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London

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Travel Guide Europe United Kingdom England London

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Introduction

Piccadilly Square, London

Piccadilly Square, London

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London is a cultural melting pot where people from around the world have found a home, a legacy of their colonialist past and a great contributor to its vibrant culture today: according to the 2001 census, over a quarter of the population of London was born outside the United Kingdom. Home to Big Ben, the Queen of the United Kingdom, the Tower of London, Piccadilly Circus, Buckingham Palace and fish and chips in your local, London provides days of distraction for the first time tourist. For return visitors, London's size and diversity offer something new to see on every trip. The city is the biggest in the UK and one of the biggest metropolitan regions in Europe with almost 14 million inhabitants.

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Neighbourhoods

London consists of the City of London, 32 boroughs and two liberties, which are informally divided into the following sub-regions.

City of London

How, you may be wondering, can there be a City of London within London itself? Because the modern municipality - the Greater London Authority - does not govern the actual City of London.

The City of London itself is located on the north bank of the Thames in the eastern part of the modern city centre. This was the Roman city of Londinium, and in its modern incarnation it is the world's largest international financial centre. It is a separate Ceremonial County from the Greater London and occupies a square mile, in comparison to the 609 square miles (approximately 1,500 square kilometres) of Greater London. Its cathedral is St Paul's.

Central London

Big Ben

Big Ben

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Central London, like any other city centre in the world, is the place where the hive of activities and sights are concentrated. There is no official definition for the Central London boundary. Colloquially, Londoners refer Central London as the Zone 1 of the city's public transportation fare zoning system. Zone 1 covers the City of London; part of the boroughs of Camden, Islington, Kensington & Chelsea, Lambeth, Southwark, and Tower Hamlets; and the City of Westminster.

The only borough with a city status within Greater London is the City of Westminster, a couple of miles upstream adjacent to the west of the City of London. This is the seat of government, and its protestant cathedral is the church of St Peter's, otherwise known as Westminster Abbey.

West London

West London is the area on the west side of London, on the north bank of the River Thames. The boroughs in this unofficial sub-division are Brent, Ealing, Hammersmith and Fulham, Harrow, Hillingdon, Hounslow, and Kensington and Chelsea.

North London

The London boroughs of Barnet, Camden, Enfield, Haringey and Islington are located in the area known as North London.

East London

The north eastern part of London – the east of the north bank of the River Thames – is commonly referred to as East London. The boroughs in East London are Barking and Dagenham, Hackney, Havering, Newham, Redbridge, Tower Hamlets and Waltham Forest. The Summer Olympics in 2012 will be held on this side of the city.

South East London

South East London, the eastern half of the south bank of the River Thames in London, is occupied by the boroughs of Bexley, Bromley, Greenwich, Lewisham and Southwark.

Popular attractions in the south east include the Cutty Sark, Maritime Museum and the Royal Observatory, home of 0° longitude, the Prime Meridian.

South West London

South West London is the western half of the south bank of the River Thames in London. The boroughs in this part of London are Croydon, Kingston upon Thames, Lambeth, Merton, Richmond upon Thames, Sutton and Wandsworth.

Others

Other boroughs within Inner London include Southwark, Hackney, Hammersmith and Fulham, Lambeth, Southwark, Tower Hamlets, and Wandsworth. Just east of the city in Tower Hamlets is Brick Lane is the heart of "Banglatown" in the east London Borough of Tower Hamlets, a street which runs from Bethnal Green, through Spitalfields and down to Whitechapel. Brick Lane has been the focus of several films and books, most recent being "Brick Lane" a book by Monica Ali - which was later made into a film. Tarquin Halls book "Salaam Brick Lane" was also about this wonderful part of London. Brick Lane is close to Aldgate, Aldgate East or Whitechapel tube stops.

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Sights and Activities

Museums and Galleries

Further information: London Museums

British Museum

British Museum

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There is no shortage of world class museums and galleries in London and best of all, many of them can be entered for free, although usually there is a "suggested" donation.

Central London

  • British Museum - The British Museum is one of the world's great museums. Much content is loot from years of colonialism. It has especially notable Assyrian, Celtic, Egyptian, Greek and Roman collections, and it also houses the Elgin Marbles from the Acropolis of Athens, and the famous Rosetta Stone. Its Great Court is of architectural interest in its own right. Leave plenty of time to take it all in. Karl Marx wrote "Das Kapital" in the Reading Room.
  • Sir John Soane's Museum - Sir John Soane's Museum is the house of Sir John Soane (1753-1837), an architect and eclectic collector.
  • National Gallery - National Gallery houses over 2,300 paintings dating from the mid-13th century. The collection, which also includes paintings of Leornado da Vinci, Michelangelo, Rembrandt and Vincent van Gogh, belong to the British public. Entry to the main collection is free.
  • National Portrait Gallery - National Portrait Gallery is a collection of portraits of historically important and famous British people.
  • The Shard - The Shard is the tallest building in Western Europe, its crystalline facade transforming the London skyline with a multi-use 310-metre vertical city of high-quality offices, world-renowned restaurants, the 5-star Shangri-La hotel, exclusive residential apartments and the capital's highest viewing gallery, The View from The Shard, offering 360° views. Address: Tooley St, London, Greater London SE1 9EX

West End

  • Science Museum - Science Museum has a collection of over 300,000 items, including the famous Stephenson's Rocket, Puffing Billy (the oldest surviving steam locomotive) and the first jet engine. It is not only a museum to see things, but also to touch and do things. Great for kids.
  • Natural History Museum - Natural History Museum includes some of the finest collections of animals, stuffed and skeletal, past and present, in the world – including some spectacular dinosaur skeletons. The museum has a collection of over 17 million specimens, though most of them are hidden behind the scenes.
  • Madame Tussauds - Madame Tussauds has a collection of waxwork models of famous people in this museum set up by an émigrée from the French Revolution, Marie Tussaud. Be prepared to queue.
  • Tate Britain - Tate Britain has a fine collection of British work from medieval times to the present day, particularly notable for its Turner collection.
  • Victoria & Albert Museum - Victoria & Albert Museum is the world's largest museum of decorative arts and design.

East End

  • The Geffrye Museum - The Geffrye Museum is situated in a row of ex alms houses, showcases the lives of Londoners from 1600 to the present day.

Southbank

  • The Clink Prison Museum - The Clink Prison Museum is a museum dedicated to The Clink, a notorious medieval prison from 1151 until it was burned down during the Gordon Riots of 1780.
  • Tate Modern - Tate Modern has the largest collection of Modern Art in Europe, spectacularly located in the old Bankside power station.

South East

  • Royal Observatory - Royal Observatory in Greenwich Park is where the line of zero longitude, the prime meridian, was finally established in 1884, to the chagrin of the French. Also the coordinate base for Greenwich Mean Time.
  • National Maritime Museum - National Maritime Museum is part of the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Maritime Greenwich.

Parks and Gardens

Squirrel at Saint James's Park

Squirrel at Saint James's Park

© All Rights Reserved Hien

London has one of the largest ratio of park space per-capita in the world.

West End

  • Hyde Park - Hyde Park is a big breath of fresh air bang in the middle of London, with boating ponds and flower gardens. It also has the Diana memorial fountain. Another famous part of the park is Speaker's corner. In summer the park is sometimes used for big scale music events.
  • Kensington Gardens - Kensington Gardens is the western part of Hyde Park.
  • Green Park - Green Park is a small park just south of Piccadilly.
  • St James's Park - St James's Park is a well-kept small park with views onto Buckingham Palace.
  • Holland Park - Holland Park is a park in Kensington & Chelsea. It houses a famous orangery and the ruins of the Holland house.

North London

  • Hampstead Heath - Hampstead Heath is the largest park in London, with great views over the city from Parliament Hill.
  • Regent's Park - Regent's Park is a park in the north of London in which the London Zoo is located.

South East

  • Greenwich Park - Greenwich Park has good views of London from the hill in the park.

South West

  • Battersea Park - Battersea Park on the southbank of the Thames between Albert bridge and Chelsea bridge, and near to the Battersea power station.
  • Richmond Park - Richmond Park is a wild park on the outskirts of London with a resident herd of deer.

Royal Palaces and Residencies

  • Buckingham Palace - Buckingham Palace has served as the official London residence of Britain's sovereigns since 1837. The State Rooms, the Royal Mews and The Queen's Gallery are open to public visits.
  • Changing the Guard - Changing the Guard is the ceremony of hand-over of guards in the forecourt of the Buckingham Palace, usually consisting of Foot Guards in their full-dress uniform of red tunics and bearskins.
Queens Birthday - Guards

Queens Birthday - Guards

© All Rights Reserved adamandmeg

  • Palace of Westminster - Palace of Westminster is better known as the Houses of Parliament. It is the iconic landmark that represents not just London, but the entire United Kingdom as well. Until 1512, the site was a royal residence, but a fire forced Henry VIII to move out. However, the site remained a Royal Palace; therefore, its official title is the Palace of Westminster. Almost all of it now is newer than it looks: most of it burned down in 1834 and was rebuilt in neo-Gothic style. Today, it is where the two Houses of the Parliament of the United Kingdom (the House of Lords and the House of Commons) meet.
  • Big Ben - Big Ben – The Clock Tower, the main part of the iconic landmark to travellers, is often referred to as Big Ben, the nickname of the bell housed within the 96-metre-tall Clock Tower. Big Ben's official name is the Great Bell. Tours to the Clock Tower are open to UK residents only and must be arranged through the local MP.
  • Westminster Hall - Westminster Hall is the only major part of the ancient Palace of Westminster which survives in its original form. It survived the 1834 fire which destroyed the rest of the Houses of Parliament.
  • Hampton Court Palace - Hampton Court Palace is a former royal palace built by Henry VIII, located in the London Borough of Richmond-upon-Thames, South West London.
  • Tower of London - Tower of London - Once a fortress, a royal palace and also a prison (for high status and royal prisoners, such as future Queen Elizabeth I), this 1078 fortress built by William the Conqueror is now home of the Crown Jewels of the United Kingdom since 1303. This monument is located in Central London and is just a stone's throw away from the Tower Bridge on the north bank of the River Thames.

