MAR 25,2013 - MAY 08,2013 (45 DAYS)
3 Tips for reducing your London attractions expenses:
The following two passes must be purchased in advance and cannot be purchased anywhere within the UK.
National Trust Tourist Pass
For those who spend more than a week in London we recommend buying NT Pass - available online (throught the Internet) only. You can purchase a 7 consecutive days pass (24 GBP) or 14 consecuitve days (29 GBP). It allows entry to over 300 historic houses and gardens in England, Wales and Northern Ireland. The NT holdings include the large-scale gardens and country homes for the most part.
After providing your payment details - you get a printed order confirmation that should be confirmed and stamped (with your first visit date) in one of the following (London and South-East England) NT sites: Bodiam Castle, Chartwell, Ham House and Garden, Knole, Mottisfont, Nymans, Osterley Park and House, Petworth House and Park, Sissinghurst Castle, Stowe, Waddesdon Manor, the White Cliffs of Dover. There are a small number of properties where you cannot use your pass for free entry. These are: Ascott, Chastleton House, Red House, Wakehurst Place.
London NT sites:
CARLYLE'S HOUSE 24 Cheyne Row, Chelsea
FENTON HOUSE Hampstead Grove, Hampstead NW3 6RT
HAM HOUSE Ham Street, Richmond TW10 7RS
OSTERLEY PARK & HOUSE Jersey Road, Isleworth TW7 4RB
RED HOUSE Red House Lane, Bexleyheath DA6 8JF
2 WILLOW ROAD Hampstead NW3 1TH
Chartwell House and Quebec House (on the same ride).
English Heritage Pass
Almost the same scheme holds for English Heritage sites. You buy EH pass (online only) for 9 sites in 23 GBP. English Heritage focuses on Britain's built heritage.
London EH sites: Apsley House, Chiswick House, Eltham Palace and Gardens, Jewel Tower, Marble Hill House,Ranger’s House - The Wernher Collection, Wellington Arch. BTW, the Stonhenge site is included in this pass.
Note: The Heritage Pass lets you in certain National Trust properties as well.
The English Heritage Pass looks to me like a bit better deal for overseas tourists !
Another option for reducing your expenses in visiting sites in or around London is printing the 2FOR1 coupons (for Travelcard holders only). With your valid Travelcard you can buy two tickets in many sites (including several NT and EH famous sites) in a price of one.
River and Canal Cruises in London:
Thames Cruise: Central London - Greenwich section:
From the Westminster Pier, London Eye Pier or Embankment Pier terminals to Greenwich: various operators. From our experience the cheapest is the Thames Clippers (a transportaion company and not a tourism company - with NO audio explanations) - one way is 6 GBP minus 30% concession for Travelcard holders (cruise also included in 2FOR1coupons). All others are more expensive and more touristic. It takes 40 minutes and the boat passes through the Tower, London Bridge, the Docklands and other regenerated areas. You can buy ticket on board. The tickets are checked on exit. Most boats are wheelchair accessible and all have toilet facilities.
The Thames: Hampton - Kingston Cruise
25-minute cruise which offers stunning views of Hampton Court palace, its golden gates and gardens. The trip along the river from Kingston or from Hampton Court will take in three beautiful miles of one of the most attractive stretches of the world-famous River Thames. The schedule varies according to time of year, with more sessions at weekends and during school holidays. Adults Single - 4 GBP, Return - 6 GBP (on Thursdays - Return - 4GBP only). The service starts from Kingston 10.45 and from Hampton Court at 11.15. Weekends - every half an hour, weekdays - every 75 minutes. Departue points: Hampto Court - the stage is at the foot of the Hampton Court Bridge -the opposite side from the Palace. Kingston - the Queen's Promenade, Portsmouth Road, Kingston, KT1 2ND, a short walk from Kingston Bridge.
Regent Canal Cruise:
The route with most frequent services is from Camden to Little Venice (near Paddington). At least three boat companies operate regular services in summer. There are less frequent boats at weekends and during the winter. THe London Waterbus Company operates occasional all-day trips to Limehouse. Sample fares for the Camden-Little Venice route: One way - 50 mins Adult £8.00, child/senior £6.60 or Return - 110 mins. Adult £11.30, child/senior £9.20. You can make a stopover and go back later. from Little Venice ; 10am, 11am, 12pm, 1.15pm, 2pm, 3pm, 4pm and one way at 5pm. from Camden Lock ; 10am, 11am, 12pm, 1.15pm, 2pm, 3pm, 4pm and one way at 5pm.
