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Top 10 misconceptions about London

Who has not dreamed of a city trip to London? After all, it is one of the most visited cities in the world. In 2016, they attracted over 19 million international visitors. London is home to some of the world's major attractions such as Big Ben, Natural History Museum and London Eye's largest cities. It's just a shame that it's full of miserable people, British food and bad coffee. And is not it raining there all the time?

Despite London's worldwide fame, far too many people still believe in some pretty big misunderstandings about the British capital. Some of them were true decades ago, others are just misunderstandings, and others just seem to be total rumors as wrong as they are now. We would hate to be put off by a simple misunderstanding of your stay in London. So today we set the record and tell you the truth about ten of the things that make most people wrong about London!

See also: Top 1

0 Most Cruel Things Hiding Under the Streets of London

10 Coffee and Tea

Let's start with the one that discourages many American visitors: the myth that good coffee is impossible to find in London. This may have been the case a few decades ago, but the London coffee scene is much more impressive today than it was in 2000. You can find important coffee chains like Starbucks, Cafe Nero, and Costa Coffee on almost every street corner in every major city in the world. Indeed, both the largest European coffee chain, Cafe Nero, and the second largest chain in the world, Costa, are headquartered in London.

Until recently, those looking for a more specialized coffee experience had to make a detour to the continent, but London's independent and mini-chain coffee scene has grown tremendously over the last decade. There are now hundreds of specialty stores in the capital offering thousands of unique coffee creations (and jobs for many barista millennials) that will satisfy even the most discerning connoisseur. So no, you will not be hungry for coffee when you are in London! [1]

9 Bad Food

Britain is notorious for being boring and boring otherwise. It is not difficult to understand why: One of the traditional dishes in London is the London Particular. What is it? Well, it's basically a really thick pea and ham soup – thick enough to hold a spoon in it.

Fortunately, today's London is a thoroughly global city. There are thousands of restaurants, from reasonably priced takeaway restaurants to Michelin-starred restaurants catering to virtually every imaginable culinary tradition. To find London's best food, you have to take to the streets.

London has a centuries-old history of innovative street food dating back to the Middle Ages. At that time, most of the city's workers went to a bakery during their break, where they found everything from donuts to meat pies. London street food is one of the best in the world today – heavily influenced by the city's diverse population. In modern London, there are probably as many places to eat curry as chicken sandwiches! [2]

8 Unfriendly People

Ask people around the world how the British are, and you'll get a pretty similar reaction: they're quiet, reserved, rude and so on. And Londoners in particular have a bad reputation – even other Britons will say the people in London are rude!

In reality, Londoners are not less hostile than anyone else in Britain – or most people in the world. A test conducted on the streets of London showed that nearby people, when confronted with an old lady, needed help with their bag, or a woman whose food had been knocked out of their hands, quickly intervened and offered help. Well no, it's not that the Londoners are rude, but they are in a hurry most of the time. London is a fast-paced, global city, and most people who travel during the day are in a hurry. This may mean that they forget to apologize if they rush past you at the train station, but meet them after work and feel completely different! [3]

7 Narrow and Dirty

In 1952, the Great Smog descended on London and killed thousands. It was the worst air pollution event in British history, and the news of it spread around the world. This led to new government regulations and a plan to reduce pollution in the city, but the city's reputation was permanently damaged. For the rest of the world, London was known as a dirty, old-fashioned Victorian town, striving to meet modern cleanliness standards.

This reputation still exists today, though it is completely untrue. While studies have shown that London's air still affects people's health, it is relatively clean by modern standards. In fact, London does not even make it into the list of the 500 most polluted cities in the World Health Organization. In short, visitors to the city do not have to worry about air quality!

Perhaps more shocking is that London is one of the greenest cities in the world in terms of area. 47% of the city is green, so that almost half is covered by parks, forests and other open spaces – enough to say that the Greater London Area should be converted into a national park. [4]

6 It never sleeps

When someone speaks of "the city that never sleeps", it usually refers to New York. In recent years, however, the term has also been transferred to the British capital, which has led to the idea that London is a busy place with a lively nightlife – and not the place to go if you have children with you!

