London, Summer 2012 Highlights
London Hotels. London Discount Hotels. London Luxury Hotels. 4-star London Hotels. 5-star London Hotels. Special rates at all-star London Hotels.
London hotels at discount rates
Hotel Specials
Get your tickets ahead of time and stroll right in when you arrive. The Tower was built to awe, subdue and terrify Londoners and to deter foreign invaders. It's an iconic symbol of London and Britain and one of the world's "must visit" tourist attractions. Take the Beefeater tour and you'll be amazed, appalled and amused by the tales of passion, treachery and torture delivered with a smile and a swagger. Click here

What's on London Summer, 2012

Royal Heritage
Not only is London host to the summer Olympics 2012, (27 July-12 August) and the Paralympics, (29 August-9 September), but is enjoying Jubilee fever as Britain celebrates the Queen's Diamond Jubilee of her reign. London is more than ever conscious of its position as a royal city and has decked itself out to celebrate its royal connections as only London and Londoners can. While official celebrations take place in the first week of June, the reverberations of this event will linger on throughout the summer in festival, exhibition and events.

In addition London 2012 celebrates the World Shakespeare Festival and the bi-centenary of the birth of Charles Dickens who lived and worked in London. Burlington Bertie chooses his summer, 2012 Hot Picks.

Buckingham Palace summer opening
Summer opening of the State Rooms of Buckingham Palace and gardens. The special exhibition in the State Ballroom 'Diamonds: A Jubilee Celebration!, will be a real 'bobby dazzler'! Feast your eyes on the remarkable collection of The Queen's royal jewellery, collected from State visits over Her 60 year reign. See also Royal Mews and Queens Gallery.
Venue:Buckingham Palace, SW1A 1AA. Entrance in Buckingham Palace Road. Exit in Grosvenor Place.
Date: 9.45am-6.30pm, 30 June-8 July; 31 July-7 October, 2012.
Tickets: £18, (Concessions). Buy a Royal Collection discount ticket giving combined entry to Buckingham Palace & gardens, Royal Mews and Queen's Gallery.
London Transport: Nearest Tubes: Victoria, (for entry);Hyde Park Corner. (for exit).
Wheelchair Accessibility: Yes. Adapted Toilets: Yes.

Historic Royal Palaces
A visit to one or more of Royal London's great historic palace museums are a popular choice for visitors in this year of The Queen's Diamond Jubilee. Check Burlington Bertie's Royal Palaces and Attractions for descriptions and access details.
Take advantage of the £43, (£63 for two adults) annual membership of Historic Royal Palaces. This gives you unlimited entry to the Tower of London, Kensington Palace, Hampton Court Palace, Kew Palace, Banqueting House, palace souvenir shops discount and other benefits.
Wheelchair Accessibility & Facilities: Yes.

Music & Theatre Summer Season
Royal Albert Hall: BBC Promenade Concerts 2012
It's the Prom season once again! An orchestral and choral mix of music for all tastes and ages ; classical, Broadway and family, leading up to the great 'Last Night of the Proms'. Nightly performances at the Albert Hall, plus additional matinee concerts at the nearby Cadogan Hall. Dine at the Albert Hall's excellent Coda Restaurant. The menu and wine list are short, but interesting.
Venue: Royal Albert Hall, Kensington Gore, London SW7 2AP. Box Office: 0845 401 5045.
Date: Times vary, nightly. 13 July-8 September, 2012.
Tickets: From Free - £44. Season/half season and weekend passes available. Special ticket arrangements for wheelchair users.
London Transport: Nearest Tube: Knightsbridge, Kensington High Street.
Wheelchair Accessibility: Yes. Adapted Toilets: Yes.

Shakespeare's Globe Theatre: Summer Season
A summer season of matinee and evening performances of Twelfth Night, Henry V, Richard III, As You Like It, Hamlet, and Taming of the Shrew. Morning exhibition and tour of the theatre covers Shakespeare, the London of his time and the theatre for which he wrote. Audio guide available.
Venue: 21 New Globe Walk, Bankside, SE1 9DT. Tel: 020 7902 1400.
Performances: 2pm, 7.30pm daily until 14 October, 2012.
Tickets: £5 - £35, (Concessions).Online booking for all seats, accommodation, etc. London Transport: Nearest Tube. London Bridge/Southwark, (Jubilee line). Bankside Pier is 10 metres from theatre.
Wheelchair Accessibility : Yes.
Dine before the performance in the 'Swan at the Globe' Brasserie next door and enjoy a drink there after the show.

