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Hey I need some advice re: London Bars

PheezerPheezer Registered User, ClubPA regular
edited July 2010 in Help / Advice Forum
I'm gonna be in London from July 30 through August 7 and my girlfriend wants to do all the historical shit because she's a history major, but we know where all that stuff is. I like to drink and see bands so I need to know where we can go so that I can do that.

Ideally places where the bands don't suck so much. Genre is less of a concern than being able to get a good beer in a cold glass without losing an arm and a leg in the process, though if you all can point me at a handful of shitty rock/punk/metal clubs that'd be extra nifty.

IT'S GOT ME REACHING IN MY POCKET IT'S GOT ME FORKING OVER CASH
CUZ THERE'S SOMETHING IN THE MIDDLE AND IT'S GIVING ME A RASH
Pheezer on

Posts

  • ThanatosThanatos Registered User regular
    edited June 2010
    Hey, Pheezer, you left the redirect in the mod forum where you accidentally posted this initially.

    Just, you know, letting you know. :P

    Thanatos on
  • PheezerPheezer Registered User, ClubPA regular
    edited June 2010
    Yeah well one or two of you might know something. It's hard to imagine anyone with access to that forum being of any legitimate use to anyone, but I thought I'd let it redirect for 1 hour.

    Pheezer on
    IT'S GOT ME REACHING IN MY POCKET IT'S GOT ME FORKING OVER CASH
    CUZ THERE'S SOMETHING IN THE MIDDLE AND IT'S GIVING ME A RASH
  • RainbulimicRainbulimic Registered User
    edited June 2010
    Camden might be good for your rock/punk/metal. There's lots of bars there, some have live music. The only one I can think of atm is The Purple Turtle. Camden is also just ace in general, I recommend checking out the markets.

    Rainbulimic on
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  • PheezerPheezer Registered User, ClubPA regular
    edited June 2010
    Rad.

    Also I'm up for day trips out of london, if it's not unreasonable. If you can recommend somewhere that I can get to and back for $100 or less, ideally without having to stay overnight, I'd be up for an adventure.

    Pheezer on
    IT'S GOT ME REACHING IN MY POCKET IT'S GOT ME FORKING OVER CASH
    CUZ THERE'S SOMETHING IN THE MIDDLE AND IT'S GIVING ME A RASH
  • HerkimerHerkimer Registered User regular
    edited June 2010
    Combine history and drinkin':
    Ye Olde Cheshire Cheese
    145 Fleet Street, London EC4A 2BU
    closest tube stops Blackfriars, Temple, Chancery Lane

    oldest pub in London. Pretty badass place.

    Herkimer on
  • FallingmanFallingman Registered User regular
    edited July 2010
    I can't remember the name of it, but I once had a beer at the pub that they think Jack the Ripper used to stalk people from. The best bit about it was that it feels really authentic, and they dont make a big deal about it (i.e. no big Ripper posters or anything).

    Fallingman on
    [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]
  • InAmberCladInAmberClad Registered User regular
    edited July 2010
    You could do a lot worse than the crobar http://www.crobar.co.uk/ It's a minutes walk from tottenham court road station.

    InAmberClad on
  • PheezerPheezer Registered User, ClubPA regular
    edited July 2010
    You could do a lot worse than the crobar http://www.crobar.co.uk/ It's a minutes walk from tottenham court road station.

    I fucking love the looks of this.

    Pheezer on
    IT'S GOT ME REACHING IN MY POCKET IT'S GOT ME FORKING OVER CASH
    CUZ THERE'S SOMETHING IN THE MIDDLE AND IT'S GIVING ME A RASH
  • El-ZilchoEl-Zilcho Registered User
    edited July 2010
    Do you like garlic? And also shots of hard liquor? Garlic and Shots. I went here in 2005 or so, and though I was likely drunk when entering, I am certain I was considerably more drunk when exiting. But in a good way.

    Their thing is that the food menu is garlic with everything (including ice cream), but they also have a menu of 101 shots that are all pretty neat to drink. They have this vile one involving hot sauce, tomato juice, vodka and minced garlic that you take basically as a stunt, but the novelty is fun.

    Also there was some kind of metal (as in \m/) bar in the basement.

    El-Zilcho on
  • Ashaman42Ashaman42 Registered User regular
    edited July 2010
    Pheezer wrote: »
    Rad.

    Also I'm up for day trips out of london, if it's not unreasonable. If you can recommend somewhere that I can get to and back for $100 or less, ideally without having to stay overnight, I'd be up for an adventure.

    Well I've taken day trips to London from Brighton before so if you want to go the other way and spend a day at the beach that's certainly an option.

