Thursday, September 22, 2005

night out in London - living in Cardiff 

Is it possible to go to a concert, theater etc in London without having to stay overnight? Tried to see if this were possible, it is at a push.
The last train to leave Paddington is at 2245 - which is probably going to be too early, unless your entertainment finishes at 10pm.
The only other option I found was a national express coach leaving Heathrow at 0105. As long as you leave central London at midnight, you can be back in Cardiff in time for a few hours sleep.

Here's how I did it:

Book a return ticket to Heathrow, but choose a route that means you change in Victoria on the way out (why anyone actually going to Heathrow would choose to do this is beyond me).
Obviously don't continue to Heathrow when you get to Victoria.
Make sure you are ready to leave central London at midnight. The tube to Heathrow takes about 50 mins. It would be possible to take a night bus or the Heathrow Express instead - but I can't see either of these options being much quicker (unless you are in Paddington) - and Heathrow Express costs a fortune.
The tube station (Heathrow 1,2,3) is right next to the coach station, so no need to worry about time.
Coach gets to Cardiff (via Reading, Bristol and Newport) at 0415. I took a taxi from the station to the house, and was asleep by 0500.

I'd set my alarm for 1000, so that I could get up, make some calls and start work, but the woman next door had David Bowie at full volume at 9 - leaving me with about 6 hours sleep (counting a couple of hour's sleep on the bus)

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