London is a destination for many travelers who are exploring Europe. There are a ton of exciting London attractions to cross off bucket-lists! However, like many big European cities, there are certain activities and areas you may want to avoid. Due to this huge influx of tourists, some parts of the city can be very congested with people and some have even become prime places for tourist scams in London. However, the city has great authentic alternatives for you to enjoy! So we have made a list of areas avoid in London to ensure you have a smooth and enjoyable trip!
Areas to avoid in London: The Shard
Since opening in 2013, The Shard has become a major attraction. Due to its original architecture and incredible height, it has become a hit among tourists wanting to enjoy views of the city. However, it is often overcrowded and is also quite expensive.
Luckily, you can enjoy a great view of London for far less. We recommend Sky Garden instead. It is free and has three floors open for the public to get panoramic views of the city. It is a great place to spend an evening watching the city from above. Just make sure to book tickets in advance.
Sky Garden Address: 20 Fenchurch St, London EC3M 8AF, UK
Areas to avoid in London: Leicester Square Restaurants
Leicester Square is a very popular spot in the city due to its centrality and for being the main site for many West End musical shows. However, you should maybe just stick to watching the shows here. Especially, when it comes to restaurants. Many of the restaurants here are tourist traps that will cost a lot of money for not very good food.
Instead, take a quick 10-minute walk to Soho. Here, you can get quality food of all different varieties. From Iranian to the classic fish and chips in London, the options are endless and great! It is a much better choice for dining after a great show!
Areas to avoid in London: The London Eye
Similar to the Shard, the London Eye is a massive tourist destination for views of the city. There are often long lines and each ticket costs £20.
It may save you time and money to go to other great places in the city where you can get a view from above like Sky Garden, Heron Tower or better yet Primrose Hill! All of these are much cheaper and you will still get a great view of the city from above! In fact, Primrose Hill is well-loved by many locals and its sure not to be too crowded (plus it’s free!)
Areas to avoid in London: Westminister
Well, you definitely can’t avoid this area while in London but it is important that you remain vigilant while there. Westminister is an extremely popular location for tourists and locals alike. During the day, this area can be densely populated by tourists coming to see the sights and by locals commuting to school or work. It has also become a major part of the city where there is petty theft and pick-pocketing. So, while you can’t avoid it try and just be vigilant while in this area.
Areas to avoid in London: Football Stadiums
Like the rest of England, football culture is a big part of the city. If you aren’t a football fan, then you might want to avoid stadiums when matches are being played. The surrounding areas of stadiums like Stamford Bridge, Wembley Stadium and the Emirates Stadium can get extremely crowded with passionate fans from both teams before and after matches.
Especially, if it is an important match, it is recommended to avoid these areas as tensions between fans of each team can get very high. Public squares and pubs would also be ‘hot spots’ for passionate football fans who oftentimes have one too many drinks regardless of a win or a loss!