London Calling: Yet another Reason to be in the British Capital This Holiday Season

True to its reflection of being the most loved city in the world, London now moves on to become the most visited place too.

A recent study projects that London will be the most frequented city in 2014. As per the Mastercard Global Destination Cities Index, the British capital is likely to welcome 18.7 million international tourists by the end of this year. This means Bangkok, which was world’s most popular city in terms of international visitors in 2013, will soon slip down to the second position. The index is currently in its fourth year and counts the opinion of the visitors who spend at least one night in 132 cities across the world.

Well, it seems we are not the only ones in awe with London – another 18.7 million fans also belong to the same league! But what makes London so endearing? We have our very own reasons listed below.

7. It’s Fashionably Edgy

The fashion quotient in London is always boiling up. But if you are looking for quirky trends at the Kings Cross or the Cranaby Street, you are knocking the wrong door. The best place to browse street style fashion is the Sunday Up Market on the Brick Lane. It showcases the hottest fashion items from upcoming designers, costume jewellery and vintage stuff. If fashion is what brings you to this runway city, a visit to this marketplace can be promising.

Sunday Up Market

6. The Dead are Equally Important Here

No freaking out! Unlike most tourist cities, London is home to the famous souls and fictional ghosts of likes of Oliver Twist, Shakespeare, Dickens, Sherlock Holmes and Samuel Pepys. Wish to see them in person? You can visit the Poet’s Corner at Westminster Abbey. The who’s who of British Literature lay in peace here.

5. Hopping Around in the City is Cheap – Literally...

Travelling from one place to another within the city wouldn’t burn a hole in your pocket. The tubes, the buses and the trains, everything is priced wisely. And if you have the mighty Oyster Card with you, nothing can stop you from saving big bucks.

4. And then there is the Mayor’s Bike

Not interested in the tubes or buses? Rent a bike to take on the town. London has an official bike sharing programme called the Barclays Cycle Hire Scheme. But since it is a brainchild of Mayor Boris Johnson, it’s lovingly called ‘Boris Bikes’. Take your bike and ride on to explore wonders like the Big Ben, the London Eye and the Buckingham Palace. London is quite a bike-friendly city.

3. It has got Views that Thrill

Go to the London Eye, and you know exactly what do we mean. As you enter the Millennium Wheel, the world literally comes down to the feet. 135 meters above the ground, you get 360 degree panoramic views of the entire city. You can see up to 40 KM, standing at one place. It’s more than thrilling, we guess.

London Eye View

2. Just the Right Place for Choco-addicts

No kidding! If you are looking for a real chocolate experience exclusively designed for adults, London is the place to be. The city is home to various chocolate boutiques, where you can find an assortment of chocolates. These include bars, handmade chocolates, delectable biscuits and a lot more. It’s a mouth-watering affair.

1. And You Needn’t Starve for Art Either

Hungry for some contemporary art? London won’t disappoint you. Enter the great Tate Modern. You will get the best of international modern art here, alluring you more than any other view in the city. The gallery holds contemporary art works dating from 1900 until today. A must-visit for art enthusiasts.

Tate Modern

You can’t find reasons enough to love the capital city of Britain. Here are some more grounds to declare London as your favourite city Top 20 Reasons to Visit London on a Holiday.

This is why we love London - feel free to drop your reasons to adore London in the comment box below.

I Loved London So Much that I Could Spend Rest of My Life Here – My London Love

The latest contributor to the My London Love series, Cristi Almaguer, couldn’t believe it when she finally got the chance to visit her dream destination – London. She and her husband took on the city streets all by themselves and explored every nook and corner. From the cultural history of the place to the hospitable nature of Londoners, everything left a lasting impact on Cristi’s heart! Join her in the heart-warming adventure she had in the royal city, by reading her travel account below:

Travel Story by Cristi Almaguer from Hidalgo, Mexico

Cristi“The buildings, the streets, and the people – everything left a lasting impression on me.”

When my husband suggested that we take a tour to London, I couldn’t help but agree. The city has always been one of my dream destinations so I grappled the opportunity to explore it with both hands! It’s an extraordinary place, steeped in a fine blend of distinct people and their diverse cultures.

We boarded a British Airways flight from Cancun to London. The on-flight experience was overwhelming. The service was excellent, the food was delectable and most importantly, the crew was very attentive. They paid heed to even the smallest needs of all passengers.

As I de-boarded the flight, I was greeted by the exemplary hospitality of Londoners. In fact, it was the first thing that caught my fancy. Since English isn’t my first language, I was having a hard time locating my hotel. So I approached a cop and thankfully he was kind enough to guide me with the way. He was extremely obliging.

