Discover a romantic getaway in London with SWR

A romantic couple's getaway to London

15 March 2022

As the UK’s capital city, London is a vibrant hub filled with plenty of things to see and do, from walking tours to delicious dining experiences. With so much on offer, choosing what to do with your other half in this bustling city can feel like an impossible task. 

You might be a London local in search of the best things to do with your partner, or perhaps you live outside of the city and are planning for a London couple’s weekend getaway. Whatever your motive, we’ve got your covered. Our guide to the best things to do in London for couples will give you tips for your whole trip, including indoor and outdoor activities, places to eat and the best places to stay.

Romantic things to do outdoors for couples in London

Step into the great outdoors and brave the UK weather with some of these fun outdoor activities. From climbing the O2 to stargazing at the Royal Observatory, there’s an activity for every mood. 

Climb the O2

Fancy yourselves as the adventurous types? You and your partner can prove to each other just how brave you are by climbing to the top of the O2! This 365m diameter multipurpose arena is just as impressive from the inside as it is the outside—but what about from its roof? With sprawling rooftop views of London, the climb will certainly be worth it.

A couple enjoying a glass of champagne while stood at the top of the O2 dome

If you’re up for the challenge, you can easily get to the O2 Arena from London Waterloo. Simply hop on the tube via the Jubilee line towards Stratford, ride for 12 minutes and get off at North Greenwich. From there, it’s just a three-minute walk.

Alternatively, you can hop on the Uber Boat and cruise down the Thames to get to the O2. Also known as the river bus, your Uber Boat will provide you with one of the best views of London throughout your journey, giving you the chance to spot some of the city’s most iconic landmarks. The closest Uber Boat stop to Waterloo is London Eye Pier. From here, relax and enjoy your view of the city until you reach North Greenwich Pier.

Drift through London’s waterways in a floating hot tub

Somebody took the genius idea of combining a self-driving boat with a hot tub, and you can now cruise down the Thames in your own little private hot tub boat with your other half. Relax in the warmth of your tub and sip on a glass of bubbly as you drift down London’s waterways, admiring the sights as you go.

A couple in a floating hot tub on the Thames

There are plenty of different hot tub boat options scattered along the Thames, so we’d recommend booking online to find the best deal for you.

Go stargazing at Royal Observatory

Is there anything more romantic than a night of stargazing with the person you love most? As your day comes to a close, why not head to Royal Observatory and take a journey through space together. During your visit you will get the chance to meet astronomers, enjoy a planetarium show and even use a Victorian telescope!

The Royal Observatory at night

The Royal Observatory is just a 17-minute walk from Greenwich station.

Romantic things to do indoors for couples in London

Whether you’re planning your trip over winter or are preparing for bad weather, it’s always a good idea to have some indoor activities planned while you’re away. Here are some of our top picks:

Hop on board an afternoon tea dinner cruise on the Thames

Fancy an afternoon tea with a view? Treat your other half to a romantic boat ride down London’s iconic River Thames—with the added bonus of a delicious afternoon tea. Book with Thames Dinner Cruise and enjoy a selection of sandwiches, mini pastries, and scones with clotted cream and jam, to be enjoyed as you coast down London’s famous river.

Afternoon tea served on a Thames Dinner Cruise

Thames Dinner Cruises depart from Tower Pier, which is easy to get to from London Waterloo. Simply walk for nine minutes to Embankment Station and catch the District line towards Tower Hill. Ride for 10 minutes, get off at Tower Hill and then it’s around a five-minute walk from that point.

Stroll through the Sky Garden

To see some of the best views of London, head to the city’s Sky Garden. Standing at 160 metres tall, London’s highest public garden sits on the forty-third floor of the ‘walkie talkie’ building and offers beautiful views of the city below. This attraction is completely free, though it’s worth booking in advance to secure your spot—especially during weekends.

A view inside the Sky Garden at sunset

Sky Garden is a 35-minute walk from London Waterloo, or alternatively you can get there via the Waterloo and City tube line towards Bank.

Tour the Beefeater Gin Distillery

Take a tour through one of London’s oldest and most famous gin distilleries at Beefeater. You and your partner will have an exclusive opportunity to see how the world’s most awarded gin is made—and even better, you’ll get to taste it for yourself at the end!

An ingredients display at the Beefeater Gin Distillery

Beefeater Gin Distillery is just an 11 minutes’ stroll from Vauxhall.

Most romantic brunch and lunch restaurants in London

No couple’s getaway is complete without a delicious meal, and with so many restaurants to choose from in London, you won’t go hungry!

Sketch London

If pretty interiors are your thing, then Sketch should be top of your list. With its gorgeous pink and rose gold interior and unique Instagram-worthy toilets, not to mention a delicious menu to choose from, this is a restaurant you’ll want to come back to time and time again.

Interior of Sketch restaurant, including artwork on the walls

Sketch is just a 20-minute walk from Charing Cross, or if you’d rather get the tube, it’s just a three-minute journey via the Bakerloo line towards Queen’s Park. Get off at Oxford Circus Underground Station and walk for a further five minutes to reach your destination.

The Queen’s Primrose Hill

Just a stone’s throw from Primrose Hill is The Queen’s, a charming and characterful pub perfect for lunchtime dining. Aside from the scenic location, it’s their delicious menu that makes The Queen’s a popular choice for couples. Featuring a wide range of mouth-watering meals made entirely from scratch, you’ll be truly spoilt for choice here!

Interior of the Queen's Hotel and Pub in Primrose Hill

You can get to The Queen’s in just 19 minutes from King’s Cross. Catch the Northern tube towards Edgeware, get off at Chalk Farm and walk for eight minutes.

Most romantic dinner restaurants in London

Dans Le Noir

For a truly unique dining experience, head to Dans Le Noir. Here, you and your other half will be tucking into your meal in complete darkness, allowing your other senses to be heightened. The menu at Dans Le Noir is a total surprise—simply tell the chef if you have any allergies and they’ll work around your preferences to create a meal 

Interior of Dans Le Noir restaurant

Dans Le Noir is just a five-minute walk from Farringdon station.

Brutto

You can’t go wrong with hearty Italian food, and Brutto serves the best of the best. Bask in the atmosphere of a traditional Italian restaurant and choose from an authentic menu that includes all your Italian favourites, from tomato and vodka penne to the classic margarita pizza.

Interior of Brutto restaurant

Brutto is just a four-minute walk from Farringdon.

Most romantic places to stay in London

If you’re planning to make a weekend out of your London getaway, a nice hotel will be the cherry on top of an amazing trip. Our top picks for a high-end budget include The Savoy Hotel, Rosewood London and Sea Containers London, while those looking to spend less can choose from Premier Inn London Blackfriars, Lancaster Gate Hotel and Hotel Ibis London Earls Court.

London is without a doubt one of the best places to plan a UK couples’ getaway, so what are you waiting for? Begin your planning today by exploring our flexible range of ticket types to find the right one for your journey. Make the most of cheap train tickets throughout your trip by going off-peak, and those with a Railcard could save even more.

Spring has sprung – grab your flock and get cheap train tickets to London and the rest of the Southwest with no booking fee and a price promise guarantee that you won’t find cheaper tickets anywhere else. Visit London and enjoy theatre, restaurant and attraction discounts with SWR rewards, take a trip to the coast for some spring sunshine or head to the New Forest for some fresh air and walking trails.

Spread your wings this spring