Other Sights and Activities

Tower Bridge

Tower Bridge

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  • Westminster Abbey - Westminster Abbey is one of the most important buildings in Britain. Founded by St Edward the Confessor and consecrated in 1065, it was not completed until about 1500. But architecturally it is a Norman cathedral. Monarchs are crowned here, and plenty are buried here. The Henry VII chapel, in an apse, is particularly fine.
  • St Paul's Cathedral - St Paul's Cathedral - This Anglican cathedral is the seat of the Bishop of London. Located on Ludgate Hill in the City of London, this present building is generally reckoned to be the fifth St Paul's Cathedral of London.
  • The Inns of Court - The Inns of Court are located between the cities of London and Westminster, the four Inns of Court are the colleges of England's barristers, or specialist trial lawyers. Their open areas and gardens are open to the public and can offer welcome respite from the crowds. Middle Temple and Inner Temple are located to the south of Fleet Street; Lincoln's Inn is between Fleet Street and Holborn; and Gray's Inn is to the north of High Holborn.
  • Tower Bridge - Tower Bridge is the most iconic bridge of London and is often mistakenly referred to by many as the London Bridge, which is a different bridge that used to be located 800 metres away upstream on the River Thames. London Bridge was sold and relocated to Arizona after World War II.
  • HMS Belfast - HMS Belfast was a Royal Navy light cruiser in service from 1939 until 1963. In 1971, Belfast was turned into a museum ship and is permanently moored on the Pool of London, between London Bridge and Tower Bridge.
  • The London Dungeon - The London Dungeon - A recreation of various gory and macabre historical events about various tortures from the Medieval Age.
  • London Eye - London Eye - Nothing ocular about, it is a large and beautiful Big Wheel, located on the south bank of the river virtually opposite Westminster. Book in advance.
  • Piccadilly Circus - Piccadilly Circus is a famous circular open space at a street junction in London's West End is in a central location close to major shopping and entertainment areas. Many famous movies have been shot in this popular meeting point.
  • Abbey Road - In the north of London, near Regent's Park lie the famous Abbey Road studio's. Here you can do one of the most silly things in London: creating your own Abbey Road album cover.
  • Cycle Tours - Cycle Tours - There are numerous companies offering cycling tours around London; just search for 'london bike tours' and there are at least 10 popping up. This can be a great alternative of walking around and taking public transport and is fun as well! Guided tours of London's famous landmarks usually include stops like Big Ben, The Houses of Parliament, Buckingham Palace, Trafalgar Square and Covent Garden, meandering through backstreet's and cycle paths. Tours to Hyde Park and Kensington Gardens for those who are wanting a longer tour are also available. Usually you can alos hire a bike and just travel around London at your own pace.
  • Theatreland - London's Theatreland in the West End of the city is the home of theatre. Centred on Covent Garden, Theatreland is a major tourist attraction for both home and foreign visitors. At any one time there are over 100 shows being performed from small fringe productions to blockbuster budget musicals like Wicked, The Lion King, Matilda the Musical and Blood Brothers. The oldest operational theatre in the world is the Theatre Royal Drury Lane, said to be haunted by actors passed, and the the city hosts both the longest-running play, The Mousetrap and the longest-running musical in the world, Les Miserables, which has been active here since 1985. There are a number of helpful websites for visitors to the London theatre scene, including Official Theatre, which provides the official box office information for every West End theatre, Seat Plan, which gives seating reviews for London venues, and the West End Whingers, who provide hilariously accurate reviews of West End shows.
Trafalgar Square

Trafalgar Square

© All Rights Reserved atbrady

  • Trafalgar Square - Trafalgar Square is located in the heart of London, making it a great place for the occasional celebration as well as a political demonstration. The square is situated in front of the National Gallery, and is named after the British victory over the French and Spanish navy at the battle of Trafalgar during the Napoleonic Wars. The most famous name from that battle is the one of Horatio Nelson, after which Nelson's Column is named, which stands in the middle of the square. Erected in the years 1840 to 1843, it was finished just before the square opened for public in 1844. The big fountains placed in the square were originally not meant to be decorative but an attempt to have less open space, reducing the risk of riots on the square. The 4 lions at the base of Nelson's Column were added in 1876. In 2003 a redevelopment of the square was completed, making it much friendlier for pedestrians.

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Events and Festivals

Notting Hill Carnival

Notting Hill Carnival

© All Rights Reserved StephenJen

  • Notting Hill Carnival - Notting Hill Carnival held each August Bank Holiday in London; it's comprised of a Kids Day, an Adults Day, and a spectacular parade that rivals Rio. There are plenty of stalls selling foods from all over the world, but the majority of the cuisine remains true to its Caribbean roots. There are live bands, DJs, and sound systems set up in the streets so you can continue to party long after the midday parade.
  • Wimbledon Championships (24 Jun 2013 - 07 Jul 2013) - The Wimbledon Championship tennis tournament is held every year between late June and early July. Often called the "fortnight", this year the tournament starts on the 24th of June until the July the 7th 2013. With regards to things to do in London, people are very attached to this game and eager to see best tennis players from over 60 competitive nations.
  • City of London Festival - City of London Festival occurs each year in June-July and has done so since its inception in 1962. It offers a wide range of activities at indoor and outdoor venues across the square mile: a variety of music, literature, visual arts exhibitions, guided architecture walks and much, much more. Many free events can be found on the program, so it won't break the bank!
  • The Mayor's Thames Festival (08 Sep 2012 - 09 Sep 2012) - The Mayor's Thames Festival takes place along the River Thames every September. The festival's main spots are between Westminster Bridge and the amazing Tower Bridge; the event features street performers, markets, activities and eateries. The final day of the festival culminates in a night parade where thousands can enjoy the parade of lanterns, performers, spectacular floats, and a massive fireworks display.
  • 2012 Olympic Games - This will be the third time in modern history that London will host the Olympic Games. It will be a very exciting time for London and those visiting the city.
  • Whisky Live London - Whisky Live London is the most important whisky event of the year. It offers visitors a chance to learn about the history, culture, and process of making whisky. And of course, there will be opportunities to sample as many whisky brands as your liver can handle.
  • Carnaval Del Pueblo - This unique Latin event brings thousands to London each year. Latin American performers take to the streets and host parades, carnival games, music concerts, and dance shows to give Londoners a taste of authentic Latin culture.
  • London Marathon - This 42-kilometre race is very popular in London, with entrance fees raising a substantial amount of money for important charitable organizations. Approximately 32,000 runners participate in this race annually. The race begins at Greenwich Park and finishes in The Mall.
  • Lord Mayor's Show - A traditional procession dating back to the year 1215, when the city's citizens became allowed to elect their own mayor. Each year, the newly elected Mayor must travel to Westminster to pledge allegiance to the Crown. This historical show is watched by over half a million spectators annually. The parade is comprised of thousands of participants, including a variety of performers and military personnel. The event's finale is a grand fireworks display over Tames. Hours: 11:00am
  • SouthWest Fest - A grand community event featuring free comedy events, street theater productions, carnival parades, food, and much, much more. This event is organized by the community, for the community. A great taste of local culture if you're visiting the city.
  • Spitalfields Music Festival - Both the local and international community of musicians come together for this biannual event (held both in the Summer and Winter). This festival is filled with concerts, featuring the most talented classical musicians in the area. This event focuses on local music education.
  • Streatham Festival - This festival features a great variety of arts and cultural exhibits, all speaking a different theme every year. Although the event's theme may change year by year, there are always great music events and arts exhibits for visitors to experience.
  • The Great River Race - Both professional and amateur rowers race up the River Tames for this event. This festival is a fun day of sportsmanship, competition, costumes, and a forum for a variety of charity events.
  • The Mayor's Thames Festival - One of London's largest street festivals that promises to be one of the city's grandest "feel-good" events of the year. This popular multi-cultural event promotes community spirit and environmental awareness. Taking place on the banks of the River Tames, this event features: live music, dance, feasting, art exhibits, carnival games and events, river races and street performers.