We had booked the Gatwick Belmont Hotel for our stopover. Once I reached the hotel it was time for some rejuvenation. The hotel was very warm and hospitable. For me, it was a new experience altogether since I was new to the place, the people and the mannerisms. The rooms were clean and warm and the interiors were classy. The food served at the hotel was also scrumptious. I specifically loved the chicken roll, fish and chips, and all English breakfast. For desserts, the ice cream with chocolate bar suited us well.

Also, the staff was quite considerate. I approached the hotel receptionist with my queries related to transport and moving around London, in general. She not only helped me with the nearest tube station but also arranged a van to drop us off to the station. This is one thing I notably loved about Londoners. They are very straightforward and nice people, always ready to lend a helping hand.

After having a serene good night’s sleep at the hotel, next morning we were set to explore the British capital. I decided to explore the city with my husband only. When we two were together, we didn’t need a guide at all J And, I must admit, it was the best decision taken. Being on our own, we learned a lot more about the city than any guided tour could tell. Besides, there were no time constraints. We could stay out till as long as we wanted. We owned our time. And also, it was quite romantic.

So, the first place we headed to was the London Eye. It was a fantastic experience. Getting a view of London from 442 feet from above the ground was enthralling! And after that, cruising in the Thames and exploring its depth made us feel even nice. By the time we were through with the cruise ride, it was already dusk and we decided to go back to the hotel walking. The overall experience was splendid. In my opinion, it is best to discover the city on foot.

Changing of the Guards

Next morning we woke up only to embrace a beautiful London morning. The sky was clear so we decided to visit the Buckingham Palace. The very enormity of the place put us in awe. We were to be there during the Changing of Guards Ceremony. We walked along the procession from the Victoria station to the Buckingham Palace. Everything about the spectacle was just perfect! From the way the guards marched in harmony to the classical music playing in the backdrop, everything exhibited chivalry and royal charm.

Once the ceremony was over, we went ahead to explore one of the most significant museums in London – the British Museum. According to me, it is a must-see place as you find a perfect blend of culture and history under a single roof. We got to know so much about the origins of the vibrant British customs.

The cultural account of the city left an impact on me and I dearly wanted to take a part of it along with me. So, obviously, the next thing I aimed for was shopping. My husband was reluctant but gradually he gave in. We walked down to the Piccadilly Circus. This place houses some amazing shops. I came across this beautifully decorated showroom, Lush, that was all about perfumes and scents. I had never seen such an enormous collection of so many varied fragrances at one place. 

Piccadilly Circus

Next we explored a shop named BAPE. I think it was Japanese brand, but nevertheless, their collection of apparels was amazing. They sold all limited-editions. London is a heaven for shopaholics. We bought perfumes, t-shirts, souvenirs and shoes. On our way back, we also stopped by the Ben & Jerry’s ice cream parlour. They served flavours that I hadn’t even heard of before. My ice cream eating experience was redefined.

Piccadilly Circus became my favourite corner in London. As if the shopping extravaganza was not enough, the variety of food available there overwhelmed us. It is also a traffic roundabout so you get an earnest opportunity to meet and interact with locals. Moreover, it is situated very close to China Town, a happening place where you can find a rich mix of people and cultures.

Since we didn’t have much time left on us, we couldn’t visit the London Eye. Though, I was really looking forward to be there. And this brings me to the piece of advice I would like to share with all the people planning to tour London soon – you need minimum four days to explore the place. And it’s best to do so on your own. You get to learn a lot about the British capital.

London was an amazing experience! The buildings, the streets, and the people – everything left a lasting impression on me. I wish to come back to the city soon. In fact, I love it so much that I would love to come and live here for the rest of my life! The place is magical!

This was indeed a heart-to-heart account of London tour.  Did Cristi’s story take you back to the memorable time you spent in London? Please do share your experiences with us. We would love to know about your travel story and share it with the world. Please feel free to contact us at info@londonhotels4u.com. Have an experience to share but don’t know how to pen it down? Don’t worry! All you need to do is to fill a simple questionnaire and our team of writers will take care of the rest. It’s really just that simple! And now, do let us know how well you related with Cristi’s story? You may leave your comments below.

Why You Should Visit Brockley, South East London

London is a city with 32 small ’towns’ within it, each has its own sense of identity, history, and charm. A hidden yet magical gem, Lewisham is a multi-cultural borough and is a well known artistic hub with over hundreds of attractions and leisure venues. Brockley is one of the most cherished districts, located in the London Borough of Lewisham. The town is home to fine restaurants, comfortable hotels, cosy pubs, fashionable shops, and a pleasing village-like atmosphere. Here are some of the top best reasons to visit Brockley, South East London.

