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How to Spend 4 Days in London with Kids

How to Spend 4 Days in London with Kids

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Planning a trip to London with kids and want a totally do-able itinerary? Keep scrolling to check out my kid-friendly 4 days in London itinerary from my last trip to England!
This kid-friendly 4 days in London itinerary was written by family travel expert Marcie Cheung and contains affiliate links which means if you purchase something from one of my affiliate links, I may earn a small commission that goes back into maintaining this blog.

Planning a trip to London with your family?

We just spent 4 days in London and had a blast! Our 8-year-old and 5-year-old loved all of the activities we did. Keep scrolling to see our exact London itinerary. Spoiler alert: they want to go back!

You will too once you see how much fun these activities are. All of them are perfect for kids of all ages. And don’t worry – we have tips for traveling with kids included too.

Scroll down now to check out our 4 day London itinerary and to find out some awesome things to do for kids in London that your whole family will enjoy!

Don’t have time to read a bunch of London blog posts and reviews? Here are some of our top picks for visiting London with kids.

Popular London Tours/Activities

Kid-Friendly London Hotels

4 Days in London with Kids

Before I really get into the London in 4 days itinerary, I wanted to note that we spent the week prior visiting Paris so we had recovered from jet lag by the time we got to London.

We took the Chunnel from Paris, which is a great way to get from Paris to London. They even served us a meal and hot tea!

We arrived in London in the evening, walked to a pub for dinner, and then went right to bed. This itinerary starts the very next day.

DAY 1: Bus Tour, London Eye, & Photo Shoot

Double Decker Bus Tour of London

When you think about visiting London with kids, you probably picture touring around on one of those iconic double-decker buses, right?

Image of a boy with outstretched arms in front of a blue double decker bus in London
We highly recommend this GoldenTours bus tour of London. Photo credit: Marcie Cheung

That’s the main reason we booked a 2-hour London bus tour. We did one with a live guide instead of the audio tour because we always have a hard time with audio guides. It was fantastic!

We had tickets for 10 am and we were able to find seats on the upper deck, which offered amazing views of famous London sights like Tower Bridge, Big Ben, and Parliament.

I hadn’t visited London since I was a teen and my husband went in his early 20s and neither of us really remembered how the city was laid out.

Doing this double-decker London bus tour was really helpful to orient ourselves. We also liked doing this vs the hop on hop off bus tour because we didn’t have to wait at a bunch of stops. Check the latest rates and availability.

Lunch at Fishcotheque

Our London bus tour ended near the London Eye. Since we still had 5 hours before our London Eye tickets, we decided to find lunch nearby.

Image of the exterior of Fishcotheque fish and chips in London
Fishcotheque has the #2 rated best fish and chips in London. Photo credit: Marcie Cheung

We knew we wanted to find fish and chips since that’s one of the most famous English foods. Luckily, Fishcotheque was within walking distance and they have the #2 best fish and chips in London!

I’m so glad we went there because the food was SO GOOD! It really was the best fish and chips I’ve ever had. It was crispy on the outside and the fish was nice and flaky.

Image of a plate of fish and chips with a lemon wedge and tartar sauce packet
This was the BEST fish and chips I’ve ever had! Photo credit: Marcie Cheung

The rest of my family also enjoyed the food. And we liked getting mango juice, which can be hard to find at most restaurants.

The staff members were also super friendly and chatted us up while we were there. I highly recommend stopping at Fishcotheque for lunch in London!

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    London Souvenir Shopping, Carousel, and Break

    The kids saw some souvenir stands and shops on our way back from lunch, so we stopped to check a few out.

    I grabbed some adorable picture frames and we bought little Union Jack flags to use for our evening London photo shoot.

    Image of two boys on a brightly colored carousel in London
    Definitely hop on the carousel near the river! Photo credit: Marcie Cheung

    We also took a ride on the big carousel next to the London Eye. It was really fast and we had a blast!

    Then, we headed back to our hotel so everyone could get a nice break. This gave the kids time to zone out on screens for a bit while I got ready for our London family photo shoot.

    When traveling with kids, it’s always nice to add in some breaks so they can rest up and have enough energy to last the rest of the day.

    London Eye with Kids

    When I asked my kids about things to do in London, my 8-year-old told me riding the London Eye was on his London Bucket List. He’s been wanting to do it for the past few years, so we made it a priority to get tickets.

    Image of a mom and boy taking a selfie on top of the London Eye
    We’re on the top of the London Eye! Photo credit: Marcie Cheung

    There are actually several ways to get London Eye tickets and all types of price points.

    We booked Fast Track tickets for 5 pm. We decided it was worth spending a few more dollars in order to cut down the time waiting in line. I’m so glad we did this because the line was insanely long when we arrived.

    Our tickets came with mini binoculars that were awesome for our kids!

