The Sherlock Holmes Museum
221b Baker Street : the address is mythical and yet, if the street exists, the number, no. It was created from scratch, the house of Sherlock Holmes never existed. Just see Bobby (policeman) who guards the entrance to dive whisked England of the nineteenth century. One would almost expect to be enveloped by the fog . It will be nothing, London having got rid of this pollution by abandoning the coal heating. For a reminiscence of this time, we walk in the rooms of the house where are evoked the life and work of the most famous character of Conan Doyle. Damsels in period dress hold the house with a certain authenticity. Passage to the quality souvenir shop (especially notebooks and felt hats, cheaper than at Harrods).
The Sherlock Holmes Museum . Admission: £ 15 and £ 10 for under 16s, sherlock-holmes.co.uk
Browse London by bus
To afford a mini-cruise at a low price, we board a boat bus . Ideal to go from Westminster to the Tower of London, we go back along the docks, we cross the Thames to Tower Bridge, to admire its architecture, we continue on the banks where spread pubs and other animations, we make a stop at Shakespeare's Globe, then back to the Millenium Bridge (where a Harry Potter scene takes place). With the Oyster Card , you can buy tickets on the river bus from £ 3.90 up to £ 7.20 depending on the route, which is about double the cost of a metro ticket, but is much more fun.
To know: the Oyster Card is the most convenient transport card, it costs £ 5 empty and is charged as the stay (regular promotions on the site visitbritainshop.com). Order online at least one week before your trip to receive it on time.
Shakespeare's Globe is the crazy project of an American actor and producer: to reconstruct exactly the theater where Shakespeare created his plays! A successful bet. On the banks of the Thames, a replica of the theater opened its doors. Since the Globe is an open-air stage, there are no performances during the winter. But we can still visit and immerse ourselves in the spirit of places. We learn that the aristocrats were sitting on the stage (it was more important to them to be seen than to see), while the commoners stood in the parterre. Even today, these are the best places and at a modest price (£ 5).
Visit in English, £ 17 and £ 10 for ages 5-15. shakespearesglobe.com
Camden, the punk district of the capital
Giant Dock Martens hung on the front of a building, Art Nouveau ornaments, chips and second-hand clothes, food trucks and stalls, not to mention the statue of Amy Winehouse ... Camden is a sprawling market that brings together everything that makes British originality. The hype address of young hipsters? Cyberdog ! Deep music, fluorescent or backlit clothes, geek gadgets ... far from the trash spirit of the 70s, even if, at the corner of one of these aisles become neat, we can still meet real punks!
Camden Market , open daily. Mr. Camden Town.
In the intimacy of an artist of the Victorian era
English bricks and oriental cupola, the house of Lord Leighton is a curiosity in this wealthy neighborhood. famous for his ceramics of one of the most beautiful blues ever. If the decoration of the patio and stairs is extraordinary, the paintings of the Lord are in the movement of his time, they have a little air of Mucha, one of the figures of the Art Nouveau movement. Not far from this block, there is the chic and bohemian Notting Hill , perfect for a lunch break at Grander & Co, where you can enjoy healthy and beautifully presented cuisine . Then, at the bend of the streets, we will spotted the signs of trendy shops (not necessarily overpriced) and we will have fun to "hunt" the works of a graffiti artist as mysterious as famous: Banksy .
Leighton House Museum , 12 Holland Park Rd. Entrance: £ 9.
Granger & Co , 175 Westbourne Grove.
The London Ferris wheel for a spectacular view
If the weather is nice, if it's your first time in London or if you bring your jaded teenagers ... get in the London Eye . This Ferris wheel, the highest in Europe, offers a breathtaking climb and a spectacular view of the city. It makes it serious!
Starting from £ 23.45. For a better rate, book in advance on londoneye.com
1997, an orphan enters Hogwarts, the school of wizards ... 20 years, 7 novels and 8 movies later, Harry became one of the most famous characters of the kingdom. To satisfy the curiosity of the fans, the Warner studios , where the films were shot, open the deserted plateaux to the public. The places are magical, the immediate craze! Entering the Hogwarts dining hall is a moment of great emotion for both children and parents. The visit continues in the sets, we discover the special effects, costumes ... Temporary exhibitions reveal the secrets of filming and we take the real Diagon Alley. We do not leave without his wand, chocolate or carved wood. Since March 2016, a new space has opened its doors: The Forbidden Forest! We find Hippogriffe and Aragog the Acromentule, and we pierce the secrets ...
Studio Harry Potter , from 42 € per adult and 31 € for - 16 years. Ticket to be booked well in advance on studiotour.warnerbros.fr
1 hour from London. Accessible by train, then by bus (double-decker). More expensive: get there on a "Harry Potter" bus (movie broadcast during the trip).
Sir John Soane's Museum: The House of Treasures
Once a month, on Tuesday, a queue stretches along the pretty houses in the square. At 18h, a person goes up the queue, distributing the sesame to enter the number 13: only 200 lucky can enter. This candlelight visit adds a mysterious atmosphere to this extraordinary place. Entering the architect Sir John Soane is entering a cabinet of giant curiosities: recesses, double levels, trompe l'oeil mirrors, secret passages ... and an incredible collection of art. On the top floor, ask the caretaker to unfold the tables (we do not tell you more ...).
Sir John Soane's Museum , 13th Lincoln's Inn Fields. Admission free, day visit possible, soane.org
Chills in White Chapel
The neighborhood has shifted from White Chapel to Shoreditch , and even further up the East End , the working-class neighborhoods have disappeared in favor of a merry hodgepodge of start-ups and bio shops. art galleries, boutiques for young designers, juice bars and granola. The self, switch in 1888, the year terrifying during which rages a Jack the Ripper , during a tour of 2 hours proposed in French by London Walks guides.
London Walks Jack the Ripper , in French on Friday at 19h. Meet at Tower Hill Station (no reservation required). £ 10 per adult, free for children. walks.com
Where are we sleeping in London?
- In a Z Hotel , a chain of minimalist hotels. No reception, the rooms are tiny but the mattresses fluffy and the bathrooms spotless. Most: a Wine & Cheese offered from 17h to 20h, (for under 18 years, soda and ice cream, and fruits for everyone). Perfect for a dinette on the go or an aperitif before going out for Indian dinner in the East End or an Italian in Soho! In addition, they are very well located (Soho, Shoreditch, Victoria ...). From 50 £ the double room, thezhotels.com
- At the Novotel Canary Warf . The renovated docks have changed the urban landscape of this neighborhood, and in this freshly opened hotel, we are in the middle of a futuristic environment. Plus: a room for children under 16 at 50%. From 106 € the double room, novotel.com
And to know everything about the British ...
Why are Bobbies called police officers in the city? Is bulldog really the favorite dog of the English? What is the name of the most select cheesemaker in the capital? All the answers are in the Unusual Dictionary of London . More than a guide, this little sesame dissects the habits and customs of our dear neighbors ...
By Valentine Palfrey, ed. Cosmopole, 11 €.