Places to stay in London for tourists

Our guide to accommodation in London. Central London is huge, about 8 miles from west to east and 5 miles from north to south. This means that there is no better place to live in London. Wherever you decide to stay, you will have to drive to see all the major tourist attractions. Fortunately, London has one of the best public transport systems in the world, with an extensive metro and bus network. It’s a good idea to look for accommodation near a tube station, from where you can reach most of central London in 30 minutes. Many bus routes also run over the Underground, making all parts of central London very well connected.

Where to stay in London

Our favourite:

The West End is a major tourist area in the heart of London. There are many theatres, shops, excellent restaurants and a vibrant nightlife. High hotel prices reflect West End’s excellent central location, and there are many 4 and 5 star hotels in the area. It’s the best place for families, couples, singles… for just about everyone!

Best place to visit

Head south of the Thames to the South Bank to find hotels close to the sights. You are close to the London Eye, Shakespeare’s Globe and other popular tourist attractions.

By budget:

Go a little further and you will find excellent budget hotels. Although areas like Victoria and Paddington don’t have many attractions, they have excellent transport links. This means you are only a short drive from most of London’s tourist attractions.

There is no shortage of luxury accommodation in London. Find hotels near Hyde Park in areas like Mayfair or Kensington. They offer the perfect combination of an ideal location and first class accommodation.

Hotels in London – West to East

In this article, we reveal London’s best neighbourhoods to live in – from West to Central to East – in terms of price, location, accessibility and amenities. We will also show you the metro stations nearby, as they are the easiest and most efficient way to get around. We have also listed some hotel recommendations for each region.

West London Hotels

There are many hotels in West London that combine a variety of environments. Cheap and mid-priced areas in West London, including areas such as Earls Court, Victoria and Paddington. Here you will find many famous hotel chains in London. On the luxury side of the hotel market, you’ll find areas like Kensington, Knightsbridge and Chelsea full of 5-star and boutique hotels.

Hotels in Earls Court and Cromwell Road

Meininger Hotel, Hyde Park London

Earl’s Court and Cromwell Road is a major hotel district in West London where you will find many cheap hotels. This area is very popular with tourists and students. There are many large four-star hotels used for coach travel, especially along Cromwell Road. The area also has a large number of nightclubs, discotheques and cheap restaurants aimed at young people. Remember that Cromwell Road is one of the busiest roads in London. So if you stay here, make sure you request a room at the back of the hotel to avoid the traffic noise!

Summary: If you have a limited budget, this is a good compromise as central London is easily accessible by tube.

  • Transportation: There are three subway stations that cover this area: Earls Court, West Brompton and Gloucester Road. It is a particularly good neighbour for travel to and from Heathrow Airport, as there are direct trains on the Piccadilly line.
  • Local Attractions : This is an area with no tourist attractions and nothing to see during the day.
  • Nightlife : In the area you will find reasonably priced restaurants and several local clubs, bars and pubs.
  • Shops: Mostly local businesses.
  • Cost: Cheap hotels and hostels.

Where to stay at Earls Court and Cromwell Road:

  • Hotel 4* : Hotel Indigo London Kensington is a beautiful Victorian townhouse.
  • Hotel 4* : The Moonlight Hotel is a boutique hotel just a 3-minute walk from Earl’s Court station.
  • Hotel 3* : The Holiday Inn Kensington Forum is a renowned hotel with excellent reviews, in an ideal location close to the museums.
  • Hotel 3* : The London Court Hotel is a small 22-room hotel located 2 minutes from Earls Court tube station.
  • Hotel 2* : Located opposite the Natural History Museum, Hotel Meininger offers clean, modern rooms.
  • Hostel: Barmy Badger Backpackers is one of the best hostels in London for young travellers.

Hotels in Kensington and Knightsbridge

An ampersand. Credit: Amy Murrell.

These areas are in West London, near Hyde Park, and you will find high-end hotels. Kensington is a very chic district where you can find both the most important museums and exclusive boutiques. Knightsbridge is home to Harrods and the Harvey Nichols department store. It is an ideal place for people looking for a moment of relaxation, and especially for families.

Summary: Ideal neighborhood for tourists looking for a very chic, quiet and elegant neighborhood. With several national museums nearby, excellent restaurants, a wide range of shops, plenty of green space and good transport links, it is one of the best places to live in London!