    We got on board with maybe 16 other people for the 30-minute loop on the London Eye. Even though the rotation is very slow, the 30 minutes really flew by.

    Image of a man with a backpack holding up a boy inside the London Eye
    The cabins were quite spacious. Photo credit: Marcie Cheung

    We took lots of selfies and moved around to the different areas of the cabin.

    There was also a London Eye Champagne Experience in the carriage right in front of us that people could rent for a private experience. It would be great to do for a big family trip to London.

    Our whole family agreed that riding the London Eye was worth it. I’m not sure we’ll need to do it on a future trip to London, but we all had a great time! Check the latest rates and availability.

    Flytographer Photo Shoot in London

    After doing the London Eye, we had about 20 minutes to walk across the river to meet our London family photographer.

    Image of a family of four standing in the street with Big Ben in the background
    We ran out into the street to get this cool shot! Photo credit: Rajesh in London with Flytographer

    I booked the 90-minute London photo shoot for our family specifically because I want to capture as many iconic London landmarks as possible.

    Image of two boys waving British flags in a courtyard in London
    This was tucked away from the crowds. Photo credit: Rajesh in London with Flytographer

    Not only did we get tons of amazing photos but we walked in areas that most tourists wouldn’t even realize existed. Check out our full London photo shoot.

    Image of a family of four posing in front of a red phone booth on a street in London
    I’m so stoked we got some shots with a red phone booth! Photo credit: Rajesh in London with Flytographer

    It was fun to chat with our London photographer about all types of things as he told us stories about all the places we went to. It really was like doing a guided tour and a photography session combo!

    We always use Flytographer when we travel. They are usually the most affordable photography service we can find. And you can save $25 off your first session.

    Book a Family Photo Shoot

    Whenever we travel, we almost always book a family photo shoot with Flytographer. They are super easy, affordable, AND guarantee that I’ll be in some photos. You can get $25 off if you book through this link or use the code HAWAIITRAVEL.

    DAY 2: Harry Potter Walking Tour & Afternoon Tea at Harrods

    Harry Potter Store at Platform 9 3/4

    One of the main reasons we wanted to visit London with kids is because they are huge Harry Potter fans. So, we knew we wanted to do at least one Harry Potter tour in London.

    We found a cool Harry Potter walking tour that met at King’s Cross Station at Platform 9 3/4. I did some research and realized that there’s a huge Harry Potter store there.

    Image of the entrance to the Harry Potter Platform 9 3/4 shop at King's Cross Station in London
    Definitely plan a stop at King’s Cross Station to visit the Harry Potter Platform 9 3/4 store! Photo credit: Marcie Cheung

    So, we headed there about 45 minutes before our Harry Potter walking tour started to have time to peruse the shop at our own pace. Plus, it gave us time to get the boys changed into the Hogwarts robes and scarves.

    The Platform 9 3/4 Harry Potter store is really awesome! They had different merchandise than the Harry Potter Store in NYC as well as what we’ve seen at Universal Studios. And we didn’t even see some of the stuff at the Harry Potter WB Studios either.

    Image of two boys in red sweaters receiving wands at the Harry Potter store at King's Cross Station in London.
    My kids loved choosing new wands to use during the walk! Photo credit: Marcie Cheung

    They have a full section of the store where you can purchase character-specific wands. My kids chose Draco Malfoy and the Sword of Gryffindor.

    This is also where you’ll find a cool photo op where you can push the cart into the wall of the train station. They have a staff member there and even super long Hogwarts scarves so you can get the ultimate photo.

    We knew we were doing the Harry Potter studio tour the next day, so we didn’t do the photo op. But our tour guide told us it’s best to go early in the morning or late in the evening to avoid a long line. It’s one of the coolest Harry Potter attractions in London!

    Harry Potter Walking Tour

    Once we were done shopping, it was time for our Harry Potter Walking Tour. We met right outside the store, which was super convenient.

    Image of two boys touching the stone wall in King's Cross station in London where they filmed Harry Potter
    It was surreal to touch the actual place where they filmed the Harry Potter scenes! Photo credit: Marcie Cheung

    From there, we walked down to the actual platform where they filmed Harry Potter. Our tour guide chatted with some people who let us go right up and touch it. It was super cool!

    We also walked over the the train station where they filmed all the exterior shots, like when Ron and Harry drove the magical car to Hogwarts. And our guide was able to show up photos of the scenes, which was helpful!

    During this two-hour tour, we saw tons of Harry Potter filming sites including the exterior of Gringott’s Bank, Grimmauld Place, and the inspirations of Diagon Alley and Knockturn Alley.

    This tour was really informative and our guide peppered our kids with Harry Potter trivia questions which kept their attention. We all loved this tour and highly recommend it!

    It was definitely a highlight of our 4 day trip to London. Check the latest rates and more information.

