London is a vibrant, cosmopolitan city full of history, heritage and culture. There are some 300 museums and art galleries to visit, around 6,000 restaurants to enjoy and endless shopping opportunities in the many stores and markets.
London has an extensive public transport system. Both the bus network and the underground network (‘the tube’) run frequent services and cover the city extensively, meaning that wherever you want to go, there will be a bus stop or an underground stop very close by. Delegates are advised to use the underground as the quickest and most efficient way of travelling around the city.
If you are planning on travelling extensively around the city, we recommend that you purchase a ‘travelcard’. This gives the user unlimited bus, underground and train travel across London for the day. An adult day travelcard costs £6.00 / $11.50 / €8.60 if purchased before 9:30am, or £4.70 / $9.00 / €6.80 if afterwards.
Taxis are commonly available and can be hailed from the street. Delegates are strongly advised to hail only licensed ‘black cabs’.
The UK currency is the pound sterling (£). Some larger stores in Central London may accept US Dollars or Euro. Credit cards are commonly accepted in all shops, restaurants, hotels and pubs.
Some London attractions that you might like to visit if you have time:
The London Eye
(Tube: Westminster or Waterloo). The British Airways London Eye forms a major feature of London's skyline. It is the world's highest observation wheel and offers passengers spectacular views of over 55 of London's most famous landmarks in just 30 minutes.
(Tube: Holborn or Russell Square). The imposing British Museum exhibits the works of man from prehistoric to modern times with collections drawn from all around the world. Famous objects include the Rosetta Stone, sculptures from the Parthenon, and the Portland Vase.
Tower of London
(Tube: Tower Hill). Take a free guided tour with one of the Yeoman Warders around one of the most famous fortified buildings in the world. Discover its 900 year history as a royal palace and fortress, prison and place of execution, mint, arsenal, menagerie and jewel house.
(Tube: Westminster). This architectural masterpiece is one of Britain's finest Gothic buildings. The scene of many coronations and marriages, it also houses the tombs of many of the country's notorious Kings and Queens, as well as the grave of the Unknown Warrior.
Houses of Parliament
(Tube: Westminster). Known officially as the ‘Palace of Westminster’, this is the official seat of the UK Parliament. The Palace is also home to ‘Big Ben’ - which in actual fact is not the clock tower itself, but rather the bell inside which strikes the hour.
(Tube: Blackfriars). The impressive Tate Modern is Britain's national museum of modern art. Housed in the former Bankside Power Station on the banks of the River Thames, the gallery displays major works by Matisse and Picasso as well as contemporary work, exhibitions and installations.
(Tube: Baker Street). See the famous waxworks of celebrities, and join in the interactive fun as you become a star for the night.
(Tube: Oxford Circus or Piccadilly Circus) The world famous toy store.
(Tube: Knightsbridge) One of the world's most prominent department stores, established in 1849 as a humble grocery store employing two assistants. Today, it offers everything from food to fashion, furniture to sportswear plus 20 in-store restaurants serving every kind of cuisine imaginable from pizza to sushi. Services range from piano tuning to fitting saddles. Must-see sights include the Food Halls, the Egyptian Hall and the Pet Department. At night the store is illuminated by 11,500 light bulbs.
(Tube: St James’ Park or Westminster). The official residence of the Royal Family. During the summer opening (2 Aug - 26 Sep) visitors may tour the 19 State Rooms, including the Throne Room, Picture Gallery and Ballroom, the largest room in Buckingham Palace used for investitures and State banquets. All the State rooms are opulently decorated with some of the finest pictures, tapestries and works of art from the Royal Collection. The extended visitor route includes a 450 metre walk through the south side of the Palace garden.
St Paul’s Cathedral
(Tube: St Paul’s). Sir Christopher Wren's famous cathedral church of the diocese of London incorporating the Crypt, Ambulatory and Whispering Gallery. Those who wish to pray at times when there is an admission charge may use St Dunstan's Chapel on the north side (free at any time).
General information on attractions in London:
Things to do in London
Things to do in London - shopping
Time Out guide to London
Travel and transport:
Transport for London
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