Location Familiarisation

This is about preparing for your holiday by checking any critical information at places you visit.


  • How far from the hotel to the bus stop; train station; taxi rank
  • Where is the museum; art gallery; restaurant and how could I get there?
  • This is obviously not necessary for every part of your holiday, but if there are some particular points of interest it is easier get the details in advance.

Using Online Maps

Example: Google Maps

  • Measure distances for walking
  • Get directions for 'transit' which might give bus, tram or train timetables for reference.
  • Find GPS coordinates of sights or accommodation to make driving with Sat Nav easy.
  • Find location of services convenient to accommodation (supermarket, petrol, cafe, parking, chemist)

Here are three examples using England as the country of interest.


This is the Google map image for walking directions from Westminster Abbey to St James Park Tube Station.
Note that the time and distance are specified.

These are the detailed directions for the above walk if required.

Clicking on the border between Scotland and England locates a point on the map.
Right clicking on a computer gives a menu where selection of What's here? gives the map coordinates.

The map coordinates from above can be recorded and entered to a Sat Nav for driving directions.
It is also possible to send the map coordinates to any of your connected devices using send to phone.
This will open the same point on Google maps on the device that the reference was sent.


This image is for driving directions, traffic indications and travel time from London Heathrow to Oxford.

  • Google Street View also allows views of a location to familiarise with location of entrances.

Offline Internet Maps

Google maps allow parts of maps to be stored so that they can be used without an internet connection.
This is useful if you know exactly what you need.
Google requires offline maps to be updated every 30 days so make sure you do this before departure.

Some other maps may be available offline or stored as a pdf file.

Internet Searches

  • Search ‘what to see in… ‘, ‘where to eat in…” for recommendations and reviews of other travellers
  • Search for public transport options, airport transfers

Search for tourist passes and alternatives providing transport and entry to sights

Example, in Paris there are multiple choices:

  • Paris Pass
  • Paris Museum Pass
  • Paris Visite (all day rail/metro ticket)
  • Carnet of metro tickets (a pack of 10 one-trip metro tickets)

What works for you will depend on what you want to see

Search for local tour options

  • City walks
  • Ghost tour
  • Bus tours
  • Private tours

Location Based Apps

There are many apps that provide detailed information of a particular location.

  • Cities with their own tourist apps
  • City transport services with their own tourist apps
  • Museums or galleries with visitor apps
  • Tourist passes with their own apps
  • Country wide transport apps
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