London: A perfect blend of heritage and modernity

There is a lot more to experience than historic monuments alone

Published: Oct 6, 2018 08:13:04 AM IST
Updated: Oct 6, 2018 09:01:46 AM IST

g_109759_london_280x210.jpgA trip to London is incomplete without a visit to Lord’s
Image: Shutterstock


I have lived in London for a year in 1999, and travel there multiple times every year for business meetings, events or holidays. The city is a perfect blend of heritage and modernity. It is a visitor’s paradise.

Recommendations
My favourite place to stay is Taj 51 Buckingham Gate Suites and Residences, which is one of London’s finest hotels because of its architecture and food. It offers the best Indian food and the opulent 24 Karat Gold Afternoon Tea. The Royal Exchange is great for a business lunch or cocktail.

For sightseers, historic monuments dot the cityscape, while a couple of hours by road can take you white water rafting in Nottingham. And then there is the mecca of cricket—Lord’s—which, in itself, is worthy of a trip.

Getting around
The best way to get around the city is by its Underground train network and on foot. You should also not miss a trip in the famous black cabs.

After Hours
The city offers endless options to recharge your batteries. Check out the view of London from The Shard, or watch an Elizabethan-style play at the Globe. Entry to state museums is free. If I am on a slightly longer business trip, I prefer a relaxing day off by going to the museum. My favourite remains the Natural History Museum for all things prehistoric. It is also a great way to keep away from the city’s cacophony, and staring at devices.

The city changes as the sun goes down. There are plenty of clubs to party and relax. One of my favourite haunts is Ronnie Scott’s Jazz Club, which has a live band every evening. Amaya, a Michelin-star Indian restaurant, is still one of the toughest places to get a reservation at, while La Porte Des Indes offers fusion Indo-French food.

Harrods is a must for every visitor, at least once.
 
Tips
Walk whenever and wherever possible. Play smart and don’t pay the full price for an attraction without checking online, as you may get great combo offers and discounts for pre-booking. If there is a golden rule of London it is to not stand on the left side of an escalator while travelling by the Underground.

My visit to Wimbledon in 1999 would be my most memorable incident.

We queued up for tickets through the night. Unaware of the weather, we came unprepared. So, while the locals zipped open their camping tents, we got soaked in the rain. But it was all worth it.

The author is the managing director, GlobalLogic India

(Coordinated by Jasodhara Banerjee)

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(This story appears in the 12 October, 2018 issue of Forbes India. You can buy our tablet version from Magzter.com. To visit our Archives, click here.)

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