London is the most elegant, stylish, historical travel destination. Here is a quick London guide with my preferred places.
End of November, I spent a long weekend in London enjoying the Christmas ambience.
Ryanair flys to Stansted Airport. From the airport, Stansted Express is the quickest way into Central London. The train station is located below the airport terminal, trains depart every 15 minutes. I have arrived to Liverpool Street within 45 minutes. Best option is take a black cab to my hotel, St Martins Lane. (4 km costs around 17 GBP)
A classical London experience is to have a ride in one of the black cabs. London’s official taxis, black cabs can be hailed in the street or booked from the hotels. If the Taxi light is illuminated, it is available. The taxi drivers have a detailed test in order to be approved called “Knowledge test”. We had a small talk with the taxi driver about this test, he told he needed to memorise every street in the London centre. It took him 4 years to study and pass the test, memorising around 300 routes, 25 000 streets.
The location of our hotel is perfect, located at the lively St Martins street, only 5-10 minutes walk to main attractions such as Big Ben and Buckingham Palace. There are majority of restaurants in this area and they are very crowded in the weekends. The hotel also has a very good Cuban restaurant and a very elegant “Light Bar”. Be well dressed and enjoy the cocktails.
Another London classic is to have a bus tour (hop on-hop off). It takes 2-3 hours to complete the tour and costs around 23 GBP.
Big Ben is the nickname for the Great Bell of the clock at the Palace of Westminster in London. It was completed at 1859. This is one of the symbols of London, most photographed place.
It is also known as the Millennium Wheel and is one of the largest observation wheels in the world. (135 meters) The Eye was opened in 2000. It is the most popular paid tourist attraction in the United Kingdom: there are over 3.5 million visitors annually.
I preferred to take the boat from Big Ben to tower bridge. (Mana thames clippers, it costs 7,5 GBP from Westminster to Tower Millennium. Best way to visit London is to buy the combined cards. I will spend most of my time shopping, I chose the single trip.
Tower bridge is the other most photographed place in London. It is a suspension bridge built in 1886 – 1894, crosses River Thames. Best times to photograph is probably blue hour. Unfortunately I did not have the chance in this trip, maybe next time.
London is always very elegant, fascinate and has a special style. There are around 300 stores an at the Oxford street. It starts from Marble Arch , crosses with other shopping street, Regent street. Probably one of the best times to visit Oxford street is the Christmas time. It is Europe’s busiest shopping street, with around half a million daily visitors,
More popular shopping places are Convent Garden and Camden Town. A weekend is not enough to explore London. I have a long of list of places that I would like to visit next time: Buckingham palace, Chinatown, one of the Theatres and elegant Kensington area.
There are plenty of nice restaurants, Indian, Chinese and Japanese food is quite popular. I highly recommend Hakkasan Hanway Place, great design and delicious Chinese food. An early reservation is a must, because this place is very popular and busy.