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Help me be a tourist in my own country!

Help me be a tourist in my own country!

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Old Mar 20th 2014, 4:42 pm
  #1  
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Talking Help me be a tourist in my own country!

So, it's been a good 20 years since I went into the centre of London.

My kids are 7yrs and 8yrs old and want to see the Natural History museum, Science museum, Tower of London, London Dungeon, possibly London Zoo.

So - question no1: how many days would that lot take to do, comfortably, and not rushed?

Question no2: where to stay and travel in? proviso is that last day of holiday we have an 8am departure flight from Heathrow which may or may not impact the decision...

Question no3: what's the best way to pay for transport around London? given that it may be many years later that we return!

thanks in advance
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Old Mar 21st 2014, 1:13 am
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Default Re: Help me be a tourist in my own country!

We stayed at Novotel London City South last summer for a few days and found that good for access to the sights. It's down the Southwark Bridge Rd and close to Borough Market. There's also a cheaper Ibis Styles there. Both very busy though with tourists.

Tube great for getting around but don't write off the busses or even water transport down the Thames.
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Old Mar 21st 2014, 11:23 am
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Default Re: Help me be a tourist in my own country!

http://www.lastminute.com/trips/hotellist/datelessList?&city=London&startIndex=0&hotelMaxRet urnPerPage=25&neighborhoodId=102GB-0000|Top%20Secret%20Hotels%20in%20London&guestCode s=ADULT&guestCounts=1&numRooms=1&path=hotels&showH otelType=TSH

top secret hotels site has great bargains, read the descriptions properly and you can usually guess where the hotel is. Some friends of mine stayed at the Mayfair hotel for £80 a night.
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Old Mar 21st 2014, 11:48 am
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Default Re: Help me be a tourist in my own country!

It's been a loong times since I went to the Science Museum ; I remember going there in the morning and leaving in the afternoon, so about 5 odd hours.
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Old Mar 21st 2014, 1:44 pm
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Default Re: Help me be a tourist in my own country!

Thanks Patsy!

Boomhauer - yeah, me too - suspect that it will take up most of one day!
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Old Mar 21st 2014, 1:50 pm
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Default Re: Help me be a tourist in my own country!

For a hotel near the museums in South Ken - http://www.londonregency.com/contact.asp - Mrs Auto has stayed there and it's really nice in a great location - We are staying there in a few weeks and can let you know more then... decent prices.
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Old Mar 21st 2014, 1:50 pm
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Default Re: Help me be a tourist in my own country!

Originally Posted by OriginalSunshine View Post
So, it's been a good 20 years since I went into the centre of London.

My kids are 7yrs and 8yrs old and want to see the Natural History museum, Science museum, Tower of London, London Dungeon, possibly London Zoo.

So - question no1: how many days would that lot take to do, comfortably, and not rushed?

Question no2: where to stay and travel in? proviso is that last day of holiday we have an 8am departure flight from Heathrow which may or may not impact the decision...

Question no3: what's the best way to pay for transport around London? given that it may be many years later that we return!

thanks in advance
To avoid over doing it you really need to do one per day. The Natural History and Science Museums are close but both in one day is overload. I wouldn't bother with the London Dungeon, unless you go on a day when Borough Market is operating fully as that's a treat in itself. For you at least.

Get a daily/weekly travel pass for best value to get around.
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Old Mar 21st 2014, 2:11 pm
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Default Re: Help me be a tourist in my own country!

thanks - is it worth getting one of these Oyster card things, given we will only be there for 3 or 4 days?
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Old Mar 21st 2014, 2:51 pm
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Default Re: Help me be a tourist in my own country!

Originally Posted by Meow View Post
To avoid over doing it you really need to do one per day. The Natural History and Science Museums are close but both in one day is overload. I wouldn't bother with the London Dungeon, unless you go on a day when Borough Market is operating fully as that's a treat in itself. For you at least.

Get a daily/weekly travel pass for best value to get around.
London Dungeon has recently moved. It's now up by the London Eye. If you do walk down the south bank between Southwark and London Bridge I throughly recommend the Flounders arms for lunch. Child friendly, good food and great views across the Thames (weather dependant).

Don't forget HMS Belfast up by London Bridge ( access through Hays galleria). That is a quick hour or so at the end of the day, again child friendly and bloody interesting. Again great pics across the Thames of tower bridge and the old city.

My daughter lives 100m away from Borough Market and that is a destination in itself if you love food.

Hope it helps.
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Old Mar 22nd 2014, 3:42 am
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Default Re: Help me be a tourist in my own country!

thanks Shed
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Old Mar 22nd 2014, 5:46 am
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Default Re: Help me be a tourist in my own country!

Last time I went to the Natural History Musuem on a british school holiday day, the queue to get in was ridiculous! Depends when you are going but if it is during english hols, get there early!!

Oyster card is definitely your best bet for getting around! Under 11's are free so won't need one either.
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Old Mar 22nd 2014, 6:01 pm
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Default Re: Help me be a tourist in my own country!

Did all this last year with my similar aged kids. Definitely get an Oyster card as kids go free on tube and buses and travel on an Oyster is the cheapest way of getting around.

One place a day, possibly two max. Kids get tired traveling around and you don't want to do too much. Remember it's good to have chill out time in a park which London is great for. My wife and kids loved Regent's park.

airbnb is worth a look for places to stay. It has the advantage that you get a whole apartment to use rather than a hotel room. This worked for me as it meant we could do our own food and didn't get walletraped every time we went out the door.
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Old Mar 22nd 2014, 6:02 pm
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Default Re: Help me be a tourist in my own country!

Forgot to say: take your kids on the Emirates cable car over the Thames. It's cheap and the kids should love it.
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Old Mar 23rd 2014, 4:29 am
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Default Re: Help me be a tourist in my own country!

One thing I would suggest is to plan the days out well in advance (probably before you leave). A quick search on the net of tourist London will reveal tons of offers where if you buy ticket a and b, c is effectively free. Many if the big attractions are run by a few companies and they all do advance deals.
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Old Mar 23rd 2014, 3:08 pm
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If you are up by South Ken and want to chill away from the hordes after or between museums visits check out the Serpentine Swimming Club on the lake in Hyde Park. You pay a few quid to get in

There's a hidden park where you can sunbathe accessed from the pavilion and also kids play bits...and the swimming lanes in the lake itself if you fancy it...I swam in the lake last summer...just because. Got to access it through the pavilion though.

Agree with Shed, Meow & Co about Borough Market

Last edited by flares; Mar 23rd 2014 at 4:46 pm.
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