Plan your trip
What type of trip are you looking for?
How it works >
not got a clue about your do? Give me ideas
Where are you heading?
With Red7...
you get 32 years of experience - ooh get us, we're gurus!
When are you going?
With Red7...
there's no need for you to pay for everyone up front - you all pay Red7 individually.
How long are you going for?
With Red7...
you can pay in instalments, we have flexible payment plans to make it easy.
And how many people in total?
With Red7...
you can invite friends in seconds. So who's in?
London Hen Do

The Ultimate London Hen Do

Red7 Blogs , July 19, 2016

Share Now:
Facebook
Twitter

Why London is the best place to visit:

The Ultimate London Hen Do - Big Ben Girls

With a population of 7.5 million people, London is one of the biggest and most diverse cities in Europe. Famous for its history and architecture, the city of London is great for sightseeing and offers spectacular views.

It makes the perfect choice for hens as there is something to do all year round. Whether you’re into art, shopping, theatre or just fancy some really good nights out, London will definitely have you covered!

 

What has London got to offer?

Ultimate London Hen Do - Oxford Circus Station

 

London By day

Top attractions for city views

There are plenty of places offering incredible views of the famous London skyline. For the highest viewing platform, head to The View from the Shard. From the top you’ll see St. Paul’s Cathedral, the Gherkin and the London Eye, not to mention the expanse of London’s architecture at its finest. For hens that would prefer a private area, book a private capsule on Europe’s highest Ferris wheel, the London Eye. Adventurous hens looking for something unique need to experience the 360 degree views visible when you Climb the O2. You’ll spot famous landmarks, as well as the Emirates Cable Car and the ArcelorMittal Orbit sculpture in the Olympic park. Another unique viewing point is the Tower Bridge Glass Floor viewing platform. Not only does the viewing area offer skyline views, visitors will also have a birds-eye view of the traffic crossing Tower Bridge below them – yikes! Lucky visitors may even get to see the bascules being raised beneath them as ships are let through!

Where to shop in London?

London is known for its amazing shopping, so what better way for hens to spend the day before hitting the town at night. At the heart of London sits Oxford Street with its many flagship high street stores and world famous Selfridges, whilst nearby Regent Street is home to some of the city’s oldest shops, including Liberty. From here you can take a short walk to Carnaby Street. Known to be the fashion hub in the 60’s, you’ll still find an eclectic mix of independent boutiques, brands and cafes. Feeling flash? Then head to the Kings Road and mix with the stars of Made in Chelsea around Sloane Square.

Saunter just a little further down the road into Knightsbridge, home to Harrods and the big name fashion designers. If you’re looking for unique gifts and for a place to explore, head to the cobbled streets of Covent Garden where you’ll be greeted with street performers as you wander around the shops. For vintage finds and unusual pieces, world famous Portobello Market in Notting Hill is at its best on Fridays and Saturdays. But if you and the hen party would much rather have everything in one place, then go straight to Westfield. Home to high street favourites and luxury designer brands, you’ll also find plenty of bars and restaurants for when you need a break from all that shopping!

What museums to visit in London?

Britain was the first place in the world to have a public museum, so it’s no surprise that the capital is host to so many world famous museums. Open daily, London’s galleries are the perfect place to step away from the hustle and bustle and unless you are buying tickets for a specific exhibition, admission is free! The British Museum, Natural History Museum and V&A are open on Fridays until late if you fancy a wander through the galleries after dark. Hens looking for international modern and contemporary arts should try the Tate Modern, which officially opened its brand new building in June 2016. Design lovers can explore the art, sculpture, tapestries, photography and jewellery on display at the V&A. Or, if you’d rather step away from the art side of museums, check out the Natural History Museum for dinosaurs and the natural world.

What alternative attractions to see?

