London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Travel and Camping Guide
We realised that planning your trip to the 2012 Olympics and Paralympics may not be the easiest of tasks and there are a few key things to consider before making the decision to stay at a particular campsite. We have put together a list of things to think about and some handy planning tools to aid you in choosing the best location.
For more information on planning your route from your campsite to the Olympic venue check the Transport for London website, which will also show details on extended opening times during the games.
Things to think about:
1. Where are you travelling from?
Think about where your main route into London is and which area will be the most convenient to get to. As you know London is a sprawling city, but does have well connected public transport in order to get to the venue you need to.
E.g. You and your family are driving from Manchester and have tickets for 1 morning session at the Athletics. You could add 2 hours onto your journey time (at least) in order to try and stay somewhere in East London near the Olympic Stadium, or, find a campsite in North London and spend only 45 minutes travelling to the stadium on the day you need to.
You could save time, energy and petrol costs by staying at a London location which is easy to get to from your home.
2. Which venues do you need to get to?
This is obviously a major consideration in working out which campsite to stay at during the 2012 Olympics and Paralympics. Check out our helpful page, “Travelling times to 2012 Olympic and Paralympics Venues” to find out approximately how long it will take to get to each Venue from each of our camping sites – you may be surprised as travel times are not necessarily proportional to the distances involved!
N.B. When planning travel to venues watch out for using high speed rail links to Stratford – these journeys will not be included in your Olympic or Paralympic ticket travel card and can be very expensive (e.g. £30 return for 11 minute journey).
3. What kind of campsite / location do you want to stay in?
This probably depends on what the make up of your groups is. Check out the facilities and location and whether it is recommended for you. Some are great for volunteers (with special volunteer areas so you can meet other volunteers), some better for families or groups; some campsites even have separate family areas. Think about the kind of atmosphere you would like to be part of, and also the size of the campsite you are staying in – would you like a smaller, more familiar feel or a big festival type location? If you are a family, then you probably want somewhere with a family friendly atmosphere where you are going to feel safe and secure; probably not too noisy; where there will be space for children to run around and you won’t be camping all on top of one another. If you are a group of friends you may want somewhere away from families which has a bar on-site so you can be social in the evenings.
4. What impact will your camping choice have on how much you can expect to spend?
For a start camping of course be cheaper than staying in any other paid for accommodation. But think about these other factors as well: you will want to be able to bring and cook your own food rather than eating out; you are less likely to have to pay to do other activities if there is some space to run around and entertain yourselves sometimes; and the food and drink costs at sports clubs are very reasonable compared to some inner city prices; you can chose where you camp and ensure it is more efficient for you to get to from wherever you are travelling from. Also remember to check what any subsequent travelling costs to the Olympic or Paralympic venues may be when budgeting.
5. What else can you do to make the most of your trip to the 2012 Olympics and Paralympics?
So, you’re travelling to the South East to see some of the Olympics or Paralympics and may have only 1 or 2 sets of tickets and they may be a few days apart. Well, think about it; there is so much to do in and around London and loads of free stuff to do too. E.g. whilst in London, why not visit the Natural History Museum or the Science Museum; or attend some of the free Olympic sports events like the cycle road race; or perhaps do a walking tour of some of the most famous part of London; or check out all the myriad of free events whic are part of the Cultural Olympiad. Watch this space for guides of free and brilliant stuff to do from the areas you are camping – the possibilities are endless!