Recommending things to do for guests in London

Hi everyone,

I am new the forums, hoping to get some advice

We have some guests staying that have asked for recommendations on what attractions / things to do in London for a 3 day trip.

Is this a frequent question? I’ve heard some hosts will print out recommendations on a guest book and leave it on the coffee table - has anyone tried this?


just include some links to top London websites like Time Out London and Visit London in your guest book.

I have a printed copy of my guide book and leave it in the guest room in a folder with details of local attractions, food magazines, map of the local area, theatre guides etc.

I also provide a ‘top ten’ things to do while you are in Bristol along with my personal recommendations for restaurants, cafes and pubs.

The Visit London site has ideas of how to spend a day, weekend, week etc in London.

Whether it is a frequent question will depend on where you live.

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I’m not in London but yes, our house manual has recommendations. I also ask guests during the house tour if they have any questions. Often they ask me then if they are interested in specific activities or interests.

However, for guests staying for a week or more, I prepare a specialised list for them of what’s on in the area during their stay. This is a lot easier than it sounds because the basic template has recurring events. (Docent-led tours at xxx every day at 1, 2 & 3 pm, ghost tours every Friday at 6 pm at zzz, happy hour Mon - Thurs 6 - 7 pm at yyy and soon and so on.

The basic template remains that same although I check from time to time to be sure nothing has changed. Then I add what’s on at IMAX, the regular cinema, exhibitions at the museum of art, theatre productions etc.

I try to make them within reasonable distance of here. I include breakfast specials at local coffee houses, what live music is playing in bars locally and so on and this makes it much more personal that having the guest look at a local what’s on guide.


Yes, I leave a booklet of things to see and do in the area. I think it’s a nice touch.

Another thing - over the years you’ll find that guests leave local leaflets and guides to build up your ‘collection’. I have a drawer in each apartment full of flyers, rack cards and so on which are freely available from local attractions or from local tourist information places. Some have money-off coupons that are appreciated by guests. I also have timetables for local transport and business cards from local activity suppliers.

I don’t arrange them nicely in a binder or anything (although that would be lovely) I just shove them in one of the drawers (fairly neatly though). Guests often add to them as they go around sightseeing and picking up other leaflets and flyers.

Every so often, when I have time, I look through them to weed out any that have expired coupons or similar.

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I can’t imagine what they would possibly find to do in London. Or Paris. Or NY. Or Rome.


I might put some local attractions like a good pub for dinner or a nice park if the suns out. And the nearest Tube station and how to get to somewhere in central London by bus or tube… But I think if they can’t find the wider attractions of London by themselves they should probably stay at home.

Phillippa, I lived in London for years (loved it) and I think it would be a nice touch if you could have a list of places that are not well known but special to you. I would also include a link to all the wonderful free Art Galleries etc you can visit in London. Covent Garden and Camden market are always worth a visit. Good luck.


I lived in London for 35 years, both south of the river but mainly north. London is such a huge area, with lots of interesting villages, that people are spoilt for choice. I think I would initially ask them what they are particularly interested in; galleries, shopping, music etc etc. If I use Muswell Hill as an example, where I lived for the greater part, I would offer information on transport links into Central London, getting an Oyster Card set up, and info on museums, galleries, Buckingham Palace, and the different shopping areas like Oxford St, High St Kensington, Knightsbridge and Marylebone. I would also include an offering on Muswell Hill itself, as a place to come back to eat well and at better value, wine bars to rest one’s feet and feel like a local, “countryside” walks and the best views over London on a good day.