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Visit London 2012: Tips For Planning A Visit

Posted on | July 23, 2012 | 3 Comments

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Visit London 2012 Torch in Kent

Check out this guest post for tips on planning a visit to London in 2012 – during or even after the 2012 Summer Olympics. This is a Guest Post is by British Airways who fly directly from Seattle to London (I know, I’ve taken that particular flight, with my kids, many, many times in the 16 years that I’ve been living in Seattle).

Visit London 2012

If you’re thinking about making your way across the pond with your family this summer but are unsure of where to start, we have some helpful, family-friendly tips on how to navigate around the city that we know and love.

Contrary to popular belief, it’s not too late to book reasonable flights or hotel stays for London – especially with the dollar becoming increasingly stronger (₤.64 GBP ~ $1 USD). Here are some helpful links to help get the ball rolling:

Where to Stay:
There’s plenty of great information on Accommodation on VisitLondon.com.
Take advantage of the British Airways “London for Free” promotion – two nights free hotel stay with the purchase of round-trip airfare between the US and UK. The offer is valid through Thursday midnight (EST), Jul. 25, 2012, with the free hotel stay valid for travel from Jul. 27, 2012, through Sep. 30, 2012.

Getting Around:
Fast track into the city on the Heathrow Express train or if you have more time consider the Tube, aka London Underground. You should plan your travel route around the city in advance, look up fares, and buy an Oyster card (fare swipe card).
Rates for Students and Children: Read up on Tube ticket deals that you and your children can benefit from.
It’s worth noting that there is a Games Travelcard, which provides spectators free travel within zones 1–9 on the London public transport network throughout the day of the event.

There are plenty of other great family-friendly sights to check out if you visit London 2012:

  • Ride the London Eye, the world’s largest ferris wheel. It offers astonishing city views and family photo opportunities!
  • Tour Buckingham Palace and celebrate the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee.
  • Cruise along the River Thames to observe the city’s beauty from a relaxing setting.
  • Have a family picnic at Hyde Park and visit the peaceful Princess Diana Memorial Fountain.
  • London has many city farms that are free to visit. Vauxhall City Farm offers pony care classes and donkey rides, while MudChute Park and Farm is the largest urban farm in London sitting on 34 acres. Many of the farms also host children’s playgrounds and fresh farm shops.

    If you’re lucky enough to get tickets for The Games then make time to visit Park Live: British Airways will also be hosting a live public viewing of the Games in the Olympic Park, posting giant two-sided screens for up to 10,000 viewers. Give your family a front-and-center view of the sporting action from the comfort of a serenely grassy park.

    With so much buzzing in London this summer, it’s helpful to get prepared to ensure your family has a smooth, fun trip filled with heaps of good memories.

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    Comments

    3 Responses to “Visit London 2012: Tips For Planning A Visit”

    1. Megan Jones
      August 6th, 2012 @ 7:50 pm

      I love London, but when I went the things I loved the most were not the “sights”. This post does give a lot of ideas, but they will all be pretty tourist laden and you will have little chance to meet locals, which in my opinion is one of the main reason for travelling. Try the big open air markets and flea markets. In a country as old as England you will find some amazing stuff and meet some interesting people!

    2. wandermom
      August 7th, 2012 @ 8:42 am

      @Megan Jones: I totally agree. This post was intentionally London-focused to tie in with the opening of the Olympics. I’ll follow up with some more on ideas for things do to outside the city, k?

    3. Ted
      May 14th, 2013 @ 3:22 pm

      There are many more things to see and do within London. This article just mentions the main sights and surrounds in central London. There is so much more in the rest of the city that equally worth visiting, especially the parks and woodlands.

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