  • Transportation: The area has excellent transport links, with many tube stations leading to the main attractions of central London. The main stations are High Street Kensington, South Kensington and Knightsbridge. From there, it is particularly easy to get to Heathrow Airport.
  • Local Attractions : Within walking distance of Hyde Park, Kensington Palace, Kensington Gardens, Royal Albert Hall and surrounding museums (Victoria & Albert Museum, Science Museum and Natural History Museum).
  • Nightlife : There are many restaurants in the area, but they tend to be exclusive and very expensive. There are also chic clubs and very old pubs.
  • Shops: Kensington High Street is the main shopping street where you can find all the big brands. Harrods and Harvey Nichols are on Brompton Road, and there are some very small and exclusive shops in South Kensington.
  • Cost: Exclusive, high-class and expensive luxury hotels

Where to stay in Kensington and Knightsbridge:

  • 5* Hotel : Ampersand is a small, elegant boutique hotel.
  • 5* Hotel : The Lanesborough is one of the most expensive luxury hotels with a Michelin-starred restaurant.
  • Hotel 4* : Hotel Levin – a cosy 12-room townhouse near Harrods
  • Luxury Inn: The Hyde Park Astor Hotel is in a fantastic location opposite Hyde Park and the museums.
  • Luxury Inn: Safestay London Holland Park is a luxury hotel just a short drive from Kensington High Street.

Hotels in Chelsea and Belgravia

Chelsea merges with South Kensington and Knightsbridge. It is a very trendy, luxurious and expensive area, similar to Knightsbridge. Kings Road, between Oakley Street and Sloane Square, is the main street where you will find many exclusive shops. Near Belgravia are the Megabucks, several exclusive 5 star hotels.

Where to stay in Chelsea and Belgravia :

Hotels in Victoria

Premier Inn London Victoria

Victoria is a small area with a large concentration of budget hotels. It is a very good place to walk to Buckingham Palace, which is nearby. It also has one of the capital’s busiest metro and train stations, so all tourist attractions are easily accessible from here.

Summary: An ideal place to stay for tourists on a budget.

  • Transportation: Connections are excellent, with direct trains to Gatwick Airport, two underground lines connecting all of central London and a central bus station with buses to Luton, Stansted and Heathrow airports. Most day trips to attractions and day trips to London depart from Victoria Bus Station.
  • Local Attractions : There’s not much to see in Victoria itself, but you’re just a 20-minute walk from Buckingham Palace, St James’s Park, Westminster Abbey, the River Thames, the Houses of Parliament and Big Ben.
  • Nightlife : There are many restaurants nearby, from budget to luxury, as well as several pubs and bars.
  • Shops: Mainly hypermarkets
  • Cost: Cheap hotels and hostels

Where to stay in Victoria:

Paddington and Bayswater Hotels

Delmere Hotel in Paddington

The Paddington/Bayswater area is located north of Kensington Gardens and Hyde Park in West London. There are many hotels of various levels and it is a very popular area for tourists, with excellent transport links.

Summary: It is ideally located close to the shops of Oxford Street and the Royal Parks. A great place to find cheap and moderately priced hotels.

  • Transportation: Excellent transport links with Notting Hill Gate, Bayswater, King’s Way, Lancaster Gate, Marble Arch and Paddington tube stations nearby. The Heathrow Express train connects Paddington underground station with the airport in just 15 minutes. Find hotels on or near Bayswater Road, opposite Hyde Park and Kensington Gardens, where there are metro stations.
  • Local Attractions : Kensington Gardens and Hyde Park are within walking distance and perfect for a morning stroll. There are lots of things to do with kids in the area, and you can also walk through the gardens to the museum district on the other side.
  • Nightlife : Many restaurants with different prices, as well as pubs and clubs in the area.
  • Shops: The main shopping street is called Queensway and houses mostly local shops. Bayswater Road eventually leads to Oxford Street, the busiest shopping street in Europe.
  • Cost: Cheap and moderately priced hotels.

Where to stay in Bayswater and Paddington:

  • Hotel 4* : Hyde Park Westbourne is a modern hotel, located on one floor of Hyde Park.
  • Hotel 4* : Hotel Indigo – near Paddington Station
  • Hotel 3* : The Delmir Hotel is part of the Best Western group and was recently built in 2015.
  • Hotel 3* : The Parkwood Hotel is a charming bed and breakfast located at the beginning of Oxford Street.
  • Luxury Inn: Altas Hostel is a short walk from Hyde Park and Kensington Gardens.
  • Luxury Inn: The Astor Kensington is on the other side of Bayswater, a short walk from Notting Hill.

