• Image about London
Afternoon tea at ­Criterion Restaurant
Silwen Randebrock/Alamy

XXIV

At the British Museum, the Rosetta Stone and the Elgin Marbles provide a peek into the world’s very distant past. Their ownerships may be a controversial issue, but their historical significance is undisputable. And admission is free.

XXV

In the mood to do what George Orwell, Karl Marx and Lenin all did at some point in their lives? Then head to Speakers’ Corner near the Marble Arch in Hyde Park and have your say on your favorite topic. Beware the hecklers, though.

XXVI

Homesick for a wee bit of America? Get your USA on at the Benjamin Franklin House near Trafalgar Square. It’s the only surviving home of this Founding Father.

XXVII

The Beatles conquered America … with a little help from Abbey Road Studios. Music is still created here, and the street crossing made famous on the Abbey Road cover remains a Beatles-fan magnet.
  • Image about London
Take a break from seeing the sights with a sweet treat at Parlour Restaurant inside the Fortnum & Mason department store.
Courtesy Fortnum & Mason


XXVIII

Hell’s Kitchen fans who want a taste of celeb chef Gordon Ramsay (without the four-letter words) flock to Restaurant Gordon Ramsay. Just plan on making your reservation at least a month in advance.

XXIX

Three weeks after what’s formally known as the Championships, the All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club at Wimbledon will serve as host for the Olympic tennis matches. Behind-the-scenes guided tours are available, as are its world-famous Kentish strawberries and cream.

XXX

Say farewell to London with a meal at Criterion Restaurant on Piccadilly Circus. Its jaw-dropping opulence (lots of gold, marble, grand windows and soaring arches) is entirely appropriate in a city with eight palaces. Try the roasted fillet of Shetland halibut, and then smile because you know this is the place where Dr. Watson first hears of Sherlock Holmes in A Study in Scarlet. When you get home, watch The Dark Knight and savor the scene that was filmed here. Then regret ever having to leave in the first place.


American Way executive senior editor Chris Wessling would move to London in a heartbeat.