Tubes, buses and black cabs are all perfect choices for getting from A to B, but transport doesn’t always have to be about practicality. It can also be luxurious, nostalgic and even awe-inspiring. Read on to discover some innovative and unexpected approaches to London transport.
Fine dining on a luxury steam-hauled Pullman Train
For an unforgettable train travel and fine dining experience dripping with 1920s luxury, take a round-trip journey aboard the Belmond British Pullman. Over the course of the five-hour trip through delightful Kentish countryside, indulge in a silver-service five-course lunch of sumptuous seasonal dishes, all in the most exquisite art deco carriages.
Attend a gourmet supper club in an old London Underground carriage
A 1967 decommissioned tube carriage has been given a second lease of life in Walthamstow, where it forms a unique setting for gourmet supper club events hosted by Basement Galley. Choose between social seating (the ‘Luggage Rack Special’) or a private VIP booth for two at any of the club events. At present these include:
- The Underground Supper Club Spring/Summer Edition: a three-course Brasserie/Grillhouse style dinner, which runs weekly from June 2017
- The Underground Brunch Club: fine dining brunch, which runs three times per month
Take in stunning aerial views of London on a helicopter tour
Perhaps the most exhilarating and unique way to acquaint yourself with a new city is from the air. Take to the skies high above London landmarks like the Houses of Parliament, Trafalgar Square and Buckingham Palace and admire spectacular views across the Thames and beyond.
There are a few companies that run helicopter tours of London, but The London Helicopter are the only ones operating from a heliport in the city. Based in Battersea, the company offer three different routes at varying durations, and you can join a shared flight or pay more for private use (max. 6 people). They also offer discounts for holders of the London Pass.
Relax on the water with a canal or river cruise
If gliding across the water is more your style, escape the crowds with a river or canal tour. There are a whole host of companies and styles to choose from including:
- A full dining experience with live band entertainment aboard one of Bateaux London’s Thames cruises (choose from a Dinner Cruise or Sunday Lunch Jazz)
- Taking in Tudor history and Turner landscapes alike on a historic Turks boat a little outside of central London, from Hampton Court to Richmond
- Exploring London’s charming canals on a long boat between Little Venice and Camden (the Jenny Wren departs from Camden for a round trip, while The London Waterbus Company and Jason’s depart from Little Venice. Note that Jason’s is included in the London Pass, if you’re planning to buy one.)
Visit a charming vintage underground-themed bar
Blending nostalgia for the London Underground with the revelry of a 1940s speakeasy, Cahoots bar in Soho really is one of a kind. Following a greeting (and a ticket) from a train guard at the door, you descend via a subway-tiled escalator to the bar itself. From there, grab a cocktail, marvel at the fabulously detailed vintage tube carriage décor and tap your toes to the jazz and swing music. The bar is popular, so book to avoid disappointment.