There is a truth about that. As in any other city, there can be a lot going on in London – especially at the end of the week, when there are night buses in the city. London's famous black taxis are open around the clock and many London clubs close at 3 or 4 in the morning. But also in the center of London, the subway and bus terminate at midnight and start again in the early morning. Most pubs close before midnight and by this time, the vast majority of Londoners will go to bed. In the quieter outskirts of London you can even forget that you are in a city at all! [5]

5 It's expensive

London is expensive. It is actually one of the most expensive cities in the world … if you want to live there. The average three-bedroom apartment rental in central London is over £ 5,000 ($ 6,450), well below the salary range of most British adults. The rumors of high prices in London have deterred many people, but it is possible to enjoy London on a small budget. You do not even have to look carefully!

Spend a day in London spending little money: most of London's world-leading museums and the fantastic art galleries and parks are open to the public. And the places for which admission is charged are not too expensive: a ticket to visit Kew Gardens, the world's leading botanical garden, is only £ 12 ($ 15.50). The capital has thousands of pubs and restaurants that are no more expensive than the rest of the UK. When you're ready to take a risk, you can find groceries for mega-cheap. Ask the locals will quickly tell you the best places. Just do not expect to find much cheap food in Kensington or Chelsea. [6]

4 No-Go Zones

Unfortunately, this is one of the recent misconceptions about London. Some neighborhoods are "no-go zones", places where so-called ordinary Londoners – even police officers – never go. In some extreme cases, some conspiracies claim that these are places where British law is ignored and local Muslims are forced by Muslim councils to abide by Sharia law to visit the Metropolitan Police in a dangerous way, despite the chatter of some People on the internet. This misunderstanding spread in 2016 when Donald Trump claimed that there were restricted zones in London. This was rejected by the then mayor Boris Johnson, who said, "London has a proud history of tolerance and diversity, and it's simply ridiculous to suggest that there are areas where cops can not go because of radicalization. Crime has steadily declined both in London and New York – the only reason I would not travel to some parts of New York is the real risk of meeting Donald Trump. "

Just to prove it, a Briton accepted a Reddit requesting you to go through one of these areas with a bottle of wine. Not surprisingly, nothing happened to him. [7]

3 The Underground is the only way to travel

The London Underground (also known as the Underground) is one of London's most famous landmarks. It was first opened in the 1860s, making it the oldest underground passenger railway in the world. And with millions of people using it everyday, it's also one of the most visited in the world.

On the other hand London is – well known – unlike many other modern cities not network bound. When the city burned down in 1666, it was rebuilt after the old road network, which means that some streets in the city are centuries old. This means that the city is not optimized for traffic: driving through the car can be a pain.

Given this, it is easy to understand why many people believe that the subway is the only way to travel around London, but there is a wide range of other options. Take, for example, London's famous red buses. You've probably seen them in old movies, but they still exist: they carry millions of people through the city every day – more than any other bus network in Europe. There is also the famous Black Cab service, whose riders have to complete a rigorous training course called The Knowledge, which teaches them the layout of London. If you prefer to travel alone, the Santander Cycles are the best choice. Called Boris Bikes, you can drive from one of the hundreds of stations throughout the city to any other station for just £ 3 ($ 3.87) of any of these motorcycles. It's always wet and cold

Britain is known for its gray weather and rainy days. Most people assume that London as a British capital can not be any different!

Now nobody will say that Britain is a warm country. Winter in Scotland and northern England can be very hard, and summer is often dominated by overcast days. But London is in the south and the temperatures there are much warmer. London is on average a bit colder than New York, but stays well above freezing most of the winter months.

And contrary to popular belief, London is nowhere near as rainy as you can imagine. It rains an average of 23 inches a year, almost half as much as New York! Rainfall is low even in winter: in London, snow is so rare that in Britain, when it's snowing in the capital at Christmas, it's called a "white Christmas".

You should not Pack just a t-shirt and shorts for your visit to London, but it will not be as dreary and wet as you expect. In summer you can even see a blue sky! [9]

1 The City of London?

If anyone tells us that they would visit the city of London, we would not eyebrow. But real Londoners know there's a problem with that statement: does it mean Greater London – the huge metropolis we all know – or the tiny, independent authority in the heart of London that has only a few thousand inhabitants?

The smallest dot on a map covers Roman London. It is almost completely independent of Greater London and has its own police, its own government and its own mayor. So, is this the true heart of Britain, the place where the big decisions are made? No, that's the other city – the City of Westminster, where the British Houses of Parliament are located.

Does that mean that the London government is at home in the City of London? No. The mayor of Greater London – in a completely different position than the mayor of City of London – governs from the town hall, which is located in Southwark on the other side of the river. It is easy to see how even Londoners are confused by London's inner life!

Oh, and to make things even more confusing, Greater London is not even a city. It is a county. [10]

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