Charing Cross station has a superb location on The Strand - the Eleanor Cross, from which all distances from central London have been measured, is on the station’s forecourt.
Many of the most popular attractions in the West End of London, including Covent Garden, the Courtauld Institute of Art, Leicester Square, the National Gallery, the National Portrait Gallery, The Mall and Piccadilly Circus and Somerset House are within an easy 10 min walk of Charing Cross station.
It is also a compact station with only six platforms (tracks) and as it’s a terminus, London Charing Cross is also a comparatively simple station to navigate.
The concourse is level with the streetscape along the frontage of the station, so the access to the taxi-rank is step-free.
Because most of the station’s users are commuters, Charing Cross becomes busy and crowded between 16:30 and 19:00 when Mondays to Fridays are working days, but at other times during the day the station is an easy environment in which to catch a train.
Though something to be aware of, is that there is only one escalator which links the concourse to the ticket hall of the Underground station, and it usually leads downwards in the morning and upwards in the afternoon and evenings; so you can’t be sure that the access to the Underground will be step-free.
What is now step free is the shortest route between the concourse at Charing Cross station and the nearby Embankment station, which is served by the Circle and District Lines.
That Underground station is at the foot of Villiers Street, a two minute walk from Charing Cross - the exit on to Villiers Street is to one side of the concourse, by the access to platform 1; it leads to a flight of stairs down to street level, but over to the right is a smart new set of escalators.
If you will be using an Oyster Card to travel around London, and want to travel between the areas and attractions around Charing Cross and London Bridge stations, then taking a train is a better option than taking the Underground; typically 18 trains per hour connect Charing Cross and London Bridge.
When looking up a train journey from London to destinations such as Canterbury, Dover and Hastings and Tunbridge Wells, if you haven’t specified Charing Cross station as a starting point, the website may assume that you’ll want to commence a journey at London Bridge station; and the journey time will be faster than from Charing Cross.
But it’s worth checking whether Charing Cross would be the more convenient starting point for your journey, the London terminal at which you commence your journey, won't affect the ticket price.
If you'll be on a train heading to Charing Cross and travelling on to one of the stations which serve destinations to the north of the capital, you'll have easier and faster cross-London transfers if you make connections at London Bridge or Waterloo East stations.
Northbound trains on the Northern Line link Charing Cross to Euston, but all trains to Charing Cross will have called at London Bridge, so connecting there for other Northern Line services to Euston is a quicker option.
London Bridge is also directly connected to Kings Cross, St Pancras by the Northern Line, with Thameslink trains to St Pancras being an easier option if you have luggage,
Bus rotes 149 and 388 link the upper concourse at London Bridge to Liverpool Street station and if you happen to be on a train to Cannon Street station, you can take eastbound Circle Line from there to Liverpool Street.
The Bakerloo line is particularly distant from the entrance/ticket hall of Charing Cross Underground station , the Bakerloo line station was originally entirely separate, so the transfer between stepping off a mainline train and being on the Bakerloo platform takes around five minutes.
So if you will be heading to Marylebone and Paddington stations, the recommended option is to connect into the northbound Jubilee Line at Waterloo East station and then make the simple as can be transfer at Baker Street station, into northbound Bakerloo Line trains.
Both Marylebone and Paddington are on the Bakerloo Line.
If you do want to make the connection at Waterloo East, board towards the rear of a train which will be calling there, as you’ll then be closer to the access to the Jubilee Line's station named Southwark.
Makin this connection into the Jubilee Line using a combination of Waterloo East and Southwark station is simpler than making the connection at London Bridge.
This is one of more than 300 station guides available on ShowMeTheJourney, which will make it easier to take the train journeys you want or need to make. As always, all images were captured on trips taken by ShowMeTheJourney.