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Paddington Station in Westminster, Central London, is one of the oldest train stations in the capital, and is surrounded by parks, water, fine architecture and art galleries. Paddington is the Central London terminus for many inner and outer London suburban services, as well as the gateway to Cardiff, Reading, Oxford, Bristol, Exeter and Penzance. Recently, the station also became the dedicated terminal for the busy Heathrow Express Train service to the airport, making this a bustling area, busy with both national and international travellers.
After just a four-minute walk from the station, visitors can find the laboratory in which Alexander Fleming discovered penicillin in 1928 and changed the course of medical history, in St Mary's Hospital. This interesting mini museum is well worth a visit and has been restored to look as it would have done in Fleming's day.
Paddington Station has some lovely eateries both inside the station and nearby too, catering for all tastes and budgets. Angelus Restaurant and Bel Canto are a couple of lovely French restaurants in the area, while Cristini serves a good selection of pasta and pizza. Visit the Royal Park Hotel for afternoon tea and watch the world go by in comfort, or try some fantastic Brazilian steak at Desejo do Brasil.
Known famously as the station upon which a certain young bear from Darkest Peru was found and after which he was also named, Paddington has much to offer its visitors. There’s a lovely bronze statue of Paddington Bear under the clock on Platform 1, which is where the Brown family first found him in the stories. For fans, there is also a dedicated Paddington Bear shop in the station, selling souvenirs and gifts.
There are several art galleries within a 30-minute walk from Paddington. Subway Gallery is situated in the pedestrian subway between Edgware Road and Harrow Road and specialises in contemporary artists. The Serpentine Gallery can be found in the middle of Hyde Park and provides a platform for contemporary artists, both British and international, with frequent changing exhibitions.