Holiday Travel Guide & Destinations
The capital of England, the city that has inspired great works of art and literature with its exquisite beauty and its spellbinding architectural marvels — London. London is one of the world’s most popular tourist destinations, boasting four world heritage sites and numerous iconic landmarks recognisable the world over.
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With direct flights from India to London taking not more than 9-10 hours, London makes for a great international holiday destination for Indian travellers.
The magnificent London Eye and Tower Bridge, the vibrant streets of Piccadilly Circus and Portobello Market; the awe-inspiring Tate Modern and National Portrait Gallery, London is replete with places to visit and things to do.
Visit London, England
The largest city in the European Union and Western Europe, London is situated on the River Thames in South-East England. A multi-cultural city, there are more than 300 languages being spoken inside the London city.
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London has a temperate oceanic climate, and is mild and cool for most part of the year. The city experiences snowfall in the months of December and January, and the temperature may drop to an average daily maximum of 8°C in these months. The Summer months have longer daylight hours and milder temperatures, and are therefore the best time to visit London. But, irrespective of the time of your visit, be prepared to experience unpredictable rains and weather changes during your stay in London. Despite its notorious grey clouds, London is still a big draw for travellers the world over.
Sovereign state: United Kingdom
Currency: British Pound Sterling (£)
Time Zone: BST (UTC+1)
Language: English, Polish, Tamil, Urdu, Punjabi
Religion: Christian, Muslim, Hindu, Sikh
London Weather: Temperate oceanic climate
London Visitor Information Centres: London has several tourist information centres that you can visit to get more information on the city. To make the most of your stay in London, don’t forget to collect maps and guidebooks at these visitor information centres. You can find the complete list of London Tourist information centres here.
Visa Requirements: Indian nationals travelling to London, England require a visa to enter the country. You can find more information on the UK visa application process on the UK Border Agency website.
Flights to London
A popular international tourist destination, there is no lack of flights connecting to London from destinations all around the world. There are quite a number of cheap flights from India to London available on any given day. You can visit Wego.co.in to find flights with seats available, including full-carriers and budget airlines to London.
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There are a total of six airports – Heathrow, Gatwick, City, Stansted, Luton, and Southend serving the London city. Located in the London Borough of Hillingdon, in West London, the Heathrow Airport is one of London’s largest airports and one of the world’s busiest in terms of international passenger traffic. The airport has four passenger terminals (Terminals 1, 3, 4 and 5) and a cargo terminal. Apart from its flag carrier British Airways, London Heathrow Airport is served by various other airlines such as American Airlines, Air France, and Air India that connect it to other cities across the globe.
International Flights to London
British Airways, Jet Lite, Emirates Airlines, Cathay Pacific and Lufthansa are some of the airlines that operate flights to London from major Indian cities such as Delhi, Mumbai, Bangalore, Ahmedabad, and Hyderabad. Air India and Jet Airways offer budget flights to London from India. Qatar Airways is another popular airline offering affordable flight tickets to India.
Average Flight Durations on Popular Routes
Flights to London from Delhi : 9h15m – 9h45m
Flights to London from Mumbai : 9h15m – 10h15m
Flights to London from Bangalore: 10h20m – 10h50m
Flights to London from Chennai : 13h20m – 41h15m
Flights to London from Amritsar : 10h55m – 36h50m
Getting around London
From the Airport
Travelling between the city and the London airports is made quite simple with the availability of a wide range of public transport links. You can use the Heathrow Express rail that operates train to London Paddington from the airport. You can use the tube, buses and cabs to reach other districts in London from Paddington. The Heathrow Connect rail follows the same route as the Heathrow Express but halts at few intermediate stations, thereby taking a longer time to reach Paddington.
You can also use the London Underground (Piccadilly line) that operates from Heathrow to Central London every few minutes. There are also buses operated by Bus N9 between Heathrow and other areas such as Piccadilly Circus and Trafalgar Square.
London has one of the most advanced public transport systems in the world. If you are planning to stay in London longer than a few days, consider getting yourself an Oyster smartcard. Available at all the Tube stations for a deposit of £5, Oyster cards make travel through London cheaper and more convenient. Simply add value to the card and tap in and out as you travel, saving you the trouble of calculating fares for each specific journey.
London Underground One of the largest underground rail network in the world, the London Underground also known as The Tube makes for an easy and convenient mode of public transport in London. Tube maps are displayed clearly in the stations and can be collected from the tourist offices. The only problem with the Tube is that it can get crowded during rush hours and it’s advisable to use buses and other modes of public transport during peak travel time.
