Lifestyle,  Travel

Where to Stay in London

There are so many places to stay in London that it can get a bit overwhelming. Not only do you have so many amazing neighborhoods to choose from, but you have to decide what type of accommodations you want. Your options include hotels, hostels, and even entire homes if you’re looking through sites like Airbnb. London is made up of 33 districts with the city only serving a small part. The main sites (Big Ben, Westminster, London Eye, etc.) are not even located in this area. There is no real “downtown” since the sights are spread out around the city. We have complied a list of just some of the areas in London so you can find the best place to stay during your next trip!

where to stay london

The Oyster Card

Before we get into where to stay, we wanted to explain the oyster card. It is a must when you are traveling around the city!

The oyster card is a refillable travel card that you use on the buses and tubes around London. You have to have one of these cards to travel unless you have a touch card from a UK bank. If you get the London pass, you can get it bundled with the oyster card. Otherwise, you can get an oyster card for £5 in multiple tube stations or the airport.

Tube map

The West End (Covent Garden, SoHo, Leicester Square, Oxford Street)

Zone: 1

Tube Stations: Leicester Square (Northern & Piccadilly Line), Oxford Circus (Bakerloo, Central & Victoria), Tottenham Court Road (Northern & Central), Covent Garden (Piccadilly Line, Piccadilly Circus (Bakerloo & Piccadilly)

Best for those who like: Blockbuster theater shows, record stores, nightlife, and global restaurants

Attractions: West End theaters, Old Compton Street, Soho Square, Chinatown, Oxford Street, Trafalgar Square,

Victoria

Zone: 1

Tube Stations: Victoria (Circle, Victoria, & District),  Sloane Square (Circle & District), St. James’s Park (Circle & District), Pimlico (Victoria) and Green Park (Victoria)

Best for those who like: Central location with great transportation links.

Attractions: Buckingham Palace, St James’s Park & Hyde Park, James Bond movie locations

South Bank

Zone: 1

Tube Stations: Waterloo (Northern, Bakerloo, Jubilee), London Bridge (Northern, Jubilee)

Best for those who like: London sightseeing, museums, pubs

Attractions: London Eye, London Aquarium, London Dungeon, Big Ben & Parliament, Westminster Abbey, Borough Market, Globe Theatre, Southbank Centre, The Shard

City of London

Zone: 1

Tube Stations: Bank (Central, Northern, Waterloo, City, and the DLR) and Monument (Circle and District), Barbican (Circle, Hammersmith and City and Metropolitan), Moorgate (Circle, Hammersmith and City, Northern and Metropolitan) and Liverpool Street (Central, Circle, Hammersmith and City and Metropolitan), Old Street (Northern line), St Paul’s (Central line), Blackfriars (Circle and District), Mansion House (Circle and District) , Cannon Street (Circle and District), Tower Hill (Circle and District), and Aldgate (Circle, District and Metropolitan)

Best for those who like: History, restaurants, and plushy hotels

Attractions: Tower of London, Tower Bridge, Skye Garden, St. Paul’s Cathedral, Jack the Ripper haunted spots, and Tate Modern

Westminster

Zone: 1

Tube Stations: Victoria (Victoria, District, Circle), Westminster (Circle & District), St. James Park (Circle & District)

Best for those who like: Iconic landmarks

Attractions: Big Ben & Houses of Parliament, Buckingham Palace, Westminster Abbey, St. James’ Park, Churchill War Rooms

Notting Hill

Zone: 1/2

Tube Stations: Notting Hill Gate (Central, Circle, District lines)

Best for those who like: Shopping, artsy, antiques, cobblestone streets, and Victorian town homes

Attractions: Notting Hill Carnival, Portobello Road Market, Electric Cinema

Hammersmith

Zone: 2

Tube Stations: Hammersmith (Piccadilly, Hammersmith & City, Circle, District)

Best for those who like: Casual pubs, live entertainment venues, and a commercial hub for travel convenience

Attractions: Hammersmith Apollo, Bishops Park

Bloomsbury and Fitzrovia

Zone: 1

Tube Stations: Russell Square (Piccadilly), King’s Cross St. Pancras (almost all lines), Euston Square (Hammersmith & City, Circle, & Metropolitan), Goodge Street (Northern), Warren Street (Victoria, and Northern)

Best for those who like: College town within walking distance to many London attractions

Attractions: British Museum, UCL – One of the major colleges in London, British Library, Oxford Street, All Souls Church

Chelsea

Zone: 1

Tube Stations: Green Park (Jubilee, Piccadilly, Victoria)

Best for those who like: Shopping, football, and flowers

Attractions: Sloane Square, the Saatchi Gallery, Stamford Bridge, the King’s Road, the Royal Court Theatre, Cadogan Hall, Chelsea Physic Garden

Hyde Park (Kensington, Knightsbridge)

Zone: 1

Tube Stations: South Kensington (District, Circle, Piccadilly), Knightsbridge ( Piccadilly)

Best for those who like: Big name museums, posh pubs, park strolls

Attractions: The Science Museum, the Natural History Museum, the Victoria & Albert Museum, the Design Museum, Hyde Park, Holland Park, Kensington Palace, Kensington Gardens, the Royal Albert Hall, Kensington High Street, Harrods, London Zoo

King’s Cross & Camden Town

Zone: 1/2

Tube Stations: King’s Cross St Pancras (almost all lines), Camden Town (Northern)

Best for those who like: Harry Potter lovers, live music, bargain shopping, budget hotels, canal-side strolls, and quirky market stalls

Attractions: Regent’s Canal, the Roundhouse, Camden Markets, Camden Lock,  Platform 9 3/4

Greenwich

Zone: 2/3

Tube Stations: North Greenwich (Jubilee)

Best for those you like: Museums, antique, food markets, and river views.

Attractions: Royal Observatory, National Maritime Museum, Greenwich Market, Greenwich Park, the Cutty Sark, the O2, and the Queen’s House.

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