Via its highly efficient air transport system, Luton ushers in millions of visitors a year eager to experience its buzzy atmosphere, and providing easy access to London. Known as a city of hat-makers turned impressive car manufacturers turned service industry experts, Luton’s many museums showcase its fascinating history to both UK locals and tourists. Its international culinary dining options, student-dominated nightlife, and famous Carnival procession makes Luton a fantastic place to experience culture, history, and amusement.
Location: Easy access to England’s capital
Just thirty miles north of populous London, Luton is a large town and borough in Bedfordshire, England. Home to over 20,000 university students, the city is also a unitary authority of the area, meaning it presides over all local government services within the Bedfordshire district.
Business: Dominated by air travel
Once famed for its hat making and car manufacture in the 20th century, the predominant business now lies in the transportation and service industries. Home to London Luton Airport, one of England’s most frequented airports, the city acts as a domestic and international gateway to England’s capital. Monarch Airlines, Vauxhall Motors, and the popular budget airline EasyJet are all headquartered in the city. In addition to its successful airport sector, the city has bus lines, a series of highways, and a rail system that offers constant direct trains to London.
Culture: Football, hats and carriages
Luton offers visitors plenty of cultural exposure with historical museums, theatres, and bustling nightlife. Fans of rugby and football can watch matches at the local stadiums and cheer for their favourite teams at the numerous pubs that line the downtown streets. The Stockwood Discovery Centre features exhibits on the local geology, social history, and important archaeological finds. The Mossman Collection—a famous collection of authentic and carefully preserved carriages—is also here. The Wardown Park Museum has lace and hat-making displays that showcase the city’s former industries. For entertainment, visit The Hat Factory—an actual former hat factory turned theatre—to see a musical or visual art show.
Activities: Diverse dining and park recreation
Enjoy the city’s plentiful green space: at Stockwood Park, take advantage of the golf course, rugby pitches, and athletic track, or mosey through the gardens and walk along the River Lea at Wardown Park. Visit The Mall for your shopping needs and check out the diverse array of restaurants (Thai, Chinese, Indian, Italian, Malaysian, and French to name a few) in the city centre. If you’re in the area during the bank holiday in May, make sure you join the rowdy procession of nearly 200,000 people at the Luton Carnival, England’s largest one-day carnival event.