There’s no shortage of extensive travel guides and gay calendar sites for people heading to the United Kingdom, particularly for those looking to hit up the major metropolis of London. But one guy, Jack Cox, has created the Bonely Planet Guidebook: London for a very specific kind of traveler — namely, “gay, bisexual and curious men in their 20s and 30s who like to scout each other out for some fun — also known as ‘cruising.'” For the guy looking to go cruising in London, you’ve just found your bible.
Cox bills his Bonely Planet book as “a savvy guide for gay and curious men” to “spectacular cruising, sex, spas secret spots and outdoor adventures.” With individual chapters dedicated to what he considers the top spots for cruising in London — among them Clapham Common and the Liverpool Street Rail Station — he’s ranked them (and provided photos) according to the likelihood of a queer guy heading there and finding a match.
In addition to these “cruising in London” hot spots’ locations, Cox (Is that his real name? Your guess is as good as ours) fills you in on when you should go, the type of guys who tend to frequent the area and notes on safety.
In addition to cruising in London parks and public washrooms, the Bonely Planet Guidebook offers some basic info on massage apps that are popular in London, which apps local guys tend to use to hookup and a rundown of the city’s best gay spas and saunas, from Central London to Vauxhall.
Cox closes his guide to cruising in London with a piece on the “philosophy of cruising” and how it’s actually good for society.
“Cruising is, and historically has been, an incredibly positive, and I would argue, culturally subversive way for men to meet each other outside of the norms of crusty social structures,” he says. “It’s a way to explore connections and fantasies that allow the kind of mutual exchange and interactivity that we can actually learn from; and in doing so, experience the depths of our unique human-animal nature.”
For the gay or curious traveler looking for a crash course on cruising in London, check out the Bonely Planet Guidebook by Jack Cox. Whether you’re a Londontown newbie or a regular traveler, there’s sure to be a few tidbits of information you’ll be glad to put to use.