For a fun-filled day out head to ZSL London Zoo & Aquarium in Regents Park to see lions, monkeys, giraffes, penguins and turtles. You can even get up close and feed the giraffes – perfect selfie opportunity! For a day out without the animals, explore the 300 acres of the Kew Royal Botanic Gardens for stunning gardens, historic greenhouses and galleries. Hens who are after a history lesson are sure to love The London Dungeon for gory stories of London’s past, whilst gin lovers will be in their element on one of London’s many Distillery tours. The Beefeater Distillery is London’s oldest distillery, whilst the Ginstitute at Portobello Star offers tasting courses to find out about all things gin.

Ultimate London Hen Do - London TheatreLondon by night

What theatre performances to see in London?

During the day London’s West End is known for its tourist attractions and shopping. However, as night falls, the West End becomes a stage. Popular theatre choices include the Lion King and Wicked, with Aladdin coming to theatres in the summer of 2016. If you and the girls fancy a bit of a sing-a-long, head to the Jersey Boys for the story of Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons.

What are the best clubs in London?

When it comes to clubbing in London, there’s a night out suited for everyone’s tastes. XOYO in Shoreditch is known to ignore genres and focus on quality bookings, attracting a huge variety of top DJs and producers, so be sure to check out what’s on beforehand. For the hens nostalgic of their time in Ibiza, Studio 338 the mega club in East London is for you. Open all year round, during the summer months’ clubbers can party on the largest terrace arena in Europe, which turns into a heated and covered club in winter. For something a bit different, check out Proud Camden. A former horse hospital in the famous Camden Stables, it has since been transformed into a seductive burlesque and cabaret bar.

What comedy shows to see?

For a night of laughs, London is host to the country’s best comedy shows. The Comedy Store in the West End is London’s most popular comedy venue with 3500 weekly visitors. Laugh Out London has nights in Islington, Hackney, Camden and Brixton, whilst the Piccadilly Comedy Club in central London and Angel Comedy in North London regularly feature the rising stars of comedy.

What alternative ways are there to party?

There are plenty of alternative ways to party the night away in London. Go for a Party Boat on the Thames, taking in the London sights while dancing away. For spectacular city views, The Silent Disco at The View from the Shard plays the best of pop, rock and party classics – perfect for the hens who don’t agree on music choices! Feeling competitive? Then book a table at Bounce; the bar filled with ping pong tables. Or, for Jazz club lovers that would rather spend an evening in the bar, a night in the iconic Ronnie Scott’s in Soho is a must.

Where are the best places to eat in London?

Ultimate London Hen Do - Afternoon Tea Venue
Pink icons on the map below represent value options, orange icons are for those posh places as an extra special treat and blue are quirky eating experiences you won’t forget in a hurry!

Value

  • Brunch: Village East of Bermondsey, 171-173 Bermondsey St, SE1 3UW
    Close to London Bridge, Village East is located in a listed refurbished warehouse. Perfect for a weekend brunch, diners can also choose from a selection of Bloody Marys to wash down their breakfast.
  • Lunch: Borough Market, Southwark St, SE1 1TL
    Set up under the railway lines, you’ll be spoilt for choice with the delicious food on offer at the Borough Market stalls, one of the oldest food markets in London.
  • Afternoon Tea: Pyton and Byrne at the Wallace Collection Restaurant, Hertford House, Manchester Sq, W1U 3BN
    Dine al fresco on scones and tea in one of the prettiest settings without having to pay big bucks.
  • Dinner: Brasserie Zedel, 20 Sherwood St, W1F 7ED
    A stone’s throw from Piccadilly Circus, the affordable French restaurant is housed in a grand art deco 1930’s building.

Posh

  • Brunch: Duck & Waffle, 40th Floor, 110 Bishopsgate
    This 24hr restaurant will give you the best views of the city as you enjoy brunch with the girls.
  • Lunch: Chiltern Firehouse, 1 Chiltern St, Marylebone, W1U 7PA
    The former fire station turned Michelin star restaurant is a popular A-lister hangout; the ideal spot for celebrity watching.
  • Afternoon Tea: The Ritz, 150 Piccadilly, W1J 9BR
    The original afternoon tea. Visit the Ritz for a quintessential British experience.
  • Dinner: Hutong, Level 33 The Shard, 31 St. Thomas Street, SE1 9RY
    Dine on Northern Chinese cuisine against a backdrop of the city skyline.