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Weather

London has a temperate marine climate, which is similar to the rest of the British Isles through in general it's one of the warmer places in the UK. There is generally regular although light rain throughout the year with around 600mm annually. The warmest month of July has an average temperature range of 13.6 °C at night to 22.8 °C during the day. Although during the summers there can be random days that are extremely hot with the highest recorded temperature being 38.1 °C. The coldest month is January, which has an average temperature range of 2.4 °C at night to 7.9 °C during the day. The driest month is February and snow is very rare in London. Central London, because of the large urban area, has a micro climate making it slightly warmer then the surrounding area. This allows some plant life to grow in London that does not grow anywhere else in England. It is always advisable to check the BBC weather forecast before heading outdoors!

JanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec
Avg Max7.2 °C7.6 °C10.3 °C13 °C17 °C20.3 °C22.3 °C21.9 °C19.1 °C15.2 °C10.4 °C8.2 °C
Avg Min2.4 °C2.5 °C3.8 °C5.6 °C8.7 °C11.6 °C13.7 °C13.4 °C11.4 °C8.9 °C5.1 °C3.4 °C
Rainfall53 mm36 mm48 mm47 mm51 mm50 mm48 mm54 mm53 mm57 mm57 mm57 mm
Rain Days14.810.813.412.712.510.510.110.910.511.61413.2

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Getting There

There are no less than 6 international airports serving the greater London metropolitan region. Be sure to check which airport you are flying to, because transport costs into London can vary dramatically. Also, if are in transfer, be sure to check if it's the same airport you are flying out of or otherwise add lots of extra travelling time between airport. For example, between Stansted and Gatwich, it's easily 2 hours (train) but 3 hours by direct bus, which goes via Heathrow as well.

By Plane

London Heathrow
London Heathrow (IATA: LHR, ICAO: EGLL) is the largest airport in the London area, and many international flights arrive at Heathrow. In fact, no airport anywhere in the world handles more international passengers than Heathrow does. One of the world's busiest airports, Heathrow is crowded and known for outrageous line-ups and lost luggage. Heathrow has four terminals. To determine what terminal you will be using, check out the which terminal information from the Heathrow airport website.

There are numerous options to get to and from Heathrow Airport.

London Heathrow Express

London Heathrow Express

© All Rights Reserved Hien

  • Heathrow Express is a non-stop train service that offers the fastest travel option to Paddington station in central London. Services run every 15 minutes and the journey time is just 15 minutes; a few minutes more for Terminals 4 or 5. A standard single ticket (2010) purchased online is £16.50 (£18.00 from ticket machine/office; £23.00 purchased onboard) and a standard return is £32.00 (£32.00 from ticket machine/office; £37.00 purchased onboard).
  • Heathrow Connect is a stopping train service between London Paddington and Heathrow Airport, and calls at Ealing Broadway, West Ealing, Hanwell, Southall and Hayes & Harlington. Running every 30 minutes, a journey takes up to 25 minutes. Single tickets are from £4.90 to £7.90, depending on the destination.
  • Heathrow is on the Piccadilly line of the London Underground network, with three stops at the airport – Terminals 1 and 3; Terminal 4 and Terminal 5. There are two different train services; one stopping at Terminals 1 and 3 and Terminal 4, while the other at Terminals 1 and 3 and Terminal 5. Journey time to central London is under an hour and you shouldn't have to wait longer than 10 minutes for a train - even off-peak. A single ticket into central London (Zone 1) costs £4.
  • Heathrow Airport is served by an extensive network of local buses which operate from the central bus station. Some services also stop at Terminal 4. Services into west London are part of the Transport for London network. A single adult fare for anywhere in London is £2. The bus station is well signposted from Terminals 1 and 3 and is located above the London Underground station. Access from Terminals 1 and 3 is via underground walkways. The approximate walking distance from Terminal 1 is four minutes, and from Terminal 3 is seven minutes. The routes from the airport can be found on this map. Information on services can be found at the TfL website or by calling +44 (0)20 7222 1234.
  • You can also connect National Express directly. Their buses numbers 032, 035, 403, 412 and 501 (one way/return from £10/15, tickets valid three months; 45 minutes to 70 minutes, every 30 minutes to one hour) link Heathrow with Victoria coach station (7730 3466; 164 Buckingham Palace Rd SW1) over 50 times per day. The first bus leaves the Heathrow Central Bus station (at Terminals 1, 2 and 3) at 5:35am while the last departure leaves at 9:35pm. In the other direction, the first bus leaves Victoria at 7:15am, the last at 11:30pm.
  • The The Tube (one way adult/child £4/2, from central London one hour, every five to nine minutes) is the cheapest way of getting to Heathrow. Operations start from approximately 5:00am (5:50am Sunday) to 11:45pm (10:50pm Sunday). You can buy tickets from machines in the baggage reclaim areas of the Heathrow terminals or in the station itself.
  • Taxis are available at Heathrow Airport 24 hours a day. There are taxi ranks at all terminals, as well as taxi information desks inside. It costs about £45 to £70 to central London and the average journey time is approximately an hour.

London Gatwick
London Gatwick (IATA: LGW, ICAO: EGKK) is the busiest single-runway airport in the world, the second largest airport in the UK and the seventh busiest international airport in the world. Around 90 airlines operate from Gatwick's two terminals, named North and South, serving around 200 destinations.

Ways to get to and from Gatwick include:

  • Gatwick Express offers dedicated, high-speed travel to London Victoria station with a journey time of just 30 minutes. A standard single fare is £16.90 and a standard return is £28.70.
  • Southern Railway offers services to London Victoria, London Bridge, East Croydon and Clapham Junction. Southern take about 35 minutes to London Victoria. Fares are up to £16.90, but advanced purchase or travelling off-peak can reduce the price. Access is from the South Terminal.
  • First Capital Connect offers services to London Bridge, St Pancras International and other stations in southern, central and northern London. First Capital Connect take 30 minutes to London Bridge. Fares are up to £11.80, but advanced purchase or travelling off-peak can reduce the cost.
  • National Express and easyBus both provide coach service to London from Gatwick. National Express tickets cost £7.50 while easyBus tickets start from £2.00.

By car, Gatwick can be reached by taking junction 9A from the M23. The M25 provides access to Greater London, while the A23 provides local access, as does the A217.

London Stansted
London Stansted (IATA: STN, ICAO: EGSS) has domestic and European connections, plus limited destinations in North America and Africa.

There are several ways to get to and from Stansted Airport.

  • Rail: Stansted Express provides services from Stansted Airport to London Liverpool Street station, with trains departing every 15 minutes with an average journey time of 45 minutes. A single ticket costs £18.80. and £26,80 for a return ticket, when tickets are prebooked at the website. If the tickets are bought at the airport or at Liverpool Station, they are £1.00 more expensive for a single ticket, and £2.00 for a open return ticket.
  • Bus: A cheaper option is easyBus, run by the easyJet company, which offers transport to and from central London from £2.00 each way. Other express coach services to London include the National Express and TerraVision (London Victoria and Liverpool Street stations). National Express also has services directly to Oxford. Excel operates a coach service to Capel St Mary and Ipswich every 2 hours. A few more companies and local lines operate from the airport as well.
  • Car: Stansted is connected to northeast London and Cambridge by the M11 motorway and to Braintree, Colchester and Harwich by the A120.

London Luton
London Luton (IATA: LTN, ICAO: EGGW), about 57 kilometres fron the centre of London, is a major hub for low-cost carriers. Airlines using this airport include easyJet, Monarch Airlines, Ryanair and Thompsonfly.

There are a few options to get to and from Luton Airport.

  • Rail: The fastest way to get from the airport to the city is by train, which arrives at the St Pancras International Train Station in 30 minutes. Trains also go to Wellingborough, Kettering, Leicester and Nottingham. You need to get a shuttle bus to the Luton Airport Parkway railway station first.
  • Bus: GreenLine Coaches and easyBus operate direct bus services to London. National Express buses go to London Stansted Airport.
  • Car: The airport is just a few miles away from the M1 motorway. There are rental car facilities at the airport.

London City Airport
London City Airport (IATA: LCY, ICAO: EGLC) is situated just 10 miles (16 kilometres) from the West End (the major shopping centre) and Westminster (location of main government offices), six miles (10 kilometres) from the City of London (the financial district) and three miles (5 kilometres) from Canary Wharf (London's newest business and financial centre).

There are several ways to get to and from London City Airport.

  • Rail: Getting there and away is easy by public transit with the Docklands Light Railway (DLR) operating for connections to the City and Canary Wharf.
  • Bus: London Buses services 473 and 474 run to local East London destinations.
  • Car: There are short-term and long-termin parking places and car rental facilities at the airport, and taxis are available outside the terminal.

London Southend Airport
London Southend Airport is the newest star and is located near Southend-on-Sea, directly east of London proper. Easyjet has most flights, with regular connections to/from Malaga, Venice, Palma de Mallorca, Ibiza, Faro, Jersey, Belfast, Alicante, Amsterdam, Geneva and Barcelona. A few other airlines fly to/from Dublin, Waterford, Dresden and Saarbrucken.
A regular rail service runs from Southend Airport Station to London Liverpool Street Station in central London.

By Train

Paddington Train Station - London, England

Paddington Train Station - London, England

© All Rights Reserved Calcruzer

There are numerous train stations in London serving locations across the UK. Details on services are available from National Rail.

