co.

Activity: Go to the Portobello Road Market

Get here early, cause this place gets bumping. It’s one of the most iconic markets in London, and when we were there the stalls seems to go on and on.

Activity: Walk Around Notting Hill

Just walk around the neighbourhood, because it is as quintessentially London as it gets.

Brunch in Notting Hill / Portobello Road Market

I really hope you travelled with people that like to share, or if you are on your own, I hope you have a large appetite because all the food stalls here were amazing. Pick something or 7 things and park yourself in front of a performer for brunch and a show. Trust me, you’ll love it, and if you don’t, by all means, call me out.

Activity: Walk to Kensington Gardens

Opt out of taking the tube and walk to Kensington Gardens instead. It’s only a 30 mins walk from Portobello Market! When you get to the gardens you can either take inside the Palace or just people watch on the grounds.

Lunch at the Kensington Roof Top Gardens

If you feel the hunger creeping up on you, stop at by the Kensington Roof Top Gardens for lunch with a view.

Activity: Rent a bike

Burn off your lunch with a relaxing bike around the city.

Activity: Natural History Museum

End your bike tour at the Natural History Museum because it is cool to see the natural history of things.

Dinner in Kensington

After your bike ride and educational session indulge at Honest Burger. I don’t know why but to me, burgers are the epitome of the perfect meal. You get carbs, protein and most important, FRIES. After dinner, I would try to take the long routine home and enjoy London’s nightlife for what it is.

Day 2: All The Pretty Things (5 Days in London)

5 Days in London, Free Things to do, Victoria and Albert

Breakfast: Benugo’s Victoria & Albert Cafe

It’s literally so pretty, we went here for a quick photo cause we didn’t see it until the end when they were about to close up. So learn from our mistakes and enjoy a coffee + pastry here.

Activity: Victoria & Albert Museum

By far this was my favourite museum because each section of the museum immerses you into a different part of history, it was incredible. I loved the variety of things I got to see. Plus the building itself is incredibly pretty.

Brunch at Sketch

Just like the Victoria & Albert Museum, all the rooms at Sketch are different. ALSO, you get to pee in weird pods things. Heads up, this place is on the pricier side so I would keep it light and go for the experience.

5 Days in London, Free Things to do in london: Buckingham Palace

Activity: Buckingham Palace

To be honest, I would go to the Changing of the Guards at Buckingham Palace, it’s way too crowded for what it is. But I will go to the Palace grounds because it is breathtaking.

5 Days in London, Cheap Places to eat, Smack Lobster Deli

Lunch in Soho at Smack Lobster Roll

Smack Lobster Roll. It’s so good, just go even if lobster isn’t your favorite thing on earth, you should give this place a shot, because it’s more than worth it. We spent too much money here.

Activity: The National Art Gallery + Trafalgar Square.

Either take a step back in time and view the world how immensely talented artist saw it or just live in the moment people watch all the cool things that are going on in the square.

Activity: Carnaby Street

After you done at the Square make your way to Carnaby Street and window shop. Don’t forget to visit Liberties, hopefully, they will still be doing their secret rooftop garden. Liberties is another place I consider quintessentially London, it’s so perfectly old and charming in there.

Dinner in Soho:

After your done you window shopping or real shopping eat at Bone Daddies, it’s Ramen. And its some of the best Ramen I have ever had.

Day 3: Harry Potter and A LOT of History (5 Days in London)

Breakfast at King’s Cross Station

For breakfast grab a quick bite anywhere but make sure you making your way towards King’s Cross Station

Activity: Visit platform 9 and 3/4 at Kings Cross Station

After you done getting all the photos you possibly can, make your way to Camden Market and grab some more food while you are there. Take it all the coolness of Camden market, explore and walk around.

Brunch near Kings Cross Station

Go to The Real Food Market and just pick something. There so many places to eat, that I don’t think you’ll do wrong anywhere. So just grab a big bit somewhere cause you are for a journey.

5 Days in London, Free Things to do, St. Paul Cathedrals

Activity St. Paul’s Cathedral, Millennium bridge, Shakespeare’s Globe and Tate Modern

After you’re done, make your way to St. Paul’s Cathedral, take in its beauty, walk across the Millennium bridge and admire its modernness, then stop by the Shakespeare Globe for some inspiration and end at Tate Modern.

Lunch at Shouryuu

Again its ramen, it’s delicious and its close by

5 Days in London, Free Things to do, Big Ben

Activity: Big Ben and Westminster Abby

After visiting Big Ben and take a walk through Westminster Abby for the best throwback ever.

Activity: London Shard

Once you are done wandering and taking #ALLOFPHOTOS make your way to the Shard for some drinks. Don’t go hungry cause it is pricey here but the views are incredible so just indulge in one overpriced drink and maybe some overpriced dessert and watch the sunset (hopefully) in London as the skies change from blue to black.

