London is one of the largest cities in the world with a population of 8 million people. It is a leading global city of culture, fashion, finance, politics and trade and remains one of the most visited city by international tourists in the world. The city contains many famous landmarks and getting around is easy. The famous London Underground, also known as the Tube, is one of the most extensive subway networks in the world.
What to see in London on your next visit? Here are our top recommendations:
- Tower of London. Now home to the British Crown Jewels, the Tower of London was built by William the Conqueror in 1078. It served as a prison from 1100 to the mid twentieth century. This has led to the phrase “sent to the Tower”, meaning imprisoned. Famous prisoners include Sir Thomas More, King Henry VI, Anne Boleyn and Catherine Howard (wives of King Henry VIII) and Rudolph Hess. Today the Tower of London is one of the most popular London tourist attractions.
- Big Ben Tower Clock. The 150-year-old Big Ben Clock Tower is one of the top tourist attractions in London. The name Big Ben actually refers not to the clock tower itself, but to the 13 ton bell housed within the tower and takes its name from the man who first ordered the bell, Sir Benjamin Hall. The present-day Big Ben bell was constructed in 1858 after a first bell of 16 tons cracked irreparably two years prior. The clock has become a popular attraction and has appeared in many films. In the movie Mars Attacks! for example the Big Ben is destroyed by a UFO attack.
- The London Eye. ituated on the banks of the River Thames, the London Eye is an enormous, 135-meter high observation wheel carrying 32 exterior glass-walled capsules. It offers fantastic views over central London. The wheel does not usually stop to take on passengers as the rotation rate is slow enough to allow passengers to walk on and off the moving capsules at ground level. It is the most popular paid tourist attraction in the United Kingdom, visited by over 3.5 million people annually.
- British Museum. Established in 1753, the British Museum in London is a museum of human history and culture. Its collections, which number more than seven million objects, are amongst the largest and most comprehensive in the world and originate from all continents, illustrating and documenting the story of human culture from its beginnings to the present. Objects include the Rosetta Stone, the key to the deciphering of hieroglyphs, and the largest collection of mummies outside of Egypt.
London, and in fact Britain in general, may not have a great reputation for being full of friendly, welcoming people, but actually, the city is the wonder that it is because of the great diversity of fascinating people that live there. Everywhere you look you’ll see people doing incredible things, whether it’s building businesses or performing circus acts in the street. Everyone has a story to tell, and on a visit to London it’s worth talking to as many people as possible to hear some of the amazing stories, as well as creating one of your very own.