London is a family friendly city and a great place to visit with children although it must be said getting around the capital takes a little bit of planning.
Below are some tips to help with your trip to London.
- Children under 11 can travel free (Tube, bus, tram, DLR and London overground) provided they are accompanied by an adult. If they look older than 10 they may be required to get an oyster photo card. If catching the Emirates Airline you will be required to buy a child rate ticket.
- Children between 11-15 can travel free on buses and trams and get child rate fares on the tube provided they have a Zip photo oyster card. For visitors this costs £10, can be done online and is worth it if you are to spend a few days in London.
- Teenagers 16-18 can travel free on buses (if eligible) and trams and get discounted adult rate fares on tube provided they have a Zip Photo Oyster Card. For visitors this costs £10, can be done online and is worth it if you are to spend a few days in London.
- Travelling around London with children can be difficult at the best of times, with this in mind avoid public transport during peak hour periods. (7.30-9.30am and 4.30-6.30pm)
- There is no legal requirement for cabs to have safety seats for toddlers, if you are booking just let them know.
- Be prepared that some buses won't accept more than 2 non collapsible push chairs, meaning you may have to wait occasionally.
- Plan your journey ahead using the transport for London journey planner. Where possible try and use lifts rather than elevators. You can search for step free access with the journey planner or download a step free tube map here.
- Walking can sometimes be easier and less costly so consider it an option if looking to travel only a couple of stops.
- London boasts a wide variety of restaurants to take children that includes some interesting theme restaurants (Medieval Banquet, Rainforest cafe etc) to ones which are simple and good value for money. Many restaurants and pubs will have a specific children's menu.
- There are no rules regarding Mothers breast feeding in public.
- Some useful Apps to help you find baby changing facilities; try the NCT Baby Change App or Go Baby App (also has step free access areas).
- London boasts some excellent adventure playgrounds that can give your children great entertainment. Playgrounds worth heading to include St James Park, Regents park, Hyde Park, Green Park, Corams Fields, St Johns Wood, Victoria Park, Kensington Memorial Park, Cissold Park, Bishops Park, Battersea Park, Holland Park, Greenwich Park, Ravenscourt Park.
- If you are looking for temporary childcare have a look online as there are many babysitting/childcare agencies in London.
For inspiration try London Stranger's Top 10 attractions for children.