When tourists visit the UK, they are drawn to the centre of London. The bright lights of the West End, the iconic architecture of Buckingham Palace, and the spectacle of the London Eye are certainly alluring. However, accommodation right in the centre of things is never cheap, and it’s rarely as effortless as you might need. Those that are in the UK know that ‘just outside’ of these tourist hotspots can offer the holidaymaker a lot more of London than they thought.
The M25 is the outermost ring road for London. Within this motorway circle are the affluent suburbs commuters love to live in. They offer leafy environments, bigger houses, and less pollution. Move in a little closer, and you have the North Circular – London’s original ring road. This is busy and passes through a number of residential and key business centres that serve this area. So why are these parts of London ignored?
Perhaps some of the most convenient areas of London are the ones that are still served by London Underground and the Night Bus services. This means you can stay as late as you want at Piccadilly Circus or the West End comedy clubs. You’re still just a few minutes from your accommodation. You might be staying somewhere like the Dorsett Hotel Shepherds Bush or a nationwide hotel chain in Barking. East or West, you can be served well, without being stuck right in the middle. Best of all, these areas provide their own attractions and delights for the tourist.
If you are accommodated just outside of London, you are likely to enjoy plenty more choice of accommodation. This can include private rooms, apartments, bed and breakfast, and hotels. This might better suit your circumstances. You’re less likely to be penalised for taking your car and parking it at your hotel too! The congestion charges are due to change soon, so make sure you check what you will owe before you travel.
So what more can outer London offer? There are more parks, commons, and heaths to explore. Each will offer a better variety of view too. There are plenty of acclaimed theatres and arts houses to enjoy too. Places like Wimbledon are home to world class eateries, and Enfield offers a superb array of independent retail outlets. Each area is different, so why not try more than one?
How can you get in and out of London from the outer reaches? The underground system is one of the quickest and most efficient modes of transport. You pay for a travel card to last the day or the whole week. This can usually be used to cover your cost of travel on the buses and some overground trains too. Check which zones you need. You may be able to save some money.
If you really love spending time in London, don’t be afraid to explore what is just beyond the tourist hotspots. There is an endless amount of things to see and do, and every area has its own unique character too. What is your favourite area of London in spring?