Common Tourist Misconceptions of London

Fish, Chips with Mushy peas 1

It’s commonly accepted that you have to live in a country or city before you truly understand what it’s all about. But in the internet days of the 21st century, it’s amazing how many common tourist misconceptions of exactly what to expect in London still survive in spite of the millions of blogs, tourist sites and other information easily accessed online. The best way to discover the city and its huge number of attractions, things to do and amazing theatre and nightlife is to come and see for yourself!

Chips With That?

One popular misconception which sends Londoners reaching for their anti-stress medication is that London’s food is either inedible or is all fish ‘n’ chips and curry. To be sure, traditional English food is more geared to the warmth and comfort made necessary by the British winter (and occasionally spring, summer and autumn) weather, but London is a world gourmet city as well as home to a huge number of immigrants from across the world, all with their own delicious cuisines which are easily found in ethnic eateries across the capital.

Two bowler hats on the Thames

Posh And Proud

Another myth that’s damaging to London as a tourism destination is that visitors need to be wealthy to enjoy a visit here. The rule for London is the same as for any other major world city – live like the everyday residents do! The vast majority of Londoners are far from rich, and still manage to have a great time in the city. As regards accommodation, a plethora of comfortable budget hotels are found outside the central areas, and local eateries are half the price of those in fashionable enclaves. Bed and breakfasts and guesthouses in London are favourites with Britons visiting the capital as well as with visitors from other countries, as these lodgings are mostly family run and ultra-friendly to their guests.

Snooty And Standoffish

‘Londoners are standoffish and snooty’ is an often-heard misconception, which is as incorrect as all the others. Yes, Brits are different and express themselves in a unique manner, but on the whole they’re friendly, welcoming and helpful. They’re also fascinated about life in foreign countries, making an evening in a local pub a great way to exchange experiences over a pint or two. The vast majority of visitors to London find their one-to-one experiences with the natives to be friendly, helpful and enjoyable transactions.

A nice cup of tea!  That will sort you out.

I’ll Just Put The Kettle On

A common complaint by Americans who perhaps haven’t visited London for 20 years or so is that all Brits drink tea, making it impossible to get a decent cup of coffee anywhere in the city. This is a perfect example of a ‘wake up and smell the coffee’ situation, as smell it you can, all over the city in mostly US-franchised coffee bars serving the real McCoy. Cafe Nero, Costa, Starbucks and their imitators have taken over not just the Central London streets, but every high street across the city. It’s the few Brits left who only drink tea who can’t find a cuppa these days!

Dear Stalkers And Pea Soup

One out-of-date misconception resulting from romantic 1940s and ‘50s Hollywood movies is that London is a foggy city and unsuitable for those with weak chests. Back in those far-off days, London’s smog was caused by air pollution due to coal fires and was hell to live with during the winter months, causing the city’s nickname, ‘The Big Smoke’. However, since the Clean Air Act was passed in 1956, London can give any city in the world, including Los Angeles, a run for its money as regards fresh, clean air. Visitors with weak chests will feel a great deal better after a couple of weeks in London!

Come and see what the British are really like, take a low cost airline, ferry, cycle or motorbike over here and join the party.



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