Buses Buses are more convenient and cheaper than taking the Tube for short trips inside the city. If you are planning to travel out of central London then using a bus is better than using the Tube, considering the fact that over 5 million bus trips are made within the city each weekday.
National Rail London is also served by the British railway system also known as the National Rail. National Rail services are best used for taking trips to specific destinations such as the Hampton Court, Windsor Castle, Kew Gardens and Greenwich, or to visit other cities in the UK.
From resorts and luxury hotels to budget accommodation, you can find a wide range of hotels in London. Earl’s Court, West Kensington, Bloomsbury, Paddington and Bayswater are some of the districts that are replete with hotels and service apartments.
Situated in Central London, the London Hilton on Park Lane hotel makes for a luxurious and convenient stay. The hotel offers 10 dedicated Suite and Executive floors, and is close to several tourist attractions such as the Hyde Park, the Buckingham Palace, the British Museum and the shopping districts of Knightsbridge Oxford Street and Bond Street. The Waldorf Hilton Hotel, the Capital Hotel are some of the other luxury hotels in London.
The Sofitel London Heathrow hotel makes for a good stay if you are looking for a hotel near the Heathrow airport. The hotel has direct access to the Terminal 5 of the Heathrow airport via a covered walkway and is connected to the Terminals 1, 2, 3 / Terminal 4 through the Heathrow Express/ Connect rail connection. It boasts of 605 non-smoking bedrooms, 27 suites, and 45 meeting rooms in addition to a state-of-the-art health spa and gym.
For more accommodation options in London, visit Wego Hotels. Compare and book the best rates available online.
Places to visit in London
The London Eye
One of United Kingdom’s major tourist attractions, the London Eye is a giant ferris wheel located on the South Bank of the River Thames. This 443 feet tall wheel contains 32 capsules and carries around 10,000 visitors every day. A ride on the London Eye gives a magnificent view of some of London’s popular attractions including the Tower Bridge, the St. Paul’s Cathedral, and the Big Ben.
Photo Credit: Anna Anichkova
For those who want to make the London Eye ride even more memorable, there are some special ride packages available such as the private capsule flights, flights with champagne or cocktails, and flights with breakfast.
You can find more information on the London Eye and buy tickets for the ride here.
The 19th century bridge located by the Tower of London, the Tower Bridge has become an iconic symbol of London. This magnificent 800 feet bridge that crosses the River Thames consists of two towers held together by two horizontal walkways.
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Bustling with tourists and the locals, just watching the bridge from a distance is interesting. You can also attend the Tower Bridge Exhibition that takes visitors on a journey through the history of the Tower Bridge by hosting guided tours and exhibitions.
One of the world’s oldest scientific zoos, the London Zoo (also known as the Regent’s Zoo) was originally designed to be used for scientific study. It was opened to the public in 1847. Today. the zoo houses a collection of 755 species of animals, making it one of the largest in the United Kingdom.
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The zoo situated at the northern edge of Regent’s Park, between the City of Westminster and Camden, houses several interesting exhibits. This includes a reptile house, a public aquarium, an insect house and children’s zoo. To plan your visit to the London Zoo, visit the London Zoo website where more information is available.
While there are many free things to do in London, the top of your list should be exploring London’s myriad art galleries and museums.
One of the most-visited modern art galleries in the world with over 4.7 million visitors per year, Tate Modern features works of international modern and contemporary artists dating from 1900 until today. The galleries include works by Pablo Picasso, Claude Monet, Barnett Newman, Mark Rothko, Henri Matisse, Tacita Deans and several other high profile artists.
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An art museum located on Trafalgar Square, the National Gallery houses a collection of over 2,300 paintings dating from the mid-13th century to 1900. It features some of the finest collections of Western European paintings including art works by popular artists such as Michelangelo, Caravaggio, Rembrandt, Titian, Raphael and Cezanne.
The British Museum, the National History Museum and the Victoria and Albert Museum are some of the other museums worth visiting in London.
With so many places to visit and so many things to do, a trip to London is endlessly fun and even educational. It’s a chance to walk the paths and view the works we so often come across in books, paintings, television and everything else culturally significant. English author Samuel Johnson was right when he stated that, “When a man is tired of London, he is tired of life.” So, book your tickets with Wego and get ready to turn your London dreams into a reality.