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Getting around London

Heathrow Airport
Heathrow Airport is the largest and busiest airport in Europe, so most travelers to London will be arriving here. There are many options to get from the airport to the city. The fastest way is to take the Heathrow Express train that gets passengers from Heathrow to Paddington Station downtown in just 15 minutes. The Heathrow Connect train is also pretty quick; it will get travelers from the airport to Paddington Station in 25 minutes. The underground takes about an hour from the airport to downtown. Buses and taxis will take about an hour and 15 minutes to get from the airport to downtown.

London Underground
Known by locals as the tube, the underground is often the best way to get around London. This is the largest underground system in the world. The tube has 11 lines that cover the vast majority of the city. Passengers should invest in the Oyster Card, which is an electronic card that can be loaded with funds to pay for all methods of London public transportation. The tube runs from 5:30 AM until 1:00 AM. They can get very crowded, especially during rush hour.

The double-decker, red buses in London are among the most recognizable in the world. They are generally a better option to use than the underground for short trips. It is best to use the Oyster Card to pay for fares on the bus. Those that don't have one will need to buy a ticket from one of the machines at the bus stop.

Docklands Light Railway
This light rail system runs throughout east London and is generally a very quick means of transport. It is also much more scenic than taking the tube.

National Rail
The national rail service has terminals located throughout London, and their trains cover the entire city. This is a pretty slow method of getting around, but it does offer the chance to look at the scenery.

The compact nature of central London makes riding a bike a good option. This is one of the fastest methods to get around the center of the city. There is a city bike rental service that has locations all over the city. Bikes can be rented for an hourly charge from one of these rental stations and then returned to any other station in the city.

This is another good option for those travelling in the center of the city. It is often faster to walk than to take the tube if just going one stop.

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