I know people are going to ask this question so I thought it might be a good idea to show how to go from London to Sandy, which is where my guide, Thomas, picked me up for fishing in England. I can already see that most people will be foreigners who have no idea how to take the train so I’m going to go step-by-step in order to assist people undertake this journey so they can have good fishing like I did. Even I had some head-scratching when I first did this train ride up north in England but the thing is I’m not from the UK and I speak English. But this isn’t the first time that I’ve done this as I crossed the Nicaragua-Costa Rica border to go fishing there (Nicaragua) as well. So the challenge can be overcome!
The first item to execute is to go to King’s Cross Train Station which is roughly in north London. There are several metro lines that stop at King’s Cross so make sure you get to the train station.
If you don’t know what King’s Cross Train Station looks like, here’s a picture of the front of the building. Inside, it’s pretty big and has a bunch of stores and restaurants inside.
Tip: I recommend staying at a hotel near the train station so you can buy a ticket the day prior and get up early enough so you aren’t dicking around with the mass hordes of the London human rush hour waves and thus, miss your train to Sandy.
Your next step is to go to ticket machine. You can also go to the ticket counter to talk to an actual human but the machines are faster due to the long lines the customer representatives usually have to receive (due to people having missed train connections, have major questions, etc).
These machines can get crowded at any given time. Best is to buy a ticket the day before when there is no stress or buy a ticket very early in the day.
So go up to one of the machines and touch the screen in order to start.
You can technically click on Petersborough as well but for simplistic purposes, we’re going straight to Sandy via “Other ticketing options.”
Click on “Going somewhere else?” And yes, again, you could click on Petersborough which is the direction that you need to go towards anyways.
Input “Sandy” through the touchscreen keyboard. The town Sandy will pop so click on it.
Make sure you put in how many passengers are going on the train and then click on “Outward.” This will allow you to set the departure time from King’s Cross. Notice that I am buying the ticket the day before so I am not rushed. Depending on when you do it, set the time/date of the train you want to go on.
Once you’ve set the departure time/date, you will want to return. The Sandy train station is only open during a set of hours and I don’t remember ever seeing any electronic self-service ticket sellers there. Best to get the train tickets at King’s Cross. So press on the “Return >” button.
As an example, I picked 20:45 for the next day in case you want to stay in Sandy and check out all the glorious tourist attractions. Haha. This is where you decide when you want to leave. You can also select the “Return within 1 calendar month” if you are not sure about your return time/date. If you want a specified time/date in order to get a cheaper ticket, you can definitely set it. Talk to the guide on determining what time the fishing will be over and when you can return back to the train station.
If you are good with everything, press on the circled area to proceed to paying for the tickets.
Press on “Pay now” and the machine will prompt you to pay.
Review the data and then proceed onto paying with a credit card. Once accepted, you’ll get
Once you have your ticket, keep them safe because you need them to pass through the gates as well as UK Police does conduct random checks to see if you have a validated ticket. Not having a ticket could result in a fine.
As you are nearing the time and date of your train departure, make sure you go inside the train station to look at the electronic boards to see which platform to go on in order to board the train to go to Sandy. You want to look for the Petersborough-bound train. Generally, the train departs from platforms 8-11 but make sure before you proceed.
The trains are in order of departure meaning the ones leaving the sooner are to the left. So look for the Petersborough train (of the time you booked it for) so you can see which platform to go on. Once you know your platform, proceed there and insert the ticket in order to get past the gates.
The train will arrive and you get on. You can sit anywhere you want and the train takes about 40-50 minutes to get to Sandy. There are roughly 5 stops from King’s Cross before arriving at Sandy.
Trains are generally on-time in the UK. Should your train be delayed, you can technically file a claim to get some kind of refund or compensation.
Stay alert for the Sandy train station stop. There are announcements at each station the train is arriving at so you know for sure where you are at.
You will stop at this station unless you made other arrangements. Have your ticket ready to insert through the gates in order to leave the station.
If you don’t know what the front of the station looks like, this is it. You will meet your guide here in the parking lot.
If you’re a big Harry Potter fan, you can act like an idiot at King’s Cross train station pretending to go to Platform 9 3/4 even though the station does not remotely look like the one in the movie. I’m not a big fan of HP but look, you can just buy a sign that says “Platform 9 3/4” slap it on a brick wall and take pictures that way rather than wait in line to take a stupid selfie. Thank the gods I only went to the train station to go fishing.
Someone, preferably drunk, should run full-speed into this brick wall so they can catch the train like in the movie! The movies are always right!