    I normally book my train ticket well in advance but I think even on the day a return ticket isn't too much.

    *Edit: Just checked, a return ticket bought today for travel today is under £20 /Edit*

    Ashaman42 on
  • KalkinoKalkino Buttons Londres Registered User regular
    edited July 2010
    Camden is a good place to start, as suggested above. Places like the World's End is pretty good for metal and the like, then the Hawley Arms sometimes has stuff. I was in Brixton the other day and went to the Windmill pub which is almost the classic dirty rock pub, it seriously felt like i'd walked through a time warp to the early 90s.

    I'll ask a couple of friends for more suggestions

    Kalkino on
    Freedom for the Northern Isles!
  • poshnialloposhniallo Registered User regular
    edited July 2010
    Windsor Castle and Eton College is a great day trip out of London. Less than an hour on the train, see the town, go around the castle, cross the bridge and explore Eton.

    Also Brighton is great too. I like The Lanes - there's a lovely little shop in there that sells antique weapons, such as cavalry sabres, Lewis guns, Sten guns etc.

    Cambridge, a tour round various colleges and a punt down the river with a student guide is another good day trip, though that would be the furthest you might be willing to go.

    Camden and Kentish Town are good for punkish live music. Worlds End is popular. I used to see bands at the Camden Falcon back in the old days, and the net tells me those people are now at the Camden Monarch. Saw the Pixies and the Throwing Muses there, for 4 pounds.

    http://www.camdenguide.co.uk/entertainment/livemusic.htm

    poshniallo on
    I figure I could take a bear.
  • saint2esaint2e Registered User regular
    edited July 2010
    If you do get homesick, there's the Maple Leaf pub in Covent Garden where you can get your fix of Canadiana.

    Down the road there's a pub with a HUGE assortment of beers called The Porterhouse. It's great too. I just looked it up and realized it's a bit of a chain, but still worth a visit to try something different.

    saint2e on
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  • KalkinoKalkino Buttons Londres Registered User regular
    edited July 2010
    If you are looking for good, non rock pubs check out the Good Pub Guide (book or app) or sites like Fancyapint. If you are staying in the west of the city I can probably rustle up some recommendations

    Kalkino on
    Freedom for the Northern Isles!
  • WillethWilleth Registered User regular
    edited July 2010
    I recommend going to Cambridge for a day. You have to pay to look around a lot of the colleges, but it's worth it just for the architecture in general and the general feel of the place. Also punting.

    Willeth on
    @vgreminders - Don't miss out on timed events in gaming!
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  • poshnialloposhniallo Registered User regular
    edited July 2010
    I used to drink in the Porterhouse - it's a great pub. Irish music sometimes and I imagine some paddypunk too.

    poshniallo on
    I figure I could take a bear.
  • AriviaArivia Registered User
    edited July 2010
    It's not a pub, but you really want to do http://www.abeno.co.uk for lunch at least once.

    Arivia on
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  • PheezerPheezer Registered User, ClubPA regular
    edited July 2010
    Awesome suggestions so far. Also if anyone can think of stuff worth doing in London/nearby that isn't the standard tourist fare, let me know. I'd like to see and do Londoner stuff as much as possible. Don't need a photo of myself standing in front of a buckingham guard.

    Pheezer on
    IT'S GOT ME REACHING IN MY POCKET IT'S GOT ME FORKING OVER CASH
    CUZ THERE'S SOMETHING IN THE MIDDLE AND IT'S GIVING ME A RASH
  • HerkimerHerkimer Registered User regular
    edited July 2010
    -The Tower of London is touristy but a very well-done museum. A bit pricy though as I recall
    -check out a free show at the Barbican
    -my favorite walk in London, if it's a nice day: start at the Houses of Parliament, cross Westminster Bridge, hand a left along the pedestrian walkway, take that to Blackfriar's Bridge, hang another left along the Embankment, that'll take you back to the Houses of Parliament
    -THE BRITISH MUSEUM IS FANTASTIC
    -So is the Imperial War Museum
    -So is the Tate New Modern
    -eat a Big Breakfast
    -go down to Brick Lane, eat curry
    -rent a car, drive down to the Channel coast. Some beautiful old churches and castles down that way.
    -take a picnic up to Hampstead Heath
    -Greenwich Observatory
    -Go to Hyde Park and walk along the Serpentine. Avert your eyes from the Albert Memorial.
    -Go to one of the old train stations. They're quite stunning examples of Victorian architecture.
    -Check out St. Martin in the Fields: it's, IMO, the best example of Christopher Wren's work in the city. While you're there, they have (or used to have) a cafeteria in the basement that served good food for not much money.
    -St. James' Park is also pretty great

    What other sorts of things are you interested in?