Images of Brockley London

Open Spaces

Brockley’s parks and recreation areas are part of the "green lung" of London. Along with other smaller areas like woodlands, ponds, and grasslands, the district has over 1185 acres of land described as Sites of Importance for Nature Conservation. Beckenham Place Park, Brookmill Park, and Blackheath are some of the key attractions that are perfect to enjoy a leisurely walk and to enjoy some time away from the hustle-bustle of London. The town is also home to wonderful playgrounds, where kids can play, enjoy sport, and discover fun exploring nature.

Coffee Shops

Brockley may not have the reputation of New York, but if you are in the mood to relax and sip a cup of coffee, the area can oblige you with its fine independent cafés. Browns of Brockley, The Waiting Room, and Chinwag are just a few names that offer you a unique London city feel. And the best part is that many of them offer free public ‘cupping sessions’ where locals and travellers can learn more about speciality coffee. For any coffee lover, it’s the best way to discover unique flavour profiles and learn about new verities of beans.

Ethnically Diverse Restaurants

There’s no doubt, it is a small town but every imaginable cuisine at all price levels are available. You will discover quality and originality in the ethnic food at a part of the price of any central London restaurant. Those who want to enjoy a mid-priced dining while sticking to their favourite beer taps; they can consider visiting The Orchard and The Gantry. For authentic Indian food, you can head to Nouvelle Spice Indian Cuisine and Everest Curry King. Meze Mangal is one of the best choices for Turks, while The New Cross House is perfect option for Brits.

Amazing Attractions

Do you remember the fifties era of glamour and phenomenal fashion? If yes, then Rivoli Ballroom is a must-see. Rewarded with a Grade II-listed title, it is the only undamaged fifties ballroom remaining in the capital. This ballroom hosts regular dance shows and has featured in number of movies and pop videos. Besides, Brockley Jack Theatre and Hill Station are some of the other attractions where you can whet your travel appetite. Brockley Jack Theatre shares a building with the Brockley Jack pub, where you can sit back and enjoy a beer or two.

Food Market

Of course, Oxford Street is like a temple for shopping enthusiasts and travellers. But, Brockley food market is also a great place to indulge and expand your culinary horizons. The market is home to hundreds of food stalls and vans, offering a wide range of locally sourced fruits, vegetables, meat, and more. But, if you are looking for ready-to-eat brunch meals, then you can try burritos and fish finger sandwiches.

Brockley is an ideal vacation spot for those who want to discover a unique side of London. These are just a few tourist spots that you can visit during your itinerary.

Travel from Dublin to London: A Practical Guide

Before You Leave
Travelling from Dublin to London
Getting around in London
Accommodation in London
Things to Do in London

Dublin to London

Are you planning a trip to London from Dublin sometime soon? Heartiest congratulations then, as we believe, visiting the British Capital ensures one amazing time. The city that is famous for its royal tradition and ancestry, along with growth and development and bustling nightlife, offers a lot to her visitors. London isn’t that different from Dublin in terms of whether, and owing to a large extent of Irish population staying in London, the city easily makes the Irish people feel at home. However, visitors often find the fast pace of the city quite intimidating. To help you perfectly plan your trip and get the maximum out of your visit to London, we have come up with a comprehensive travel guide for the Irish. The guide includes comprehensive information about travelling, staying and getting around in the capital, and what all you can do once you are in the capital, including the Irish club and bars, nightlife, events, shopping and more.

If you wish to have a completely hassle-free and well-organized journey, kindly continue reading our travel guide.

Before You Leave

Visa Requirements

Wondering if you need a visa or passport to travel from Dublin to London? Allow us to answer your travel queries here.

The native residents of Dublin should rejoice, as they can travel to London without furnishing any Visa documents. All you need to do is to carry your working passport and you are good to go. Other individuals, who wish to travel to London from Ireland, should first confirm if they meet the Visa norms or not. You can check whether you need to carry a visa or not, here.
Embassy Information

British Embassy In Dublin, Ireland

ADDRESS

29 Merrion Road, Ballsbridge, Dublin 4, Ireland.

TELEPHONE

+353 (1) 205 3700

FAX

+353 (1) 205 3885

WEBSITE

www.britishembassy.ie

E-MAIL

consular.dubli@fco.gov.uk

TIMINGS

Monday – Thursday: 9 am – 12.45 pm/2 pm – 5.15 pm;

Friday: 9 am – 12.45 pm/2 pm – 5.15 pm.