Quirky

  • Brunch: Cereal Killer Café, 139 Brick Lane, E1 6SB
    One for the cereal lovers, with over 120 cereals to choose from.
  • Lunch: Bubbledogs, 70 Charlotte St, W1T 4QG
    Hot dogs and champagne, great for a boozy lunch.
  • Afternoon Tea: Mad Hatters Afternoon Tea at Sanderson, 50 Berners Street, W1T 3NG
    Fall down the rabbit hole with this Alice in Wonderland themed afternoon tea celebrating the 150th anniversary of this much-loved tale.
  • Dinner: Dinner by Heston, Mandarin Oriental, 66 Knightsbridge, SW1X 7LA
    This Michelin star restaurant is the ultimate in unique and pioneering cuisine.

Where to stay in London?

Ultimate London Hen Do - London House Accommodation

South

Best for: Pubs, green parks and a busy nightlife

South of the Thames you’ll find the greenest areas of London such as Wimbledon and Greenwich Park. South London is also home to young professionals and students, resulting in some of the best nightlife. Head to Brixton for lively gig venues and cool bars.

North

Best for: Culture, architecture and bars
With Camden Town located in North London, there’s plenty to do when staying in London. Visit the infamous Camden Lock for market buys, take a stroll up Primrose Hill for views over the city and head to Regents Park to visit ZSL London Zoo.

East

Best for: Arts, culture and vintage shops
Arguably the coolest area in London, stay East for easy access to Shoreditch, full of quirky bars, and Brick Lane made up of curry houses and vintage shops. There’s always something going on. You’ll also be near to Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park, right next to Westfield Stratford City shopping centre.

West

Best for: Designer shops, museums and classic architecture
West London is where you’ll find all the Sloane Rangers shopping in the designer shops down the Kings Road. If staying west, you’ll be in a short distance from Notting Hill, the museums in South Kensington, Harrods in Knightsbridge, the posh restaurants in Chelsea and the deer in Richmond Park.

Central

Best for: Tourist attractions, shopping, theatre
Central London is where it all happens, so stay here if you are planning a hen jam packed with sightseeing, shopping and good restaurants. Within walking distance of Central London you will find Covent Garden, St Paul’s, Soho, Southbank, China Town, London Bridge and Westminster.

What’s on? Dates for the diary

Ultimate London Hen Do - Somerset House Ice Rink

Spring

  • London Coffee Festival, Old Truman Brewery, Brick Lane
    For those who love an espresso martini, and for those who don’t. Not only does LCF do coffee, it also has a Milk & Sugar district dedicated to fashion and design, plus an area for art lovers.
  • RHS Chelsea Flower Show, The Royal Hospital, Chelsea
    The most prestigious flower show in the UK, make your way through the floral exhibits and even pick up a few ideas for flowers on the big day.
  • IWA Canalway Cavalcade, Little Venice, Grand Union Canal
    Around 130 canal boats are decorated for this annual gathering, complete with music, market stalls and Morris dancers.

Summer

  • Film4 Summer Screen at Somerset House, Somerset House, Strand
    Two weeks of classic, cult and contemporary films shown on the big screen in the courtyard of Somerset House.
  • Taste of London, Regents Park
    For the foodies, this food festival samples some of London’s top restaurants and gives you the chance to get involved with chef masterclasses plus wine, whisky and craft beer tastings.
  • Sunset Safari, ZSL London Zoo, Regents Park
    Enjoy the Friday festival at the zoo with food markets and carnival acts as you travel through the zoo at sunset.
  • Notting Hill Carnival, Notting Hill
    The street party of the year! Watch the procession as the carnival bands take to the road.

Autumn events

  • Oktoberfest, Millwall Park, Canary Wharf
    For those unable to make it to Munich, don’t fear – Oktoberfest has come to London. Drink German beer and snack on German food all served up by waiters and waitresses dressed in traditional Dirndl and Lederhosen.
  • Bloomsbury Festival, various venues, Bloomsbury
    With each year focusing on a different theme, Bloomsbury festival promises up to 130 events on arts, culture and science.