    Afternoon Tea at Harrods

    I had afternoon tea on my London bucket list and the most iconic place is afternoon tea at Harrods. Fortunately, I made reservations about a month in advance to guarantee our spot.

    We hopped in a taxi to drop us off at the most famous department store in London. And it was even exciting to go up to the 4th floor to visit the Harrods tea rooms.

    Image of the Harrods Tea Rooms kids menu.
    This was the kids menu at Harrods Tea Rooms! Photo credit: Marcie Cheung

    We were a little early for our reservation, so we wandered around the 4th floor for a bit. That’s where we discovered that they had a whole hallway full of Harry Potter merchandise that was fun to look at.

    But the real treat was the whole afternoon tea at Harrods experience. If you want to do a fancy afternoon tea in London with kids, this is the place to go!

    We got to pick our hot beverages (we did tea and the kids did hot chocolate), but everything else was a set menu.

    The kids absolutely loved their teddy bear presentation of savory items and bite-sized treats. And my husband and I couldn’t get enough of the finger sandwiches and desserts.

    Image of a two-tiered tray filled with finger sandwiches and bite-sized desserts at Harrods in London
    My husband and I devoured the entire tray! Photo credit: Marcie Cheung

    We were almost too full to enjoy the scones, jam, and clotted cream!

    This is definitely one of the pricier afternoon teas in London, but it was a highlight of our trip to London with kids. It was simply marvelous!

    Shopping and Break at Hotel

    After we did afternoon tea, we headed down to the Harrods gift shop. We were all feeling a bit tired to peruse the entire store, so we decided the Harrods gift shop would be our best bet.

    Image of a woman holding a shopping bag posing with two life-size teddy bears dressed up in London outfits at Harrods
    I couldn’t pass up this cute photo op at Harrods! Photo credit: Owen Cheung

    They had so many adorable items including their signature teddy bears, branded food items, teas, Christmas ornaments, bags, and so much more.

    It was raining by the time we finished, so we headed back to hotel for a break. We were all feeling a bit worn out from all the travel but if we had more energy, we probably would have visited the British Museum.

    Dinner at Seafresh

    We took a really long rest at our hotel and then walked over to a restaurant near our hotel called Seafresh. It had great reviews.

    The food was really tasty! My oldest son and I ordered fish and chips, my husband got the lobster thermador, and my youngest got a big bowl of mussels.

    DAY 3: Warner Brothers Studio Tour

    Since our family appreciates all things Harry Potter, we knew we needed to check out the Warner Brothers Studio in London.

    I waited to get tickets until about a month before our trip and they were sold out. It was like a punch to the gut.

    Image of Diagon Alley set from Harry Potter
    Walking through Diagon Alley was pretty epic! Photo credit: Marcie Cheung

    Thankfully, I was able to get 3rd party tickets that even included transportation from London. The studio is actually about an hour outside of the city so this actually was a blessing in disguise.

    The WB Studio Tour in London is epically cool and my kids said it was the highlight of their London vacation.

    Our tour allowed 4 hours to explore and we used up the entire 4 hours. This is the real studio where they filmed all the Harry Potter movies and it’s packed with interactive experiences, movie sets, props, and so much more.

    Image of a cup of Butterbeer ice cream at the Harry Potter studios in London
    My kids LOVED the Butterbeer ice cream! Photo credit: Marcie Cheung

    The studio is massive and they have a cafeteria about halfway through the tour where you can get lunch and butterbeer (or butterbeer ice cream). And they have a really cool gift shop at the end of the tour.

    This is definitely one of the coolest things to do in London for families. Check the latest rates and more information.

    DAY 4: Changing of the Guard, Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, & Afternoon Tea on a 1960s Bus

    Changing of the Guard Tour

    Another iconic thing to do in London is see the Changing of the Guard at Buckingham Palace. I remembered seeing it as a teen but I wasn’t sure how to do it on our own.

    Image of British guards wearing red coats riding horses in front of Buckingham Palace
    It was cool to see the horse during the Changing of the Guard at Buckingham Palace. Photo credit: Marcie Cheung

    When I saw an affordable Changing of the Guard tour on Airbnb Experiences, I knew it would be perfect for our family.

    I’m so glad we booked it because it actually started raining that morning, which alters the whole ceremony. And there are places you can and cannot stand, which our guide knew all about.

    Seeing the actual Changing of the Guard was pretty cool. There was no music when we went (due to the rain) but it was still worth seeing.

    But the real reason we appreciated the tour was getting to hear all kinds of stories about the royal family and even info about the Netflix series The Crown. Check the latest rates and availability.

    However, you can actually go inside Buckingham Palace on a State Room tour for 10 weeks each year. Talk about a London Bucket List item!

    Harry Potter and the Cursed Child

    After the Changing of the Guard, our family headed back to our hotel to re-group.

