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Last questions before my trip (I hope). Help me, please =)

Talcahuano, Chile
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Last questions before my trip (I hope). Help me, please =)

Hello to all!

I’m (finally!) less than a month from my trip to London and I have what I expect are my final questions before it.

Thanks in advance for any information you can give me =)

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1) I need to go from LHW to the Palmers Lodge’s Swiss Cottage hostel (near the Swiss Cottage tube station). I will have one suitcase and one backpack. Please advise the best option:

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a) Underground (Picadilly Line) from Heathrow to Green Park

Jubilee Line from Green Park to Swiss Cottage

QUESTION: How difficult is to change lines at Green Park? I understand it’s a step-free station with platforms and trains at the same level but I couldn't find information about changing lines.

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b) Underground (Picadilly Line) from Heathrow to Green Park

Route Bus 38 (towards Victoria) from Green Park to Hyde Park Corner Station

Route Bus 82 (towards North Finchley) from Hyde Park Corner Station to Swiss Cottage

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c) Underground (Picadilly Line) from Heathrow to Hyde Park Corner Station

Route Bus 82 (towards North Finchley) from Hyde Park Corner Station to Swiss Cottage

QUESTION: How difficult is exiting Hyde Park Corner Station? I know it’s not step-free but I understand it has escalators. Should I be able to manage with one suitcase?

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d) Underground (Picadilly Line) from Heathrow to Green Park

Taxi from Green Park to Palmers Lodge’s Swiss Cottage hostel

QUESTION: How much would a taxi cost? It’s a Sunday so would it be more expensive?

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2) When leaving I should (in theory) go the opposite way in whatever alternative I choose in question 1. However, my suitcase will be considerably heavier so I’m thinking that my best option is taking a cab to the Green Park underground station and there taking the Picadilly Line to Heathrow.

QUESTION: Is Green Park my best option? How much should a taxi cost?

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3) I got a Giffgaff SIM card and I need to activate it. I couldn’t do it from here because Giffgaff’s website doesn’t accept foreign credit cards (at least non-European ones, I’ve read they accept Spanish CC). So I need a top-up voucher sold at stores with PayZone, Epay or PayPoint.

Is there any store at Heathrow where I can buy this voucher?

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4) I want to go to the London Eye both to admire the view and take photographs. Is it better to do it in the morning or in the afternoon? I don’t want to have the sun in front of me “blinding” me and ruining my photos.

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5) Is there any BBC store in London where I can buy some Sherlock and Doctor Who related products? I’m more interested in Sherlock products but I would also like to buy some DW things for a friend of mine. I already have Forbidden Forest in my list but I fear their selection of Sherlock products isn't as wide as I would like.

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6) Do you know of any good walking tour for The City? I checked London Walks but they don’t seem to have one.

=) Thank you again for taking the time to answer my question

Solihull
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1. Re: Last questions before my trip (I hope). Help me, please =)

Question 6 you mention The City so do you mean the actual "City" area of London (rather than the generic city of London)

If so The Famous Square Mile Walk seems to be what you want.

walks.com/London_Walks_Home/…12874

London
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2. Re: Last questions before my trip (I hope). Help me, please =)

6) Do you know of any good walking tour for The City? I checked London Walks but they don’t seem to have one.

walks.com/London_Walks_Home/…default.aspx

They don't have 'one' - they have a number based in The City. Take a look at the descriptions of the walks and you may reconsider:

Hidden London

Ghosts of the Old City

Old London

London's Hidden Village

The Blitz

Crime & Punishment

The Famous Square Mile

This is the description for the last:

"This is the great classic London Walk, the London Walk of London Walks! It explores the very heart of the City – the most historic part of the capital. Threading his way through an intricate network of narrow alleys and cobble-stone lanes, Simon chronicles the 2,000 years of London's rich and tumultuous history. And illustrates it by drawing upon everything from street names to ancient customs to the frozen music of London's great buildings, among which are the ruins of the Roman Temple of Mithras, the Bank of England, the Lord Mayor's Mansion House, and ancient Guildhall. (The walk includes, whenever possible, a visit inside Guildhall!)"