    Herkimer on
  • PheezerPheezer Registered User, ClubPA regular
    edited July 2010
    Yeah I've never driven on the left side of the road so I'll probably pass on renting a car.

    We're doing the British museum, and this Thames river tour, and hitting all the big historical stops. We have just over a week there. It's the less obvious "this place does the best breakfast in town" or "this place has a retarded selection of beers" and so forth that I'm really interested in. Like, stuff you wouldn't know about if you didn't live there. The touristy shit is easy. My girlfriend is a history major, she knows exactly where she wants to go for that stuff.

    Pheezer on
    IT'S GOT ME REACHING IN MY POCKET IT'S GOT ME FORKING OVER CASH
    CUZ THERE'S SOMETHING IN THE MIDDLE AND IT'S GIVING ME A RASH
  • HerkimerHerkimer Registered User regular
    edited July 2010
    Pheezer wrote: »
    It's the less obvious "this place does the best breakfast in town" or "this place has a retarded selection of beers" and so forth that I'm really interested in.

    I've got to run out for a bit, but when I get home I'll have a look at the map and try to remember where some of my favorite places were.

    Herkimer on
  • PheezerPheezer Registered User, ClubPA regular
    edited July 2010
    Rad

    Pheezer on
    IT'S GOT ME REACHING IN MY POCKET IT'S GOT ME FORKING OVER CASH
    CUZ THERE'S SOMETHING IN THE MIDDLE AND IT'S GIVING ME A RASH
  • WillethWilleth Registered User regular
    edited July 2010
    There's really no point in renting a car in London. The Tube (subway) is accessible from pretty much everywhere and it makes it almost impossible to get lost anywhere (although disoriented when you get out of the station, perhaps). The important thing to remember is that the Tube map is not a literal map - it's an efficient diagram of how the lines link up, with very little bearing on reality for relative distance between stations.

    The London Eye is a nice enough view of the city but that's all it is. It's a slow ferris wheel and it's not cheap. I'm not even sure there's an audio tour, but I've always been on it with Londoners so anything we wanted to know we just asked - I'd recommend it if you want an overview of the city, but it's nothing more than that.

    Willeth on
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  • PheezerPheezer Registered User, ClubPA regular
    edited July 2010
    Yeah I have very, very little interest in the london eye. How close can you get to the Battersea Power Station? Like, could I sneak onto the property and take photos without being thrown into a secret prison? Are there tours? My initial googlage turns up nothing other than to say it's no longer functional.

    Pheezer on
    IT'S GOT ME REACHING IN MY POCKET IT'S GOT ME FORKING OVER CASH
    CUZ THERE'S SOMETHING IN THE MIDDLE AND IT'S GIVING ME A RASH
  • japanjapan Registered User regular
    edited July 2010
    Pheezer wrote: »
    Yeah I have very, very little interest in the london eye. How close can you get to the Battersea Power Station? Like, could I sneak onto the property and take photos without being thrown into a secret prison? Are there tours? My initial googlage turns up nothing other than to say it's no longer functional.

    It's a derelict shell at the moment.

    You can see it from the train on some of the lines leaving from Victoria station. I don't believe it's fenced off or anything, so you could probably get pretty close.

    I think the last time it was used for anything was when Red Bull staged an X-fighters round inside it last year.

    EDIT: It seems to be a popular target for urban exploration types based on a few google searches, so I'm guessing it can't be that difficult.

    japan on
  • LewishamLewisham Registered User regular
    edited July 2010
    Pheezer wrote: »
    Yeah I have very, very little interest in the london eye.

    It also completely sucks if it's grey and cloudy out, which combined with Sod's Law, means whatever time you book, you won't see shit.

    A friend of mine took me to The Lock Tavern in Camden once. It was pretty rad, but not bands when I was there. YMMV.

    Lewisham on
  • KalkinoKalkino Buttons Londres Registered User regular
    edited July 2010
    You would be able to loiter about outside the station easily enough and get some nice photos. There may be a side road that goes nearby, but that would probably require you going up close to it to find out as I can't tell if it is closed due to construction or private.

    If you want stuff like that then perhaps consider heading out East, to the old Docklands area - that is quite neat as it is a mixture of barren post industrial abandoned docks, occasional factories and odd clusters of suburbs. Then if you keep going a little further you will see the Thames Barrier - which are the flood defences to stop a tidal surge.