Embassy Of Ireland In London, UK

ADDRESS

17 Grosvenor Place, London SW1X 7HR.

TELEPHONE

+44 – 20 – 72352171

FAX

020 – 7201 2515

WEBSITE

www.embassyofireland.co.uk/

TIMINGS

Monday – Thursday: 9 am – 12.45 pm/2 pm – 5.15 pm;

Friday: 9 am – 12.45 pm/2 pm – 5.15 pm.


Currency Exchange

Ireland’s national currency is Euros, which however is not acceptable in London. Moreover, it is quite difficult to find enough currency exchange options in London, especially for Euros. And even if you do manage to find any authority providing exchange, the rate might get quite exorbitant. Thus, we recommend you carry enough Pound Sterling with you, especially if you are travelling via Ferry + Rail. You may also opt for other alternatives, such as traveller’s cheques, credit or debit cards etc. Lastly, you can still get the Euros exchanged to British Pound Sterling at various post offices, banks etc. You must totally avoid getting the currency exchanged at the airports, since they offer the worst and exorbitantly high exchange rates. In London, one can easily find a bevy of money exchanging shops near the Victoria Station. One such popular name is Thomas Exchange, providing competitive exchange rates. Besides, there is one more money exchange shop near the Marks and Spencer Showroom right outside the Liverpool Street Station. Furthermore, if you carry the ATM cards with you, you can get the currency exchanged while on the go, so that’s a pretty nice option too.

Travelling From Dublin to LondonDublin to London Map

Travelling from Dublin to London can be a lot of fun. From flights to bus rides, you can book anything to reach London, depending on the resources you have at your disposal and the travel experience you are looking for. Rest assured your journey from Dublin to London is going to be awesome, filled with heart-warming picturesque scenery. It is a short distance of nearly 464 Km, travel time depending solely on the choice of travel. And if you choose the right means of travel, you can also have a quick weekend break to the British capital, and be back without missing out on much of your work.

Let us now discuss various travel options available for reaching London from Dublin:

1. Sail and Rail from Dublin to London

Commuting to London via a ferry and rail is an experience in itself. You can easily take the ferry from Dublin Port, that will drop you to Holyhead (in Wales, UK), and from there you can take a train to Euston, London. The Euston railway station is situated in central London and there is an interlinked tube station as well, and thus you can travel around the city from there.

Here, you need to keep in mind a few things:
  • Firstly, do not think of walking down to Dublin Port from the City Centre. The entire way is quite confusing, and while in the middle of it, you would wish you’d taken a cab instead. Best bet? Take a bus to the port or a cab if you feel like it.
  • There are two types of ferries connecting Dublin and Holyhead – Fast and Slow. We do not recommend the fast one, especially if you are carrying vessels or have been prone to sea-sickness in the past.
  • Ferry has enough space for you to walk around peacefully. You can also carry snacks and enjoy the journey.
  • If you book a SailRail ticket you won’t have to book the ferry and train tickets separately. Just pay at once, and reach Euston without any further obligations.


You can get the ticket from the Dublin Port itself, and that ways you wouldn’t need a printer. At the port, you’ll get one Ferry ticket and another longer ticket, which is generally filled by hand. You are supposed to show the longer ticket prior to boarding the train from Holyhead, hence don’t miss it. Also, there are no specific seats reserved by this ticket. Sit at any empty seat that you can find and enjoy your ride to London.

2. Or Opt for Dublin to London Flights

The quickest and simplest way to reach London is via airplane. The entire journey would take hardly an hour, give and take a few minutes, but you’d surely enjoy amazing comforts on your way. Aer Lingus, City Jet, British Airways, Ryanair, etc, every leading airline has got their flights scheduled from Dublin to Ireland on a daily basis.

From Dublin, you can easily reach any of the international London Airports, i.e. Heathrow Airport, Gatwick Airport, Stansted Airport and London City Airport. However, since you are coming to explore the city, we recommend you book a flight to the London City Airport. This airport is located right in the heart of the capital, and hence you would save a lot of energy and resources travelling from Airport to various city attractions.

3. Dublin to London via Coaches

If you are in for overnight coach or bus rides, this option might be perfect for you. The route typically covers Birmingham and Milton Keynes, before terminating the travel in London. However, if you find it difficult to sleep during a bus ride, we suggest you consider other options for your travel.

Please Note

Before making the ultimate travel decision, you should know that with Buses or Ferry and Train rides, you don’t have to pay for carrying extra luggage; although you are solely responsible for the same. This is not the case with flights, as you need to pay for carrying extra luggage, but at the same time, the airlines resume responsibility for a safe carriage. Sail and Rail is surely the cheapest and considerably faster way to reach London, but again, make an informed decision after considering all the above mentioned factors.

