I live in Hackney, and I really enjoy it. This guide is divided into two parts. A general guide of some things I recommend in London, and a guide if you are staying in Hackney. If you want to be by the cool bars and nightlife, you should stay in  or near Shoreditch. I leave the choice of hotel or hostel up to the reader. Unfortunately, as I have no experience traveling to London, I can’t recommend anything definitively. Onto the guides.

General London Guide

Things to do

Sky Garden

The Sky Garden is the free (and better) version of the Shard view. You can book it for free through the link, however you must do it well in advance (2 or more weeks). Free!
Walkie-Talkie Building Evening (29881324456)

Westminster Abbey

Westminster, Big Ben, and the Houses of Parliament are all next to each other, but of the three Westminster Abbey has the most dead famous people for you to see. Not free.
Westminster Abbey West Door

Tower of London

The castle that used to guard the Thames! The Tower is great to see, but there are different kinds of tours you can take of it, so it’s worth looking in advance for tickets. Yeoman Warders Rooks, and the crown Jewels all call the Tower home. Not free.
Tower of London viewed from the River Thames

Tate Modern

The best art museum in London, the Tate Modern is in an old power station that has been stripped out and now houses a modern art museum. The building is the best art museum building I’ve ever been in. Free!
Tate Modern - exteriér I. (3. 10. 2004)

Primrose Hill

Another great view of London, Primrose Hill is north of Regent’s Park. Worth a walk up.
Primrose Hill 2

Buckingham Palace

Do you want to see the Guards Change? Well, you can.
London (UK), Horse Guards -- 2010 -- 1921

Walking Tours

Karl Marx Walks London

Karl Marx walking tour - very interesting, takes you through Soho and shows you what Marx’s soho was like, and what other revolutionaries called Soho home

Jack the Ripper Tour

Went on this Jack the Ripper tour and it was fantastic - a great walk through Whitechapel with a good mix of history of the time and history of the murders

Self guided walks

Sky Garden to Big Ben

Top Tips

Best tip of all - set up Apple or Android pay

You can now use Apple and Android pay everywhere you can use a card in London, but the nice thing about electronic payment is that you don’t need to sign a receipt for it. It makes things like paying for a pint at the pub a snap

Sort out your cellphone service

Are you going to have or want a sim when you get to London, or are you going to be using your cellphone plan?

Don't bother with a London pass

They are more expensive then just going into the museums you want to visit

Hackney Guide

Coffee

See them on Google Maps
Moko Made London: A Japanese coffee shop
Worker’s Dalston: A good place to work (for a small fee) or just have a coffee.
SHED: A coffee and pastry stall at the entrance of a photography studio. Very convenient if you’re going to catch the overground from Haggerston.
Jonestown: Good coffee and a cool vibe, situated at the top of Brick Lane
All Press: Both All Press coffee shops do great coffee and the one in Dalston has a large outside area.
Ozone: Usually quite busy but does a good veggie/vegan brunch. You can see the coffee roaster from the entrance way.

Pubs and bars

See them on Google Maps
The Stags Head: A cozy traditional pub with a large beer garden that is less than 5 minutes from the flat.
Folklore: Has a divebar feel to it.
Howl at the moon: A pub with an Irish/American theme going on. They do their own beer on tap too.
Pamela: A Pamela Anderson themed cocktail bar with a fully vegan menu. The cocktails are delicious!
Hoxton Cabin: A cosy bar. The music is never too loud so you can actually hear one another talk. They also do lots of snacks during the day and sometimes hand out free popcorn made with their retro popcorn machine. Occasionally they do comedy nights in the downstairs area.
Brewdog: There are a few around the area, one in Dalston and one in Shoreditch.
Zigfrid Von Underbelly: They have eclectic decorations and an outdoor area with heating.

Food

See them on Google Maps
Hanoi Cafe: A family run Vietnamese place with lots of veggie options. Their tofu Bánh mì is my favorite.
Unity Diner: A not for profit vegan diner that also does breakfast on weekends.
Boxpark: A collection of restaurants and shops in stacked shipping containers. Has a few vegan places: Eat Chay, What the Pitta and Biff’s Jack Shack.
Voodoo Ray’s: Good pizza with lots of veggie options. They sometimes have a vegan special.
The Vurger co: Very hefty and tasty burgers.
Temple of Hackney: The best vegan fried chicken I’ve ever tasted.
Sutton Sons Fish and Chips: Despite being a traditional fish and chip shop they have lots of vegan ‘fish’ options! Last time we went they were cash only just FYI.
Essential Vegan: A Brazilian vegan cafe that serves pão de queijo.
Redemption Bar: A dry bar that serves non alcoholic cocktails and healthier dishes. The concept was to help alleviate the effects of Sunday hangovers.
Mildred's: A London veggie restaurant chain. Very tasty ‘chicken’ tikka! The Dalston branch is light and airy too.
Vida Bakery: A vegan cake shop that made a Black Mirror cake for Miley Cyrus. Their rainbow cake is vanilla flavoured and is delicious! Would recommend having it with an espresso.
Breakfast Club: Very popular so might have a line out the door, but they have a fun interior and pretty good veggie options with a few vegan options too.

Cool places

See them on Google Maps
Dalston Eastern curve garden: A community garden with a cafe that serves coffee, beer and snacks. (Wrap up warm if it’s cold as it’s all open air).
Stolen Space Art Gallery: I love a dose of low brow art so I go here to check out new and sometimes established street and underground artists that it showcases.
London Fields: A usually busy park in Hackney that you can BBQ in.
Columbia Road Flower Market: Open on Sundays only, great for cheap plants.
Spitalfields Market: A very interesting place that you can never fully look around because there’s so much to see.
Barbican: What brutalism was supposed to look like. A very interesting piece of architecture that you can enter and walk around. There’s a large garden inside that’s sometimes open to the public and a cinema that shows indie films and documentaries.