    You should base yourself out west in Kensington area - that is where a lot of the museums are and a lot of the tourism hotels. From there you can easily walk into town via Hyde Park/Embankment or Westminster in 45-60 minutes through some lovely early 19th century suburbs. The tube or bus network is also pretty good around that way. Notting Hill is also about 20 minutes walk north and it is pretty good for food and drink.

    There are also a lot of smaller or obscure museums or display houses out there which are worth seeing if you have time. Plenty of neat walks too, depending on what you are into.

    If you are here on a Saturday or earlier in the week start off at Borough Markets (great food market) next to London Bridge, then either walk up towards Tower Bridge and across into the City. Or walk south along into Southwark/Waterloo area. Soho is pretty good year around - loads of nice cafes or pubs as well as a lot of theatres nearby.

    Try and avoid Piccadilly Circus / Leicester Square / Oxford Street so far as possible. They are packed year around and there really is not a lot to do there except wander around and gawp, or be en route somewhere else.

    So far as pubs go, there are quite a few London based PA-ers, so I'm sure we can give you suggestions for whatever suburb you end up staying in.

    Kalkino on
    Freedom for the Northern Isles!
  • corcorigancorcorigan Registered User regular
    edited July 2010
    Wander around Camden any evening except Tuesday (when it is completely dead for some reason). Usually stuff going on. Otherwise it's normally pretty busy around Soho/Leicester Square whenever.

    Normal Londoner stuff is pretty touristy. I usually wander around museums or parks during my free time. I wouldn't bother with Buckingham Palace or guard changes though, it's all a bit of an early 20th century wannabe imperialistic mess.

    corcorigan on
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  • WillethWilleth Registered User regular
    edited July 2010
    Last time I was near Battersea Power Station was last year sometime, but I seem to remember you got a fair enough view of the whole thing from a pub halfway down the street from the dogs' home.

    Looking on a few parkour websites following the tip above, it looks like there might be a fair bit of security at BPS. Peregrine falcons nest there, which while great for photos are also a protected species, so if they're nesting you'll come up against a lot more resistance. I'd say it's still worth checking out - if it's a no go then you can always go somewhere else but if you're clearly only interested in the building and photography you may get lucky.

    EDIT: Can't believe I forgot this. Most of the Tate Modern operates under an admission fee, but Miroslaw Balka's installation should still be in the Turbine Hall for free. Try and visit it at a low-traffic time and experience it - I loved it.

    Willeth on
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  • syphaxsyphax Registered User
    edited July 2010
    If you fancy a day trip without having to actually go anywhere, I recommend stopping by at the Old Mitre pub

    Aside from being a pretty cool place and too hard to find for most touristy folk, due to some archaic land rights it's technically in Cambridgeshire.

    syphax on
  • WillethWilleth Registered User regular
    edited July 2010
    syphax wrote: »
    If you fancy a day trip without having to actually go anywhere, I recommend stopping by at the Old Mitre pub

    Aside from being a pretty cool place and too hard to find for most touristy folk, due to some archaic land rights it's technically in Cambridgeshire.

    Hah, that's great:

    "Ely Place remains quite literally a law unto itself, and long may it continue to do so. ‘Many times we’ve had robbers run in here from Hatton Garden,’ Wright recalls fondly. ‘They know the City police don’t have the right to follow them. It’s still the same today: the police just have to seal all the exits and ring the Cambridgeshire force, then wait around ‘till they jump in their cars and get down here’."

    Willeth on
    @vgreminders - Don't miss out on timed events in gaming!
    @gamefacts - Totally and utterly true gaming facts on the regular!
  • CojonesCojones Registered User regular
    edited July 2010
    If you're interested in university sightseeing, Oxford is accessible via the Oxford Tube which is a coach service that connects London to Oxford and leaves every ten minutes, while Cambridge is accessible via rail every 15 minutes or so from King's Cross station.

    London universities are generally less exciting, though the Maughan library is pretty sexy, and UCL is as good as adjacent to the British Museum.

    The Crobar's a solid suggestion, though at peak time it can become uncomfortably crowded. The Old Bank of England is a lovely, if relatively pricey pub which does pretty good food, to boot. Camden isn't anywhere near as cheap or trendy as it was a decade ago and be prepared for lots and lots of alt teens and guyliner.

    I'm surprised that no-one's recommended Harrods or Fortnum's yet. Both are very full-on but are totally worth seeing.

    You should definitely, definitely use the tube while you're there, cars are almost certainly slower and more expensive. You should each have an Oyster card paid up for the whole week(zone 1 certainly, maybe zone 2if you want to go further out). This works out to be pretty cheap(something like £22 each, it's been a year since I lived in London so it might've gone up since then) and will get you on tubes and buses anywhere that isn't almost strictly residential.

    Cojones on
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