Posts Tagged ‘london’

summer fun in London

Wednesday, July 16th, 2014

Summer in London is fun – the city comes alive with festivals of food, culture or just good time bonkers events!  The city is so well connected that a visitor is never too far from an amazing event – from a local neighbourhood street market to a huge open air cinematic experience.

London’s choice of alfresco film screenings is bigger than ever for 2014. Big-screen movie showings, with line-ups covering everything from well-loved comedies to cult classics, have popped up for the season and have been really popular during the hot weather.

And the summer weather has been perfect for doing what we Brits do very well – visit the pub! London’s beer gardens are the best – overlooking the Thames, along the Embankment with local ales on tap and fun BBQ’s. Or look up – the best places to kick back, soak in the sun and listen to the capital’s top DJ’s are the rooftops with venues offering the festival vibe in the heart of the city.

But for the culture vultures amongst us – the biggest music festival in London is the Proms. Spanning 3 months, London opens its doors to the  greatest orchestras and classical musicians in the world. The big concerts attract big audiences but you can often get standing room space for £5, available on the day. All starts this Friday, 18th July.

So, whilst London is a huge urban city – there are plenty of reasons to get outdoors and seek an alternative view of our amazing capital city!london Summer

 

Awe-Inspiring Summer Art In London

Thursday, July 4th, 2013

London is renowned for being home to some of the world’s greatest art exhibitions. Every summer millions of tourists flock to the city in order to visit the scores of museums and art galleries which mushroom from the city’s every historic nook and cranny.

The well-established bigger gallery venues never rest on their laurels in their goal to deliver exciting and groundbreaking exhibitions during the height of summer. Top arts and museum venues offer a wealth of talented homegrown and international artists, artefacts and visual media.

2013 is already proving to be an outstanding year for London’s top gallery attractions. The Pompeii exhibition produced at the British Museum now wows crowds who have made a visit from all over the globe. It has already sold more than 50,000 tickets – the highest number for any of the big shows staged in the venue’s reading rooms in the past five years.

Judging from the short list below this year’s choice isn’t limited to ancient disasters, and is sure to appeal to all kinds of visitors with a desire to while away an arty afternoon or weekend in the heart of the capital.

Life and Death in Pompeii and Herculaneum at the British Museum

250 exhibits evoke the ordinary experience of life in these times. Exhibits paint a wonderfully real picture of the two towns just before Mount Vesuvius buried them in AD79: from carbonised food and impressive wall paintings, mosaics and cultural curiosities. Until September 29th.

David Bowie at the V&A

The exhibition charts Bowie’s influence on fashion, music and art through the decades through 300 objects. Some of Bowie’s iconic stage tour outfits feature as well as diary entries, sketches and scores. Until July 28th

Alien Revolution at the Royal Observatory Greenwich

The exhibition takes a trip through our fascination with aliens through 19th century illustrations of moon maidens, snaps of the Mars rover Curiosity, 1970s evidence of crop circles, and stills from ’80s-favourite ‘ET’. The exhibition is associated with several events which encourage visitors to wonder at the sky at night. These include four sci-fi movie nights, an alien planetarium show and make-a planet finder session. Until August 16th

Coronation! 1953-2013 at Westminster Abbey

The exhibition in the Abbey’s Chapter House marks the 60th anniversary of the 1953 Coronation with some behind-the-scenes images that show how the Abbey was prepared for the 1953 coronation, as shot by the likes of photojournalists such as Bert Hardy and John Chillingworth for the Picture Post and other publications. Included are images detailing the extensive building work done to re-configure the abbey in a six-month Ministry of Works project that was just one part of the build-up to the event. It is run in association with Getty Images. Until September 27th.

Poster Art 150: London Underground’s Greatest Designs

The tube is 150 years old. These posters communicate how Londoners were told about latest developments, and informed how for example they could use the system to escape bad weather and more recently to instill faith in passengers that the Tube is in good shape. The posters from the early parts of the 20th century contain an artistic quality as several on show were designed by leading lights May Ray, Graham Sutherland, Paul Nash or Laszlo Moholy-Nagy. 1930s works by Edward McKnight Kauffer and Harry Beck are also included. Until October 27th.

There are plenty of awe-inspiring exhibitions on offer this summer for art enthusiasts and museum buffs alike. B+B Belgravia can make your stay a relaxing one during your tour of some of the city’s most interesting cultural hot spots.

Travelling by Tube in London – A Tourist’s Guide

Thursday, May 17th, 2012

Whether you’re visiting London for business or pleasure, the chances are you’ll have to take the Tube at some point to get from A to B. Central London’s so vast and the roads are incredibly congested so the Tube is often the most practical commuting solution.

For first-time Tube riders a number of emotions may creep over them before embarking on their first underground pursuit; excitement at riding on London’s iconic transport infrastructure, anticipation at the thought of being underground and general confusion at trying to navigate the system. The fact is; there’s a sort of unwritten code of conduct on the Tube that savvy commuters always adhere to which ensures safety and efficiency for travellers using the underground. The best thing you can do as a newbie is read this simple guide so you don’t have “lost tourist” written across your forehead.

Underground Fares and Ticket Debunking

The London Underground can be a confusing concept to grasp in terms of fares and tickets. Firstly, you need to establish which zones you will be travelling in; Tube tickets are priced according to how many zones you will cross and how many single journeys you will make in a day.

For example, a daily travel card for zones 1-3 (off-peak) costs £7.70 and enables you to make unlimited journeys within those zones, whereas a single journey within those zones costs £4.30. So if you intend to make more than one trip within those zones you may be best purchasing a travel card.

