I decided it was cheaper to take the train from Nuneaton (3.50GBP parking, 4.50GBP return fare) than pay for petrol and parking in Coventry. Not to mention the hassle of trying to actually *find* somewhere to park, and the hassle of traffic getting into and out of the city.
It may well be worth your while to do the same.
Trains from Nuneaton (and Bedworth) are tiny...just one carriage with an integral engine... but comfortable and efficient. The journey only takes 18 minutes.
Obviously you can get to Coventry by train from anywhere else which has a railway station!
Coventry station is about 10 minutes' walk from the centre and the cathedrals perhaps 15 minutes. There are buses (the bus stop is directly outside the station entrance..the 12 and 18A go into the city centre) but a helpful blue line has been painted on the pavement to help you find your way on foot!
Coventry is well connected by coach to Birmingham as well as to Milton Keynes, Luton Airport, Stansted Airport and London. Coaches run several times per day, travel time to Birmingham is around half an hour while central London or Stansted Airport take around three hours. The coach station is not the cleanest one I have seen but at least bus connections are fine. It is located in the north of the City center, close to the transport museum and the Cathedral. The coach station serves also as a hub for local buses.
Coventry’s airport is not well served and with exception of a Wizzair Service to Katowice (Poland), you’ll only have Thomsonfly holiday package flights to the Mediterranean Sea. Travellers who want to reach Coventry by air are advised to use Birmingham Airport which is less than half an hour away from Coventry. Frequent coach services (National Express) are available from Birmingham Airport to Coventry.
Attention: If you are flying from Coventry Airport and are not taking a Wizzair or Thomsonfly flight, please check out my General Tip about "East or West".
The network west midlands daytripper costs £4.70, and you can get an add on £1.80 which covers the majority of Warwickshire including Nuneaton/Stratford/Leamington? Warwick, so £6.50 for all buses and Trains is pretty reasonable and you can travel as far across the region not just county so places like Lichfield and Kidderminster and all over Birmingham.
It is possible to get from Coventry to Warwick by train but I stayed at the University there, which is far from the railway station so thought a bus would be much more convenient. I chose Stagecoach which went all the way to Stratford, or Oxford even, got a return ticket to Warwick, where I was going to spend the whole day at the wonderful Castle. I enjoyed myself enormously but had not forgotten my last bus back was about 7 pm. I arrived at the bus stop well ahead of time and waited and waited. The bus never came. It was Saturday evening, no one around to ask, but the notice at the bus stop said clearly it should have stopped there at the appointed hour.
I was at a loss what to do. Luckily, I saw a man plastering posters on the wall opposite. He was so kind as to give me a lift as far as Leamington Spa, where I could take another bus. But I had to wait till he finished his work. In the meantime I was lucky to watch a wonderful show of enormous colourful balloons floating in the distance. I was back on campus late at night but I was glad to get back there at all. Many thanks to my benefactor. No thanks to Stagecoach. They are still running their services there. Beware!
Centro and Central provide lots of local services to and from Coventry. The evening service has been increased to half hourly upto about midnight.
From December 2004 the local stopping service to Birmingham New Street no longer goes through to Wolverhampton. You may well have to change trains at Birmingham New Street if you want a station between Birmingham and Wolverhampton. If you want Wolverhampton it may be quicker tocatch any Virgin train.
The inner ring road system can be a nightmare and very intimidating for drivers unfamiliar with it. I used to drive miles out of my wawy to avoid traversing the ring road system. Now I use it at least twice a day. The best tips are don't hestitate or stop at the on/off slip roads, yes they have been designed to allow traffic on and off at the same point. Treat them with respect, and be on the lookout for idiots- there are plenty of those. Take notice of the overhead instructions and you should be OK. There are major renovations of the slip roads at the moment the anti-clock wise slip road No. 9 to Belgrade Theatre are is closed, going off but not on. If you want to avoid the ring road, use teh park and rides south- memorial Park or North- Gallagher Retail Park. Once in centre it is easy to get around on foot.
When you travel in or around Coventry to places nearby like Royal Leamington Spa or Kenilworth it seems reasonable to get a return ticket. If you do so, you may be in for trouble. The point is that there are a few bus companies operating in that area and each has its own tickets which are not valid for the other buses following the same routes. So, if you don't want to pay for the same trip twice, you may sometimes have to spend a long time at the bus stop before the bus you have got a ticket for arrives.
Pool Meadow is the main bus station in Coventry. All the buses arrive and leave for all over the land from here. There are different terminals for different destinations. Pool Meadow also has a small shopping centre where few shops are available for quick shopping. The coaches also leave for different airports and other information could be found on www.nationexpress.co.uk.
Drive through if you have a car. Don't make a special trip by train or bus, 'cause there really isn't much here. Just stop by if you have an hour to kill. Go east from London, toward the coast. You'll see the signs.
Walk if you wish, but there isn't much to see.