According to BuzzFeed, London is the most popular tourist destination on the planet. With 4.9 million people visiting the country between July 2013 and September 2013, the city’s tourism levels grew by 19.5% over those for the 2012 Olympics! If you’re planning a vacation to London , there are some things you should keep in mind for a successful trip to the heart of the UK.
Check the Weather
With weather like London’s, you’d be crazy not to do your research into the forecast weather for your stay. Groucho Marx is quoted as saying, “I’m leaving [London] because the weather is too good. I hate London when it’s not raining.” This should give you some indication of what the typical London day is like. If you don’t want to be forced to stay inside hotels for the duration of your stay, research the weather and pack accordingly.
Find Cheap Hotel Rooms
Did you know, according to the BBC, there are more than 130,000 hotel rooms in London? Needless to say, you’re going to have a heck of a time narrowing down your hotel search. As written in The Daily Mail, London is the sixth most expensive city in the world. Use popular hotel booking sites, like Kayak or TripAdvisor, to help you find the best hotels offering discount hotel rooms to save.
Don’t Pay for Every Activity
When planning a vacation, you should plan for the activities you want to partake in. This will give you an idea of your budget. Luckily, many of London’s attractions are free. Take the British Museum: since 1753 it’s been known around the world as the home of important historical artifacts. Currently, according to BritishMuseum.org, the museum is running a jaw-dropping exhibit centered around China’s Ming Dynasty. Surprisingly, it’s completely free to visitors.
Just because you’re a tourist doesn’t mean you have to act like one. One of the best ways to experience the city is to act like a local. Try heading to one of the metropolis’ well known tea-houses, like Victoria’s Grand Imperial London. Taking time out for tea is one of the best ways to see the city as a Londoner. As The United Kingdom Tea Council writes, Brits have consumed over 116 million cups of tea just today. Go have a few of your own.
Travel by Foot
In a city with public transportation as good as London’s, it’s tempting to take the tube or the bus everywhere. That being said, Frommer’s writes that one of the best ways to experience a city, its people, its food, is by walking its streets. While this can be tricky for older travelers and those on family vacations, it is the best way to see the heart of London Town.
Put Down the Smartphone
Planning a vacation away can lead to stress about work and the family and friends you’re leaving behind. Subsequently, you’ll feel the urge to constantly check your phone and your e-mail. However, as Forbes suggests, your vacation is the perfect time to ignore your phone. Remember, you left home to relax and enjoy yourself. It will be easier if you leave your phone at the hotel.
If you’re planning a trip to the Big Smoke, keep these tips in mind. Not only will you save money, you’ll experience the true essence of our wonderful city in ways few travelers have. See this link for more.