Getting Around in London

London offers quite diverse means of communications to various commuters. In fact, the well planned commuting network often spoils the users with too much choice. There is a plethora of options available from arriving in London to getting around town. Below we shall discuss some of the most commonly used means of transportation in London.

London Underground Tube Stations1. London Tube

London Underground or the Tube is a smart way of getting around in the capital. There are 12 functional tube lines, and along with the Docklands Light Railway (DLR) and interlinking railway stations serves various parts of Greater London. The tube stations operate from 5 in the morning until midnight, except on Sundays where the operating hours are reduced. For the ease of communication and different fares, London tubes are divided in various concentric zones. Zone 1 and 2 operate in Central London and Zones 6 to 9 cover the outskirts of the capital. To reduce travel fares, consider buying a Visitor Oyster Card. Now, let’s see how tube stations will help in your journey from your arrival in London.

Arriving at Euston Railway Station – Finding your way in the city from the central railway terminus station, Euston, isn’t a difficult task at all. The Railway Station is interlinked with the Euston Tube Station, and hence you can easily hop on to the London Underground easily. The tube station operates in Travelcard Zone 1, connecting you with every major central London destination, including the City of Westminster and the West End. 

Arriving at Major Airports– You can easily make your way to central parts of London via tube stations regardless of which airport you come to. You might have to endure a little walk to reach the Underground from the terminal, which is particularly difficult if you are carrying a lot of luggage. However, need we even mention that this means of transport is amongst the cheapest? Thus, make the choice while considering various factors. In case you decide to travel via Tube, here is a comprehensive guide:

  1. Heathrow Airport–Piccadilly Line connects travellers from Heathrow Underground to Central London. Heathrow has 3 Underground stations, 1 for Terminal 1, 2 and 3, and 1 each for terminal 4 and 5.
  2. London City Airport–This airport is closest to Central London, and you can utilize the DLR (Docklands Light Railway) to reach Central London. DLR Stations offers interchangeable transfer to various transitory tube stations on the central line. Depending on where you intend to reach, you can plan a comfortable trip down to that particular station.

Here, please note that there are no direct London Underground lines connecting London Stansted and Gatwick Airports to Central London. We shall cover that under coaches, buses, and railway station. But first, let’s catch up on some safe travel tips while commuting via Tube:

  1. Try avoiding travel during rush hours. Morning rush hours extend from 7:30 am to 9:30 am and evening rush hours from 4:40 pm to 6:30 pm.
  2. Confirm the destination of the train before boarding. The destination station is mentioned at the front of the train.
  3. While using escalators, stand on your right.
  4. Prior to boarding, allow passengers to de-board first.
  5. When you enter the tube, move to sides, else, you’d be blocking the doorway for other passengers.
  6. You can download the latest tube map here.
Visitor Oyster CardTravel Smartly with Visitor Oyster Cards

Oyster Cards are plastic smart cards that can be used as against to paper tickets. You can top up the card at once, and use it for a number of journeys ranging from Tube, DLR, Tram, London Overground, and most of the National Rail Services. Travelling via Visitor Oyster Card is a smart choice since:

  1. It saves time, which otherwise would get wasted while standing in queues and buying tickets.
  2. It saves money, as the paper tickets are a lot costlier as compared to Oyster Cards.
  3. The card is valid for many journeys taken via public transports.
  4. There is a daily price cap, surpassing which visitors get to travel for free during the rest of the day.
  5. You get to enjoy discounts on Emirates Airline Cable Car and Thames Clipper River Services.

2. Buses
  1. London 

Buses

The popular red buses of London offer a convenient and cheap means of travel. Besides, when you travel by buses, you enjoy a lot of sightseeing along the way. In recent years, the bus network has undergone several improvements, and hence, now offers much more comfort and ease. You can use the Visitor Oyster Cards to pay for your bus fare as well. With travel card in place, the bus journey would cost you around £1.45, which is a lot less when you compare it with £2.40 by cash payment. However, it is important for you to have an Oyster Travel Card in place because from 6 July 2014 onwards no one will accept the bus fare paid in cash. The accepted modes of payments include Travelcard, Oyster Card, Visitor Oyster Card or a Contactless Payment Card issued in the UK.

You can reach the central parts of London from the airport via various Bus Routes.

