Visiting the Capital, or starting a new life in the city means having to navigate the streets and sights. We are going to help you with a few pointers as to how to get transport around to the places you want to go.
Transport in London
As with any big bustling city, London can appear quite daunting to plot your routes across. Luckily, London has several options for getting you across the city swiftly and efficiently.
The black cabs in London are famous for having passed ‘The Knowledge’. Passing this incredibly difficult test means that your driver literally knows every street in London like the back of his hand. Your driver will often tell you of little known places to visit if you are interested.
There are other taxis in London, these ‘private hire’ cabs are usually cars with signs showing this status, look for official badges from the Councils and TfL to say your driver is a licenced cab.
At night some people pose as taxis offering lifts from outside nightclubs and restaurants, be very careful before taking up the offer. It is safer to prebook or hail a black cab.
Transport on Buses
London has a fine network of buses. Daytime routes are regular and often quick. Here is a link to the key bus routes in Central London. This link will take you to the ‘spider routes’ for each borough. The famous night buses are a lifesaver for those who either party late or work late or early!
There are a number of tour buses around the centre of London. Some of these are heritage buses, lovingly restored. Or open-top so you can take in the sights.
Transport Rail- overground and underground
London has a huge network of rail lines crisscrossing the city. Many of them travel overground and duck down into the ‘tube’ network as they near the centre. The map of the Tube stations is not accurate to the streets above, as it was designed for simplicity by an electrical engineer. However, it is easier to navigate when reading it this way.
Overground stations link to the central network, here is a link to those maps.
Ever since the time Boris Johnstone was Lord Mayor of London and promoted cycling within the capital, it has remained a popular way of getting around. Cycle lanes and paths have been developed, and recent changes to the highway code have increased the rights of road users other than cars. Cycle paths are clearly marked and you can find a map here.
The Thames transport by river
Visitors often overlook the Thames as a major transport link. The riverboats are a wonderful leisurely way to make your way across and along the river, whilst taking in the sights. Some boats are faster than the roadways or the tube! You can find a map here. Many of the boats accommodate cycles and wheelchairs too.
The whole region of London is subject to a congestion charge for vehicles. The sheer volume of traffic has had the effect of making it frustratingly difficult to drive around the capital. Even locals often find it tough navigating as there are changes in roadworks, new cycle paths and one-way directions. Parking is extremely problematic and people fight over premium spaces. We do have parking at some of our hotels, so you can leave your car here during your stay, while you explore using other forms of transport. Do check the highway code before driving in the UK if you are unfamiliar with it.