Dinner at the local Fish and Chips Place

For dinner have some Fish and Chips. Cause when is it a better time.

Day 4: Buying All of The Things and Eating More (5 Days in London)

Breakfast on the go

Again just grab something quick before heading to the Covent Gardens

Activity: Shop around Covent Gardens

Enjoy the performers also remember to grab a cookie at Ben’s Cookie 😀

Brunch: Indulge at Shake Shak

the food is cheap and the fries are so good. Eat out in the openness of the gardens.

5 Days in London, Free Things to do, Regent Street

Activity: Shopping on Regent and Oxford Street

Lunch on Regent and Oxford street

You might be full from “brunch” or you might not be. Stop by on the Chain’s either Itsu or Pret a Manger and grab something quick to hold you over.

Activity: Shopping at Harrods

Continue your shopping adventures on Regent and Oxford street or if you are done there head over and treat yourself at Harrods or somewhere else in that area. Or you can play the game, how much is this if you want to be blown away by what people can spend on a pen.

Activity: Sunset at Hampstead Heath

Get ready to enjoy some amazing view while you watch the sunset at Hampstead Heath. You might be hungry so grab something before you get there.

Dinner at Franco Manca in Hampstead Heath

When is Pizza a bad idea? Never and it becomes the best idea when Franco Manca is involved, so eat there and you won’t regret it.

Day 5: ALL OF THE FOOD AND ALL OF THE VIEWS (5 Days in London)

Breakfast in your Local London Neighbourhood

Visit a local hip grocery store and grab a smoothie cause if you are following my food recommendation you’re likely full of grease so help you body out and drink some greens.

5 Days in London, Free Things to do in london: Columbia Flower Market

Activity: Columbia Flower Market

With you drink in hand what better way to spend a Sunday than at Columbia flower market. Don’t expect to see anything but stalls and stall of flowers. It’s so pretty and perfect and what Sunday’s are meant for.

Activity/ Brunch at Spitalfields Market and Brick Lane Market

After admiring all the flowers go to either or both the Spitalfields Market and Brick Lane Market they are close by to each other so walk and take in the different neighborhoods.

Whatever market you end at making sure you grab a bit there. We end in the Spitalfields market and ate at a Crep place and it was delicious I opted for sweet option cause I recommend you do too if your debating. And if you not too hungry keep it light.

5 Days in London, Cheap Places to eat, Borough market

Activity / Lunch at Borough Market

What’s better than leaving markets to only go to another market. Borough market is all food, and it is everywhere and it is delicious so again, I hope you traveled with people that like to share cause that’s what these markets are meant for. Coming here on the weekend means a TON more stalls are open. Also leave room for dessert cause bread ahead is there and you don’t want to do without a doubt at the again of your epic meals

Activity: Leadenhall Market and London Towner Bridge

After you done eating your weight in food make your way to the Leadenhall Market and be taken back in time, there, not a ton to see there, it’s really for the pictures / experience but it’s also on your way to the London Towner Bridge!

5 Days in London, Free Things to do, Sky Garden

Activity Sunset at Sky Garden

If you planned it perfectly once you are done at the bridge head up to Sky Garden to end your 5 days in London adventure. There you will see the most incredible sunset, a perfect way to end your adventure. You need to book your FREE tickets ahead of time though so don’t forget that. Again I would not recommend eating here unless you have money to burn, then, by all means, I’m sure it’s tasty.

Dinner in Chinatown

After you, breath is done being taken away, so into Chinatown and line up at the restaurant with the Duck and newspaper clipping in the window that tells you how good their duck is. Cause the duck wrap dish, there is so amazing good that I still think about it today.

And that my friends bring you to the end of you 5 days in London adventure. I wish you the best adventures and hope you make a ton of memories and fall in love with London the way I have so many times.

Until Saturday,
Jennifer An Bui 😀

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9 Comments

  1. Jakiya Brown
    March 1, 2017 / 9:41 am

    Great post!

    Thank you!

    • Tina
      May 2, 2019 / 6:44 pm

      It’s my first time exploring London right now and it was rather challenging to plan an agenda. Thank you for posting this and allowing it to be free to noobies like me!

  2. Cheryl
    April 15, 2017 / 5:56 am

    What month did you visit and was it busy?

    Thanks! 🙂

    • Jennifer
      Author
      June 11, 2017 / 3:02 pm

      We went in January 2016 and it was wonderful – not busy at all. I’ve also been in April and May and it’s great then too, but a bit more rain. In January we only got one day of rain!

  3. Florina
    October 20, 2017 / 10:32 am

    Your article is only about food food and eating?!?

  4. Aticha
    April 29, 2019 / 4:23 am

    I have plan to go on September. thank you for you sharing.

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