Although I live in the north of England I’ve been fortunate to spend countless weekends in London over the years. There’s always something happening and I never tire of a visit to the capital. Hopefully on this four day visit I can introduce some lesser known attractions in addition to the city’s famous sights.
If a man is tired of London he is tired of life, for there is in London all that life can afford
To keep costs down we booked our train tickets 12 weeks ago when they were first released and at their lowest prices. My train arrived into King’s Cross station promptly at 7.15 pm. It’s almost four years to the day since the new western concourse was opened and I still marvel at its magnificent roof structure when passing through the station.
For travelling around London its best to use an Oyster Card these can either be ordered in advance on-line or purchased on arrival at a ticket office. Its much easier and cheaper than buying individual tickets for the underground and there is a daily ‘cap’ limit which is especially useful if you plan to make several journeys. Off peak fares are available any time at weekends but only after 9.30 am on weekdays so if you can delay making your first tube journey further savings can be made. The Oyster card can also be used on buses and some main line trains, London buses are now ‘cash free’ so it’s necessary to pay with either an Oyster or a contactless bank card when travelling by bus. Details and journey planning are available on Transport for London’s website.
We’d booked accommodation this weekend at the Vauxhall Travelodge. We often stay in Travelodges whilst in London as, apart from sleeping, we are rarely in the hotel and they offer good value for money in comfortable rooms. Vauxhall is a central location and has the added bonus of having a main line station as well as being on the Victoria Line. After checking in, we walked along the Thames Path as far as Westminster Bridge, approximately one mile away. This section of the riverside walk is always very quiet as people don’t seem to notice that the path continues beneath Westminstet Bridge. Along here is actually the best place to take photographs of the Palace of Westminster (Houses of Parliament and Big Ben) as you are directly opposite with the river Thames in the foreground.
We had a snack near the London Eye and wandered along the vibrant South Bank with its attractive shops and restaurants before walking back to the hotel.