If you are coming to England chances are someone told you or you read somewhere you need to try the afternoon tea. Going to an afternoon tea is almost like watching the change of Royal Guards, aside from the fact that the first costs around 50 pounds and the later is free of charge (not free of hassle!).
I have been to 3 different locations for tea, so far. A very traditional one at the Ritz Hotel, one inside a beautiful and must visit store (Fortnum&Mason) and another more contemporary at Sketch. Great experiences if tea and finger food is what you are looking for. This is basically what you are paying for when you go to tea, savory sandwiches and sweet little treats:
You can also add champagne to your tea (price goes up of course). There are variations on the food depending where you go but they all resemble what you see above. Waiters will bring scones (plus jam and cream) at some point and you can order refills of everything. Prices don't change much from one place to the other, so there are two things to consider when picking a place to go: (1) the quality of the tea served if tea is your thing (like it is mine) and the ambience (traditional, fancy hotel, contemporary and different, and so on).
I wrote about my favorite Sketch here, a combination of beautiful and modern ambience, food and quality tea. Ritz second for the ambience and tea (it does not get any more traditional!), third Fortnum and Mason which despite having great teas lacked in ambience for me.
Get inspired here and don't forget to make reservations, a must.
FORTNUM & MASON
SKETCH (more here)