Live Like A Local In London
Is there anything better than really getting to know wherever you’re travelling to? London in particular is a vast city, full of incredible things to do and people to meet. Here are some tips on how to experience it like a local…
Stay For As Long As You Can
First of all, no matter where you are, the best way to live like a local is to stay in your destination for as long as you can. Weekends away are a lot of fun but you feel obligated to pack all the tourist attractions into them, which means that you never really get to the heart of a city. If you spend a few weeks in a new place then you can take it at a more leisurely place and really investigate the city in your own time.
Don’t Stay In A Hotel
Let’s face it: hotels are overrated. They often feel sterile, and as though you aren’t really getting an authentic travelling experience. If you stay in a local apartment or in homestay accommodation, then you’ll be in a real London neighbourhood. Admittedly you might be a little further out from the centre of town, as London housing prices can be extraordinarily high, but that doesn’t matter. It’s a city that’s made up of a lot of different neighbourhoods and communities so you’ll be able to get to know the one you’re staying in brilliantly.
Get To Know Public Transport
If you want to travel across a city with ease, then you need to get to know its public transport system, and London is no different. It is absolutely not the sort of city where you need to hire a car – in fact, a lot of locals don’t even bother to own one. They’re expensive to park and to run, and the London public transport system is so strong that you really don’t need your own car. The London Underground is easy enough to navigate after a day or so, and the red double decker London buses have maps at every bus stop. When in doubt, you can always flag down a traditional black London cab.
Check Out Free Events
One of the best things about London is its vibrancy. There’s always something happening – check out the Time Out website for any local events and festivals that you can attend along with your fellow Londoners. From food festivals to music events to charity events to comedy, no matter what you love, you will find it in London. You could also get a £5 ticket to a performance at Shakespeare’s Globe, or go to the Natural History Museum for free.
There’s nothing better than getting to know the locals to really understand a city. London has an unfair reputation for being unfriendly. Although people do tend to keep themselves to themselves in a city, if you get talking to people at a pub or your neighbours then chances are they’ll leap at the chance to show you their favourite parts of the city that they love.