An Insider’s Guide to Moving Around the Centre of London

The City of Westminster in London covers an expanse so teeming with hot spots, shopaholic experiences and cultural icons of the UK, it is a borough that completely merits its title of being a City!

Tourists can select from a range of transport choices for finding the sights around the borough, but the mode of transport you decide upon, needs to be framed around the amount of time you have available to move around.

1st Time Visitors (with plenty of time to enjoy Westminster):

For first-time visitors there’s a sustained flow of buses that run from Marble Arch through to Holborn (passing near to Covent Garden ) and this is the most glorious of routes to take. Oxford Street is shopping districts in London, where all the primary UK brands have their pioneering stores. You’ll find HMV, C&A, H&M among others. get off the bus at key points (Bond Street) and you’ll find the chic designer label fashion stores, as well as historic stores (Regent’s Street) such as Liberty and Hamleys Toys (who supply toys to the Royal Family, an absolute essential for families…there is no children’s store the same as Hamleys).

Early Bird Time Visitors (on a tight time schedule):

If you’re on a flying visit or have seen the main tourist attractions before, the best method of transport is going to be the London Underground. The City of Westminster has a number of lines that split up the main shopping zones very well. Because of this rather than taking a bus from Marble Arch to Holborn, which could take upwards of forty-minutes if there’s traffic, the Underground will provide the same journey in under ten minutes. The London Underground Central line is one of the main arteries in Westminster, cutting over from Queensway/Lancaster Gate through to Holborn. While the Piccadilly line with a service from from Kings Cross (Borough of Camden) through to Knightsbridge (where you can find Harrods) takes in Covent Garden, Piccadilly Circus (the very famous advertising signage you see in historic films of London, it’s also where you can find the statue of Eros).

Making it cost less:

London isn’t cheap, but at least, at the present time the exchange rate of the Euro against the Pound makes it, for the first time in the Euro’s history a very attractive exchange rate for taking the plunge into this intricate city. The economics of ticket pricing combined and with the desire by authorities to keep Londoners through the turnstiles, means that, the cost of buying individual tickets makes no sense at all. For example a single stop may cost upwards of £2.00, but a one-day travel card which can be used across all the buses and tube’s (Londoners affectionate slang name for the Underground) may cost as little a £5.00. Visitors should be able to also find unique travel option deals for longer periods. Either ask your hotel concierge or directly at an Underground Station. Note, that it is now exceptionally rare to be able to buy a ticket for a bus onboard, at most bus stops there are ticket dispensers where you can purchase single or a travel-card directly. Once you have this ticket you can speed around the Underground network to the points of interest you are interested in seeing.

What about Taxi’s?

Along with the old Routemaster Bus, which is rarely seen in circulation, The London Black Cab is an beacon of hope to Londoners. The training that a cabbie (taxi-driver) needs to put themselves through in order to be granted a taxi-licence to drive, comes in the form of a strict course, affectionately known as “The Knowledge”. In order to pass and proceed this course, a cab driver must be able to pinpoint every single street in London. If they fail to identify the route they would need to take in order to complete a journey defined by the examiner, they fail. Unfortunately traffic is the problem in Westminster, so the only time that a cab journey is really worth it, is when you’ve completed all your shopping and are completely exhausted. At that point tumbling into a taxi is the most enjoyable sensation in the World.