Alternatively, you can purchase an Oyster Card which basically entitles you to cheaper fares on any mode of public transport in zoned London areas. For example, the regular zone 1-3 single fare would £4.30 as mentioned before, but with an Oyster Card would only be £2.60. If you made various journeys within zones 1-3 your Oyster Card would stop charging you once it hits the daily cap (which is the equivalent price of the daily travel card). It also allows you to top up Pay as You Go style in Tube and train stations as well as at a large number of off licences.

You can also load railcards onto your Oyster Card for further savings; you get an extra 34% off single and daily price caps so it’s definitely worth utilising! You can load a railcard onto your Oyster by visiting any train or Tube, London Overground and certain national rail ticket offices.

Navigating the System
Before even thinking about getting on the Tube it’s highly recommended that you have a look at the Tube map and plan your journey as best you can before setting out. Certain lines only run through certain stations, so you may be required to change lines at particular stations to reach your intended destination.

If you have a smartphone then it’s definitely worth downloading the Tube Map App, not only is it convenient to have on your person at all times but it also calculates your journeys for you! If you put your starting point and intended destination it will pick the most efficient route, informing you of any changes required and providing you with an estimated journey time. Of course if you do get lost there are plenty of Underground staff on hand to help you find your way.

If you’re planning to travel via Tube at the weekend then allow extra time for your journey. The Underground often suffers from partial line closures at the weekend for planned engineering work, so you may have to take an alternate route or endure delays. This is due to the Underground track being rather ancient and needing a refurbishment.

If you’re intrigued by the transport system that is, in its own right a major tourist attraction, then why not watch the BBC documentary series The Tube? It delves into the daily life of Underground staff filling various roles and provides an interesting insight into how it all runs. It also gives Tube novices a fairly good idea of what to expect when travelling on the Underground!

About the author: Stephanie Staszko writes for MF Airport Parking who provide cheap London Heathrow Airport Parking for those visiting the Capital by air.

image via _dChris

Why London Is Perfect At Christmas

Friday, December 30th, 2011

The pretty lights, fancy decorations, anticipation of Santa visiting and excitement of Christmas Day morning all make this a truly magical time of year for children. However, even when you’re all grown up it doesn’t mean that the fun of Christmas has to go. With so much to see and do in London at this time, it’s bound to bring out the festive spirit in anyone.

Every year Hyde Park plays host to one of the most spectacular Christmas events in the UK. Perfect for all ages, Winter Wonderland is the place to find all things merry and joyful. With markets, an ice rink, shows, attractions, activities, rides and plenty of food to go around, this is a day out that will be remembered forever. Visitors can even take a trip to Santa Land where they can tour the workshop, talk to the elves, ride the Santa Express and of course meet the man himself.

If you find yourself near Covent Garden on a Saturday why not head to the Piazza for a spot of Reindeer petting? Alternatively, up until Christmas Eve London Zoo will have their very own Reindeer Lodge. Santa’s furry friends will be taking a daily walk around the zoo and visitors will even be able to pet them while they are in their enclosure.

Christmas just wouldn’t be the same without a trip to Santa’s Grotto and Kew Gardens is one of the top places to do this according to critics. With the chance to meet Santa, ride a carousel, get their face painted, go on mini vintage car rides and take seasonal walks, there is lots to keep the young ones happy.

Of course there is plenty of festive entertainment around London for adults too. With comedy shows, gigs, cabaret and Christmas markets aplenty, even the biggest scrooge would find it hard not to feel merry at this special time of year.

 

 

 

 

London Christmas Lights

Saturday, December 3rd, 2011

With Christmas quickly approaching, there is no doubt that everybody is starting to feel festive and in the mood to start celebrating. Towns and cities across the UK make a big effort every year to make sure that they have an impressive display of lights and decorations to bring a bit of festive cheer to the thousands of people out doing their Christmas shopping.

The London Christmas lights are amongst the most famous in the world and attract massive crowds every year during the holiday season. Whilst some have already been turned on, there are still plenty of places to go throughout November to see the special occasion taking place.

Oxford Street, St Christopher’s Place and Westfield Stratford City have already turned their lights on but they can still be enjoyed until the 5th January 2012. All of them boast a colourful array of lights which decorate the streets and shopping centres and some even have a grotto where young children can go and visit Santa.

Visitors to the brand new Westfield shopping centre can even go ice skating on one of the newest rinks to arrive in London for Christmas 2011.  Alternatively, St Christopher’s Place is known for having some of the most beautiful collection of lights and this year is no exception. Having been created by James Glancy Design, they include giant, reflective spheres which have been suspended above the streets and provide a magical experience for Christmas shoppers from all over the world.

The Balham Christmas lights are due to be turned on by the Mayor of Wandsworth on the 26th November 2011. The event will take place between 4 and 5pm on Hildreth Street and there will be plenty of seasonal refreshments available, entertainment for children and Christmas Carols which will be performed by the Balham Ukulele Society, Chestnut Grove Steel Band and the South London Choir.

The 30th November will see the Christmas lights being turned on in Greenwhich. Between 4pm and 7pm at Greenwich Market, visitors can enjoy a lantern procession, Santa’s Grotto and the famous Christmas market which will be full of festive foods, drinks and gifts to buy for friends and family.

There is going to be a very special event taking place on Motcomb Street in Belgravia on the 1st December 2011 because it will be the very first switching on of the Christmas lights here. From 6pm until 8:30pm, visitors will be treated to a host of live acts who will be entertaining the crowds with traditional carols and live music.

Going to see the London Christmas lights is a truly special occasion and is bound to fill everyone with festive cheer during the cold winter months. Click here to find out more information about events taking place and where some of the best and most impressive displays can be seen.