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London, England, United Kingdom Vacation Travel

More About London - Editor's Tips - Weather Maps & Dining

When to go?
Tourism in London never really slows, but if there is a time you can call the high season, it would be April through October; holidays are very busy as well. Take one part hot summer, one part tourist, and one part no air conditioning in many venues, stir well, and you have got yourself an uncomfortable situation. Head for London in spring to beat the heat and stroll through the many gardens and parks in full bloom. Autumn is an equally pleasant time to explore London, unlike winter which is often rainy, overcast and cold. While historically accurate, fog in London is not an issue as it once was. It can occasionally be seen early on winter mornings, but typically disappears by mid-morning.

Where to stay?
Choose wisely: there are five districts in London that you should consider when selecting your accommodation. Pick a hotel in Notting Hill if you like to surround yourself with the young and fashionable. Knightsbridge and South Kensington may be pricy, but are conveniently close to Harrods and Sloane Street shopping. Hotels in Covent Garden and Bloomsbury are your best bet if you plan on taking in a show at a theater or are heading to the British Museum. Marylebone and Mayfair are the most expensive options, and the place to look for four and five star hotels. Finally, Paddington: the hub for most tourists, not without reason. From your hotel here, you have quick access to Hyde Park, Oxford Street (shopping), and Heathrow (via direct train).

What to do?
A city as large as London has more activities and things to do than you can cover in one trip. The obvious favorites for a first visit include British Museum, the changing of the guard at Buckingham Palace, Big Ben, etc. For the view and experience, sit in the front of a Routemaster bus (red double decker bus). For a repeat visitor to London, try to explore some less touristy areas. Head to the Thames riverfront with ethnic restaurants, traditional pubs, and the Design Museum near Butlers Wharf.


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