London area of Central London guide

What to do and where to stay in London's Central London neighbourhood

While many take Central London to be anything found within the confines of the Circle Line, the official make-up comprises the City of London, most of Westminster, and the inner parts of Camden, Islington, Hackney, Tower Hamlets, Southwark, Lambeth and Kensington and Chelsea. It is described by the Greater London Authority as "a unique cluster of vitally important activities including central government offices, headquarters and embassies, the largest concentration of London's financial and business services sector and the offices of trade, professional bodies, institutions, associations, communications, publishing, advertising and the media". In 2001, Central London had a population of just over 1.5 million.

See our recommended nearby Central London Hotels, Entertainment, Sights and Attractions, Shopping, Restaurants, Pubs, Nightlife, Leisure, Education, and Meeting Venues.

Central London Hotels

in or near Central London
ME London
London > Hotels > Luxury Chain Hotel
336-337 The Strand, WC2R
A luxurious 5-star hotel situated right in the heart of the city, ME London offers guests a lavish accommodation experience. Floor-to-ceiling windows provide the impeccable guestrooms ... More
 
 
 
Strand Palace Hotel London
London > Hotels > Mid-Range Chain Hotel
372 Strand, WC2R
This West End Art Deco hotel right on the Strand and next to Covent Garden is in a fantastic location for accessing central London and theatreland. ... More
 
 
 
The Waldorf Hilton Hotel London
London > Hotels > Luxury Chain Hotel
Aldwych, WC2B
Positioned between the City's Square Mile and the thriving West End, this grand, Edwardian Hilton hotel welcomes guests with a patisserie and champagne bar in the ... More
 
 
 

Central London Entertainment

in or near Central London
PICK
Savoy Theatre
London > Entertainment > Theatres
Strand, Central London, London WC2R
Situated alongside the Savoy Hotel, the building of the current theatre with its Art Deco auditorium, was financed by Richard d'Oyly Carte with the considerable profits ... More
 
 
 
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National Theatre
London > Entertainment > Theatres
South Bank, South Bank, , Central London, London SE1
Each year the three superb venues in the National Theatre put on a significant proportion of the world's best productions. From intimate character studies in the ... More
 
 
 
PICK
Aldwych Theatre
London > Entertainment > Theatres
Aldwych, Central London, London WC2B4LD
With the Waldorf Hotel sandwiched inbetween them, the Aldwych and Strand theatres were originally built to work as a pair. The Aldwych is probably most noted for ... More
 
 
 

Central London Sights and Attractions

The best museums, galleries, attractions in or near Central London
PICK
Courtauld Institute Gallery
London > Attractions > Art Galleries
Courtauld Institute of Art, Somerset House, Central London, London WC2R
Manet's 'Bar at the Folies-Bergeres', Van Gogh's 'Self-Portrait with a Bandaged Ear' and Renoir's 'La Loge' are just a few of the celebrated artworks displayed at ... More
 
 
 
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Somerset House
London > Attractions > Historic Buildings
Strand, Central London, London WC2R
Somerset House, once the site of a spectacular Tudor palace, now includes a magnificent 18th century art gallery housing celebrated collections belonging to the Courtauld Institute Gallery, ... More
 
 
 
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Somerset House: Embankment Galleries
London > Attractions > Art Galleries
Strand, Central London, London WC2R
Opened on 24th April 2008, the Embankment Galleries at Somerset House offer 750 square metres of exhibition space where the Hermitage Rooms used to be. Exhibitions ... More
 
 
 

Central London Shopping

The best shops and markets in or near London's Central London
PICK
Foyles Royal Festival Hall
London > Shopping > Books
Riverside, Level 1, Royal Festival Hall, South Bank Centre, Central London, London SE1
The family-run Foyles book shop has been in the book selling business since 1906. Around 30,000 books are stocked at this branch on a broad range ... More
 
 
 
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Primrose Bakery
London > Shopping > Food and Drink Shops
42 Tavistock Street, Central London, London WC2E
If cupcakes are you cup of tea then head to the Covent Garden outlet of Primrose Bakery, a family owned enterprise which makes the most scrumptious ... More
 
 
 
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The Albion Emporium
London > Shopping > Food and Drink Shops
38 Tavistock Street, Central London, London WC2E
As British as a bacon buttie, buying your groceries at The Albion Emporium is like getting first dibs on Mrs Beeton's pantry. A bastion of Britishness, ... More
 
 
 

Central London Restaurants

What are the best dining options in or near Central London London?
PICK
The Admiralty
London > Restaurants > French restaurants
Somerset House, The Strand, Central London, London WC2R
In the evenings, approach this restaurant through the fountained courtyard of Somerset House to get yourself in the mood for a magical meal. The Admiralty is ... More
 
 
 