International Services on the Eurostar via the "chunnel" currently arrive at St Pancras International Train Station from Brussels and Paris, and other destinations in France and Belgium. St Pancras International is served by the Circle, Hammersmith & City, Metropolitan, Northern, Picadilly and Victoria lines on the London Underground.

For transporting your own vehicle (car, motorcycle) through the 'chunnel', check the Eurotunnel website, and for all other international options check the http://www.raileurope.co.uk|Rail Europe]] website.

By Car

London is well served by highways and roads into the town. Check out online maps like Google Maps for driving directions.

Drivers should note that the city is very busy, and traffic is a common problem. In addition, much of the centre of the city is covered by a congestion charge of £8.00 for any travel within the city centre, Monday to Friday from 7:00am to 6:00pm, excluding holidays.

By Bus

National Express has coach services from major cities and towns in the UK and Europe. Megabus has quite a few services within the UK as well and in general is cheaper as well, as they operate like a sort of low-cost airline, with seats for as little as £1.00 if you book early.
Greenline is another operator on UK routes. For more options on European routes check the Eurolines website.

By Boat

There are no ferries services directly into London, however a number of international ferry services run to coastal towns in the United Kingdom, and travellers can drive, take the bus or take a train from there. For more information about options regarding arriving or departing in the UK by ferry, check the UK Getting Around section.

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Getting Around

By Car

With its narrow streets, busy traffic and congestion charges, most people leave the car at home and take the frequent public transport options. If you insist, there are numerous options to rent a car with both local as well as major international companies. Try Easycar, ElephantCar, Hertz, Avis, Budget, Europcar, Thrifty and Enterprise, for a start.

Drivers should note that the city is very busy, and traffic is a common problem. In addition, much of the centre of the city is covered by a congestion charge of £8 for any travel within the city centre, Monday to Friday from 07:00 to 18:00, excluding holidays.

By Public Transport

Underground sign, London, UK

Underground sign, London, UK

© All Rights Reserved GregW

Transport for London (TfL) manages the bus, riverboat, tram and overground and underground train services in London. London uses a travel zone (PDF file) system, with crosses into other zones increasing the cost of fares. Informally, Central London is Zone 1 and the zone number increases as one travels farther away from the city centre.

For travellers who are spending multiple days in London, the best choice is either an Oyster card or a Travelcard. These are strongly recommended, because without them, ticket prices are obscene. Travelcards allow unlimited travels on the TfL network and come in Day, 7-day, Monthly and Annual validity. Oyster is a stored value travel smartcard that you use on the TfL network. Simply "touch" the card on a card reader when you enter and exit the system and you will be charged the lowest fare. For Oyster Pay-As-You-Go card, daily charges are capped at the price of a Day Travelcard even if you travelled more than that. Stored value in the card can be topped up at all tube stations.

The TfL Journey Planner is a great tool to find the route, mode and journey time to get from one place to another. Maps are also provided to assist travellers find their way around.

Underground, DLR, Overground

Bank Station, London Underground

Bank Station, London Underground

© All Rights Reserved Hien


London has the oldest underground transport system in the world, and it shows. Delays are common. That said, the network is extensive, especially north of the river. Londoners usually call the Underground "the Tube," named after the shape of the underground tunnels. In London, a "subway" is an underground passage used by pedestrians to cross under a road.

The DLR (Docklands Light Railway) is a driverless light rail service that serves mainly the South East London. Compared to other modes of public transportation which are built decades or even over a century ago, this railway is fully accessible, making access much easier for people using wheelchairs, or who have other mobility impairments, as well as people with young children in prams or with heavy bags.

Unlike the Underground system, the DLR does not have barrier gates where you touch your Oyster card or insert your ticket to enter or exit. Instead, it is an open system and travellers are trusted to purchase a ticket prior to boarding, or in the case of Oyster card users, a card reader is placed at the station entrance. Remember to "touch in" when you enter and "touch out" when you exit. Don't even think of taking a free ride as there are ticket inspectors on the trains who will not hesitate to slap you with a penalty for fare evasion.

Overground is a sub-urban train service in London. It runs on ground level mostly in Zones 2 and 3. It has a lower frequency with train arriving every 15 to 20 minutes. The Overground also has no barrier gates like the DLR. Options include the Thameslink and Silverlink. Silverlink links Richmond in the southwest with North Woolwich in the southeast via Kew, West Hampstead, Camden Rd, Highbury & Islington and Stratford stations. Thameslink goes from Elephant & Castle and London Bridge in the south through the City to King’s Cross and as far north as Luton.

Zone 1 only£4.00£1.80£1.80£7.20£5.60
Zones 1–2£4.00£2.30£1.80£7.20£5.60
Zones 1–3£4.00£2.70£2.40£8.60£6.30

* Oyster single fare: Peak hours are Monday to Friday from 06:30 to 09:30 and from 16:00 to 19:00. Off-peak hours are at all other times including public holidays.
** Day Travelcard and Oyster price cap: Peak hours are Monday to Friday from 04:30 to 09:29. Off-peak hours are Monday to Friday from 09:30 to 04:29 (the following day); Saturdays, Sundays and public holidays from 04:30 to 04:29 (the following day).

Further information:

Bus and Tram
London has such a wide bus network that a Londoner's knowledge of the routes is just as good as the next visitor to the city. The iconic red double-decker bus is a good way to travel around while still being able to see London compared to the Underground. Standing is not permitted on the top deck when the bus is full. All bus stops have bus route information and it is not uncommon to see two or more bus stops in a row, each serving different routes. There are bus services 24 hours a day. However, only certain trunk and N-prefix (indicating night bus) routes run throughout the night to major parts of London.

Adult£2.00£1.20 (daily price cap: £3.90)£16.60
Children under 11sFree--

Tickets can be purchased on board of most buses. You can also find road-side ticket machines on routes where buses do not sell tickets on board. So if you see a road-side ticket machine and you don't have an Oyster card, get a ticket first before boarding the bus.

Tram services are only available in Croydon in South West London.

Further information: Bus maps, Tram maps, Bus and tram fares

Riverboat
Not entirely useful for commuters, but an enjoyable way to get around and see the traditional artery of the city at the same time, riverboats ply their trade between Putney in the west and Woolwich in the east, with several stops in the centre. This is a particularly good way to get to Canary Wharf or Greenwich. Thames Clippers offers commuter services running from 6am to just after 1am. The services (adult single/­return £5/8, child -5yrs and under- half-price, roughly every 20 to 30 minutes) give you access to lots of the river sights. Boats run from Embankment to Woolwich Arsenal Piers, passing the Tate Modern, Shakespeare’s Globe, Tower Bridge, Canary Wharf, Greenwich and the O2.

Further information: River maps, River fares

By Taxi

Taxis come in two varieties: licensed and unlicensed.

Licensed taxis (aka black cabs, officially Hackney carriages), are black with a yellow 'taxi' light on top In order to get a license, a candidate must pass a demanding test called The Knowledge. Essentially, he or she must know every street in London and how to get between them. So vast is this amount of spatial information that MRI studies have shown that your average cabbie has an enlarged hippocampus. So if you go by black cab, you can be confident your driver will know the way (although he may not want to go there: many cabbies get a nosebleed if asked to go south of the river). You can also be reasonably confident of your security and can take the licence number of your driver if you wish to complain. The downside: you pay more.

If you travel in an unlicensed taxi, you will pay less. But you will need to know how to get to your destination, since you will probably have been in London longer than your driver, even if you are a tourist. And you will have no idea of the identity of the person driving you. Women on their own are especially advised to think carefully before using this means of transport.

By Foot

Greater London is a very large city, and it is not practical to explore all of it on foot. However, most of the sites of interest to tourists are in the centre of town. It is quite practical (and highly recommended) to walk between the central sites and then take public transport home. London is a very rewarding city to explore on foot, and both Westminster and the City of London are full of thousand-year-old nooks and crannies that can only be seen this way. Walking along either bank of the river is also recommended.

Several companies offer walking tours of the West End or the City. Almost every building in the centre has an interesting history to it, and this is one way to discover it.

Other rewarding areas for a day out on foot are the villages of Hampstead and Highgate and Hampstead Heath North London; Greenwich and Greenwich Park in South East London; and Kew and Hampton South West London.

By Bike

Provision in the UK for cyclists is pitiful compared to much of continental Europe. The Greater London Authority has carried out programmes to change that, the so-called London Cycling Campaign, and bicycle usage has increased sharply since the congestion charge for vehicles was introduced in 2002. Nevertheless, cyclists and motorists are constantly at loggerheads, and London is a challenging city for cyclists. It is essential to wear a helmet. Cycling around Hyde Park Corner offers a thrill comparable to that of parachuting. Heavy goods vehicles are particularly dangerous.

Cycle London, an initiative by Transport for London to promote cycling, provides information, and free guides and maps for cycling in London. The free maps can be found here. More online maps of cycle routes are also available at the London Cycle Network website.

The London Bicycle Tour Company offers tours and bike rental in London and surroudings. Go Pedal is another company offering bikes for rent, as doSouthbank Cycles and On Your Bike.

If you want to try something different try the London Pedicabs, which has three-wheeled cycle rickshaws, seating two or three passengers. Still, they are more typical tourist transport instead of a regular mode of transport.