The Shard at London Bridge is the tallest building in Western Europe. It is going to be one of the hottest attractions in London. It has been opened in 1 February 2013. BUT, the price is overwhelming - 25 GBP. No concessions - except children. Even with this price - you cannot avoid the queues. BTW, you can book a ticket through their web site:http://tickets.theviewfromtheshard.com/cgi-bin/WebObjects/Ticketup.woa/wa/commonBook?performance=3543742&canale=2&view=day&lang=EN)
The giant building looks like a glass pyramide, 309 metres high. You arrive to levels 68-72 with rapid glass lift to see a breth-taking view of London. In clear days you can see as far as 60 km. But, how many bright days we have in the UK ?
This cable car from the Docklands to Greenwich or has been open from July 2012. It is one of London's newest and most exciting attractions. It created a unique hop-on hop-off transport option as well as a wonderful way to see London. For Travelcard or Oyster Cards, it only costs 3.20 GBP for a single ride. Most of the time - you walk straight on, with no queues. The staff aree very pleasant and polite. You get to and from either the north side (Royal Victoria Dock) or south side (North Greenwich) of the river. It takes 5 minutes from side to side of the Thames river. Lovely views across the Thames and London (London City airport, O2 Arena, Olympic village, Thames barrier and The Shard). A bit shaky in the first few seconds but then it goes smoothly and quietly. Cabins include 8 comfortable seats - but, very often, you can expect the whole pod for your family only. The northern departure point is south to the Royal Victoria DLR station (along the Seagull Lane road). In days with strong winds - it is closed.
There are 3 mandatory ways of transport from/to Greenwich:
With a bus: Take the 108 bus to Lewisham from Stratford stop C. Drop at
Blackheath Royal Standard (Stop BD) and continue with Bus 53 towards St James'. It will put you in the entrance to Greenwich Park.
or: From wherever you are, travel to Deptford Bridge DLR station. Walk outside and take a 53 bus from Stop Y. They run every few minutes, so you won't have a long wait. The bus will take you up Blackheath Hill. You need to get off at Greenwich Park.
Better to walk down the hill ! Walk through the gates. You are now watching one of the world's most famous and spectacular views: of Canary Wharf, the O2, Greenwich down there - and the Thames and London. The big advantage of using the bus is that you chose the easiest way: stroll down, past the Old Royal Observatory, across the International Date Line, through the gates with the National Maritime Museum on your right, across the road towards the Cutty Sark with the University of Greenwich (former Royal Naval College) on your right.
With the Emirates Air Line - see another tip.
With the Thames boat cruise - see another tip.
More quick (and cheap) but less aspiring ways are: the DLR and the train.
There is absolutely loads to do and see in Greenwich. You will need, at least, one sunny or mild day. There would certainly be enough o occupy 2 days here
The National Maritime Museum, Queen's House, Royal Observatory, Royal Naval College and Cutty Sark are normally open 10.00–17.00 seven days a week. Last admission is 30 minutes before closing (1 hour for Cutty Sark).
Get the combined ticket which costs £16 Concessions – 13 GBP: Cutty Sark + Royal Observatory admission + Ansel Adams exhibition. Without or with the Ansel Adams exhibition (until end of April 2013) – you always save 10 GBP for person with the combined (Big) ticket.
Cutty Sark Clipper Ship, King William Walk, Greenwich SE10 9HT Adult 12 GBP, concessions – 9.50 GBP.
Royal Observatory Greenwich, Blackheath Ave, SE10 8XJ T: +44 (0)20 8858 4422 Royal Observatory - Flamsteed House and Meridian Courtyard – Adult 6.35 GBP, Concessions – 4.50 GBP. Royal Observatory - Astronomy Centre – Free.
National Maritime Museum – Free.
Ansel Adams: Photography from the Mountains to the Sea, National Maritime Museum – Adults – 6.35 GBP, Concessions – 5.45 GBP. Open: 9 November 2012–28 April 2013.
Royal Naval College - Free. Wren's twin-domed riverside masterpiece. The painted Hall is magnificient. The chapel is beautiful. Stunning architecture.
