London in Jan. -- are we crazy??

Aug 13th, 2001, 10:55 PM
  #1  
Sandra
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London in Jan. -- are we crazy??

We have been planning a trip to London for one week -- with one day trip to Winchester by train. Now our schedules have changed and it looks like we might have to switch to the second week of January. Is this just insane??

My thinking is that if dressed warmly enough, we will be going in and out of buildings mostly. What is the weather like at that time of year??? Would it just be miserable? Should we cancel? Help!!!!!!

Sandra
 
Aug 13th, 2001, 10:57 PM
  #2  
Sandra
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p.s. I failed to mention that we had been planning our trip for the first week of April. I have been there at this time of year before & it was chilly anyway....
 
Aug 13th, 2001, 11:00 PM
  #3  
Hiho
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Not crazy at all - and no need to be in a panic. Million of Londoners are carrying on a normal life all winter. It is not all that cold in London in the winter - a lot of 40's - however, it is gray/damp much of the time.

I live in DC, where winter weather is comparable, and walk all over the place.

And as you say, you will be inside much of the time.
 
Aug 14th, 2001, 12:35 AM
  #4  
david west
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No far from crazy, actually quite wise. January is a very quiet in london for two reasons. Firstly very few tourists visit so there aren't any queues and the attractions are empty, so you can take your time and actually look at the exhibits etc.

Secondly, we natives don't go out much in January. We tend to be nursing our wallets, heads and livers after the Christmas season ( a bigger deal here than in the US) so restaurants, theatres etc aren't booked up.

You will find a lot of the shops have sales on, and restaurants etc will also have promotions, look in Time Out for details at the time.

The only possible problem I can see is if it snows. This will represent no problem in London, but may disrupt train travel for a while. It always seems to catch the rail companies out when it snows in the winter!
 
Aug 14th, 2001, 03:10 AM
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linda
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Sandra, I have been in London in January. I thought it was great. Yes, the weather is cold(ish) and you tend towards indoor activities, but we still did the London Walks tours- many particiapants commented that there were more people there than expected. I say you keep your plans and enjoy the fact that you do not have to wait as long for your fun trip!

linda
 
Aug 14th, 2001, 04:29 AM
  #6  
Nancy
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By all means, go in January. We have spent time in London on four different occasions in that month and always had a wonderful time. The theater season is at it's height and no lines for museums. You'll want warm clothes (hats and gloves are good to bring) but will find that most public buildings are kept much warmer than here in the U.S.
 
Aug 14th, 2001, 06:09 AM
  #7  
janis
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London is fabulous in January (well it is actually fabulous anytime - except August)

It will be much warmer than the northeast or midwest USA. Can be wet but is seldom really cold. And if you are lucky and get clear days - they are CLEAR. The views from the Eye will be amazing without the summer haze.

The only real crowds you'll see are for the sales.

Unless it is stormy - always a possibility - you can also do a lot of outdoors things. Walk along the Thames, Buy roasted chesnuts from sidewalk vendors, Take a river cruise (bundle up). And if it is too wet - there are all the galleries and theatres. I love London in the winter.
 
Aug 14th, 2001, 09:15 PM
  #8  
Sandra
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Thank you everyone for your postive comments!! I feel much better about going in January & I think we're going to do it!!!

My only additional question is taking the day trip by train to Winchester. Is that area much different from London -- weather-wise?? Should we anticipate difficulty with a day's visit there?

Thanks again!
Sandra
 
Aug 14th, 2001, 10:11 PM
  #9  
Carla
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You'll be just fine in lovely Winchester. (We used to live there.) Dress warmly in layers, just as you do in London. Sometimes it feels a few degrees colder in smaller cities just because there's more open space, but nothing significant.

January is one of my favorite times to visit London, for the (relative) peace and quiet -- not to mention the January sales! Enjoy!
 
Aug 14th, 2001, 10:30 PM
  #10  
Carla
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Sandra,

One more thing -- Winchester USED to observe one early closing day a week, when many of the shops would close at noon. I don't know if this is still the case, but you might want to contact Winchester tourist board to check, or ask your London hotel to check, and plan your day trip for a non-early-closing day.

Also, keep in mind that dusk comes early in January in England, so you might want to plan outdoor sightseeing in Winchester before 4 p.m.

If you happen to drop in on a sung service at Winchester Cathedral, you'll never forget it. The acousitcs and atmosphere are out of this world.
 
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