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Eat

Like any big city, London offers a mass of choices. From £2 breakfasts in greasy spoon diners up to £200 meals in the restaurants of some of the top chefs in the world, there are many choices.

For an inexpensive lunch, check out chains like Eat or Pret A Manager, both of which offer sandwiches, soups and salads for under £5.

Brick Lane, the heart of Banglatown, is the Curry Capital of the United Kingdom and is known for its "Cheap and Cheerful" atmosphere. You often come across touts for the restaurants trying to tempt you into their establishment. This is the time to negotiate your per-head price and attempt for a round of complimentary poppadoms or drinks! A Brick Lane curry is a must for anyone visiting London!

The High Street in Angel has an array of choices - even if you don’t know what you feel like eating! Everything is covered - from French to Turkish.

  • Le Mercury - Le Mercury is a wonderful example of a restaurant with affordable prices and delicious French cuisine! The place is small, so you may have to wait for a table (even during the week) if you don't make any booking. Address: 140A Upper Street, Islington, N1 1QY. (Tube: Northern line: Angel), Phone: 020 7354 4088
  • SAF - Healthy, all-vegan restaurant inside a great Whole Foods Market. Moderate price range, about £7-£13 for mains. Today's pasta and soup changes daily. Address: 63-97 Kensington High Street, The Barkers Building, London W8 5SE

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Drink

Prices for a pint of beer in a pub range from £2 in the outer areas of London to £3.50 in the centre and at tourist areas. Clubs can charge significantly more, and drinks can cost £10 and above.

  • Gordon's Wine Bar - Gordon's Wine Bar is the oldest wine bar in London and has been serving London drinks (and meals) since 1890. It's a unique atmosphere and great experience for a night out in London. Address: 47 Villiers Street (just up from Embankment tube station, right next door to Charing Cross and a stroll across Hungerford bridge from Waterloo), Hours: Open from 11:00 to 23:00 every day other than Sunday which is 12:00 to 22:00
  • Edinboro Castle - Edinboro Castle pub in Camden is great for a pint or two if you're around the North London. They also have a great menu and a lovely big beer garden for when the sun comes out. Address: 57 Mornington Terrace, Camden, NW1 7RU (Tube: Northern line – Camden Town or Mornington Crescent), Phone: +44 20 7255 9651
  • Wetherspoon - Wetherspoon pubs generally offer reasonably priced drinks and food, though admittedly the atmosphere can be less than inspiring in some of them.

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Sleep

London is one of the most expensive cities in the world, and as such finding places to sleep can be pricey. However, with some advanced planning an accommodation option can be found for most budgets. With the extensive tube and train system, travellers can stay a little further out of the city and still be close to the action.

Private rooms in hotels, B&Bs and studio apartments in flats can be found around London for £40 a day and up. Areas with lots of hotels and B&Bs include Earl's Court and Paddington. Travellers can also check out Gumtree for listings of short term vacation rentals in flats in the city.

London is home to some of the most luxurious hotels outside of Dubai (which seems to have cornered the market on luxury hotels).

Many upscale accommodations can be found in Mayfair in the West End, including The Ritz and Claridge's Hotel, both renowned for the lavish accommodations.

