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Westminster London

The vast majority of London’s most iconic landmarks and attractions can be found in Westminster. Not only that, it’s the location for the government of the United Kingdom, but is it a good area to choose as your home when relocating to London? 

It’s not all landmarks and tourist attractions though, it’s a thriving place to work with many businesses and government buildings located there. You’ll find it’s a great place to live too and there are some fantastic areas to call home in Westminster, both within the deep centre of London and beyond. How can we help? 

Where do I begin?

An overview of Westminster

When people hear the name Westminster, they’d usually think of the UK government. Westminster is the home of all government operations with Parliament, consisting of both the House of Commons and the House of Lords based there. However, Westminster isn’t just about politics. Many of London’s famous sights that you might have heard of can be found in Westminster. In fact, it’s probably the part of London with the most recognisable landmarks, with everything from Big Ben to Buckingham Palace located there. It’s also a great place to live, with several fantastic neighbourhoods within walking distance of countless places of business and places to keep you entertained when you’re not working.

Housing 

Housing is quite varied throughout Westminster, but for the most part, it consists of period properties which are predominantly flats or apartments. There are, none the less, still some houses available. Westminster has some of the most expensive properties in London, which is mainly down to its proximity or location in the centre of the capital. 

Public Transportation 

Westminster is about as central London as you can get and, as such, there are plenty of tube stations and bus routes to choose from. Virtually every tube line runs through Westminster, and they’re joined by the Elizabeth Line which allows for a quick route though the city and beyond to both the east and west. Additionally, there are mainline services that run from, and terminate in, Westminster from stations such as Victoria and Paddington. These services will take you across London and beyond to destinations all across the country.

Areas of Westminster

Soho has long been a place where the people of London can find their entertainment, but recent decades have seen it shed its former, seedier, reputation to become something verging on respectable. Whilst you’ll still find the odd vestige of its past, for the most part, the area is full of fantastic pubs restaurants, clubs and bars. 

Oxford Street is the place to shop in central London and its where Selfridges, John Lewis, Marks and Spencer and Primark have they flagship stores. There are also plenty of opportunities to stop off for a bite to eat or a drink along this bustling street, should you feel the need for respite whist shopping. Why not pop down to Regents Street and stop by the Apple Store and the multi-floor toy shop, Hamley’s too. 

Keeping with the theme of shopping and eating, you can do both of these activities very well in Covent Garden. As well as Apple’s other Central London store, there are clothes shops, books shops and all manner of other stores. The former market area now also houses shops,  as well as cafes, pubs and bars and with variety a plenty you’re sure to find something that suits your taste buds. It’s also famous for the array of buskers/entertainers right near the station including some quite perilous circus acts! 

The area around Marylebone and Baker Street is perhaps best known as the stomping ground of fictional consulting detective, Sherlock Holmes. There are plenty of things to remind you of this, like the Holmes silhouette on the tiles at Baker Street Station and the presence of the Sherlock Holmes Museum. Both Marylebone and Baker Street have some very nice properties along with the usual array of restaurants, pubs, bars and shops that one might expect of a similar are. Needless to say, it’s not a cheap area to live in but if your budget allows a fantastic area to live in.

St John’s Wood is a lovely neighbourhood that appeals to American families, due to the close proximity of the American school. It’s also where you will find Lords Cricket Ground and Abbey Road Studios, where the Beatles recorded many of their albums. The nearby crossing is the place to go if you want to recreate the cover of The Beatles iconic album, Abbey Road!

Maida Vale is mostly residential, with most properties being Victorian or Edwardian era flats, maisonettes or apartments. Little Venice is the name given to describe parts of Maida Vale and Paddington, with boats hosting bars and restaurants lining the bank side of the canal should you fancy an after work drink or bite to eat.

Leicester Square and Piccadilly Circus are just a short walk from each other, so don’t be tempted to catch a tube between the two places. Leicester Square has more places to eat and drink, but it’s also home to a few cinemas where film premières typically take place. Piccadilly Circus is famous for its neon/LED advertising and the statue of Anteros (not Eros as people commonly think). If Chinese cuisine is your bag, then Chinatown nearby is a must visit with a wide array of shops selling those hard to find native ingredients and restaurants serving some of the best Chinese in London.

If you’re feeling like discovering some of the more decadent areas of London, check out Belgravia and Mayfair. Exquisite restaurants, exclusive clubs, expensive boutiques, and luxury car dealers abound, so bring your credit card!

Trafalgar Square – exit at Charing Cross tube – is a serious stop for any art lovers with one side of the square fully taken up by the National Gallery, featuring works by Monet, Van Gough, Constable, and Da Vinci, to name but a few. The National Portrait Gallery is also tucked around the corner too.

Pimlico, a fairly well-to-do area in the south of the borough is primarily residential and offers a slower pace of life than much of the rest of Central London. It has some picturesque garden squares with over 350 listed buildings. Nearby Victoria is resplendent with the usual pubs restaurants and shops you might expect too.  

Things to do in Westminster

Anything and everything you could imagine could probably be done in Westminster…

There are plenty of cinemas and theatres for those who want to be entertained, perhaps for those who want to admire or learn a vast number of museums, or for those who want to indulge cafes, pubs, restaurants and more to visit. This isn’t an exhaustive list, but it will give you an idea of what you can find in Westminster.  

Museums and Art Galleries – The National Gallery, National Portrait Gallery, London Transport Museum, Sherlock Holmes Museum, Tate Britain, Institute of Contemporary Arts.

Theatres and Venues – Novello, Lyceum, Adelphi, Vaudeville, Aldwych, Theatre Royal Drury Lane, Royal Opera house, Royal Albert Hall.

Tourist Spots or Notable buildings – Trafalgar Square, 10 Downing Street, Big Ben (technically the Elizabeth Tower, Big Ben is the bell), Parliament, Westminster Abbey, Westminster Cathedral, Royal Courts of Justice, Marble Arch, London Zoo, Madame Tussauds.

Universities and Colleges – Imperial College, Kings College London, London School of Economics.

Open Spaces and Parks – Hyde Park, Green Park, Buckingham Palace Garden, St James’s Park.