From Heathrow–You can use the N9 night bus to reach Central London (Trafalgar Square) from Heathrow. One bus leaves in every 20 minutes. You need only pay the standard fares (£1.40 Visitor Oyster Card/ £2.40 cash), even for the night’s journey. Even if you don’t have an Oyster Card, you can still get one at the Heathrow Airport itself. Thus, we recommend you buy that before travelling ahead.

From Gatwick – An inexpensive express bus service connects Gatwick Airport to Earls Court / West Brompton within one hour. The bus service runs 24 X 7 hence you can take the journey any moment.

From London City Airport –Since the airport is so close to the Central London, you get to enjoy several bus routes connecting the two. Bus Route 473 connects travellers to Stratford, North Woolwich, Silvertown and Prince Regent DLR Station. 474 Bus Route connects travellers to Canning Town, Silvertown, East Beckton and North Woolwich.

From Stansted Airport – Although bus routes are quite scarce, travellers can still take a coach service to reach various parts of Central London.

Most of the buses provide a disabled friendly access, and hence ensuring a comfortable and convenient travel experience. Children under 11 years of age, senior citizens, and students are entitled to travel discounts.

London Coaches3. London Coaches

Coach services serve the entire UK, with some even connecting to different parts of Europe. Travel via coaches is cheaper and convenient, but often takes longer than train transportation. Victoria Coach Station is the principal station in London. Situated in the heart of the capital, this Coach Station also connects to Victoria railway and tube station on the mainline. Besides, it also contains several useful shops and other facilities, including the left-luggage office.

When you take a bus journey from Dublin to London, you are dropped at the Victoria coach station. It is good in a way that you can easily reach the intended parts via London Underground.

One can also avail the coach services from different Airports, such as

  1. EasyBus offers a 24 X 7 low costing express bus service between Stansted and Central London. The journey often is direct, without any stoppages and takes near one hour and 15 minutes. If you book online, the cost of one way travel is £2.
  2. National Express makes available several coach services between the Central Bus Station of Heathrow to Victoria Coach Station. Depending on the route you choose, the journey may take from 40 minutes to 1 hour and 30 minutes. The services operate between 5:35 am until 9.40 pm, with a standard single ticket costing £6.
  3. you can opt for private shuttle to central London, especially if you are carrying extra luggage.


4. TrainsLondon Local Trains

There is a well laid out network of train serving various parts of London and also going beyond. Train journeys are often very relaxed and luxurious and also provide a peep through the intimate culture and lives of Londoners. If you have flown down to London, let us explain how train can help your reach Central London easily:

From Heathrow–The Heathrow Express connects the airport and the Central London. Trains leave in every 20 minutes and offer complete luxury and comfort. Train fares for adults cost £21 if booked online, or £26, if you are booking onboard. You may book your train journey from Heathrow to Central London here.

From Stansted–In order to reach Central London in the quickest time possible, travellers should book a seat in Stansted Express. The train begins operation at 5.30 am, continuing till 11.45 pm. A standard cost for an adult seat is £23.40, and the journey scheduled to terminate at the Liverpool Street Station takes nearly 50 minutes, also stopping at Tottenham Hale Station.

From Gatwick –To reach Central London at the soonest from Gatwick, hop on to the Gatwick Express. The express line connects the Southern Terminal of the Gatwick Airport with the Victoria Station, and operates between 4.35 am to 1.35 am.

Besides, you can also book a First Capital Connect Train from the Gatwick Airport to St Pancras International, Farringdon, Blackfriars, City Thameslink and London Bridge. Moreover, during the day time, you can also take the Southern train from Gatwick to London Victoria, that also brushes across Clapham Junction and East Croydon. If interested, you may book your tickets here.

From London City Airport –The Docklands Light Railway (DLR) connects travellers from the City Airport to various Central London and other destinations. With thorough disabled access, DLR provides a comfortable and stress-free transfer.

5.  Local Trains

These rail services are spread all across the city and often extend beyond the network covered by the Tube Stations. Most of the local trains provide easy access to various tube stations and other popular locations. Consequently, they are widely used by people staying in the outskirts to easily access the central parts of London. The trains accept Visitor Oyster Cards as mode of payment.

There are various frontrunners managing the locals. These include the Silverlink, SouthEastern Railway, London Overground, First Capital Connect, Greater Anglia, and Southern Railway.

London Taxi6. Cabs

Your visit to London isn’t complete without experience a ride in the quintessential black cabs of the city. The official taxis of London, these cabs are available at various noteworthy places, including various tube and rail stations, airports and several popular tourist destinations in London. One can book these cabs via phone.

After arriving in London, if you want to luxuriously travel from the airport to a designated destination, cabs are the best way out. You can catch a cab from every major airport in London.

