London trip: August 8th - 12, Staying in Guildford

Hi all,

Since there's always great advice from this forum, wanted to ask for any pointers. I'm heading to the London areas August 9th -12th (these are actual days on the ground, we travel in on the 8th and out on the 13th) and will be staying in Guildford since some family lives out there. I'm traveling with my 17 year old sister and it's her first time in London. We are planning on heading into the city and exploring the area outside of London, but I am curious about transportation into London and getting around from Guildford. We aren't renting a car, so would appreciate any tips on rail/bus suggestions for getting into the City and traveling around the countryside.

We are considering trips to Bath, Greenwich, Stratford-upon-Avon, and possibly Stonehenge in addition to several days in London (afternoon tea, museums, midnight play at the Globe, the Tower, and general wandering).

Also, if there are other suggestions on things a 17 year old first timer might enjoy, feel free to share!

Cheers,
Sam

Posted by Nigel
East Midlands, England
11410 posts

With only 3 days in the London area I would have thought you would have very little time to do anything more than London and visiting with family.

Some people think it is worth visiting the new Guildford cathedral.

By Stratford - do you mean Stratford in the East End where the last Summer Olympics were held (and with a very large shopping mall - Westfield) or do you mean Stratford-upon-Avon in Warwickshire, the home of Shakespeare and the Royal Shakespeare Theatres?

Posted by Laura
Rick Steves' Europe
7416 posts

You definitely won't exhaust the possibilities of London in 4 days. Trains from Guildford to London Waterloo station take about 40 minutes and run about every 15 minutes. Trains to Bath take about 2 hours each way with a connection at Reading. See www.nationalrail.co.uk for train destinations outside London, including Guildford; roundtrip tickets 16 pounds per person at Off Peak times and 22 pounds for Any Time.

See www.tfl.gov.uk for Tube and bus within London; Paddington station and most sightseeing are within zones 1 & 2; you can get a 7-day Travel Card for that region for about 30 pounds for an adult age 26+ and less for youths.