Eating out in London

When it comes to eating and drinking, there are lots of London restaurants, of all varieties and that suit all budgets. There are lots of places to eat with kids in London with special menus, and fun and games to keep little ones entertained. 

England’s famous for its afternoon teas and it’s certainly a popular thing to do when visiting London.

Sit-down breakfast, lunch or dinner in London

When it comes to eating and drinking, there are lots of London restaurants for all budgets and dietary requirements. OpenTable is a great app to have. It helps you book tables and find deals on restaurant tables around the city. Always check Time Out, too. When it comes to eating out in London, having an open mind is a good idea as there is so much amazing stuff to sample. Like, for instance, Thames Dinner Cruise, with prices that start at £79* per person for dinner, but only £34 per person for lunch (note they’re not the only people who serve dinner on the Thames). But, if you’re looking for a certain type of food, these are the areas to focus on.

• China Town: located between Leicester Square and Soho, China Town has many Chinese - as you’d expect - restaurants offering a buffet or a la carte menu. We recommend Beijing Dumpling on Lisle Street. Leicester Square and Piccadilly are the nearest stations.
• Edgware Road: if you’re hankering after some Middle Eastern cuisine, then Edgware Road is the place to go (also the name of the nearest Tube station).
• Kingsland Road: the lower end of the road the running in between Dalston and Shoreditch is crammed with cheap-eat Vietnamese restaurants. Go a bit further into Dalston, and you’ll be spoilt for choice with Turkish cuisine. the closest Tube station is either Old Street or Liverpool Street, with a ten-minute walk to Kingsland Road from either
• Brick Lane: this East London street is packed with Bangladeshi curry houses. Most of them are BYO (bring-your-own alcohol). Aldgate East, Liverpool Street, or Shoreditch High Street are the closest Tube stations.
• Soho: Not known so much for a particular type of food, rather Soho is teeming with places to eat and drink. For Italian, try the causal Princi; for Indian, go to Imli Street (the name of the restaurant, not the address); Randall & Aubin is a seafood sensation and Balans is a 24-hour Soho institution. The nearest Tube station is Tottenham Court Road.

When it comes to tips and tipping in London, most London restaurants include a 12.5% discretionary service charge on your bill. This then either goes to the restaurant or the serving staff. You can ask for it to be removed and pay cash directly to your waiter if you choose.

Classic cream tea
A cup of coffee

Afternoon tea in London

England is famous for its afternoon teas and it’s certainly a popular thing to do when visiting London. Many hotels offer a beautiful spread in stunning surroundings. Make sure you check individual websites for booking details and dress codes. 

• Sketch: this fantastically quirky destination is full of surprises with lasers, optical illusions and egg-pod loos with farmyard sounds. Enjoy afternoon tea in the Gallery, a powder pink room lined with 239 works of art. Tea starts at £39* per person, with refillable tea and sandwiches.
• The Savoy: Savour the exquisite surroundings of the Thames foyer as you sip on fine tea and nibble on finger sandwiches, scones, clotted cream and other sweet treats. Prices from £50* per person. 
• The Ritz: tea is served in The Palm Court, an elegant and timeless salon, in this historic hotel. Enjoy your afternoon tea on pretty chinaware and pour from silver service teapots, while the resident pianist plays on. Prices start at £50* per person. 
• Claridge’s: serving afternoon tea for over 150 years, this famous London hotel presents a classic spread in the art-deco inspired Foyer, with teas sourced from the four corners of the world. Afternoon tea starts at £50* per person. 
• One Aldwych: with a Charlie and the Chocolate Factory theme, afternoon tea is served at this hotel with quite a few twists. It’s quite a thing to behold. Prices start at £34.50* per person.