PropertyAddressTypePopularity
Abercorn House Hostel28 Bute Gardens HammersmithHostel75
Acacia Hostel14 Queensberry Place South KensingtonHOSTEL72
Access Hyde ParkHarrowby St Marble ArchApartment-
Access Apartments Cityn/aApartment-
Access Apartments Earls Court16Leinster Square BayswaterApartment76
Access Apartments EustonCheck in: 16 Leinster Square, BayswaterApartment79
Access Maidavale29-31 Clifton Gardens PaddingtonApartment78
Access Marble ArchLandward Apartments 1 Harrowby StreetApartment75
Accommodation London39 Chatsworth Rd KilburnHostel75
Acropolis Hotel114 Shepherds Bush Road LondonHOTEL-
Acton Town Hotel109-113 Gunnersbury LaneHotel-
Airways Hotel Victoria London29 St. Georges Drive VictoriaHotel75
Alexandra Hotel1 Sussex PlaceHotel-
ALL STAR HOSTEL39 Chatsworth Rd KilburnHostel71
ALL STAR PRIVATE STUDIOSWillesden GreenApartment73
The Antigallican Hotel428 Woolwich RoadHotel76
Anwar House31 Collingham Place SW5 0QFHOTEL73
Aquarius Hotel20-22 Hogarth Road Earls CourtHotel-
Arriva Hotel47-55 Swinton Street King's CrossHotel-
Clink261261-265 Grays Inn Road Kings CrossHostel79
Astons Apartments31 Rosary Gardens South KensingtonApartment-
Astor Court Hotel20, Hallam Street. London. W1W 6JQ. UKHOTEL77
Astor Hyde Park191 Queensgate South KensingtonHostel85
Astor Kensington138 Cromwell Road KensingtonHostel-
Astor Museum Inn27 Montague Street BloomsburyHostel83
Astor Quest45 Queensborough Terrace BayswaterHostel85
Astor Victoria71 Belgrave Road VictoriaHostel84
At Home B&B20 Denbigh Road EalingGUESTHOUSE70
Balham Lodge204 Bedford Hill LondonGuesthouse80
Barkston Youth Hostel1 Barkston Gardens Earls CourtHostel77
Beaconsfield357 - 359 Green LanesHotel70
Belgravia Hotel118 Ebury Street BelgraviaHotel-
Belmont Hotel104 Sussex GardensHotel-
Belsize House40 Belsize Park GardensHostel77
Blair Victoria & Tudor Inn78-84 Warwick Wayhotel71
Bowden Court24 Ladbroke road Notting HillHostel75
Brazen Backpackers69 Lisson Street LondonHostel70
Budget London ApartmentsWillesden GreenApartment72
Budget Mapesbury Hostel39 Chatsworth RoadHOSTEL75
Campus Accommodation @ Queen Mary, Uni of LondonWestfield WayHostel76
Central Hostel26 Princes SquareHostel68
Charlies Hotel63 Anson Road LondonHotel-
Chelsea Guest House372 & 374 Wandsworth RoadGUESTHOUSE-
Chelsea House HotelNo.96 Redcliffe Gardens Earls CourtHotel75
City Hotel Carlton90 Belgrave Road VictoriaHotel-
Clink7878 Kings Cross rdHostel81
Comfort Inn SW887 South Lambeth RoadHotel71
Cranbrook Hotel22/24 Coventry Road IlfordHotel74
Croydon Court Hotel London603 London Road Thornton HeathHotel-
Dolphin Inn44 Norfolk SquareHotel-
Dover Castle Hostel and Bar6a Great Dover StreetHostel76
Elmwood Hotel19 & 20 Argyle square LondonHOTEL75
Elysee Hotel25/26 Craven TerraceHotel72
Enrico Hotel77-79 Warwick Way VictoriaHotel76
Equity Point LondonWestbourne Terrace 100-102 PaddingtonHostel79
Euro Hotel Wembley1-11 Elm road WembleyHotel74
Euro Lodge Clapham90 Clapham Common SouthsideHotel76
FCT Bed180 Bow Common LaneGuesthouse73
Gay Hostel164 Victoria StreetHostel-
Generator Hostel LondonCompton Place Off 37 Tavistock Place, WC1Hostel83
Goldsmith's HousePark Village East Regents ParkHostel74
Grapevine Hotel117 Warwick WayHotel79
Hanover Hotel30 St. Georges Drive VictoriaHotel77
Hayesthorpe Hotel48-52 St Augustines Avenue South CroydonHotel76
Henley House Hotel30 Barkston Gardens KensingtonHotel-
Palmers Lodge - Hillspring at Willesden Green233 Willesden Lane LondonHOSTEL81
Hollingbury Hotel106 Craven Park HarlesdenHotel-
Hootananny Hostel95 Effra Road BrixtonHostel74
Hostel 639639 Harrow RoadHostel59
Hotel Bluebells14 Pembridge Square Notting Hill Gatehotel80
Hotel Earls Court28 Warwick Road Earls CourtHotel-
Hotel Olympia49, Earl's Court SquareHotel-
Hotel Sergul87 Shepherds Bush Road W6 7LRHotel77
Hyde Park Court Hotel48 Norfolk SquareHotel74
IES Student Residence HallManresa Road at Kings Road SW3 6NA ChelseaHostel-
International Students House229 Great Portland StreetHOSTEL-
Islington Home bed and breakfast52 hemingford rd, Islington londonGuesthouse76
Journeys Greenwich West Hostel86 Tanner's Hill DeptfordHostel72
Journeys King's Cross Hostel54-58 Caledonian Road Kings CrossHostel72
Journeys London Bridge Hostel204 Manor Place KenningtonHostel-
Kensington West25 Matheson Road KensingtonHotel75
Kings Hotel36-37 Argyle Square Kings Cross WC1 8ALHotel70
Lidos Hotel43-45 Belgrave Road VictoriaHotel77
London Backpackers8/10 Queens Parade Queens Road, Hendon CentralHostel77
London Holiday Stay48 Berkely Road Manor ParkApartment-
London House Gay Hostel25 Northway Court Green Avenue Mill Hill LondonHostel-
London House Hotel81 Kensington Garden Square Bayswater W2 4DJHOTEL84
London Private RoomsWillesden Green NW2Guesthouse-
London Town Hotel15 Penywern Road Earls CourtHotel-
London Waterloo Days Hotel54 Kennington Roadhotel80
Lord Kensington Hotel38 Trebovir Road Earls CourtHotel75
LSE Bankside House24 Sumner Street SE1 9JAHostel76
LSE Butler's Wharf11 Gainsford Street SE1 2NEHostel-
LSE Carr-Saunders Hall18-24 Fitzroy Street W1T 4BNHostel77
LSE High Holborn178 High Holborn WC1V 7AAHostel76
LSE Passfield Hall1-7 Endsleigh Place WC1H 0PWHostel78
LSE Rosebery Hall90 Rosebery Avenue EC1R 4TYHostel77
MacDonald Hotel45 - 46 Argyle Square Kings CrossHotel76
Marble Arch Inn49-50 Upper Berkeley Street Marble ArchHotel74
MEININGER London Hyde Parkat Baden Powell House 65-67 Queen's GateHOSTEL80
Melita House Hotel35 Charlwood Street VictoriaHotel-
Metro Hotel7 Craven Road PaddingtonHotel61
Mowbray Court Hotel28/32 Penywern Road Earl's CourtHOTEL75
myOE Shared House6 Lena Gardens LondonGUESTHOUSE-
New Cross Inn Hostel323 New Cross RoadHostel71
No.8 Hostel London305 High Rd, WillesdenHostel68
Ibis Styles London Croydon585 London Road Thornton Heath, CroydonHOTEL75
Northfields Hostel264 Northfield Avenue LondonHostel72
Northumberland Kings Cross Hotel9-11 Euston Roadhotel-
O'Callaghan's205 Earls Court RoadHostel-
Olympia Rooms27 Matheson Road KensingtonHotel-
Olympic Victoria Hotel115 Warwick WayHotel-
Opulence55 North Cross Road, London SE22 9ET, UKHOTEL-
Paddington Hotel28 Gloucester TerraceHotel-
Palace Court Holiday Apartments1 Palace Court, Bayswater Roadapartment-
Palmers Lodge - Swiss Cottage40 College Crescent Swiss CottageHostel85
Park Hotel Essex327 Cranbrook Road IlfordHotel73
Park House Women's Hostel227 Earls Court RoadHostel75
Peckham Lodge110 Peckham RoadHotel73
Phoenix Hostel6 Daventry Streethostel81
Piccadilly Backpackers Hostel12 Sherwood Street PiccadillyHostel-
Pickwick Hall7 Bedford Place BloomsburyHostel83
Plaza Hotel London53 Shepherds Bush Road, LondonHotel-
Princes Square Hotel23-25 Princes Square,Off Ilchester Gardens BaywaterHotel74
Quality Hotel WembleyEmpire Way Wembley, MiddlesexHotel79
Queens Hotel Euro Group122 Church Road Crystal PalaceHotel74
Regina House110 Gloucester RoadHostel-
Belgravia Rooms104 Ebury Street Victoria, WestminsterHOTEL77
Royal Court Apartments51 Gloucester TerraceApartment-
Royal Hyde Park Hotel106/110 Queensway LondonHotel73
Sara Hotel15 Eardley Crescent 15 Eardley CrescentHotel-
Sheriff Inn117 Warwick WayHotel-
Smart Camden Hostel55/57 Bayham Street CamdenHostel71
Hyde Park Hostel2-4-6 Inverness Terrace BayswaterHostel58
Smart Hyde Park Inn48 - 50 Inverness Terrace BayswaterHostel71
Smart Hyde Park View11 Craven Hill GardenHostel78
Smart Russell Square71 Guilford StreetHostel70
St Christopher's Camden48-50 Camden High Street Camden NW1Hostel80
St Christopher's Greenwich189 Greenwich High Road GreenwichHostel77
St Christopher's Oasis59 Borough High StreetHostel77
St Christopher's Shepherds BushBelushis Bar 13-15 Shepherds Bush Green.HOSTEL79
St Christopher's Inn - London Bridge121 Borough High StreetHostel80
St Christopher's Village165 Borough High StreetHostel78
St George Hotel46 Norfolk Square Paddington, W2R102Hotel73
St. Athans20 Tavistock Place Russell SquareGuesthouse76
St Christopher's Hammersmith28, Hammersmith Broadway HammersmithHostel76
Sundial Court Summer Lettings38-42 Chiswell Streethostel-
Surtees94 Warwick WayGuesthouse75
Best Western The Bell HotelHigh Road, Bell Common, Epping, London, Essex CM1HOTEL-
The Bird's Nest32 Deptford Church StreetHostel-
The Court Hostel194-196 Earls Court Road KensingtonHostel68
FRESH @ The Green Man, Paddington308 Edgware RoadHOSTEL73
London Eye Hostel73 Lambeth Walk LondonHostel71
The Royal Bayswater Hostel121 Bayswater RoadHostel68
FRESH @ The Steam Engine, Waterloo41-42 Cosser StHOSTEL78
The Walrus Hostel172 Westminster Bridge RoadHOSTEL81
FRESH @ The White Ferry, Victoria1a Sutherland Street VictoriaHOSTEL77
The Windmill50 Acton High street, ActonHostel76
Tony's House Hotel30 Norfolk Square Hyde ParkHotel73
Travel Joy Hostels Chelsea111 Grosvenor Road PimlicoHostel84
Tudor Court Hotel10-12 Norfolk Square Hyde ParkHotel-
umi16 Leinster Square BayswaterHotel-
University of Westminster Halls - Alexander FleminAlexander Fleming 3 Hoxton Market, London N1 6HGHostel75
University of Westminster Halls - Wigram84-99 Ashley Gardens, Thirleby RoadHostel-
University of Westminster Halls-InternationalHouse1-5 Lambeth Road London SE1 7DQHostel-
University of Westminster Halls-Maryleybone Rd35 Marylebone Road London NW1 5LSHostel-
Victoria Inn65-67 Belgrave Road VictoriaGuesthouse73
Victorian Apartment157 Drakefell RoadApartment-
West Cromwell Hotel66 West Cromwell RoadHotel73
West Two London22-23 Kensington Gardens SquareHOSTEL69
Windsor House Hotel12 Penywern Road Earls CourtHotel-
YHA London Central104-108 Bolsover StHostel84
YHA London Earls Court38 Bolton Gardens SW5 0AQHostel76
YHA London Holland ParkHolland Walk Kensington, W8 7QUHostel77
YHA London Oxford Street14 Noel Street Soho, W1F 8GJHostel83
YHA London St Pancras79-81 Euston RoadHostel82
YHA London St Pauls36 Carter Lane EC4V 5ABHostel78
YHA London Thameside20 Salter Road Rotherhithe,Hostel76
York House Hotel27 - 28 Philbeach Gardens Earls CourtHotel-
Sandeman Allen40 Inverness TerraceHostel76
Access VictoriaCundy StreetApartment-
Access Apartments Paddington16 Leinster Square BayswaterApartment-
Hotel 261261 Uxbridge Road Shepherds BushHotel69
Strand Continental143 Strand, LondonHostel74
Crown Hyde Park hotel10-11 Craven Terrace PaddingtonHotel-
Queen Elizabeth Chelsea58 Bagleys LaneHostel78
Arsenal Tavern Hostel175 Blackstock RoadHostel66
Keystone House Kings Cross272-276 Pentonville Road Kings Cross LondonHOSTEL78
Davies Court56 East India Dock RoadHOSTEL75
Best Western Ilford Hotel5 Argyle Road, Ilford, EssexHOTEL-
4 Star Hostel Piccadilly London91 Jermyn Street, Westminster LondonHOSTEL71
The Lodge at Crystal PalaceCrystal Palace National Sports Centre Upper NorwoodHOSTEL75
Surprise Backpackers110 Vauxhall bridge Road LondonHostel72
Egoli Hostel4 Fulham High StreetHostel-
Orchard Hotel86-90 Sussex Gardens PaddingtonHotel-
Gresham Hotel116 Sussex GardensHotel-
Corbigoe Hotel101 Belgrave Road, LondonHOTEL-