Hotels in Central London

Overnight stay in the West End

Although London does not officially have a city centre, the area called the West End is the centre of London’s tourist attractions. It consists of several small areas, each with its own character and price. Main areas : Marylebone, Oxford Street, Mayfair, Soho, and we will look at each area separately.

In general, West End is very well served by public transport. The main street through the area is called Oxford Street, and the main stops are Marble Arch, Bond Street, Oxford Circus and Tottenham Court Road.

Hotels in Marilebone

Zetter mansion. Credit: Andreas von Einsiedel

Marylebone is a very chic and expensive neighborhood in the center of the city. There are not many places to stay here, but there are some charming hotels. Overall, this is a very exclusive and quiet area of central London. Local attractions include Bakers Street with the Sherlock Holmes Museum, Madame Tussauds and Regent’s Park. The main shopping street is Marylebone High Street, with great shops and restaurants. And on the southern edge of Marylebone is Oxford Street and thus the centre of London’s shopping district.

Cost: About £150-250 a night.

Summary: Perfect for those looking for a sophisticated, upscale neighborhood that feels like a village in the city.

Where to stay in Marylebone:

Mayfair Hotels

This is one of the most expensive areas of London, so don’t forget to bring your wallet. Mayfair has mostly luxury hotels, the west side overlooking Hyde Park and the south side overlooking Green Park and Piccadilly.

Where to stay in Mayfair

Summary: Wonderful, quiet neighborhood to stay in if your budget allows! There are some very expensive and elegant hotels in the area, such as the Claridges, the Ritz and the Chesterfield Mayfair. A cheaper option might be the Holiday Inn Mayfair.

Hotels nearby Oxford and Regent Street

At the beginning of Oxford Street, around Marble Arch and Portman Square, you’ll find many 4- and 5-star hotels. In some side streets, especially in St. John’s In St. Christopher’s Place there are many restaurants and pubs for tourists. There are also several accommodation options in Regent Street. It’s a very central location in London.

Summary: This is an extremely convenient location if you plan to do a lot of shopping while in London, with hotels in the mid to high price range.

Where to stay in Oxford/Regent Street:

  • 5* Hotel : Montcalm Marble Arch – above Park Lane, with excellent access to all major shopping areas.
  • 5* Hotel : The Café Royal is an elegant hotel on Regent Street.
  • Luxury Inn: The YHA Oxford Street is part of the YHA chain and has a fantastic location on Oxford Street.

SoHo fashionable hotels

The chic lobby of the SoHostel

Soho is a trendy area of London for young tourists, with a lively and vibrant nightlife and many pubs, bars and restaurants open until late. It is also the heart of London’s LGBT community. Soho is within walking distance of the theatre district and major shopping areas such as Oxford Street, Regent’s Street and Carnaby Street. And Piccadilly Circus, Green Park, St James Park and many more are within walking distance of Soho.

Summary: A place for a vibrant nightlife, but keep in mind that hotel prices are high.

Where to stay in Soho:

  • 5* Hotel : The Soho Hotel is a unique luxury hotel located on a quiet street in Soho.
  • Hotel 4* : The Nadler Soho is a 78-room hotel in a great location.
  • Hotel 4* : The Hazlitt Soho is an extraordinary boutique hotel and a true gem.
  • Luxury Inn: Sohostel is an excellent budget hostel located in the heart of Soho.

Hotels in London theatre district

Henrietta Hotel

Covent Garden is London’s theatre district, located in the heart of the capital, next to Soho. The Covent Garden market area is a lively place, day and night, with many restaurants nearby. It is within walking distance of Soho, Oxford Street and the River Thames and is easily accessible via Covent Garden tube station.

Summary: Great area for anyone to stay if your budget allows!

Where to stay in Covent Garden :

  • 5* Hotel : The Covent Garden Hotel is a charming boutique hotel with an English design.
  • Hotel 4* : The Henrietta Hotel is a small, charming hotel with 18 rooms and beautiful architectural features.
  • Hotel 3* : Assembly Hotel – fantastic location with clean, modern and tidy rooms.

