Everything You Need to Know Before Travelling to United Kingdom

Everything You Need to Know Before Travelling to United Kingdom

The country might be small but it holds a lot of history, fame and culture, don’t be surprised that the British accent changes every 16 miles. People who come over to the United Kingdom can find it hard to learn the quirks and idiosyncrasies and pronunciations, road rules and the drinking culture can be strange but its a lovely nation with lots of history to explore.

The United Kingdom is made up of England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. England is also the site of Neolithic Stonehenge, Bath’s Roman spa and centuries-old universities at Oxford and Cambridge and birthplace of Shakespeare and The Beatles.

Entry Requirements

Your passport or identity card will be checked when you arrive at a UK port or airport to make sure you’re allowed to come into the country. It must be valid for the whole of your stay. More Information can be found at the UK Government website.

Passport Required Return Ticket Required Visa Required
The United States of America Yes No No
Canada Yes No No
British No No No
EU Yes No No
Other Countries Yes Yes Yes

Check if you need VISA to enter the United Kingdom

Safety and Security

Visiting the United Kingdom is fairly safe and really nothing to worry about. The United Kingdom benefits from low crime rates and very effective emergency services.

Visiting any public spaces, you will find a lot of CCTV cameras overlooking the public and if any crime did happen, you could easily report it to the police with no hassle and health care is free so no need to worry about injuring yourself.

Just use your common sense when visiting any country and respect the cultural and keep your belonging to yourself.

Best Time to visit the United Kingdom

London is most heavily touristed in the late spring and summer months when the weather is warm and kids are off school and during the December rush of shopping and seasonal activities. London can be visited at any time of year, as it has a mild climate and extreme weather is rare.

Northern Ireland has relatively warm temperatures, but wet and windy conditions. In the summer months expect the weather to be between 10°- 18°C. Temperatures are highest between June and August and pleasant in April and September.

England boasts the warmest temperatures in the United Kingdom with July and August being the hottest months. summers rarely get very hot and the winters don’t get very cold, expect the weather to be between 11°-20° degrees on average.

Wales weather is similar to Northern Ireland, In the summer months expect the weather to be between 10°C-17°C and 2°C-6°C during winter.

Scotland weather during June and August in the south of Scotland average between 11°-19°C and in the winter it’s between 1°C-7°C.

Language

The United Kingdom has a number of languages, English is woken everywhere as the main language, however, some parts of Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland Speak their own language: Welsh, Scottish and Irish. But don’t worry about learning the languages, English is spoken everywhere.

There are 11 indigenous languages spoken across the British Isles: 5 Celtic, 3 Germanic, and 3 Romance. Over 300 languages are currently spoken in London.

Travelling around the country

Travelling around the United Kingdom is fairly simple, just rent a car and you can go just about anywhere using the motorway to visit different cities and towns, London and Birmingham are only 2 and a half hours away, driving from the second city Birmingham to Scottish Capital Edinburgh will take you around 5 hours.

Britain’s National Rail network is one of the largest in the world and over 2,500 passenger railway stations on the National Rail Network not including the London underground, you can travel just about in the United Kingdom using the rail system. The Map below shows how far you can travel using the rail network.

Britain's National Rail network
Britain’s National Rail network ©Official National Rail Maps

Money

The currency in the United Kingdom is the Pound sterling (£) which can be withdrawn from all ATMs. The United Kingdom is a safe place when it comes to fraud, so don’t worry about using ATM’s that are not installed inside a bank, however, we would still highly recommend using the ATMs at banks.

Scotland and Nothern Ireland Have their own currency “Scottish Pound” and ” Northern Ireland Pound” you can spend Scottish & Irish money anywhere in the UK as it is a legal tender denominated and backed by sterling, the currency of bank of England.

Places to avoid

Lewisham in South-East London has the highest murder rate in the country, so I would highly recommend not going there at night.

West Yorkshire is the most dangerous place to live in England and Wales.

 

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Everything You Need to Know Before Travelling to United Kingdom
Everything You Need to Know Before Travelling to United Kingdom

Oxford Castle and Prison

Oxford Castle and Prison

Oxford Castle was built in 1071 on earlier Saxon Defences when William the Conqueror took control of England and was victories at the battle of hastings Oxford, he ordered for the castle to be built with a mound, The Castle was left under control of Hereditary constables drawn from the D’Oilly Family.

The Initial castle was made out of earthwork mound and surmounted by wooden palisades, the Motte rises over 60 feet, however, within the next few years Robert d’Oilly built the first stone fortifications, including a stone keep atop the mound.

In the 14th Century, the castle was diminished and the site became primarily used for country administration and as a prison. It saw action during the Anarchy where it was the scene of Matilda’s dramatic escape from King Stephen in the midst of a snowstorm. During the English Civil War, the castle was destroyed.

In the 18th Century, the castle became Oxford’s prison and a new prison complex was built on the site and later expanded in 1876, becoming the HM Prison Oxford. In 1996 the prison closed and was redeveloped into a hotel.