Regent's Park: Open Air Theatre
The ever popular Regents Park Open Air Theatre season provides the perfect setting for Shakespeare's A Midsummer Night's Dream on a warm summer night. This production alternates with Ragtime-A Musical.
Venue: Queen Mary's Garden, Regent's Park.
Date: Weekdays 2.15 pm and 7.45pm, 2 June - 8 September, 2012.
Tickets: £17.50-£44.50. Book Online
London Transport: Nearest Tube. Baker street.
Wheelchair Accessibility: Special arrangements. Check online Disability Booking form

Offtolondon Theatre Breaks and Offers
Your guide to London's theatre programs, concerts and events with online booking facility. Top musicals continue to draw capacity audiences nightly. Book your tickets for these and other forthcoming shows, together with your hotel Online now to avoid disappointment later.

Fine Art
Royal Academy: Summer Show, 2012
The world's largest open submission contemporary art show, now in its 244th year, continues the tradition of showcasing work by both emerging and established artists in all media including painting, sculpture, photography, printmaking, architecture and film. Exhibited work, from the 11,000 entries submitted, is for sale. Lunch, dine or take afternoon tea in the stunning restaurant and bar.
Venue: Main Gallery, Burlington House, Piccadilly W1J 0BD.
Date: 10am-6pm Daily. Late night 10pm Fridays. Through 12 August, 2012.
Tickets: £10, (concessions). Book online or by telephone: 0844 209 0051
London Transport: Nearest Tube. Green Park,; Piccadilly.
Wheelchair Accessibility: Yes. Accessible toilets: Yes.

Tate Britain: Picasso and Modern British Art
A superb exhibition that explores Picasso's extensive legacy and influence on British art, how this played a role in the acceptance of modern art in Britain, alongside the story of Picasso's lifelong connections to and affection for this country. It brings together over 150 artworks, with over 60 Picassos including paintings from the most remarkable moments in his career, such as Weeping Woman 1937 and The Three Dancers 1925. It offers the rare opportunity to see these celebrated artworks alongside seven of Picasso's most brilliant British admirers, exploring the huge impact he had on their art: Duncan Grant, Wyndham Lewis, Ben Nicholson, Henry Moore, Francis Bacon, Graham Sutherland and David Hockney.
Venue: Tate Britain, Millbank, SW1P 4RG
Date: 10am-6pm Daily. Late nite 10pm Fridays. Through 15 July, 2012.
Tickets: £14, (concessions). Entry charge is for temporary exhibition only. All other rooms are free.
London Transport: Nearest Tube. Pimlico. Tate Boat runs every 40 minutes between Tate Britain and Tate Modern.
Wheelchair Accessibility: Yes. Accessible toilets: Yes.

Tate Modern: Damian Hirst
Damian Hirst first came to public attention in London in 1988 when he conceived and curated Freeze, an exhibition in a disused warehouse which showed his work and that of his friends and fellow students at Goldsmiths College. He is now one of the most influential artists of his generation. This is the first substantial survey of his work in a British institution and brings together key works from over twenty years. The exhibition includes iconic sculptures from his Natural History series, including The Physical Impossibility of Death in the Mind of Someone Living 1991, in which he suspended a shark in formaldehyde. Temporary Exhibition Entry charge is for temporary exhibition only. All other rooms are free.
Venue: Bankside, SE1 9TG. Tel: (0)20 7887 8888.
Date: 10am-6pm Sunday-Thursday;10am-10pm Fri/Sat. Through 9 September, 2012.
Tickets: £14, (concessions).
London Transport: Nearest Tube. Blackfriars. Tate Boat runs every 40 minutes between Tate Britain and Tate Modern
Wheelchair Accessibility: Yes. Accessible toilets: Yes.

