London attracts tourists like a magnet.
London attracts tourists like a magnet. Everyone wants to see the red double-decker, the red telephone booth, Her Majesty’s guardsmen in bear hats, Madame Tussaud’s wax dolls, the Tower, and Big Ben with their own eyes — in other words, all they have talked about during English lessons at school under the heading “London is the capital of Great Britain.” A trip to London — one of the most extraordinary, dynamic, and expensive cities in the world — will deliver upon all of your expectations and, for sure, will surprise you with something.
How to Get to London?
Since the UK is an island nation and is located far enough from Eastern Europe, it is logical to get to its capital by plane. From the airports of Moscow, a direct connection with London is provided by several airlines: Transaero, Aeroflot, British Airways and EasyJet. The journey takes 4 hours. From St. Petersburg, only fly directly to British Airways, delivering to London in 3.5 hours. Variants with transplantations are at Aeroflot, Transaero, S7 Airlines, UIA, airBaltic, Finnair, SAS and many other airlines. From Kiev to London without a transfer arrive in 3,5 hours, direct flights can be chosen from such airlines as WizzAir, UIA and British Airways.
Visa to the UK
The UK is not a part of the Schengen Area; therefore, to visit this country, you need a national visa. Obtaining it is considered to be one of the most effort-consuming visa processes in Europe, since the consular staff is extremely scrupulous about reviewing each document and often refuse to issue a visa for unexplained reasons. The received visa gives the right to stay in the territory of the United Kingdom for six months for an unlimited amount of time driving in as many times as you like.
Taking into account the difficulties of obtaining a British visa, it is better to deal with related issues a few weeks before the planned trip to London. First of all, you need to visit the website of the UK Visa Application Centre in Ukraine.
Guided Tours Around London
The travel planner Ever.Travel will help you understand what kind of entertainments you would want to see and what order would be the most convenient for that. Plan your trip to London using an interactive map, marking the places you would like to visit and allotting them for several days of travel. Then download Ever.Travel free mobile application and log in to it under the same account as on the website. Thus, your plans are synchronized between the web version and your smartphone. You will get a personal multimedia guide that can fit into your pocket and will work even without an Internet connection, which is very important if you are out of roaming.
The Kitchen of London
There is an opinion that the British cuisine is boring and prim. But in fact, it is quite diverse and incredibly nutritious. Many institutions have received the highest awards and attract gourmets with their unique author’s dishes. There are quite a few places in the city that specialize exclusively in national dishes, most often the menu represents a unique combination of European and Asian dishes. Of course, the first thing that comes to mind when mentioning London is tea. Here you will be disappointed: in 98% of London’s cafe, tea is served with a packet. It is worth to try roast beef, steak, various and very tasty soups (from vegetables with meat, from a cock with a bow, from a sheep’s head with vegetables, from bovine tails, from beef or porcine giblets, etc.), smoked salmon, all kinds of meat and potato pies, fried cakes and croutons. For dessert, order traditional puddings with raisins, dried apricots, prunes. Such puddings you just will not try anywhere else.
Shopping in London
London is one of the world’s fashion capitals and a real mecca for shoppers. However, prices here are far from being affordable. The main shopping streets are: Oxford Street (elite European brands), Regent Street (everything from large department stores to small toy stores), Carnaby Street (fashionable youth clothing), and King’s Road (indie shops and boutiques of avant-garde designers).
The areas of Picadilly (department stores, book supermarkets, and souvenirs), Knightsbridge (expensive department stores and boutiques), and Covent Garden (affordable clothes and footwear of popular brands) are also famous for their outlets.
Almost all shops in the central part of London are open from Monday to Saturday from 10:00AM to 06:00PM, major department stores work until 07:00PM or 08:00PM. In busy tourist areas, shops can be open on Sundays. At precisely the same time street markets such as Portobello, Borough, Brick Lane, and Covent Garden unfold. Sales in London are held twice a year: in the beginning of January and in July.
Official language: English
The area of the city is 1,500 square kilometres. It is divided into the City and 32 districts.
The population is 8.3 million people; it is the second largest city in Europe.
A British visa is needed; it costs 80 pounds.
Currency: the pound sterling.
The time difference with Moscow: 3 hours in summer, 4 hours in winter.
Climate: the “Foggy Albion” is famous for its rainy weather, although the average annual rainfall is even less than in Moscow. London is characterized by mild winters, warm (but not hot) summers, rainy autumn, and dry sunny spring.
We recommend visiting:
• Harry Potter pavilions at the Warner Brothers movie studio
• The London Eye
• Buckingham Palace
• Queen’s Gallery
- Westminster Bridge
Other interesting facts about London:
The number of residents of the capital of Great Britain reaches 8.2 million people. So, this is the largest city in the European Union and the 16th in the world.
The area of London is 1706.8 square kilometres.
In London, they drive cars on the left side of the street, and the indigenous Londoners are firmly convinced that this side of the road is the most correct.
A zero meridian, which is also called Greenwich by the name of the district of Greenwich, passes through the capital.
At the disposal of London there are as many as five international airports, one of which — Heathrow — is the busiest airport in the world
In the centre of the city, there are almost no traffic jams — most likely because you have to pay for entry to the centre of the capital.
On average, about half of people in the central streets of the capital of Great Britain are tourists.
Becoming a taxi driver in London is very difficult, since there are more than 1,000 streets in the city, and every taxi driver should know them. For this purpose, drivers undergo special training for 3 years.
On average, every Londoner appears daily on 50 CCTV cameras and 15 tourist images. Therefore, the residents here tend to smile more often.
The city of London is not the only one of its kind; there are several other cities with the same name in the world: they are situated in the territory of the USA, Canada, and some other countries. It is interesting that Canadian London, like the capital of Great Britain, is located on the River Thames.