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How about renting a car in Edinburgh to visit Hadrian's Wall and eventually get to London?

Thanks to all who helped us discuss the train option. Do you think it's a good idea to rent a car in Edinburgh, spend the day visiting sites on the Wall, and end the evening at our London lodging? If so, what would be the recommended driving route from Edinburgh, to see sites most dramatic for history-loving kids?

Thanks again for all the kind help!

Posted by
5378 posts

Don't know about "the train option" without a link to that thread. In any case, I think it's a horrible idea to drive from Hadrian's Wall or Edinburgh to London in one day. While sightseeing (on the wrong side of the road) you will be stuck behind caravans and horse-drawn vehicles (not kidding ... ) as well as trucks. Then you'll have a brutal urban highway experience getting to London, and if you're not quite crazy enough to drive into the center of the city, you'll have to lug your bags from a suburban rental agency to the tube station.

It makes sense to have a car outside Edinburgh and to see Hadrian's Wall. It's the London part that's a bad idea. Have you looked at Google Maps yet? It will take the entire day just to cover the miles. Forget about stopping anywhere. Any restrictions on arrival hour at the "London lodging?"

Posted by
35 posts

Hmmm, much further than we realized.....Someone recommended renting a car in Edinburgh, heading to Northumberland, then returning car at Newcastle and taking train to London. Thoughts on that?

Thanks, Y'all!

Posted by
8889 posts

The train goes 125 mph and takes just over 4 hours of sitting back watching the scenery go by. A car goes half that speed and takes twice the time of stressful driving, plus stops. As Tim says, driving from Edinburgh to London takes a full day, you will not have time for a detour to Hadrian's Wall.

An option would be to get the train to Newcastle, hire a car from there.
After reading this and your train option post, I would recommend investing a night for this side trip. Train to Newcastle, pick up car, Hadrian's Wall, then drive to Durham, return car and stay overnight. Following day, train from Durham to London.
Plan B - even better - return car in York, spend 2 nights in York (it deserves it - mention to the kids they can walk on the city walls - show them the photos in this article), then train to London.

Posted by
5378 posts

Yeah, we really enjoyed York, even without kids. Read Rick's book for a warning on how ready for tourism they are! Don't overlook the shocking plaque on Clifford's Tower, on the way, I think, to the Railway Museum. I would have liked to see H's Wall, but we just didn't have time.