Pacific Hotel108 Sussex GardensHotel-
Somerset Hotel6 Dorset SquareHotel-
Ravna Gora Hotel29 Holland Park Avenue Notting HillHotel-
Boston Court26 Upper Berkeley streetHotel-
Maranton Hotel14 Barkston GardensHotel-
Nayland Hotel132-134 Sussex GardensHotel-
Queens Hotel33 Anson RoadHotel-
Camelot House18 Sussex GardensHotel-
Ventures Hotel12-14 Sussex GardensHotel-
Central Hotel35 Hoop Lane Golders GreenHotel-
Firs Lodge289- 291 Bath Road HounslowHotel-
The Georgian Hotel87 Gloucester RoadHotel-
Woodberry Hotel6 Woodberry DownHotel-
Saint Simeon38 Harrington GardensHotel-
St George- Victoria107 & 115 St. George's DriveHotel-
Bed in London 2519 Commercial Road LondonHOSTEL-
Britannia Inn Hotel54, Mansfield Road Ilford LondonHOTEL-
TH - Armada House19 St George WharfApartment-
Auburn Surrey Square Flat28A Surrey Square, Walworth, London SE17 2JXAPARTMENT-
FRESH @ The Great Eastern, Docklands1 Glenaffric AvenueHOSTEL76
Pride of Paddington1-3 Craven Road PaddingtonHOSTEL78
Blue Skies Hostel7 Station Rise LondonHOSTEL73
Golden Star Hotel75 warwick way VictoriaHostel65
Silk House Hotel100-102 Hassett Road HackneyHotel-
The W14 Hotel & Bar16-22 Gunterstone Road West KensingtonHOSTEL73
Five Kings59 Anson RoadHotel-
Access Apartments Maida Valen/aAPARTMENT-
Beit HallImperial College London Prince Consort Road South Kensington CampusHostel-
Orient HouseStation Court Imperial RoadApartment-
Princes GardensEastside Prince's Hall Gardens Imperial College London Watts Way, South KensingtonHostel-
Evelyn Gardens HallsImperial College London 66 Evelyn gardensHostel84
The Harcourt InsigniaMarylebone Village Nearby Underground: Edgware RoadAPARTMENT-
The Monkeys in the Trees49 Becklow Road Shepherds BushHOSTEL76
Curzon Street IICurzon Street within the Mayfair DistrictAPARTMENT-
Curzon Street ICurzon Street within the Mayfair DistrictAPARTMENT-
Curzon Street IIICurzon Street within the Mayfair DistrictAPARTMENT-
Access Kensington OlympiaRichmond Court North End RoadApartment-
Lords Hotel20-22 Leinster Square BayswaterHotel-
Staunton Hotel13-15 Gower StHotel-
Park Hotel64 Belgrave RoadGUESTHOUSE69
Rex Hotel49 Shepherds Bush Road HammersmithHotel-
Access Apartments OlympiaRichmond Court North End RoadAPARTMENT-
Grand Parade Hotel45 Green LanesHotel-
Camden Apartments15 Pratt Street Camden TownApartment-
Tinas London Guesthouse292 Bastable Avenue Barking, EssexGUESTHOUSE-
Hostel 170170 Kings Cross RoadHOSTEL-
Camden Rooms119 Camden Street LondonAPARTMENT-
Archway HostelChurch Cottages Pemberton GardensHOSTEL-
Hadleigh Hotel24 Upper Berkeley StreetHotel-
Comfotel Grn120 Shepherd's Bush Road Greater LondonHotel-
Alexandra Hotel159-161 Sussex GdnsHotel-
Compton Guest House65 Compton RoadGUESTHOUSE76
Avon Hotel50 Norfolk SquareHotel-
Holland HouseHolland House 53 Eccleston SquareHOSTEL-
New Mansion House38 Lancaster GateHOSTEL75
Eve Apartment35-37 Augustus Road WandsworthAPARTMENT-
Abcone Hotel10 Ashburn GardensHotel-
Best Western Palm Hotel64-74 Hendon WayHotel-
COUNTRYSIDE HOTEL207 Romford Road, Forest Gate,Hotel-
Griffin House Hotel10 Connaught StreetHotel-
Hammersmith Hotel186 Hammersmith GroveHotel-
Exhibition court hotel 425 collingham place Earl's courtHotel-
City Hotel12 Osborn StreetHotel76
Mina House Hotel21-23 Craven RoadHotel-
Elegant Zone 2 London Apartment91 Corbridge CourtAPARTMENT-
37 Collingham Place37 Collingham PlaceHOTEL75
Paddington Studio51 Westboune TerraceAPARTMENT-
Access CamdenKentish Town Road LondonAPARTMENT-
Euro Hotel Clapham80/81 Clapham Common South SideHotel70
Ibis style London Leyton543 Lea Bridge Road LeytonHotel-
Saba Hotel103 Shepherd's Bush RoadHotel-
The Paramount Hotel50 Nevern SqHotel-
The Wellington71/72 Vincent SquareHotel-
Stylish London Apartment114 Portland Road LondonAPARTMENT-
Globe Trott Inns1 Barking Road LondonHostel73
Zenith Hostel125 Packington StreetHostel-
The Bridge Hotel30 Borough RoadHotel-
My Place Inn - Brixton79 Rushcroft Road SW2 1 JHGUESTHOUSE75
Lodge NW261 Ivy Road Willesden GreenGuesthouse84
Hyde Park Suites55 Inverness Terrace BayswaterAPARTMENT77
Hyde Park Apartments8 Craven Hill BayswaterAPARTMENT-
Hyde Park Economy Apartments11 Inverness Terrace BayswaterAPARTMENT-
Paddington Apartments9 Talbot Square BayswaterAPARTMENT-
Bed in London International Youth Hostel1 Rampart Street corner of 176 Commercial RdHOSTEL-
City Inn Express144 A Mare StreetHotel70
Notting Hill Hotel2 Pembridge SquareHotel-
Curzon House Hotel58 Courtfield Gardens West EndHOTEL77
Vegas Hotel104 Warwick way VictoriaHOTEL75
River View27 River Court, Upper Ground, London, SE1 9PEGUESTHOUSE-
Home away from Home21 Dewsbury RoadGUESTHOUSE-
Aviva Holiday Studios42 Glenthrone Road LondonAPARTMENT-
Safestay at Elephant and Castle144-152 Walworth RoadHOSTEL81
Lyra's Bed and BreakfastCatford London SE6GUESTHOUSE-
The William IV786 Harrow RoadGUESTHOUSE-
Welcome Inn42 Tavistock PlaceHOTEL-
Evelyn Gardens64-69 Evelyn GardensHOSTEL-
New dawn hotel95 Inverness TerraceHotel69
Rose Court Hotel35/35a Great Cumberland PlaceHotel-
Studios2let36-37 Cartwright GardensApartment-
Fitzroy hotel41 Fitzroy StreetHotel-
The Stay Club @ Willesden Junction5J Nicoll Road WillesdenAPARTMENT-
London365 Hostel30 Chatsworth RoadHOSTEL75
FRESH @ The Crown, Clapham102 Lavender Hill, BatterseaHOSTEL77
Cottage 7676 Romford Road StratfordGUESTHOUSE-
Stratford London Olympics Apartment25A Mortham StreetAPARTMENT-
Cottage 3L92A Osborne Road Forest GateGUESTHOUSE75
London Holiday ApartmentLeyswood Drive Newbury ParkAPARTMENT-
Balham Lodge Apartments - Southside2a Streatham Common, South SideAPARTMENT-
The Dictionary, Shoreditch10-20 Kingsland RoadHOSTEL78
Superior IV Zone 2 London ApartmentFlat 26 Building 1 Tarves WayAPARTMENT-
City II96 City TowerAPARTMENT-
The Backpackshack1 Mill Hill Road The Talbot PubHOSTEL77
Destinations at The Rose & Crown65 Union Street BoroughHOSTEL79
Kentish RoomsTolli Patisserie, 327 Kentish Town Road LondonGUESTHOUSE-
247 London Hostels and Studio Apartments37 Chatworth Road LondonHOSTEL-
East London47 Shernhall Street, WalthamstowHOSTEL-
Aron Guest House27 South EalingGUESTHOUSE-
Rowan Park Lodge18 Jack Dimmer CloseGUESTHOUSE-
Travel Joy Hostels Wimbledon89 Hartfield Road WimbledonHOSTEL-
Barmy Badger Backpackers17 Longridge Road Earls CourtHOSTEL-
Room 1 North London26 Sandringham RoadGUESTHOUSE-
Marylebone Serviced ApartmentsLisson GroveAPARTMENT-
Sanctum International Serviced Apartments1 Greville RoadAPARTMENT-
Rest Up London172 New Kent RoadHOSTEL72
Friendship House3 Belvedere Place Off Borough RoadGUESTHOUSE-
Apples Inn18 Stanley Road LondonGUESTHOUSE-
Comfotel Blue Hotel114 Shepherds Bush Road,HOTEL-
Barry House Hyde Park London12 Sussex Place Hyde ParkGUESTHOUSE-
Normandie Hotel96 Sussex Gardens PaddingtonHOTEL-
London Stay - London Bridge Apartments187 Rotherhithe New RoadAPARTMENT-
MBD Apartments London E1519 Commercial Rd Arbour SquareAPARTMENT-
RMA Accommodation156-158 Mile end roadHOSTEL-
Kensington Residence20A Thurloe Street Flat 5Apartment-
Apples Inn 251a Selwyn road,Guesthouse-
Banks Hotel5 - 9 Park AvenueHotel-
UStay London-Superior Greenwich1 Tarves Way Apartments 11Apartment-
UStay London-Executive Greenwich1 Tarves WayApartment-
UStay London-Canary Wharf702 Wharfside Point South 4 Prestons RoadApartment-
UStay London-Canary Wharf296 City Tower 3 Lime HarbourApartment-
Cranford Hotel22-26 Argyle RdHotel-
City Best Hotel31-33 Mansfield roadHotel-
Newham Hotel349-353 Romford RdHotel-
Lanterns Court ApartmentDenison House 20 Lanterns WayApartment-
City Reach Apartment19 Leman StreetApartment-
Discovery Dock Apartment3 South Quay SquareApartment-
Camden Town Apartment194 Arlington RoadApartment-
Kings Cross Apartment1 Calshot StreetApartment-
Camden Villas244 Camden RoadApartment-
Camden StudiosCamden Park RoadApartment-
Apples Inn 11A Dickens rdGuesthouse-
London Guards Hotel36 Lancaster Gate BayswaterHotel-
247 Hostel and Studio Apartments39 Chatsworth RoadHostel-
Rossmore Hotel301-309 Cranbrook RdHotel74
Croydon1St Peters RoadAPARTMENT-
MBD Apartments in Tower Hamlets1-91 Morton CloseAPARTMENT-
Palace Street Apartments15 Palace StreetAPARTMENT-
Mill harbour Apartment41 MillharbourApartment-
Seacon Tower Apartment5 Hutching Street,Apartment-
Chiswick Rooms407 Goldhawk RoadHostel-
Park View Hotel20 & 22 Wilberforce RoadHotel-
Oakwood Hall5 Spalding RoadGuesthouse-
Caswell Hotel25 Gloucester StreetHOTEL-
Black Lion Guesthouse274 Kilburn High RoadGUESTHOUSE-
The Windmill Cricklewood57 Cricklewood BroadwayGUESTHOUSE-
Queens Drive169 Queens DriveGUESTHOUSE-
Macy`s Hotel168 Station RoadHOTEL-
Gloucester Hotel18 & 25 Wilberforce RoadHotel-
Firs Lodge289, Bath RoadHotel-
Victor Hotel51 Belgrave RoadHotel-
Central House Hotel39 Belgrave roadHotel-
Skylark B&B297 Bath RoadGuesthouse-
The Enterprise Hotel15-25 Hogarth Road Earls Court, KensingtonHOTEL-
St John Bed and Breakfast20 St Johns Way ArchwayGUESTHOUSE-
Goddis Lodge126 New Cross Road, London, SE14 5BAGUESTHOUSE-
Aboyn House8 Walpole RoadGUESTHOUSE-
Carlton House London11 Carlton RoadGUESTHOUSE-
Times Square ApartmentTimes square, Hooper streetApartment-
Stay in Holborn36 Great James StreetGUESTHOUSE-
Piccadilly Stop Guesthouse14-16 Brewer StreetGuesthouse-
Stay in Chelsea7 Brechin PlaceGUESTHOUSE-
Egoli Accommodation4 Fulham High StreetHostel-
Barking Park Hotel56-60 Tanner StreetHotel-
Hotel Lily23-33 Lillie RoadHotel-
City View Hotel Roman Road113 Roman RoadHotel-
City View Hotel Bethnal Green287 Cambridge Heath RoadHotel-
London Bridge Apartment199 Long LaneApartment-
St Georges Wharf ApartmentAcquarius House St George's WharfApartment-
Monument Street Serviced ApartmentWerna House 31 Monument streetApartment-
Saint James Backpackers21 Longridge RoadHOSTEL-
Best London Hostels22 AnsonHOSTEL-
Dawson PlaceDawson Place Notting Hill GateGUESTHOUSE-
Portobello House Hotel225 ladbroke GroveHotel-
Holland Park Hotel26 Aldine St, LondonHotel-
Dinwiddy House189 - 205 Pentonville RdHostel-
Holland Park Grove3 Aldine StreetHotel-
The Nayland Hotel132-134 Sussex GardensHotel-
Andrews House Hotel12 Westbourne StreetHOTEL-
Pembury Hotel326 - 328 Seven Sisters RdHotel-
Apples Inn 3380 Strone Road Manor Park,Guesthouse-
Alliance House44-45 Newington GreenHostel-
23 Hostel23 Inverness TerraceHOSTEL-
Lancaster Hotel4-6 Bedford PlaceHotel-
Notting Hill Hostel63 Prince's SquareHOSTEL73
Greenview Hostel1-15 Winchester Place ArchwayHOSTEL-
Tommy Miah's Raj Hotel366 Essex Road IslingtonHotel-
Whiteleaf Hotel66-68 Inverness Terrace Bayswater Central LondonHotel-
Apple Lodge46 Heigham Road East HamGUESTHOUSE-
Hostel O'Connors18 Beresford Square, WoolwichHOSTEL70
Melbourne house65 Melbourne Road East HamHotel-
New Market House17 York WayHotel-
The Sapphire Hotel35 Shepherds Bush RoadHotel-
Duke Of Leinster Hotel20 Leinster GardensHotel-
Lords Hotel20-22 Leinster SquareHotel-
BSL Bethnal Green ApartmentsSeth Court, 23 Parmiter StreetAPARTMENT-