Solihull
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3. Re: Last questions before my trip (I hope). Help me, please =)

BBC shop in London (or there is a web site)

BBC London Shop

Media Café, BBC Broadcasting House

Portland Place, London

W1A 1AA

(This shop only sells a select range of BBC gift items)

Telephone: 0203 614 3793

http://www.bbcshop.com/page/shop

London, United...
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4. Re: Last questions before my trip (I hope). Help me, please =)

I think Hyde Park Corner is almost as easy a station to navigate with luggage as Green Park. I would probably alight there and get the bus straight to Swiss Cottage. If you take option b, you would need to cross an extremely busy road junction to change buses, which will be stressful. Once you've been navigating London for a few days, you'll know whether it's worth trying that on the return journey or spending your money on a taxi. There is a slightly higher taxi fare on Sundays, but it would only add £1-2 to your journey from Green Park/Hyde Park Corner to your hotel, which TFL reckons would be £16-22 (based on being c. 4 miles).

Talcahuano, Chile
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5. Re: Last questions before my trip (I hope). Help me, please =)

@Guilbert53

Yes, I mean the "City" area of London.

@Kennydon

Thank you! "The Famous Square Mile" is what I wanted. I tried to find something like it in London Walks' website but couldn't. At least for me the website is not really user friendly. Got dizzy after so much text without any logical order.

@Guilbert53

Thank you! Do you know if the shop is accessible to everybody. I had seen that info before but since it's in the BBC Media Centre I thought it was only for people taking tours. I will check it when in London anyway.

Alexandria, Virginia
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6. Re: Last questions before my trip (I hope). Help me, please =)

I stayed at Palmers Lodge Swiss Cottage last fall - I opted to book a car to/from Heathrow through Totally Driven (www.totallydriven.co.uk). I believe for the round trip service with 2 people and quite a bit of luggage it ran us £70-£80 total, can't remember exactly. Not sure if that's an option for you but if it is - go with that route. We were exhausted getting off an 8hr red-eye flight and it was nice to jump in a car and collect ourselves during the ride from Heathrow to the hostel. Our flight home was early so the Tube wasn't really an option for us, so again, booking the car really worked out. They were timely and the drivers were very nice - can't recommend them enough.

If you're set on taking the Tube, be aware that Swiss Cottage does have stairs to leave the station. There's a large escalator to get up the first level, but I don't remember there being an elevator to get up to street level. I personally can't imagine doing the stairs with luggage, although I'm sure it's manageable.

I realize I didn't exactly answer the specific questions you asked but I hope I offered some helpful insight!

Talcahuano, Chile
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7. Re: Last questions before my trip (I hope). Help me, please =)

@rbgs

Thanks! I think I will go for option c) It sounds easy enough.

@Rachel R

Thanks for the info! I think arriving won't be as much of a problem but leaving will be. So depending on how heavy is my suitcase, I might book a car to Heathrow or at least take a cab from the hostel to the tube station. I'm travelling 24+ hrs to London so I hope I won't fall asleep in the tube/bus!

Londinium born and...
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8. Re: Last questions before my trip (I hope). Help me, please =)

It's Forbidden Planet (not forrest) and they'll have a ton of DW merchandise. It's geek/nerd heaven there.

Talcahuano, Chile
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9. Re: Last questions before my trip (I hope). Help me, please =)

LOL =D That's the one @Trillian! My potterhead subconscious betrayed me there =)

The DW stuff is a gift for a friend of mine (so it's not my #1 priority) but the Sherlock stuff is for me and very high on my list. For what I've read FP doesn't have many Sherlock items and I'm trying to see if I can find another place (like a BBC shop) to buy it.

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10. Re: Last questions before my trip (I hope). Help me, please =)

Here is a site with walks in the Square Mile (by accredited guides) and other info on the area:

cityoflondon.gov.uk/things-to-do/visiting-th…