Queen's House – Free. Great Hall & Tulip Stairs - View one of the remaining features of the splendour of the Queen’s House, from the time of Queen Henrietta Maria. Essential conservation work has begun on the painted ceiling of The Queen's Bedchamber of the Queen's House. The work is expected to continue until about early October 2013. During this time there will be no access to the painted ceiling, but visitors will be able to walk through the room under the scaffolding platform. There will be text panels explaining the conservation treatment that is being undertaken, and a short film of the conservators.
Recommended food in Greenwich:
Hola Paella, Spanish tipico food, 7-7A Greenwich Market, Greenwich, London SE10 9HZ. It is always a good idea to eat Paella as a filling and budget meal.
Heap's Sausages - 8 Nevada Street, Greenwich, London SE10 9JL. T:020 8293 9199 www.simplysausages.co.uk/about-us You can watch the team making the sausage live in the back of the shop/restaurant. Not cheap.
A MUST is Goddards pie & mash shop - a great value. The restaurant is located at 22 King William Walk Greenwich SE10 9HU - close by the Turnpin Lane/King William Walk entrance to Greenwich Market. The Cutty Sark DLR station is north-west to the restaurant.
Vietnam Restaurant in 17 - 18 King William Walk, Greenwich, London SE10 9JH T:020 8858 5888. The service could be slow and indifferent - when they fill up...
The Southern Bank - from West to East - Bridge by bridge
Syon House - a view from the southern bank of the Thames
The Thames from Richmond Hill
All Saints Church + Inlewort Aie near Richmond
The Thames near Richmond
The Thames from the southern end of Kew Bridge
A view from the southern bank to the northern one - near Kew Bridge
Another view from the southern edge of the Kew Bridge
Along the southern bank of the Thames from Hammersmith to Barnes
The Parliament, the Big Ben from Lambeth Pier
The Big Ben and the Parliament - west to the Westminster Bridge
The Parliament from the Southern Bank
County Hall and the Aquarium from Westminster Bridge
The London Eye
The Hayward Gallery
The National Theatre
Founders Arms Pub - East to Blackfriars Bridge
St. Paul and the Millennium Bridge
The Globe Theatre
The Southwark Bridge
The Cannon Bridge
The Golden Hinde boat near London Bridge
View from the southern bank - from London Bridge City Pier - East to London Bridge
HMS Belfast and the Tower Bridge
Near the City Hall
The City Hall
The Tower Bridge
The Thames from Shad Thames
The Design Museum
New Concordia Wharf + Butlers Wharf
Bermondsey Walk West area
The Tower Bridge from Wapping in the Southern Bank
Canary Wharf from the Limehouse
The Limehouse project on the Thames
Canary Wharf from the Southern Bank
The Thames near Greenwich Tunnel
The Canary Wharf from Greenwich Pier
The Northern Bank - from West to East
The Northern Bank between Albert Bridge and Battersea Bridge
Westminster Pier - North-east to Westminster Bridge
The Sphynx near Victoria Pier
St. Paul Cathedral from the Northern bank
The Fishmongers Hall west to Cannon Street Railway Bridge
THe Northern Bank - East to London Bridge
London Bridge and the Shad Thames from the Northern Bank
The Hay's Galleria, the HMS Belfast, St. Olave's House, The City Hall from the Northern Bank
The Tower Bridge from St. Thomas tower in the Tower (on the Northern Bank)
St. Katherine's Pier
St. Katherine Dock on the Northern Bank east to the Tower Bridge
One day walk along central section of the Thames
Barnes Bridge to Houses of Parliament – 17 km.
The nearest tube station is Barnes Bridge, on the bridge itself. The journey from London Waterloo takes around 20 minutes.
Start at the Barnes Bridge railway station. Cross the Thames via the railway bridge, which has a footpath running alongside. Take the steps down onto the north side of the river. Follow the promenade north past the boat houses on the river bank, on your left. The Thames is to the right. Continue along the promenade north and when the walk leaves the recreation area you can continue north passing the Chiswick Pier.