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Work

Before making plans to move to London and start working, make sure you are legally entitled to work in the UK so you do not face any legal difficulties by accidentally breaking the law. There are a number of ways you can apply for work permits and visas, and of course, this is also affected by your nationality. Check out the different types of work permits and visas to make sure you are entitled to work when you move to London.

With a number of UK and international companies based in London and a large population requiring goods and services, there are a lot of job options in London. Check out Monster or gumtree for job listings. Also, The Guardian Newspaper is also a major advertiser for skilled professionals – check out their website or pick up a copy in any newsagent's shop on a Wednesday for the biggest selection of jobs!

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Learn

London has the largest population of students of any city in the UK. Here is a list of some of the more popular universities.

  • University of London is the largest university in London with over 135,000 students on campus, plus another 40,000 studying off the main campus. The university is a federation of colleges which specialise in different subjects. Many of these are world-class: the London School of Economics has a great reputation in the social sciences, University College London in law, and so on.
  • Imperial College London, formerly part of the University of London, specialise in science, engineering, medicine and business.
  • University of the Arts London is a very good art school with other non-art programmes as well.
  • London Business School, a constituent college of the University of London, offers very highly-rated postgraduate degrees in business.
  • Brunel University is in West London and is a great school.
  • City University is known for making very good workers out of their graduates and their alumni earn very high salaries.
  • Royal College of Art is the only postgraduate arts university in the world.
  • Royal College of Music is a great music university in London.
  • Conservatoire for Dance and Drama provides higher level vocational education in dance and drama at several different places.
  • Richmond offers liberal arts and business BA degrees and Masters programmes with dual US and UK recognition.

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Keep Connected

Internet

For free Wi-Fi, check out the map maintained by Londonist. A number of bars and restaurants offer Wi-Fi service with a purchase, and will usually advertise this fact. You may need to get the security key from the service counter.

McDonald's also offers free Wi-Fi connection in its restaurants across the UK.

Internet cafés can be found throughout London, and charge from £1 to £2 per hour, usually payable in 30-minute segments.

Phone

See also: International Telephone Calls

The mobile network operators in the UK are O2, Vodafone, T-Mobile, Orange and 3; and often have store fronts in most shopping areas. There are also other "re-branded" mobile phone service using the infrastructure of the mobile network operators. The Carphone Warehouse is an independent mobile phone retailer with stores around the country.

Mobile phone service plans are usually packaged as Pay-Monthly for post-paid plans, and Pay-As-You-Go for pre-paid plans. Pay-monthly plans usually come with a 12- or 18- month contract, while Pay-As-You-Go plans require top up of credit, which can be done at ATMs, kiosks and convenience stores with a "Top-Up" logo displayed.

International telephone call centres can be found around London, allowing you to place calls using a land line and pay for the call. These are often co-located with internet cafés.

The country calling code to the United Kingdom is: 44. To make an international call from the United Kingdom, the code is: 00

In case of emergency, call 999 or 112 from any phone. Such calls are free and will be answered by an emergency services operator who will ask you for your location, and the service(s) you need (police, fire, ambulance, coastguard or mountain rescue). You can call this number from any mobile telephone as well, even if you do not have roaming.

Post

The Royal Mail provides postal services in the United Kingdom. The Royal Mail's store fronts are called Post Office and offer services ranging from sending letters and packages to foreign currency exchange. Use the branch locator to find the nearest Post Office branch. There will be at least one post office in any town/city and there are quite often post offices in larger villages. It's common for a post office to be incorporated into a grocery store, where there will be a small counter located at the back of the store for dealing with post related matters. All post offices are marked with signs that say 'post office' in red lettering. Post boxes can be found at any post office and standalone large red post boxes on the streets or red boxes in the sides of public buildings.
For sending packages overseas, it might be a good idea to check prices and services with international companies like TNT, UPS or DHL.

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References

  1. 1 Mid-2010 estimate. Office for National Statistics. Retrieved on 2011–08–01.

Quick Facts

[edit]

Population
7 825 000 [1]
Dial Code
020
Coordinates
  • Latitude: 51.500152
  • Longitude: -0.126236

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London Travel Helpers

  • Hachiko

    Hey! I've been living in London for over 12 years now, I grew up in this city and know it like the back of my hand. Happy to help with anything!

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    I live in London since Feb 2012 and keep on exploring it every day. So really happy to help with your travel plans, give any suggestions.

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    I stayed for 3 weeks in England last 2011. I will go back again this June. Hopefully I can help other travelers by answering queries about transportation, hotels, food, and places to see. While locals would definitely be more knowledgeable, its nice to hear feedback from tourist like me :)

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This is version 280. Last edited at 16:41 on Feb 12, 14 by stojac. 570 articles link to this page.

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