Winter/Christmas events

  • Winter Wonderland, Hyde Park
    Enjoy winter markets, outdoor ice-skating, fairground rides and all the glühwein you could possibly want.
  • Skate at Somerset House with Fortnum & Mason, Somerset House, Strand
    Outdoor ice-skating in the grand setting of the Somerset House courtyard. Stick around in the evenings to see the rink liven up with special club nights.
  • Christmas Lights, Oxford Street
    Join the crowds for the switching on of the Oxford Street Christmas lights. Look out for special guests and performances from early evening.

Tips for travelling in London

Ultimate London Hen Do - Travel by Bike

By tube

Travelling around London has never been easier. If you plan on using the underground it’s definitely worth picking up a map, or downloading an app which will show you the quickest routes of travel. The underground has 12 tube lines, plus the DLR and local train network, with most underground trains running from 5am to around midnight. From August 2016 certain lines will begin to operate a 24-hour service.

The best way to pay for travel on the underground is with an oyster card or a contactless card. If you’re paying by these methods, the cost will be capped once the price of a daily travel card is reached. You can also buy paper tickets for single journeys, day travel cards and group travel. These tickets will also be valid for the London buses!

By bus

If the underground doesn’t appeal to you, the London buses are a great way to travel around the capital and, more often than not, will get you closer to your destination than the underground. The buses no longer accept cash but, like the underground, contactless and oyster cards can be used with a single ride costing £1.50 and a daily cap of £4.50. Paper tickets can also be used on the buses, and these can be bought at the underground stations.

By bike

Santander cycles (otherwise known as Boris Bikes) are available throughout the city if it’s a short trip and you would prefer to cycle to your destination. Simply find a docking station, select ‘Hire a cycle’ and follow the instructions on screen. The bikes have a £2 access fee for the day with the first 30 mins free. Each 30 mins after that will set you back another £2. Once you have finished your journey, return to a docking station near to your destination.

By taxi

If you would prefer to let someone else do the navigating around the city, then taxi is the best option. Whether it’s hailing a black cab or booking an Uber through the app, make sure the taxi you get into is a licensed cab.

By plane

If you’re travelling into central London from an airport here are some helpful travel times:

  • London Heathrow – 20 minutes by train to London Paddington, up to 1 hour by taxi to Central London.
  • Gatwick Airport – 30 minutes by train to London Victoria, 1 hour 30 mins by taxi to Central London.
  • Stansted Airport – 45 minutes by train to London Liverpool Street, just over 1 hour by taxi to Central London.
  • Luton Airport – 25 minutes by train to London St Pancras, 1 hour 10 minutes by taxi
  • London City Airport – 22 minutes by tube to Bank station, 35 minutes by taxi to Central London.

Overall travel tips

Whether you’re travelling by tube, bus, bike or cab, always check the route you are travelling beforehand. On some occasions you might find it easier to reach your destination on foot.

What not to miss

Ultimate London Hen Do - Buckingham Palace Guards

If you only get a short amount of time in our bustling capital, then here are our top hen-worthy highlights.

  • See Trafalgar Square: Go to Trafalgar Square to see Nelson’s Column, the stone lions, the ever changing Fourth Plinth and lots and lots of pigeons.
  • Take the cable car across the city: The Emirates Airline crosses the River Thames between the Greenwich Peninsula and the Royal docks, offering a different view of the city.
  • Watch the Changing of the Guard: Taking place outside Buckingham Palace, watch the formal ceremony along with the music as the Old Guard changes with the New Guard.
  • Visit Southbank: Stroll alongside the Thames and explore everything the Southbank has to offer, whether it’s galleries, cafes and bars at Gabriel’s Wharf or markets along the river.
  • Walk through Hyde Park: Covering 350 acres, Hyde Park is one of London’s largest parks. Take a stroll to see the Serpentine Lake and the Diana Princess of Wales Memorial fountain.
Share Now:
Facebook
Twitter

BACK TO TOP
1
Contact Us