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Admiralty Deli at Somerset House
London > Restaurants > Cafes and Delis
Strand, Central London, London WC2R
This cafe can fulfil all your snack requirements while you peruse the exhibits at beautiful 18th century Somerset House.... More
 
 
 
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Tom's Terrace at Somerset House
London > Restaurants > Cafes and Delis
Somerset House, Strand, Central London, London WC2R
This riverside cafe commands wonderful views of the Thames from outside the 18th-century Somerset House. Large sunshades shield customers from the sun's reflective glare, while cooling ... More
 
 
 

Central London Pubs

The best pubs in or near London Central London.
PICK
Edgar Wallace
London > Nightlife > Pubs
40 Essex Street, Central London, London WC2R
... More
 
 
 
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The Marquess of Anglesey
London > Restaurants > Gastropub
39 Bow Street, Central London, London WC2E
Gastropub ... More
 
 
 
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The Sherlock Holmes
London > Nightlife > Pubs
10 Northumberland Street, Central London, London WC2N
Thirsty Sherlock Holmes fans look no further than this homage to the great detective himself and to original Victorian pubs. While you indulge in a soothing ... More
 
 
 

Central London Nightlife

Central London clubs, bars, cabaret nights, casinos and interesting nightlife.
PICK
The Lobby Bar at One Aldwych
London > Nightlife > Bars
1 Aldwych, Central London, London WC2B
Named one of the top five hotel bars in the world by the Sunday Telegraph, the Lobby Bar at the chic One Aldwych hotel is renowned ... More
 
 
 
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Gordon's Wine Bar
London > Nightlife > Wine Bars
47 Villiers Street, Central London, London WC2N
Home to Samuel Pepys in the 1680s, the building housing Gordon’s is now home to a regular, thriving crowd of drinkers of all ages and all ... More
 
 
 
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Oxo Tower Bar & Brasserie
London > Nightlife > Bars
Oxo Tower Wharf, Barge House Street, Central London, London SE1
Boasting one of the best views in town, the Oxo Tower Bar is perfect for combining a spot of leisurely (if static) sightseeing with some classy ... More
 
 
 

Central London Leisure

Central London gyms, sporting activities, health & beauty and fitness.
PICK
Bernie Spain Gardens
London > Leisure > Parks and Gardens
Upper Ground, South Bank, Central London, London SE1
Located between Oxo Tower Wharf and Gabriel's Wharf, Bernie Spain Gardens is a pleasant green space to stop off on a riverside walk along the South ... More
 
 
 
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Victoria Embankment Gardens
London > Leisure > Parks and Gardens
Victoria Embankment, Villiers Street, Central London, London WC2N
Created in 1874, the Victoria Embankment Gardens run parallel to the River Thames, creating a green walkway between Waterloo Bridge and Embankment, and are dotted with ... More
 
 
 
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The Sanctuary
London > Leisure > Fitness
12 Floral Street, Central London, London WC2E
This day spa exclusively for women is a total pampering experience from the minute you step through the door. Located in bustling Covent Garden you'll soon ... More
 
 
 

Central London Education

in or near Central London
PICK
Courtauld Institute of Art
London > Education > Arts and Drama
Somerset House, Central London, London WC2R
The Courtauld is one of the most prestigious art schools in the country, affiliated with the Oxbridge system and boasting a huge private location and prime ... More
 
 
 
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Career Energy
London > Education > Careers Services
4-6 Staple Inn, Central London, London WC1V
Situated in the heart of London, Career Energy – formed in March 2002 - offers comprehensive advice on careers, career change and job searching. They’ll analyse ... More
 
 
 
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English [Out There!]
London > Education > English Language Courses
10 Coptic Street, Central London, London WC1A
English [Out There!] takes a very hands-on approach to learning English. The course places an emphasis on using what you have learned. Students are taken out ... More
 
 
 

Central London Meeting Venues

Where to have your meeting, conference, exhibition, private dining or training course in or near Central London.
PICK
Silver Fleet - Woods River Cruises
London > Business > Venue Hire
Somerset House South Wing Strand, Central London, London WC2R
Enjoy a luxury cruise on the Silver Fleet. Departing from the Savoy Pier and cruising along the Thames. A classy way to see the Thames.... More
 
 
 
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Somerset House
London > Business > Venue Hire
Somerset House, Strand, Central London, London WC2R
Somerset House, once the site of a spectacular Tudor palace, now includes a magnificent 18th century art gallery housing celebrated collections belonging to the Courtauld Institute Gallery, ... More
 
 
 
PICK
The Deck at the National Theatre
London > Business > Venue Hire
South Bank, Central London, London SE1
The Deck is a modern roof-top venue with stunning views over the Thames, available for hire at the National Theatre, part of the Southbank Centre which ... More
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
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