Tours around Oxford Castles are done by guides who dress up in costumed characters and show you around the Saxon Tower, where you can enjoy a stunning 360° views of Oxford and then descent to the dark atmosphere of the 900-year-old underground crypt. You can even experience the Austere confines of the 18th-century debtors’ tower and the Prison D-Wing and wonder at the mound of the 11th-century motte and the Vaulted Well Chamber of Bailey castle.

The medieval remains of the castle, including the motte and St George’s Tower and crypt, are Grade I listed buildings and a Scheduled Monument.

Oxford Castle and Prison
Oxford Castle and Prison

Oxford Castle and Prison Contact Information

Telephone: 01865 260666 | Official Website | Email Address: [email protected]

How To Get There

Oxford Castle Quater does not have its own carpark, Car parks can be found at Westgate Shopping Centre, Oxpens, Worcester Street and Gloucester Green and are all a short walking distance from Oxford Castle & Prison.

Oxford rail station has regular links to all major UK cities, eight minutes walk from the train station to Oxfords Castle

Gloucester Green bus station is located in the heart of Oxford City Centre in George Street. Once on George Street, turn right and then immediately left and bear left around the corner into New Road. Oxford Castle Quarter is on your right-hand side.

There are plenty of bike racks located behind the Oxfordshire County Council building.

Opening Hours

Monday 10:00 AM – 5:30 PM
Tuesday 10:00 AM – 5:30 PM
Wednesday 10:00 AM – 5:30 PM
Thursday 10:00 AM – 5:30 PM
Friday 10:00 AM – 5:30 PM
Saturday 10:00 AM – 5:30 PM
Sunday 10:00 AM – 5:30 PM

Closed: Christmas Day.

Admission

Ticket Type Price
Adults £10.95
Children between 5 and 15 years old £7.75
Under 5 years old Free Entry
Senior/Student £9.25
Family ticket £35.00

All admission tickets get access to the Mound.

Information

  • Opened: 1073
  • Function: Castle
  • Architects: Robert D’Oyly, Daniel Harris
  • Owner: Oxfordshire County Council
  • Architectural styles: Medieval architecture, Norman architecture
  • Materials: Coral rag, Gravel

THINGS TO DO NEARBY

  • Visit the Ashmolean Museum is an Ancient and modern art and antiquities covering world civilisations, plus fine and applied arts. located only 8 minutes away from Oxford Castle.
  • Carfax Tower, Landmark 23m-high belltower, once part of a 12th-century church, offering city views from the top. located 6 minutes from Oxford Castle.

WHERE TO STAY IN Oxford

Nearby places to stay as cheap as possible budget under £100/$100/€100:

  • Central Backpackers Oxford, Museum Hotel Oxford offers accommodation in historic Oxford in a building dating from 1594. The hotel is located a 2-minute walk from Carfax Tower in the centre of Oxford. The University of Oxford colleges is 0.2 miles away. Check Price.
  • YHA Oxford, This YHA hostel is located in the centre of historical Oxford, next to Oxford Train StationYHA Oxford offers affordable accommodation, a restaurant serving traditional meals and self-catering kitchen facilities. Check Price.
  • White House View Guest House, is a 10-minute walk from Oxford city centre and offers a garden and bedrooms with free Wi-Fi and Freeview TV. The guest house is located just off Abingdon Road, in quiet and pleasant surroundings. Check Price.

Nearby places to stay at a budget price over £200+

  • Macdonald Randolph Hotel, In the heart of Oxford, opposite the Ashmolean Museum, The Macdonald Randolph Hotel offers sumptuous bedrooms and a spa. The Randolph Macdonald is just metres from The University of Oxford Colleges.Check Price.
  • Old Parsonage Hotel is a boutique hotel set in a building dating back to 1660. It has 2 terraces, a new residents garden library, a restaurant, a bar, and is a 5-minute walk from Oxford city centre. Check Price.
  • Museum Hotel Oxford, Museum Hotel Oxford offers accommodation in historic Oxford in a building dating from 1594. located a 2-minute walk from Carfax Tower in the centre of Oxford Check Price.

Visiting Oxford? We have other posts that you may enjoy that will be helpful on your trip.

Location

Address: 44-46 Oxford Castle, New Road, Oxford, Oxfordshire OX1 1AY  | Coordinations: 51.7517°N 1.2632°W

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Oxford Castle and Prison

Bodleian Library

Bodleian Library In Oxford

Bodleian Library was established at the University of Oxford by Thomas de Cobham and is the main research library of the University, Bodleian Library is one of the oldest in Europe and second largest library in Britain, Bodleian Library is composed of five buildings, Bodleian Library archives were digitised for public access

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Discovering London’s Street Food Markets

Discovering London’s Street Food Markets

Recently we discovered London’s street food markets, London is well known for its overpriced housing and luxury restaurants however the street food markets are buzzing full of people wanting quality food for only a small fee, most street foods are family owned and offer something you wouldn’t find anywhere else, with different cuisines from Chinese, Vietnamese to Indian and Levantine, London really is the cultural capital of Europe, especially when it comes to food.

We’ve tried and tasted all the Street Food Markets on this list but remember your taste buds might be different to ours however if you enjoy food, you will definitely enjoy our list.