Family Hotels in Bloomsbury

The Bloomsbury Hotel, living room

The area is a good compromise between price and location with many 3 and 4 star hotels and is ideal for families. Bloomsbury is a quieter neighborhood, popular with families, with green spaces like Bloomsbury Square Garden and small streets like Sicily Avenue. The region attracts artists, writers and painters. The British Museum is in Bloomsbury, a 20-minute walk from Covent Garden and Oxford Street.

Summary: Good location and affordable rates, with excellent transport links and close to Oxford Street shopping. Probably the best place for a family holiday in London.

  • Transportation: The main stops are Russell Square and Holborn. It is close to Euston, St Pancras and King’s Cross stations. This area is particularly convenient if you are travelling by Eurostar train or to Luton Airport.
  • Local Attractions : British Museum and it’s a very nice place.
  • Going out and shopping : The best restaurants are in the Torrington Place area, but there’s not much shopping or entertainment nearby. You will find mainly grocery stores.
  • Cost: Budget at average price

Where to stay in Bloomsbury:

Hotels nearby King’s Cross

Economic district around King’s Cross, St Pancras and Euston stations. Transport links are excellent, with trains connecting the continent to the north of England and the Eurostar to Paris.

Summary: Nothing to do or see here, the only reason to stay here is the price and proximity to train stations.

Accommodation near King’s Cross

Lodging in London, south of the river

Premier Inn London County Hall, Southbank

Southbank is located south of the Thames, just opposite the Houses of Parliament. You will find many budget hotels, but also some luxury hotels overlooking the river. Nearby attractions include the London Eye entertainment centre, Southbank and the Imperial War Museum.

Summary: A great place to stay if you are looking for cheap and conveniently located hotels.

  • Transportation: Excellent transport links to Waterloo Central Station and Lambeth North and Elephant & Castle tube stations.
  • Restaurants, shops or nightlife: Not many restaurants, shops and nightclubs nearby.
  • Cost: Mainly cheap hotels and hostels, with a few very expensive ones overlooking the river.

Where to stay in Southbank and Waterloo

Hotels in the area : Park Plaza Westminster Bridge is a good place for families, as many attractions are within walking distance. There are many options for budget travelers and backpackers.

London Airport Hotels

London Airport Hotels

London has four major international airports and each has hotels nearby. You can also easily reach the hotels by public transport from London.

  • London Heathrow Airport is served by many major hotel chains. There is also a Heathrow Express train that runs directly from the airport to London Paddington. This means you can find hotels in Paddington when you travel to Heathrow.
  • There are many hotels in London and near Gatwick Airport. Many hotels have direct access to the north or south terminal or are within walking distance. The Gatwick Express train connects the airport directly to the London Borough of Victoria. It is therefore quite common to stop in this area.
  • There are several hotels near Stansted Airport. Two hotels are located near the terminal, while several others are accessible by shuttle bus.

Other areas in which you can live in London

There are also other areas of London with hotels, such as Camden, Shoreditch, the East End of London and the financial centre the City of London. Some of these locations may be poorly served by public transport, with few metro stations, and are further away from major tourist attractions. For this reason we have not recommended any hotels in these areas.

General Rule: Be especially careful if there is no tube connection to central London from your hotel. There is sometimes a metro station nearby, but the cost of train tickets is high. In addition, buses coming from outside the downtown area can make long trips and get stuck in rush hour traffic. This means that while hotel prices can seem very reasonable when you factor in the extra cost of transportation and lost travel time, there are generally better places for tourists in central London.

Hotels near attractions

There are certain areas of London where it is good to stay to access certain attractions. For example, there are many hotels near Wembley Stadium that are ideal if you are going to an event or match at the stadium. There are many hotels near Kew Gardens that are ideal for visiting the botanical gardens.

There are also many hotels near ExCeL London, ideally located if you are attending a conference or event in the city centre, but less so if you want to visit sights in the heart of the capital.

Other considerations

  • City tour: If you’re visiting the capital for the first time, a double-decker tour bus is a great way to get your bearings. That way, you see all the major sights on the first day and get a feel for the city.
  • Security: All the areas we have mentioned as good places to stay for tourists in London are safe to walk. But, as in all big cities, be careful, especially at night.
  • Inns : The youth hostel scene in London has been gaining momentum in recent years. Some of the best hostels in London are considered some of the best in the world.
  • Travel: If you are travelling in London, you will need a contactless payment card, such as the Oyster visitor card, to get the cheapest fares.

frequently asked questions

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