Museums; Summer Exhibitions
V&A: Ballgowns
The V&A celebrates the opening of the newly renovated Fashion galleries with a temporary, ticketed exhibition of beautiful ballgowns, red carpet evening dresses and catwalk showstoppers. British Glamour Since 1950 will present more than sixty designs, including eveningwear by Norman Hartnell, Victor Stiebel and Zandra Rhodes alongside dresses fresh from the catwalk shows of Alexander McQueen, Giles Deacon, Erdem and Jenny Packham. The exhibition also features a selection of royal ballgowns, including Princess Diana's 'Elvis Dress' designed by Catherine Walker, dresses as worn by actresses and celebrities including Beyoncé, Sandra Bullock and Elizabeth Hurley, and a stunning metallic leather dress created especially by innovative designer Gareth Pugh. The rest of the museum has free entry. Temporary Exhibition
Venue: Room 40, Victoria & Albert Museum, Cromwell Road, SW7 2RL.
Access: Daily, 10am-5.45pm, Fridays, 10am-10pm. Through 6 January, 2013.
Tickets: £10, (concessions).
London Transport: Tube. South Kensington, (Piccadilly/District & Circle lines).
Wheelchair Accessibility: Yes. Adapted Toilets: Yes.

National Maritime Museum: Royal River
Since Norman times the Thames has been the royal highway and since the wedding of King Henry VIII to Anne Boleyn in 1533 has been host to the pageantry of coronations, royal wedding processions and Thames pageants which helped tie people closer to the Crown and to London as Britain's capital. This exhibition, a landmark heritage event of the year, brings together nearly 400 beautiful, fascinating and often unique objects, including one of the largest-ever loans of Royal Collection objects to any museum. Created to mark The Queen's Diamond Jubilee, this exhibition presents the historic Thames in all its glory, from British royal and City events to London's famous watermen, and the river's transformation after the notorious 'Great Stink'. Temporary Exhibition
Venue: Romney Road, Greenwich, SE10 9NF Tel: 020 8858 4422.
Access: Daily, 10am-5pm, Through 9 September, 2012.
Tickets: £12, (concessions).
Wheelchair Accessibility: Yes. Adapted Toilets: Yes.

British Museum: Shakespeare Staging the World
A unique insight into the emerging role of London as a world city, seen through the innovative perspective of Shakespeare's plays. London as it was around 400 years ago is brought to life through contemporary performance and amazing objects drawn from the Museum's collection and across Europe. Maps, prints, drawings and paintings, arms and armour, coins, medals and other intriguing objects are all examined through the lens of Shakespeare's plays.
Venue: Great Russell Street, London, WC1B 3DG
Access: 10am-5.30pm. Late night 8:30pm Fridays. Last entry 70 minutes before close. 19 July-25 November, 2012.
Tickets: £14, (concessions).Book online.
Wheelchair Accessibility : Yes. Adapted Toilets: Yes.

Cutty Sark
One of the world's most famous ships, Cutty Sark is the last surviving tea clipper and was the fastest and greatest of her time; a living testimony to the bygone, glorious days of sail. Launched in 1869, she sailed the seven seas until 1922 and was thereafter used as a cadet training ship until 1951. The dry docked ship was opened as a museum in 1959. She was severely damaged by fire five years ago and closed for a major refit. She is now shipshape again. 'Re-launched' by The Queen on April 22, she is once again open to the public.
Explore the ship's rich history; her various cargoes from tea to wool to buffalo horns, and the cultures and lives she has touched throughout her 140-year lifespan before continuing on to explore other parts of Greenwich's royal heritage; the National Maritime Museum, the Royal Observatory, the Queen's House and Greenwich Park.
Venue: King William Walk, Greenwich, SE10 9HT Tel: 020 8858 4422.
Access: 10am=5pm, Tues-Sun and public holidays.
Tickets: £12, (concessions).
London Transport: Tube. Cutty Sark DLR
Wheelchair Accessibility: No.