Hiring Cabs  in London

Any cab with an illuminated yellow TAXI sign in the front is up for hire. Cabs run on meter and a minimum fare is of £2.40. Additional charges may apply if it is Christmas or the New Year’s, or you have hired a black cab from the Heathrow. Also, most of the cabbies accept debit and credit cards, however you should confirm with the driver before starting the journey. Paying by cards may call for some extra charges, hence confirm with the driver first.

Travellers are advised to only opt for licensed black cabs. There are various un-booked minicabs, which are illegal in the capital. You must avoid the unlicensed cabs, as they are not only illegal but also unsafe and uninsured.

The choice of your stay in London depends on which parts you are planning on visiting. Accommodations near central London are costlier than the rest, but there are various mystery hotels that you may book, which provide the same luxury and comfort but at discounted prices.

Besides, since you are travelling, we’d recommend you stay near the most frequently used mode of communication. Like we mentioned earlier, London City Airport is central located within the city, Hence, by booking your accommodation near the city airport, you are more than likely to cut short on a lot of inconvenience and expenditure on commutation. Alternatively, you can book your stay near Heathrow, Gatwick and Stansted airports.

Moreover, accommodations ranging from 5-star hotels to boutiques and rather cheap hotels are also available near major tube and railway stations. If you are travelling via train, why not book your lodgings near the Euston station. That way, you’d get to stay in a central location and enjoy sightseeing at your own comfort and pace. Alternatively, you can also book your accommodations around the Victoria Station, and enjoy easy connectivity to both Victoria Coach station and tube station.

If you are looking for various other hotel deals and places to stay, you may explore Londonhotels4u.com further to find other lucrative options.

London being a land of diverse cultures and traditions, offers a delectable potpourri of different experiences. For any explorer visiting the capital, there is no dull day. Let’s now look at the various places you can explore and other things that you can (and might we say, must) do while you are in London.

London SightseeingLondon Sightseeing

From breathtakingly elegant royal places, to world renowned museums and art galleries to various chic and popular squares and corners, London offers you a rich mix of sites to visit. Some of the prominent places that you must visit are:

  • Trafalgar Square – Trafalgar Square has been one defining emblem of the city. Your visit to the capital isn’t complete without a visit to this distinguished landmark, which carries the Nelson Column. Besides, this is the concluding point of various cultural events, parades and marches and more. Thus, if you intend to explore the true tradition of London, do visit or stay near Trafalgar Square at least once.
  • Westminster – The city of Westminster is definitely a must visit for anyone, especially if you wish to explore the rich cultural past of London. Every monument and site of Westminster oozes sheer opulence and affluence. Do visit the Westminster Abbey, Cathedral, Big Ben, and the Palace of Westminster for an exquisite time.  London Eye, with winsome views of the river Thames is also located closely to these attractions. Besides, various famous art galleries and museums like Tate Britain, National Gallery, and National Portrait Gallery etc are all located here.
  • The City of London – The city carries the best of culture and contemporary development of the capital. Along with being the financial centre of London, encompassing the skyscrapers and chic corporate buildings, the City also contains the popular Tower Bridge, St Paul’s Cathedral, and the Tower of London.

St Patrick

Irish Events in London

Being the land of cultural diversity, London shows a lot of tolerance and acceptance of different cultures. Once we wrote this interesting blog post about the St. Patrick’s Day in London, an Irish event that is celebrated with a lot of pomp and show. You’d love it in the city, if you are visiting the capital around St. Patrick’s Day. Other than that, do consider participating in various popular London events, including the biggest street carnival, the Notting Hill Festival, London LGBT Pride, Changing of the Guards, Chelsea Flower Show, Great Britain Beer Festival and London Fashion Week are some of the most sought after events. Besides, the city is particularly famous for its Christmas and New Year celebrations.

London Night Life

Being the nightlife capital of England, London captivates you too much to just go and sleep at night. Various nightclubs like Ministry of Sound, Fabric and Koko are scintillating. If you want to make the most of your night, do consider visiting the Soho area. A paradise for the young and adventurous, Soho also sees a lot of participation from the LGBT community, with various pubs and bars catering solely to them. Toucan is an Irish pub located in Soho, and if you are looking for other Irish pubs in the capital, we recommend visiting Auld Shillelagh in Stoke Newington and Boston Arms in Junction Road.

Shopping in London

London has a reputation for making shopaholics indulge in their sinful pleasure. Oxford Street, Regents Street, Knightsbridge, Spitalfields and Bond Street are all ultimate destinations for shopping enthusiasts. Moreover, carrying the imprints of London’s ancestry, these places are a heritage site in themselves. If you’d like to know further about shopping in London, go read our self-explanatory blog post dedicated to shopping streets in London. Besides, if you are looking for a nice shopping experience, you might want to visit various popular shopping stores in London, such as Harrods, Harvey Nicholas, and Westfield Shopping Centre etc.

