London Just Fascinating ☺

Visiting London was for us like dream come true. Both Anna and I would have heard about London more than any other city in the World. It was such a pleasure being there and we loved every bit of it. The food is awesome, the people are friendly, and there’s more to see and do than one could actually get to in one lifetime.

London is the capital and most populous city of England and the United Kingdom. It is situated on the River Thames. For more than a hundred years, London was the de facto capital of the world, a grand city built on a tiny little island off the coast of Europe.

London is still a beautiful city that effortlessly blends fast-paced modernity with an old school charm. Is there any destination as great as London. London is the greatest city in the world. It has room for everyone, from any culture. No matter who you are, you will blend in and find your tribe. It is the best example of multi-culturalism I know. London’s Impressive architecture includes Buckingham Palace, St James’ Palace, the Victoria Memorial, Wellington Arch, Big Ben, the Houses of Parliament, Westminster Abbey, the Shard, London Bridge. (The list goes on).

When you ask someone living in London best thing about London their answer is lot of great museums and historical sites, easy to get around the city on public transport, lots of culture with many different types of people from all over the world, lots of great restaurants and pubs with every type of food you could imagine from all over the world and lots of great architecture from the past. An other answer which I got from an other friend who is living in London was “I love about living in London is easy to travel from London to other countries in Europe or outside Europe.  It’s actually possible to get a plane ticket that doesn’t cost you an arm and a leg”. They are the most important reasons, which make London one of the BEST cities in the world.

Of course, that innate complexity also makes London a city that an average tourist should be wary of. Some of the places, which we enjoyed and everyone will recommend, are……………

 

Buckingham Palace:

Buckingham Palace, one of several palaces owned by the British Royal family, is one of the major tourist attractions in London. The Changing of the Guard in front of the palace always attracts plenty of spectators.

Big Ben:

The clock inside the tower was the world’s largest when it was installed in the middle of the nineteenth century. The name Big Ben actually refers to the clock’s hour bell, the largest of the clock’s five bells. The other four are used as quarter bells.

Tower Bridge:

London’s Tower Bridge is one of the most recognizable bridges in the world. Its Victorian Gothic style stems from a law that forced the designers to create a structure that would be in harmony with the nearby Tower of London.

Tower of London:

The Tower of London was built at the beginning of the eleventh century by William the conqueror. The tower was expanded during the thirteenth century into the fortified complex that we know today. The Tower’s most popular attraction is its famous collection of Crown Jewels.

Construction of the Tower of London was initiated in 1070 by William the Conqueror, shortly after his victory at Hastings in 1066. The Tower was built to enforce the power of the Norman king over the newly conquered land.

The fortress, strategically located at the Thames, was originally not more than a temporary wooden building which was replaced later by the White Tower. Over time the complex was expanded into a stronghold with about twenty towers.

Today the Tower of London is best known for its Crown Jewels, but it used to be notorious for the many political opponents of the kings that were locked, tortured and killed in the Tower. The Tower was also a royal residence: several kings lived here, especially during turbulent times when the donjon seemed a lot safer than the palace in Westminster.

Piccadilly Circus:

Piccadilly Circus is a busy square in the heart of London. It is famous for the fountain that was installed here at the end of the nineteenth century and for the neon advertising that turned the square into a miniature version of Times Square.

The Circus lies at the intersection of five main roads: Regent Street, Shaftesbury Avenue, Piccadilly Street, Covent Street and Haymarket. It was created by John Nash as part of the future King George IV’s plan to connect Carlton House – where the Prince Regent resided – with Regent’s Park.

Houses of Parliament:

The Houses of Parliament, also known as the Palace of Westminster, is the seat of the two parliamentary houses of the United Kingdom: the House of Lords and the House of Commons.

London Eye:

A modern but already very popular tourist attraction is the London Eye, a giant observation wheel located in the Jubilee Gardens on the South Bank. The 135 meter (443ft) tall structure was built as part of London’s millennium celebrations.

St. Paul’s Cathedral:

The majestic St. Paul’s Cathedral was built by Christopher Wren between 1675 and 1711. It is one of Europe’s largest cathedrals and its dome is only exceeded in size by that of the St. Peter’s Basilica in Rome.

St. Paul’s Cathedral has had an eventful history. Five different churches were built at this site. The first church, dedicated to the apostle Paul, dates back to 604 AD, when King Ethelbert of Kent built a wooden church on the summit of one of London’s hills for Mellitus, Bishop of the East Saxons. At the end of the seventh century, the church was built in stone by Erkenwald, Bishop of London.

In 962 and again in 1087, the cathedral was destroyed by fire, but each time it was rebuilt and expanded. By that time, it had become one of the largest cathedrals in Europe. Renovations and extensions in the thirteenth and fourteenth centuries enlarged the cathedral even more.