Near the church you leave the river course.You turn right and follow the Chiswick Mall road eastward. On your left you see houses. You stride along the road but there is little traffic and it is quite peaceful. Soon you see a small island (Chiswick Eyot) to the right. Continuing along Chiswick Mall road the houses, on your right, will block the sight of the river. Continuing along Chiswick Mall you soon have views of the river again and the road changes its name to Upper Mall with houses to the left. Follow the Upper Mall road east and pass through the Hammersmith Pier arriving to the Furnival Gardens. Follow The riverside promenade along the park. In the end of the park continue straight on along the riverside path towards the green painted Hammersmith Bridge. On the opposite side of the river can be seen the past Harrods Depository converted to flats. Beyond the bridge you continue along brief section of river side path and then you leave the rivers edge and take the Queen Caroline Street and immediately turn on the first right to the Crisp Road. At the end of the Crisp road you turn left into Chancellors Road and then take the first turn right to the Distillery Road. At the end of this road turn right into Wilnslow Road to face and follow again the Thames river. You turn left and continue along the river side past some modern buildings. When the Thames path comes to an end turn left around the buildings then follow the Thames path sign beside the pub's beer garden. You return to the riverside while turning left. You follow the river side path again all the way to the Fulham Football Club (FFC). Take the path left with the back of the stand to your right and then turn right into Stevenage Road. In the end of Stevenage Rd. pass the front of the ground, with its Café. Turn right into Bishops Park where you return to the river and follow the riverside promenade. To your left is Fulham Palace (free admission). Continue through the Bishops Park until Putney Bridge. On the opposite side of the bridge stands Putney centre. Turn left beside the bridge and then right where you can take the tunnel through the bridge. Under the bridge turn right to meet again the river side path. Follow the river path over a dock until you arrive to Putney Railway bridge ahead, Here you turn left and then right into Ranleigh Gardens under the railway course. Follow this road and ahead you can see the entrance to Hurlingham Park. DO NOT enter the park and turn left along Mapier Avenue and at the end of this road turn right into Hurlingham Road. Turn right just after this point to enter Hurlingham Park. Take the main path until it turns left and then right towards the car park. Before entering the car park turn left and then follow the path around the running track. and then turn left to take the grass between the football and rugby spaces and leave the park arriving to Broomhouse Lane. Turn right and follow the road all the way back to the Thames beside a small dock area. Turn left and you can briefly follow the river. When the way is blocked turn left along the path and when it meets the Carnwath Road turn right past the neglected wharf on your right and then take the path back right down to the Thames beyond. Meeting the Thames turn left and follow the path to the blue Wandsworth Bridge. Be careful, the road is very busy and you climb to the bridge and turn left beside the road. Cross at the crossing ahead and go straight on into Town Mead Road. Follow this road until you come to a Sainsbury supermarket on your right. Walk through the car park (!) and you continue along the riverside path and turn left past the shop. Continue north along the Thames bank through some houses and soon you come to the Imperial Wharf project around Chelsea Harbour. You come to the railway bridge and continue into Chelsea Harbour. You turn left and cross the bridge over the entrance to the marina. Return to the Thames and follow the river side path ahead. The path ends close to a past power station. Here you get round the power station. Turn left into Admiral Square and then follow the road changing its name to Chelsea Harbour Drive. At the end turn right and take the first road on the right (Lots Road) with a pub on the left and then houses and the old power station to the right. Continue along Lots Road until you see the small Gardens Park on the right (Toilets). Continue straight on along the road to join the main road where you turn right. The path now follows beside the Embankment to central London. Ahead you have Battersea Bridge which you need to cross via the pedestrian crossing. Once over continue along Chelsea Embankment with the beautiful Albert Bridge ahead. Follow the tree-lined embankment all the way to the Chelsea Bridge. On the opposite bank is Battersea Park. When you reach Chelsea Bridge cross the busy road and continue straight on beside Grosvenor Road. Immediately you pass under Grosvenor bridge. Beyond you have railway sidings to the left. Continue along the tree-lined road pasing Westminster Boating on your right. You briefly leave the river side past some commercial buildings and you return to the river approaching Vauxhall Bridge. On the opposite bank is the St Georges Wharf development. You face the coloured Vauxhall Bridge ahead. Cross the bridge via the pedestrian crossing to the left and then pass the river side gardens on the left. On the opposite bank is the Vauxhall Cross building. Now you are in central London. The Thames Path (The Queen's Walk) continues beside Millbank passing the Tate Britain art gallery on the left. Continue over the crossing to Lambeth Bridge and you see, to your right, the Victoria Tower Gardens with the beautiful Palace of Westminster ahead. There is a river side path through the park so follow this until the Palace of Westminster and the Houses of Parliament block your way ahead.