The Golden Hinde
This is an exact working replica of Sir Francis Drake's Naval Flagship, the Tudor Privateer warship Golden Hinde chartered by Tudor Queen Elizabeth I to harry the Spanish, in which Sir Francis Drake circumnavigated the world, (a three year voyage 1577-1580). This exact reconstruction, a fully working ship, was launched in Devon in 1973. Since then she has circumnavigated the globe and sailed over 140,000 miles - many more than the original. Now a museum, her present berth is the St Mary Overie Dock on Thames South Bank, just a short walk from the Clink Prison Museum, Shakespeare's Globe, Southbank Centre, London Eye, Tate Modern.
This is a living history experience of particular interest to maritime history buffs and every kid from 8 to 80! Explore the 5 decks and the 22 canons.
Venue:Pickfords Wharf, Clink St., London SE1 9DG. Tel: 020 7407 7056.
Date:Daily 10am - 5.30pm.
Tickets: £7. (Concessions).
London Transport: Nearest Tube: London Bridge.
Venue Hire You can hire the Golden Hinde for entertaining, conferences, wedding and civil partnership receptions, school parties, functions or film location. Check website for details and bookings.
Wheelchair Accessibility: No. Disabled Toilet facility: No! Things were a bit rudimentary in Elizabethan times.
Walk the Gangplank No!

Tate Modern: Damian Hirst
Damian Hirst first came to public attention in London in 1988 when he conceived and curated Freeze, an exhibition in a disused warehouse which showed his work and that of his friends and fellow students at Goldsmiths College. He is now one of the most influential artists of hisgeneration. This is the first substantial survey of his work in a British institution and brings together key works from over twenty years. The exhibition includes iconic sculptures from his Natural History series, including The Physical Impossibility of Death in the Mind of Someone Living 1991, in which he suspended a shark in formaldehyde. Temporary Exhibition
Venue: Bankside, SE1 9TG. Tel: (0)20 78878888.
Date: 10am-6pm Sun.-Thurs;10am-10pm Fri/Sat. through 9 Sept., 2012.
Tickets: 14, (concessions).
Wheelchair accessibility: Yes. Accessible toilets: Yes.

Sherlock Holmes Museum
Sherlock Holmes and Doctor Watson lived at 221b Baker Street, (built 1815), between 1881-1904, according to Holmes's biographer, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. The famous 1st floor study, where the world's most illustrious detective played the violin while pondering and solving those mystifying cases before the use of fingerprints or DNA made detection so much easier, is still faithfully maintained as it was kept in those late Victorian and Edwardian days of gaslight, horse drawn Hansom cabs and London fogs. Nothing has changed. The rooms are exactly as described by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. Sherlock Holmes's possessions are in their usual places: his deerstalker, magnifying glass, calabash pipe, violin, chemistry equipment, notebook, Persian slippers and disguises, soda water gazogene on the sideboard. Dr Watson's hand-written notes made at the time of the famous case of the Hounds of the Baskervilles may be perused and visitors will be interested to admire a waxwork in the likeness of the infamous Moriarty. Strongly recommended to all admirers of Holmes. Join the Sherlock Holmes International Society online.
Venue 221b Baker Street, NW1 6XE. Tel: 020 7935 8866.
Access: Daily. 9.30am-6pm.
Tickets Adult 6, Child 4. Daily 9:30a.m. 6:00p.m. Discount Group admissions for 10 + persons. Book Online.
London Transport Nearest Tube. Baker Street. Nos 13 and 139 automobile buses run between Baker Street and Trafalgar Square. The Victorian trams and horse drawn hansom cabs regrettably no longer run in the London fog which is also a thing of the past.
Wheelchair Accessibility: No.

Sealife London Aquarium
Home to one of Europe's largest collections of global marine life with everything from tiny sea horses to 11 species of sharks, (watch them at feeding time) this SEA LIFE takes visitors on an immersive, interactive and spectacular journey along the Great Oceanic Conveyor.
Venue: Town Hall, Westminster Bridge Road, SE1 7PB.
Date: Daily. 9.30am-6pm, 2012.
Tickets: From £16.20, (Concessions). Book online for advance discount or discounted combi tickets with nearby London Eye.
London Transport: Nearest Tube. Westminster.
Wheelchair Accessibility: Yes. Adapted Toilets: Yes.

