In my London Zones and Tube Travel post I talk about how London is split up into 6 Zones, and how you can use the Tube to get around. When deciding where to stay in London, you should also consider Zones. Consider what Zones you will spend the most time in, and how much money are willing to spend on the Tube.
The further out you stay from Central London the cheaper your accommodations will be, but the more you will spend on transportation. The closer to Central London you stay, the more your accommodations will be, but you will spend less on transportation. Not only because you are not traveling as far, but most of the time you can walk to wherever you need to go.
I highly recommend staying in Zones 1 or 2. Look at this bus route map again, to see where the major attractions are.key-bus-routes-in-central-london
When looking for accommodations on Airbnb (or hotels.com) I usually pick a landmark I want to based near. I base this information off of how many other landmarks are close to there and what makes travel most convenient for me. I spend a lot of time inputting the addresses of the accommodations I am considering, and google mapping them to the attractions I know I want to see. This ensures that I am staying in the best possible location for my needs and wants, and that I can get everywhere I need to in the most convenient and direct way possible. Work smarter not harder, people.
When I was in London I chose Zone 1, in Westminster. I stayed at an Airbnb accommodation to save money, and personally I loved the location. It was so easy to walk almost everywhere. I was just down the street from Victoria Station and was able to use the Victoria Line to go almost everywhere I wanted. The first day I visited, I walked to Westminster Abbey, Big Ben, Houses of Parliament, The Southbank, around Trafalgar Square, and passed Buckingham Palace. I’ll admit it was a lot of walking, but exploring the city and getting my bearings of where things are is my favorite thing to do on my first day in a new city, and it was incredibly easy in London. London also has the advantage of having a lot of signs that include maps and directions to local attractions, with arrows pointing you in the right direction in case you’re a bit list. Another perk to staying in a central location is that if you get tired, buy a lot of stuff, or want to change clothes due to the weather, you are probably close enough to run back to your accommodations in the middle of the day.
Where do you prefer to stay when visiting London?
Image © sborisov // Fotolia