Trafalgar Square:

Trafalgar Square, the largest square in London, is often considered the heart of the city. Ever since the Middle Ages, this area has been a central meeting place. In the middle of the square stands a tall column honouring admiral Nelson.

Hyde Park:

Hyde Park, which opened to the public in 1637, is the largest of several royal parks in London that are connected to each other, forming one large green lung in the center of the city. The park is famous for its Speakers’ Corner.

Hyde Park is one of the greatest city parks in the world. Covering 142 hectares (350 acres) and with over 4,000 trees, a large lake, a meadow and ornamental flower gardens, there’s a good chance you’ll forget you are right in the centre of London.

Hyde Park in London has something for everyone. You can enjoy swimming, boating, cycling and skating. There are pitches for team games, tennis courts, tracks for horse riding and a spectacular children’s playground.

The Park has two lakeside restaurants which are licensed and serve everything from a three-course meal to a quick cup of coffee. Hyde Park is home to a number of fascinating buildings and monuments, such as The Serpentine Bridge, the Joy of Life fountain and the famous Archiles statue. And with the Diana Memorial Fountain and open air events throughout the year, there’s always something to see and do. If you’re out and about on Sunday, head to Speaker’s Corner to hear London’s most vocal orators share their opinions with the world.

Harrods:

Harrods is a luxury department store located on Brompton Road in Knightsbridge, London.

Harrods is like no other store in the world. There is no way you can compare it to a large shopping mall in some where like New York, Rome, Paris etc. The sheer size and glamour of the store is enough to make you want to stay there. Even if you don’t buy anything, just walking through the different areas and floors are enough to make you fall in love with it.

One of the most beautiful departments of the store is the magnificent Food Hall on the lower floor, decorated with tiles created by artist Williams James Neatby. Other impressive departments include the Egyptian Halls and the Crystal Rooms. Also of note is the central escalator, decorated with Egyptian motives. And don’t forget to visit the toy department, the city’s best where you’ll find enormous stuffed toys and animals.

Westminster Abbey:

A place for worship, celebration and ceremony, many of Britain’s most significant historic moments of the past one thousand years have happened here. It is one of the United Kingdom’s most notable religious buildings.Since 1066, the Abbey has hosted every coronation, and is the final resting place for the great kings, queens, poets, musicians, scientists and politicians of our past.

Millennium Bridge:

The Millennium Bridge, officially known as the London Millennium Footbridge, is a steel suspension bridge for pedestrians crossing the River Thames in London, England, linking Bankside with the City of London. It is located between Southwark Bridge and Blackfriars Railway Bridge.

Admiralty Arch:

King Edward VII commissioned the building in memory of his mother Queen Victoria, although he did not live to see its completion in 1912.

Admiralty Arch plays an important role on ceremonial occasions, with processions such as royal weddings, funerals, coronations and the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games passing through the central arch. The outer arches are used for vehicles and pedestrians.

Admiralty Arch is a landmark building in London, which incorporates an archway providing road and pedestrian access between The Mall, which extends to the southwest, and Trafalgar Square to the northeast.

Notting Hill & Portobello Road:

Notting Hill is one of London’s most desirable areas, with iconic pastel-coloured houses and a thriving market. You can find everything from world-famous events and restaurants, to cutting-edge theatres in Notting Hill. Perhaps you’ll even meet a film star in a travel bookshop.

Portobello Road has been a market since the 1800s but became particularly famous for its antiques in the 1950s. Now there are numerous stalls offering everything from fruit and bread to posters, clothes, ceramics and music.

The main market days are Friday and Saturday, although a smaller market takes place from Monday to Thursday. On weekdays, locals buy fresh fruit and vegetables here. Second-hand goods are included on Friday but Saturday is the busiest market day when all the antiques market stalls are in position and the bargain hunters arrive. There are also some great clothing stalls to find along the way. Nearly a kilometre long, this bustling west London market offers an endless variety of merchandise.

 

“The English language is like London: proudly barbaric yet deeply civilised, too, common yet royal, vulgar yet processional, sacred yet profane. Each sentence we produce, whether we know it or not, is a mongrel mouthful of Chaucerian, Shakespearean, Miltonic, Johnsonian, Dickensian and American. Military, naval, legal, corporate, criminal, jazz, rap and ghetto discourses are mingled at every turn. The French language, like Paris, has attempted, through its Academy, to retain its purity, to fight the advancing tides of Franglais and international prefabrication. English, by comparison, is a shameless whore.” 

 

― Stephen Fry, The Ode Less Travelled: Unlocking the Poet Within

 

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