The London Dungeon
London's horrible history is brought to life with 12 shows, live actors, special effects and 2 scary rides. Good for ghouls but not for the squeamish.
Venue: London Dungeon, 28-34 Tooley Street, SE1 2SZ.
Access: Daily. Opening from 9.30am and closing from 5pm. Times vary. Check website.
Tickets: From 14.44, (Concessions). Book Online. Discount when booked with Madame Tussauds, London Eye or Sea Life London Aquarium.
London Transport: Nearest Tube: London Bridge. Nearest Car Park: Euro CP, Tower Bridge Road.
Description: Wheelchair Accessibility: Yes in parts. Check website for details.

Antiques Fairs
June is the traditional summer month for London antiques fairs, bringing dealers and clientele from all over the world to buy and sell. Foremost among the fairs has been 75 year old fair hosted each June at the Grosvenor House Hotel, Park Lane. The sudden axing of this event by the hotel proprietors, (Marriott Hotels), on budgetary grounds is a sad loss to the antiques trade.

Olympia Fine art & Antiques Fair
Longstanding annual international antiques fair, combined with contemporary furniture and art. Expect some 120+ exhibitors offering furniture, paintings, militaria, numismatics, jewellery, etc.
Venue: Olympia Grand Hall, Olympia Way, W14 8UX .
Date: 11am-7pm, 7-17 June, 2012.
Tickets: £10 at door.
London Transport: Nearest Tube: Kensington High Street
Wheelchair Accessibility: Yes. Adapted Toilets: Yes.

Art Antiques London
This is the annual summer showcase for some 70 exhibiting members of LAPADA, the prestigious Association of Art and Antiques Dealers. The fair incorporates The International Ceramics Fair and Seminar. Exhibitors are experts in a wide range of disciplines, from medieval works of art to contemporary fine art, rare furniture and clocks to exquisite jewellery, sculptures and silverware, European porcelain to ceramic art, glass, coins & medals, maritime and aeronautical artefacts to objets vertu and all manner of collectors' curiosities.
Venue:Albert Memorial West Lawn, Kensington Gardens, SW7, (opposite Albert Hall).
Date: 11am-7pm, 14-20 June, 2012.
Tickets: £15 at door.
London Transport: Nearest Tube: Kensington High Street
Wheelchair Accessibility: Yes.

Masterpiece London
A LAPADA forum for distinctive design and aesthetic excellence. Every exhibit shown by the 100+ exhibitors is scrutinized by a team of experts to ensure every confidence in each purchase. The variety on offer at the fair is second to none: cars, wine, contemporary design and exquisite jewellery sit alongside the best of the fine and decorative arts. Presenting a snapshot of the history of art and design from antiquity to the present day. Visitors will relish the chance to acquire rare collectors' items or simply enjoy temptation on a grand scale. Lunch or dine there at Le Caprice or enjoy a champagne cocktail at Harry's Bar.
Venue: South Grounds, Chelsea Hospital, .SW3 4SR
Date: 11am-6pm/9pm, 28 June - 4 July, 2012
Tickets: £20. Preview 27 June, £100. Book online
London Transport: Nearest Tube: Sloane Square.
Wheelchair Accessibility: Yes.

Adams Antiques Fairs
The best and longest established of London's one-day antiques fairs, run by the organizers of Frock Me, the successful retro fashion fair (10 June/9 Sept, Chelsea Town Hall). Venue:Royal Horticultural Hall, Lindley Hall, Elverton Street, Vincent's Square, SW1P 2QW.
Date: 10am-4.30pm, 17 June, 8 July, 2 September, 2012.
Tickets: £4 at door.
London Transport: Nearest Tube: Victoria.
Wheelchair Accessibility: Yes. Adapted Toilets: Yes.

