We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.
We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

London Book-Map Locals Use (Like Paris Pratique)

Which London hotels are on sale?
dd/mm/yyyy dd/mm/yyyy
See hotels
United States
Level Contributor
484 posts
101 reviews
Save Topic
London Book-Map Locals Use (Like Paris Pratique)

Hello! I did a search and didn't find this exact topic, so hopefully I didn't miss it here.

When we visited Paris last year we got lost a lot until we got the Paris Pratique, which (I hear) many locals use. If you're not familiar, it's in book form and small and thin, so easy to carry around.

Is there a similar map that locals use in London? If so, should I wait until I get there to buy it? Are the London streets as confusing as the Paris streets? I've never been there before, but visiting next month.

Thanks.

Islington
Level Contributor
1,922 posts
3 reviews
Save Reply
11. Re: London Book-Map Locals Use (Like Paris Pratique)

As a tourist you might be better getting a good guidebook, which will not only have a maps but will also contain other invaluable information. I have often had to help tourists who have a map but no idea of where to go for what they are looking for (as in, 'Are there many bars in Soho?'). The trouble with the A-Z, which people who live in London use, is that it covers all of Greater London, far far more than you need, but will not contain some other information that a tourist would find useful. Of course, you could carry both the A-Z and a guidebook around, but I can't see the point of that. If you are going to carry one or the other, far more useful for a tourist to go for the guidebook.

Rutland, UK
Level Contributor
5,305 posts
68 reviews
Save Reply
12. Re: London Book-Map Locals Use (Like Paris Pratique)

For my money, the best map is 'The London Mapguide' by Michael Middleditch. It's slim, small paperback size, maps Central London very well - as others have said you don't need the suburbs which are contained in some A to Zs - plus, most importantly for you, it identifies all the tourist sites including many hotels and department stores as well as giving details of tourist attractions. It is the best compromise: a map with a guide book, not a guide book with a map.

Susan from SF, be thankful you didn't visit Tokyo where buildings in a block are numbered from oldest to newest, or Venice where the city is divided into a 6 districts or sestieri and an address is simply the sestiere plus a house number eg Cannareggio 961.

Edited: 09 April 2014, 08:48
Watford
Destination Expert
for London
Level Contributor
40,429 posts
44 reviews
Save Reply
13. Re: London Book-Map Locals Use (Like Paris Pratique)

Much as I love the A-Z it really is for locals. The London Mapguide though is simply superb and a must for any visitor - amazon.co.uk/The-London-Mapguide-Michael-Mid…

Winchester, United...
Level Contributor
498 posts
Save Reply
14. Re: London Book-Map Locals Use (Like Paris Pratique)

Honestly? All the Londoners I know use maps on their phones nowadays

Watford
Destination Expert
for London
Level Contributor
40,429 posts
44 reviews
Save Reply
15. Re: London Book-Map Locals Use (Like Paris Pratique)

Yes honestly.

Israel
Destination Expert
for Israel
Level Contributor
12,243 posts
Save Reply
16. Re: London Book-Map Locals Use (Like Paris Pratique)

<<One thing that threw us off on our first visit is that street numbers weren't always alternating on opposite sides of the street. >>

One very large and central street where that is true is the Strand. (Not called Strand Street, just Strand; it's the street on which Charing Cross railway station is situated.) The numbers run up one side and down the other. But I don't know of any other streets where that is the case.

…itv.com/image/file/270801/article_5ee21a7a4…

London
Destination Expert
for London
Level Contributor
21,012 posts
74 reviews
Save Reply
17. Re: London Book-Map Locals Use (Like Paris Pratique)

You can get a smaller pocket size edition of the AtoZ which covers the central area, and also handlly a tube map on the bacK. These are available prettty much everywhere including those stalls selling umbrellas, newspapers etc. You do need the detail. I've ;lost count of the number of times I've been stopped by lost visitors who haven't got the granularity on their guidebook map or were confused (even in the wrong area entirely) with their phones.

United States
Level Contributor
484 posts
101 reviews
Save Reply
18. Re: London Book-Map Locals Use (Like Paris Pratique)

strummer, were you talking about the French guide when you said "Zed" instead of "zee" for the A to Z? Londoners don't really say "Zed" do they? I've been pondering this all day.

To be honest, my husband is the navigator. And he loved the Paris Pratique, which is used by locals. He's the type who doesn't want to drag around a guide book. What I do is type up relevant info from the guidebook and print it off on one sheet. And, yes, the ink runs in the rain as I learned in Paris! I don't like carrying around a guidebook. I haven't actually bought one for London, but I do have some that I checked out from the library -- Lonely Planet Discover London and Frommer's Best Day Trips from London.

As for the phone thing, I didn't use mine when we went to Paris because I didn't want to buy a plan for international. My husband got a plan for his though and it helped somewhat. I get that locals would use their phones though. I want to figure out something different this time so I can use my phone more often. On that note, the best London map app? I have an iPhone.

I'll check out the London Mapguide too. Or go with the smaller pocket size of A to Z. I'm assuming I can buy these at the airport or somewhere close to my hotel.

Thanks!

London
Destination Expert
for Thirassia, Fira
Level Contributor
13,427 posts
16 reviews
Save Reply
19. Re: London Book-Map Locals Use (Like Paris Pratique)

Londoners don't really say "Zed" do they?

==========

Yes, really - we do.

London, United...
Level Contributor
9,092 posts
23 reviews
Save Reply
20. Re: London Book-Map Locals Use (Like Paris Pratique)

We really do, as does everyone else in the UK. Irish people too, and Australians and New Zealanders.

Not sure about Canadians.(Traveller Plus will come along soon and tell us).

Edited: 09 April 2014, 20:53