Visit the home of the Duke of Wellington to see its grand interiors and fine art. Please check for times. Please check for prices and times. www.english-heritage.org.uk/apsleyhouse. 149 Piccadilly, Hyde Park Corner, W1J 7NT. T: 020-7499 5676. F6. Station: Hyde Park Corner.
Arcelor Mittal Orbit
This 114.5-metre tall observation tower, designed by Turner Prize-winning artist Sir Anish Kapoor, gives unrivalled views of the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park (p. 28) and stadium. It also has an outdoor slide, from which you can whizz down, and occasional abseil sessions. Please check for times and prices. www.arcelormittalorbit.com. Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park, E20 2SS. T: 0333800 8099. Map inset. Station: Stratford.
This 17th-century building was designed by Inigo Jones for King James I, with an exquisite painted ceiling by celebrated Baroque artist Peter Paul Rubens. It is the only remaining part of the Palace of Westminster, which was destroyed by fire. Daily 10am-1pm, but call before visiting. Adult £6.50; child free. www.hrp.org.uk. Whitehall, SW1A 2ER. T: 020-3166 6000. E8. Station: Westminster.
Battersea Park Children’s Zoo
Zoo with keeper experiences, a play area and a petting farm with donkeys, chinchillas and goats. Daily 10am-5.30pm. Adult £8.95; child £6.95. www.batterseaparkzoo.co.uk. Battersea Park, Chelsea Bridge Gate, SW11 4NJ. T: 020-7924 5826. Off map. Station: Battersea Park.
The British Library
The world’s largest library also boasts temporary exhibitions and a great permanent collection. To 29 Aug: Russian Revolution: Hope, Tragedy, Myths. A century on from the Russian Revolution, this major exhibition of artefacts and documents shines new light on the unprecedented events of the period. Exhibition galleries Mon 9.30am- 6pm; Tue-Thur 9.30am- 8pm; Fri 9.30am- 6pm; Sat 9.30am-5pm; Sun 11am-5pm. Admission free; charges for tours, some exhibitions and events. www.bl.uk. 96 Euston Rd, NW1 2DB. T: 0330-333 1144. C7. Station: King’s Cross.
The magnificent London residence and principal workplace of the monarchy has 775 rooms. It’s usually closed to the public, except for the annual summer opening of the State Rooms (22 Jul-1 Oct). www.royalcollection.org.uk. Buckingham Palace, The Mall, SW1A 1AA. T: 0303-123 7300. F6/F7. Station: Victoria/Green Park.
Changing the Guard
At 11am every Mon, Wed, Fri and Sun, watch the changing of the Queen’s Guard on the Palace’s forecourt (except in very wet weather). Free. Buckingham Palace, The Mall, SW1A 1AA. T: 0303-123 7300. Station: Victoria/Green Park. The Changing the Life Guard Ceremony takes place Mon-Fri 11am; Sun 10am – check in case of last-minute changes. www.royal.gov.uk. Buckingham Palace, The Mall, SW1A 1AA. T: 0303-123 7300. F6/F7. Station: Victoria/ Green Park.
Chelsea Physic Garden
London’s oldest botanical garden was founded in 1673 as the Apothecaries’ Garden. Admire 5,000 species of plants, especially medicinal ones including tropical plants in glasshouses. Please check for special events. Mon 11am-5pm garden only; Tue-Fri 11am- 6pm garden and shop; Sun 11am- 6pm garden, shop and café. Adult £10.50; child £6.95. www.chelseaphysicgarden.co.uk. 66 Royal Hospital Rd, SW3 4HS. T: 020-7352 5646. Off map. Station: Sloane Square.
Chiswick House & Gardens Trust
See Old Masters on display in this outstanding manor, which features neo-Palladian interiors designed by William Kent and architecture inspired by ancient Rome and 16th-century Italy. The 18th-century restored gardens inspired Blenheim Palace and New York’s Central Park. Gardens daily 7am-dusk; house Sun-Wed 10am- 4pm; conservatory Tue-Sun 10am- 4pm. House adult £6.70; child £4. www.chgt.org.uk. Chiswick House & Gardens, W4 2RP. T: 020- 8995 0508. Off map. Station: Chiswick Park.
This 19th-century ship is the world’s last surviving tea clipper, with many of the original features including the cabins of its former sailors. Explore interactive displays on deck or take part in a lively programme of family-friendly events. 3, 10, 17 & 24 May: Toddler Time. Bring your little sailors along for songs, stories and playtime. Daily 10am-5pm. Adult £12.15; child £6.30. www.rmg. co.uk/cuttysark. Cutty Sark, King William Walk, SE10 9HT. T: 020- 8312 6608. Off map. Station: Cutty Sark/Greenwich.
Dennis Severs’ House
Since 1979, visitors can explore the home of the artist Dennis Severs, who died in 2000 (p. 36). Ten atmospheric rooms, from the cellar to the attic, illustrate the life of a typical family of Huguenot silk weavers from the 17th to 19th centuries. Keep all your senses alert and keep a look out for its former residents! Silent night tour Mon, Wed & Fri 5pm-9pm. Daytime tour Mon noon-2pm & Sun noon- 4pm. Tickets £5-£17.50. www.dennissevershouse.co.uk. 18 Folgate St, E1 6BX. T: 020-7247 4013. D11. Station: Liverpool Street.
Dr Johnson’s House
The writer Dr Samuel Johnson compiled his first English dictionary, first published in 1755, in this four-storey period home, which dates to the late 17th century. Now a Grade I-listed building, it retains many of its original features. Check for guided walks (1st Wed of every month) in Johnson’s footsteps around Fleet Street. Mon-Sat 11am5.30pm. Adult £6; child £2.50. www.drjohnsons house.org. 17 Gough Square, EC4A 3DE. T: 0207353 3745. D9. Station: Temple/Chancery Lane.
Eltham Palace & Gardens
Experience the decade of decadence as you are transported back to the 1930s. Part showpiece of Art Deco design and part royal palace with a medieval great hall and luxurious bathroom, make yourself at home as a guest of the Courtaulds. Explore their map room and beautiful period dresses and hats. Please check for prices and times. www.english-heritage.org.uk/eltham. Court Yard, SE9 5QE. T: 020- 8294 2548. Off map. Station: Eltham.