London Walks
Jack the Ripper Walk
Guided Exploration of the Whitechapel and Spitalfields alleys and pubs where serial killer Jack the Ripper murdered at least five and possibly many more prostitutes in a reign of terror during 1888. Richard Jones, author of the much acclaimed DVD Jack the Ripper will lead you on the bloody trail of London's most infamous murderer. The walk lasts approximately 1hr 45 minutes
Venue: Aldgate, Whitechapel, Spitalfields. EC. Tel: 020 8530 8443
Date: Daily. 7pm-9pm. Check website for date confirmation.
Tickets: 8. Online Booking
London Transport: Aldgate East, (District, Hammersmith and City Lines).

London Ghost Walks
Alleyways and Shadows; Ghosts, Ghouls and Graveyards; the titles of these walks, painstakingly researched by author and historian Richard Jones, perfectly conjure the haunting atmosphere of these deliciously spooky tours that venture beyond the busy main roads and twist their eerie way through forgotten medieval and Victorian London. Let Richard Jones lead you to places where the disembodied voices from London's eerie past may just whisper in your ear, as their icy fingers lightly stroke the back of your neck and your blood runs cold
Venue: Departs from Bank or Blackfriars Underground station.. EC. Tel: 020 8530 8443
Date: Fri/Sats. 7pm-9pm, Check website for date confirmation.
Tickets: 8. Online Booking
London Transport: Aldgate East, (District, Hammersmith and City Lines).

The Shakespeare City Walk
Thespian Declan McHugh leads you on a 90 minute walk through the City of London, uncovering often little-known monuments and locations with connections to Shakespeare's life, his friends, his loves and his work, while declaiming the Bard's poetry and prose in true histrionic style.
Venue: Starts from Blackfriars Tube Station, Exit 8. (Circle and District Line).
Date: Fridays, 11am, 2011.
Tickets: 9.(Concessions). 6.50 with London Pass, (Concessions) Tel: 020 7625 5155 before date for confirmation. 8.50 if booked online or pay 9 at start of tour.
London Transport: Nearest Tube. Blackfriars.

Changing of the Guards. Photo courtesy of

Don't miss out on the daily royal pageantry at Buckingham Palace, events in the Royal Parks, permanent collections in many art galleries and London's museums. They are FREE. Some individually mounted temporary exhibitions within specified museum or gallery rooms may carry a ticket charge however, (bookable online, or at the door).

Top Tips
London has never been better value for Dollar holders! Make the most of your visit with A Night 'On the town'
While in Festive London, treat your partner to a great evening out 'On The Town' with OfftoLondon's superbly priced Theatre & Dinner Packages.

Spare a day of your stay in London to take advantage of Offtolondon's discounted whole day visit by luxury coach to Windsor Castle, Stonehenge and Regency Bath for just $92.

Choose your Hotel
Use OfftoLondon's hassle-free and secure booking facilities to obtain the best internet prices for your overnight, 'City Break', or longer term accommodation requirements; from de-luxe 5-star hotels to comfortable hostels.

Book your tickets online
Book all your tickets and London Travel Passes with to ensure best seats and best prices at the events, exhibitions and shows of your choice without the hassle of price bargaining and queuing on the day.

London Transport Oyster Card
The Central London congestion charge zone for visitors driving in London now covers all main areas of attraction. It makes sense to travel by the safe London Transport bus or Tube. Buy a multi-journey Oyster Card before you arrive, (you can top this up at will), and you will save money, time and hassle.

Something for the Weekend, Sir?
Add spice to your London visit with a "Weekender" visit to Paris or Rome. Cheap and speedy Eurostar travel now brings these city gems within easy reach of all. Day trips via Eurostar to Paris for a morning's shopping, afternoon visit to the Louvre and evening meal on the Seine are now a popular excursion option for Londoners. Or take advantage of the many overnight stop or Weekend bargains! Offtolondon's associated travel specialists OfftoParis and OfftoRome will take care of all your travel and accommodation requirements and show you the sites.

London in One Day Sightseeing Tour
8.5 - 9 hours - Drive to Westminster, past Downing Street, home of the Prime Minister, and on to the Houses of Parliament and Big Ben. Stop for a visit inside Westminster Abbey, site of many royal coronations. Visit Poets' Corner and the tombs of many well-known scientists and monarchs. Also see the Chapel of Henry VII.
Click for more information