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London Underground Transport - Tube Map

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London Underground Tube Map

London Underground Tube Map

Getting Around London on the Tube

Take a look at the map above. When you are visiting London most of the sights you'll be seeing will be within this section of the Undergroup Map. Try to get your accommodation within the confines of this map.

Check out my Where to Stay in London guide for some ideas about what neighborhoods are convenient.

London Travel Cards

London Travel Card

When you first arrive in London, I recommend picking up a 3 day or 7 day London Travel card at the airport. If you are at Heathrow you can pick it up if you are buying a ticket for the Heathrow Express into Paddington Station. You should also be able to buy it at Gatwick Airport when you purchase your ticket for the train into Victoria Station.

If you are mostly doing sight-seeing within London you'll only need a card for the Central Zone which covers unlimited travel for zones 1 and 2 on the Tube and zones 1 through 6 for the Buses. The All Zone card is twice as expensive and you won't use it so don't bother getting it. Along with the card, you'll also get a tiny fold-out tube map which is very handy.



Tips on Using the Underground

If you have bad knees or a bad back, do yourself a favor and try and make use of the bus system. Every time I get home from London I tell myself I'm going to use the bus system more next time and I never do, but maybe you'll have better luck remembering to do so than I usually manage.

The London Underground has no comparison to US transport systems. It is older than all of the train services in the US, truly byzantine in its structure, and far deeper below the city than what you find in America. You will spend countless hours walking between platforms. While there are many escalators there are times when you will not have one available and will have to walk up very steep staircases. There are very few elevators anywhere. After a couple of days of using the Tube heavily, you may find that your hamstrings start to hurt. I recommend doing some leg stretches before you get into bed at night. I actually find using the Tube on days where I'm doing a lot of running back and forth between locations more tiring than running around Disney World!

Also, it is important to note that unlike most American cities, London is not very accessible to the disabled. It's a very old city where modernism and antiquity exist side by side, making it difficult to get around in a wheelchair or with other assisted-movement devices.

London Street Atlas

London A-Z

If you are spending more than a couple of days in London, I also recommend getting a copy of a London A-Z guide. This is what Londoners themselves use to get around London. It lists every street in London and all of the nearby Tube stations.

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London is a very big city and it is easy to get confused and lose your way. The London A-Z will make life much easier. If you elect not to get one though, many people will have one on them. Just ask them if you can take a look at their "A to Zed ". The British pronounce the letter "Z" as "Zed" rather than "Zee".


Descartes from grand prairie on December 05, 2010:

I've always loved the look of the Tube map. I also found the Underground to be the best I have ever used. I wish every major city in the world had a subway like London's.

Emma (author) from Boston on July 01, 2010:

Voted for by whom? People who have never been outside London?

DP on July 01, 2010:

Funny u should say that london is not very accessible for the disabled, especially since it was voted the 'MOST' accessible city in the world

londonforkids from London on March 13, 2010:

Important note to those that are travelling with infants: check the Transport for London website to locate which Underground stations have ramps for buggies and toilets with changing stations...they *are* out there and more available than you think!

Also, many transportation methods in London offer kids discount passes for travellers.

johnjoe on December 10, 2008:

good advice and like the map of the underground.

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