Due to the nature of the street foods markets and vendors, they are usually pop-ups and relocated at short notice, however, we will provide you with all the information possible about each vendor, so you can try the delicious food for yourself.

Our Favourite Food Markets in London

Black Bear Burgers

Discovering London's Street Food Markets 1We start off with Black Bear Burgers one of the best and most established vendors on this list, Black Bear Burgers was created by Liz and Stew, Wife and Husband, In 2016. After spending two years in Whistler, Canada they decided to come back home to England and moved to London, they set up a street food stall which focused on quality Beef Burgers, they now run a successful business with customers coming all around London to taste their quality Burgers.

They are based in Boxpark Shoreditch, shipping container complex next to the Overground station. you can find other vendors around the Container Complex, however, we highly recommend trying Black Bear Burgers.

Opening Hours

Tuesday’s to Saturday’s 12:00 PM – 10:00 PM
Sunday’s to Monday’s 12:00 PM – 9:00 PM

You might find Black Bear Burgers around the city doing occasional events, always keep an eye out. 

| Official Website | Telephone: 07774 326621 | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram |

 

Shrimp Up Your Life

Discovering London's Street Food Markets 2

Shrimp up Your Life began in 2013 and slowly spread across London, specialling in Seafood they bring the Scandinavian and British Flavours together to really give you a wonderful experience, its what they call a “Seafood Journey”. Shrimp up your life shows you how good tasting food can be healthy and versatile.

Opening Hours

South Bank Centre Food Market
Friday & Saturday 12:00 PM – 8:00 PM
Sunday 12:00 PM – 6:00 PM
Broadway Market
Saturday 10:30 PM – 6:30 PM

| Official Website | Telephone: 07597 516681 | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram |

Nazari Food

Discovering London's Street Food Markets 3

Nazari began in 2016 when they completed their 1974 Peugeot J7 Van and caterer for special occasions such as private parties, weddings, and street food at KERB Camden Market, they even have their own premium quality organic single variety olive oil, made in Granada, Andalucia. Nazari offers the Mediterranean and Middle Eastern food.

 

| Official Website | Telephone: 07 720847974 | Facebook | Twitter |

The Cheeky Indian

The Cheeky Indian
The Cheeky Indian

The Cheeky Indian is a creation of Ash, Who spent a day a week at Jamie Olivers Barbecoa Restaurant, gaining experience and later was offered a position running and a managing street food concept for the Restaurant, after a full years, Ash decided to start up the Cheeky Indian, cooking traditional Indian food with a unique style.

Opening Hours and Location

ST KATHERINE DOCKS
Every Friday 11:00 AM – 2:30 PM
FLEET PLACE
Every Tuesday 11:00 AM – 2:30 PM
PATERNOSTER SQ
Last Tuesday of the Month 11:00 AM – 2:30 PM
VENN STREET MARKET
Every other Saturday 10:00 AM – 4:00 PM

 

| Official Website | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram |

LemLem Kitchen

LemLem Kitchen london
LemLem Kitchen london

LemLem Kitchen is inspired by the culture and favours of Asmara, the capital city of Eritrea, the city is well known for its unique blend of Italian, Mediterranean and Middle Eastern food, the LemLem Kitchen brings a new type of food style and culture to London, which can be enjoyed by everyone, you can find the restaurant at Netil Market and try out the modern and classic African food. highly recommended to try the Afro- Tacos with Fries, you be wanting seconds.

Opening Hours

Saturday  12:00 PM – 5:00 PM

Location

Address: 13 – 23 Westgate Street, London E8 3RL

| Official Website | Twitter |

 

If you have a favourite street food location, let us know and spread the word.

Evolution of London Piccadilly Circus

Evolution of London Piccadilly Circus

Piccadilly Circus built in 1819, is a road junction and a public space connecting the Regent Street with Piccadilly, you can find a world-famous statue of Shaftesbury Memorial Fountain, which is used as a popular meeting point and a beautiful location used to take photographs.

Piccadilly Cirus is surrounded by major tourists attractions, including the London Pavilion, Criterion Theatre and the Shaftesbury Memorial as well as a number of Bars and Restaurants located nearby.

over the years the Piccadilly Circus changed as new eras begun a new age of motor transport took over and the roads of Piccadilly Circus changed later becoming a popular tourist location as advertisement boards started to appear and later becoming digital boards that are popular with tourists wanting to take photographs.

How Piccadilly Circus Changed over the years: 1900 – 1953

Evolution of London Piccadilly Circus
Evolution of London Piccadilly Circus

How Piccadilly Circus Changed over the years: 1983 – 2018

Evolution of London Piccadilly Circus
Evolution of London Piccadilly Circus

How to get there

Address: Piccadilly Circus, London W1D 7ET

  • By Bus: Piccadilly Circus via bus routes 12, 453, 94, 3, 12, 88, 159, N3, N109 and N136.
  • By Train: The nearest station is Charing Cross, which is an 11-minute walk away.
  • By Tube: Piccadilly Circus can be accessed via the Piccadilly and Bakerloo lines.
  • By Car: the nearest car parks are located on Arlington Street and Brewer Street.

 

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