    My husband and 8-year-old got ready to see Harry Potter and the Cursed Child. My 8-year-old and I were lucky enough to see it on Broadway earlier in the year, but it was an abridged version.

    London still has the 2-part play and we thought it would be a great opportunity for my husband and oldest to get some bonding time.

    They had an amazing time and talked about it for weeks afterward. If you’re able to get tickets and you love Harry Potter, this is a must-do!

    Afternoon Tea on a 1960s London Bus

    Since our 5-year-old was a little young for the play, I looked for a unique London activity for just the two of us. When I came across this afternoon tea on a 1960s London Bus experience with Brigit’s Bakery, I knew it was perfect.

    We hopped on at Victoria Coach Station and did a 90-minute tour around London in a double-decker bus.

    But, they also served us afternoon tea complete with hot beverages in re-usable to go cups.

    My son had hot chocolate while I had Earl Grey tea. And I even got a glass of bubbly!

    The food was really tasty and there was a lot of it. They even gave us boxes to bring home the leftovers, which was a nice touch.

    The whole experience was a ton of fun and we’d definitely do this again! It’s one of the best things to do in London with a 5 year old who loves vehicles! Check the latest rates and more information.

    Tips for Visiting London with Kids

    Stay Near London Attractions You Want to Visit

    We chose a hotel that was within walking distance of Victoria Station and Victoria Coach Station. This was really handy because we had several tours that met there and it was nice to just be able to walk.

    Getting a taxi in London can be hit or miss. We found ourselves running late a few times because places were too far to walk and we thought we could just hail a cab.

    Ask Your Kids What THEY Want to Do

    Kids love to be included in planning trips and it makes them more excited about the itinerary. Our kids really wanted to do the Harry Potter Studios Tour, the Harry Potter Walking Tour, and the London Eye.

    Image of a boy wearing a Hogwarts robe inside the Dursley house at Privet Drive
    My kids wanted to do as many Harry Potter activities as possible! Photo credit: Marcie Cheung

    Those were the activities they had the most fun doing and they loved getting a say in our London itinerary!

    We asked the kids about visiting some museums, doing a Thames river cruise, or taking a day trip to Bath but they weren’t interested in any of those suggestions.

    It was a good thing we checked because those were on our original itinerary. I’m glad we swapped them for things the kids actually wanted to do.

    Bring Layered Clothing

    Even though we visiting London in summer, we still needed multiple sweaters and long pants. I think their latitude runs the same as Canada, so keep that in mind.

    Image of two boys wearing grey sweaters with their arms up in the air at the river Thames in front of Big Ben
    I’m so glad we packed extra sweaters, even in June! Photo credit: Marcie Cheung

    It also rained on us several times so I was glad we had closed toe shoes and bought some umbrellas on the trip. I regretted not packing our rain jackets though.

    Try an English Breakfast

    My 5-year-old thought it was so cool that he could get baked beans for breakfast that he ordered it every single day!

    Image of a traditional English breakfast of eggs, toast, and baked beans
    My son at a bowl of baked beans every morning in London! Photo credit: Marcie Cheung

    It’s things like this that make traveling with kids fun. It totally changed his mind about what could be considered breakfast.

    London Itinerary with Kids FAQs

    Is London good to visit with kids?

    Absolutely! London is a very kid-friendly city in Europe and you’ll see tons of families out and about there. You’ll have no problem finding kid-friendly restaurants, playgrounds, activities, and attractions. And it’s perfect for Harry Potter fans!

    Is 3 days enough to see London with kids?

    You could make 3 days in London work, depending on what you want to see/do. There can be a lot of traffic in London, so you’ll want to be strategic about your activities and group them based on location. And if you want to do the WB Studios Tour for Harry Potter, that’s a full-day excursion.

    What’s the best month to visit London with kids?

    Springtime can be a lovely time to visit London because the temperatures are usually mild (similar to Seattle) and the parks and gardens are starting to bloom. Summertime is the most popular time for families to visit London, but that’s also when it’s most crowded and expensive.

    London Family Vacation Wrap Up

    I hope this London 4 day itinerary helped you figure out what to do with kids in London, England! This was one of my favorite kid-friendly trips in Europe and we can’t wait for our next family trip to London!

    If we had 5 days in London, we probably would have done a day trip to Bath to see Bridgerton filming sites! In fact, there are so many other cool places to add to a kid-friendly England itinerary.

    I recommend checking out some London tours for kids, as well as fish and chip spots, fun carousels, and anything else you can’t find in your hometown.

    Looking for more London content? Get my top London tips for newbies, kid-friendly hotels in London, best hidden gems in London, top London Instagram spots, London day trips, London vs Paris, things to do in London at night, 11 Terrific Things to Do in London with a Toddler, things to do for kids in London, 1 day in London, and how to book a London photographer!

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