London

England, United Kingdom

CITY GUIDE

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The United Kingdom (U.K) comprises of four nations; Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland and England. The U.K may look small on a map but it certainly is big in personality. 

London, England's capital with a population of 8.9 million people, is where we currently call home and have done so for the past five years. With buildings dating back to 190-225 BC, London is full of culture, diversity and some damn interesting history. The city is scattered with green parks, beautiful trees and the famous snaking river Thames dividing the city into two.

England is popular for many things; drinking tea, rainy weather, football (soccer), the Royal family, theaters, bridges, Big Ben, Harry Potter and is the home to some iconic music legends.

This city guide will direct you to all the best places to explore throughout London as well as breaching into other wonderful places throughout the United Kingdom.

Tips for visiting London

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MONEY (£)

British money is called Pound (£). £1 roughly equals:

  • European Euro: €1.13

  • Australian Dollar: $1.75

  • USA Dollar: $1.37
    (last updated 2nd January 2020)

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BEER

Brits love nothing more than a pub and a beer. There are many distilleries around Greater London and the UK or you can try many locally brewed beers in the pubs. A pint of beer will set you back between £4.50-6.50 in London. Outside of London in other cities, you will notice beer is considerably cheaper in local pubs, £2.50-4.50.

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WEATHER

London experiences all seasons throughout the year. Being part of the Northern hemisphere, the summer months sit between June-August with 14-18 hours of sunlight and in the winter months of December - February where daylight is as little as 6-8 hours per day. 

 

The best time to travel to London is of course in the warmer periods between April - October with weather ranging between 12-28+ degrees. In winter, temperatures can drop to the minus' during the day and generally fluctuates to no more than 10 degrees. 

 

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PICTURESQUE

London is full of wonderful masterpieces ready to be snapped. From parks to buildings to people and art, London truly has everything a city should offer plus so much more. Enjoy exploring because with every corner there is something different around the other side.

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SAFETY

London is a safe place to visit but like any European cities, you will need to aid caution of pick-pocket and theft. Ensure you always check your Government's travel advice before traveling.  

Top 6 things to do in London

1. Visit the Markets

There are many popular markets in London scattered from North, East, South to West. Some markets are notorious for their street food whilst others are for their flowers, antiques, books or thrift clothing. There are plenty of farmer's markets scattered throughout the City on Saturday's and some Sunday's too if you fancy something a little closer to home.

  

To find out which markets you should visit and where to find them, read Ultimate guide to London's markets.

3. Visit London's free museums
One thing that London have absolutely nailed is all the free museums. When I say all, I mean there are loads. 

 

5. Soak in all the history and buildings

There are so many beautiful building's throughout London that it can be somewhat confusing to know what they all are, and how to locate them. Most of London's most famous historical buildings are actually not that far from each other and easy to reach on foot.

 

For our guide which will take you to all the historical landmarks by foot and a few of our favorite 'not to miss' places - see our blog: London's Historical Landmark Guide.

 

2. Wander the Parks 

London has some truly wonderful green spaces which are deceptively big. Most are within close proximity and worth walking between by foot. If you want to get a great free view of London, visit Primrose hill in Green park. Once at the top you will realize how flat London is, as well as how spectacular.

 

If you are lucky with a summers day and you want to be particularly British, buy some beers or a bottle of wine, some food and have a picnic in the park. Just remember to take your rubbish with you when you leave.

 

4. Book a ticket for the Theater

Ahhh...London's Theater's. If you need any excuse to watch a theater show then being in London could not make for a better reason.

6. Enjoy a beer in a local pub

It is no secret that London, or England for that matter, is packed full of pubs. After years of living in London it continues to surprise us how uniquely different they are to one another.

To think that a quarter pubs have closed their doors since 2000 due to financial pressures is baffling when you consider how many you will walk past in a space of a mile. Support the local pubs by enjoying a meal and a beer during your visit to London.

Transport in London

Underground
London's Underground is a web of tube lines. It can be quite overwhelming if you look at an underground tube map but it truly is a wonderful masterpiece. 

Oyster card or contactless

They come every 1-5mins

Londoners are not a forgiving lot when it comes to tube etiquette. There are many unwritten rules in the London Underground that are worth taking note of.

- Have your card ready to tap before approaching the card readers; lines form far to quickly behind someone fumbling around in their purse looking for their card, especially in central tube stations.

- Most central stations will have escalators with a tube map at the bottom. Hottest tip you should take home is do not take one step off the escalator and stand looking at the map. It happens more than you think and because English people are too polite to ask you to move, they will instead risk breaking a leg to step around you. Walk away from the escalator and spend as long as you need looking at the map, but please avoid blocking entrances and exits.


- The Underground platforms can certainly reach decibels higher than you would like (screeching of the trains), but once you step inside the tube that all changes. Traveling on the tube is one of the quietest places you will come across in London - talking is not prohibited on the trains but you will notice how utterly silent everyone is, no matter how late in the night. If you are going to have a conversation on the tube, be mindful that anyone within 10 meters of you will probably be listening.

- Although Londoners may look like the most miserable people on Earth, they will happily help you if you ask. The tube map can be very confusing to a newbie and after all, London is the tourism epicenter of England therefore locals are use to pointing you in the right direction.


Overground



Buses

The famous red double decker buses.


Bicycle


Top Tip
Download the app Citymapper onto your phone. Citymapper has been an absolute lifesaver during our time in London. You simply type in where you want to go and it will show you many alternative routes using all of London's public transport, as well as walking or cycling. If there are delays on London's underground or overground networks (trust me it happens more than you think), the app will inform you and provide alternative routes. It will also tell you how long the journey should take to allow you to plan ahead.

A second tip is to make sure you look at your phone above ground. The app does not work without phone signal or WiFi.

 

London's airports

Best places to stay in London

Our favourite weekend getaways