Whilst the prices are a little steep, an afternoon tea at The Ritz is something that you will never forget.
This Palm Court really is a stunning setting with its luxurious cupola, birdcage chandeliers, lemon-coloured Dior chairs, and staff dressed-up in brass-buttoned tailcoats. This is a quintessential British experience. It's a piece of theatre. It's like Downton Abbey brought to life.
You will be treated to 16 different varieties of loose leaf tea to go with your finger sandwiches. Then you'll have a traditional scone with lashings of Devonshire clotted cream and strawberry preserve (you have to call it 'preserve' at The Ritz, not jam!). If you still have some room leftover in the corners, then you can select a posh cake or pastry from the trolley. Everything is served on pretty chinaware and a gleaming silver tea service. See a typical menu (pdf file).
If you choose one of the sittings below then you'll get some atmospheric piano playing as well, or maybe a string quintet — they even have a soprano!
Soprano — 7.30 PM to 8.45 PM (Tue-Thu)
String Quintet — 8.45 PM to 9 PM (Tue-Thu); 7.30 PM to 9 PM (Fri)
Pianist — 11.30 AM to 2.30 PM, and 3.30 PM to 9 PM (Mon); 11.30 AM to 2.30 PM, and 3.30 PM to 7.30 PM (Tue-Fri); 7 PM to 9 PM (Sat-Sun)
Harpist — 11.30 AM to 6.45 PM (Sat-Sun)
Craig has actually stayed at The Ritz hotel himself (although he hasn't had the Afternoon Tea). You might like to read his review of The Ritz hotel before you go, to see what it's like inside.
Note: There is a very strict dress code at The Ritz. Men must wear a jacket and tie. Jeans or sportswear are not allowed. Trainers are not allowed either.
After you've finished your Afternoon Tea you might like to do some shopping down the posh shops of Piccadilly. There are some very expensive boutiques in Burlington Arcade. Or maybe you'd like to see some fine art at the Royal Academy? Buckingham Palace is only a short walk across Green Park as well.
If you want to try some other afternoon teas (maybe some less-expensive ones!) then the next best is probably the one at Fortnum & Mason. You can also book yourself a Saturday tea inside the Houses of Parliament.
Enjoy an Afternoon Tea at Fortnum & Mason – Every day – Put on your best clothes and enjoy an elegant Afternoon Tea in the famous Diamond Jubilee Tea Salon at Fortnum & Mason.
Medieval Banquet, with minstrels and knights – Wed to Sun – Enjoy a medieval banquet and be entertained by English knights and singing minstrels and King Henry VIII.
Houses of Parliament tour with afternoon tea – Every Sat – Enjoy a Saturday tour of Parliament, and then enjoy an afternoon tea on the Terrace Pavilion overlooking the Thames.
Dinner cruise on the river, with Bateaux London – Every day – Bateaux London offers you great cuisine and live entertainment onboard the boat, as it sails serenely down the Thames.
Afternoon tea, in the Long Room at Lord’s – 17 Feb, 31 Mar, 19 May, 8 Sep, 6 Oct and 10 Nov 2019 – Cricket fans will love dressing themselves up for this Afternoon Tea, because it's held in the historic Long Room at Lord's.
Independence Day Party — Benjamin Franklin House – 4 Jul 2019 – The Benjamin Franklin House will be celebrating Independence Day with a piece of cake and a glass of bubbly.
Christmas afternoon tea at Lord’s Cricket Ground – 8 Dec 2019 – Enjoy a Christmas Afternoon Tea in the historic Long Room at Lord's, surrounded by paintings of the game's greatest players.
You might like these other food and drink events in London as well