At last, we want to wish you oodles of luck on your trip to London. We hope our guide comes in handy for all of you and you guys have a time of your life in London. If you have got any further questions, or would like to say something, drop in your opinions in the comments section below.

It was Blissful Discovering London on My Own – My London Love

Adam Burt, our latest contributor to My London Love series has always been smitten with everything British. Being an explorer at heart, he decided to board the train to the British Capital and explore various landmark establishments. From visiting Sherlock to looking for Frozen’s dolls to exploring various geeky and Fan-boy destinations in London, Adam’s travel story is full of such interesting tales. Tap into the bliss that he felt while visiting London on his own, by reading his personal experiences below:

          Adam Burt from Leeds, UK
 Adam Burt“More than the amazing geeky souvenirs, London filled me up with beautiful experiences that I would remember for life.”

I have always been fascinated with the British Culture –British Landmarks, British Flag, and even the All English Breakfast. So when time presented the opportunity to visit the British Capital, I just couldn’t resist it. I booked my train from Leeds to London. On the Leeds station, I remember feeling very nostalgic and ambivalent. I was happy that I’d finally be visiting London, but I was also sad that I wouldn’t get to see my family and be with my cats for the next few days. Did I tell you that I have got 4 cats back at home? Anyway, I hopped on to the train, only focusing on the thrill and excitement of visiting the city that I so much love.

By the time I reached King’s Cross, there wasn’t much room left for the exploration. Also, I felt wired down with the entire train journey. Hence, I decided to check into an accommodation near King’s Cross itself, and relax for a little while.

The next morning, I distinctly remember waking up and feeling this absolute bliss. As I stared out of the window of the hotel, the feeling ultimately sank in. Finally, I was in London!!! And the city is truly incredible!

Not being able to restrict my excitement, I hurried up with the breakfast. On second thoughts, I wish I had chosen a better accommodation though, one that would provide an All English Breakfast, or at least a proper one, while we are at it.Anyway, not letting the unpleasant breakfast ruin my day, I began with exploring the city on my own. To start with, I visited Madame Tussauds and Sherlock Holmes Museum. The stretch between the two museums also flaunts a lot of interesting shops and I bought a lot of cool and interesting gifts, souvenirs and other items from there.

Adam at Toys R Us

Ever since I watched Frozen, I had wanted to own Anna and Elsa dolls. I searched for the same at Oxford Street, and although the place is any shopper’s paradise, I couldn’t find the dolls there. No regrets though, as I easily got the dolls at TOYS R US store in Queensway, London. It’s an amazing toy store, and I personally recommend people to visit that place at least once. And while we are at it, Tokyo Toys Store is another such epic store in London that sells anything from Anime to Manga.

Over the following days, I explored the British Capital to the fullest. I travelled around Shaftesbury Avenue, British Library and British Museum (the museum is simply magnificent), Nelson’s Column, Big Ben (it won my heart), London Eye, Tower of London, Tower Bridge and Westminster Abbey. A lot of these places have enough shopping options, something that helped me collect gifts and souvenirs as I went about travelling and exploring.

Tower Bridge

To all the geeks and Fandom lovers reading this post, I’d suggest you all must visit the Forbidden Planet in the Shaftesbury Avenue. It has awesome collection of geeky materials, ranging from various super-heroes stuff, to comics, to Star Wars to Doctor Who and more.

I had to cut my trip short, and still regret that couldn’t take the guided tour of Wembley Stadium, since it was closed at that time. Next time I visit the place I would definitely take that guided tour to London, and perhaps stay at a place serving the All English Breakfast.

However, this doesn’t take away the amazing time I had in London. It is one of those cities that you can enjoy completely on your own. On the last day, I still remember carrying 3 bags with me, as I had bought so many gifts and souvenirs for everyone. But more than the things in my bags, London filled me up with so many beautiful memories and enriching experiences, which would always stay with me, no matter where I am.

Another fine experience comes to an end. Did you have a short trip down the memory lane while reading Adam’s experiences? If you would like to reach out and share your travel stories with us, please feel free to contact us at info@londonhotels4u.com. You need not be a professional writer to have your story published here. Just fill a short questionnaire and our team of writers would work on your story.It’s really just that simple! And now, do let us know how much you enjoyed going through this geeky and explorative travel escapade? Drop in your comments below.
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