August

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The top 10 things to do in London

Amongst the growing trend of latest technologies and ideas, there is certainly one that has escaped my attention, (and possibly yours)… that of the appropriately named, ‘listicle!’  ‘What on earth’, I hear you ask, ‘is that?’ Well, for the uninitiated, and those who haven't been on the internet for some time, ‘listicles’ have recently become popular with people who enjoy reading lists instead of a good novel!  A "listicle," is generally defined as a phrase for any article which is presented in the form of a list.   So this month we present the top ten things to do in London as a listicle…

Let’s look at what many people would consider to be the top 10 things to do in London our wonderful capital city, also discovering a few which are free.

Unusual facts that may surprise you about the top ten things to do in London as featured in this article!

  1. The London Eye
  2. The Tower of London
  3. The Shard
  4. Buckingham Palace
  5. The London Dungeon
  6. Madam Tussauds
  7. Take a walk
  8. Science or Natural History Museums
  9. Explore the Parks
  10. Stroll the Markets

Rent a serviced apartment in London and make the most of Great Britains wonderful capital city

1. The London Eye

This iconic, giant Ferris wheel is a masterpiece of engineering, located along the Thames. Officially known as the Coca-Cola London Eye, it is over 200 times larger than the average cycle wheel and is Europe’s tallest Ferris wheel, rising to 135 meters tall.  There are 32 capsules, one for each of the London boroughs, each weighing 10 tonnes. Capsules are numbered 1 to 33, with interestingly no capsule 13, for superstitious reasons!  The Eye can carry 800 passengers, (equivalent to 11 London double-decker buses), and welcomes over 3 ¾ million visitors annually.

Did you know?

It was once turned into a rotating nightclub, along with becoming a ‘pop up’ restaurant during the London Restaurant Festival! An unmissable venue!

2. The Tower of London

Despite once renowned as a place of torture and death, this 1000 year old, working monument has been a royal palace, jewel house, royal mint, fortress and armoury. Legend says that the ghost of Anne Boleyn walks the Tower accompanied by her head, placed, appropriately, under her arm.  With over 2½ million visitors each year, this is an attraction not to be overlooked.

Did you know?

For 600 years it accommodated a range of wild creatures, making it the first London Zoo.  Exotic animals, ranging from kangaroos to a polar bear, hunting for fish in the River Thames on a lead! All long gone now, although legend has it that if the Tower’s ravens leave, then this spells doom for Great Britain.  So let’s hope they stay! 

3. The  Shard

This superb vantage point is twice as high as any other in the city.  As Western Europe's tallest building, (309m), The Shard allows visitors to see up to 40 miles away.  The impressive 95 storey

structure was designed as a vertical city, enabling people to work, relax and live.  Its ‘Neo-futuristic’ design was based on the shape of a shard of glass, derived from the architect’s description during planning. Incredibly, 95% of the construction materials are recycled, and the 11,000 glass panels have a total area of 8 football pitches, around 56,000m2. It’s wiring amounts to 320km and would stretch from London to Paris, whilst the swimming pool on the 52nd floor is Europe’s highest swimming pool. An apartment in this fabulous space would set you back around £40 million, so best just to visit!

Did you know?

Near the end of construction, a fox, nicknamed Romeo, was found on the 72nd floor. Later released into the wild, it is thought it survived on food left by construction workers.

4. Buckingham Palace

This unmissable, working royal palace, gives you a glimpse into royal life.  The superb state rooms boast palace treasures and masterpieces from fine artists like Rembrandt and Rubens. Originally named Buckingham House, and the Queen’s official London residence, the house comprises of 775 rooms, including 19 state rooms, 52 main suites, 188 staff bedrooms, 92 offices, and 78 bathrooms! There are also 760 windows and 1,514 doors, 350 clocks and watches, along with a post office, police station, doctor’s surgery, ATM, cinema and pool.

Did you know?

There is an exciting set of passageways running beneath the palace, connecting it to the outside world.  Many royals, including HM Queen Mother and King George VI, enjoyed exploring these.  On one occasion, they encountered ‘a very polite man from Newcastle,’ who was living down there.

5. The London Dungeon

This thrilling attraction transports you back to Britain’s gory past.  The macabre setting lets your senses explore all the sights, smells and sounds of London’s horrifying crimes.  Not for the faint hearted and with a surprise round every corner, you’ll encounter an array of frightening characters, from torturers, judges and infamous rogues and villains, played by fine actors. So stay alert for the shocks, special effects and rides and become entwined in the world of horror.  Embark on this thrill-filled journey at your peril, through 1,000 years of London's dark past.

Did you know?

Figures like Sweeney Todd and his sidekick Mrs Lovett, are only fictional, as no public records exist which substantiate the existence of a barber named Todd. Yet stories of shocking criminal deeds were often embellished as they were told and were therefore asserted to be true.

6. Madam Tussauds

This fine museum, founded in 1835 by wax sculptor Anna Maria Tussaud, has been enthralling visitors for almost 200 years.  Typical figures included in today’s displays range from historical to royalty, film stars to sporting legends and famous murderers.  Originally holding around 400 exhibits, some of these were damaged irreparably during the war, although many have been remade using the original casts.  Each sculpture takes four months to produce, costing £227,000. Accuracy is paramount, so 250 precise measurements, along with 180 photographs are taken to ensure this.

Did you know?

The singer Ozzy Osbourne once posed in the museum as himself and scared unsuspecting visitors. Mother Teresa decreed that her ‘work was more important than her physical being.’ She was therefore one of the only people to refuse to be sculpted.

Free Activities in the Top Ten

7. Take a walk

Head off to admire the lions in Trafalgar Square and take in the famous Nelson’s Column. Cast in bronze, the lions were designed by Edwin Landseer, who worked from real corpses and the cast of a lion statue.   After this, head inside the nearby National Portrait Gallery to view some fabulous artwork and drawings from Leonardo to Rembrandt.

Did you know?

Although he strove for great accuracy, Landseer made a big error. In reality, lion’s backs are convex when laying down, not concave as he depicted them. Many thought they looked more like a sphinx!

8. Science or Natural History Museums

The NH museum boasts a huge collection relating to life and earth science specimens. It holds over 80 million items within five main collections, including; botany, entomology, mineralogy, palaeontology and zoology. It has excellent research facilities, specialising in identification, conservation and taxonomy.  Many specimens have significant historical value as well as scientific, like those collected by Charles Darwin.  The museum is particularly popular amongst younger children for its exhibition of dinosaur skeletons.

Alternatively, the incredible Science Museum is another of the city's major tourist attractions, attracting 3 million visitors annually.  Major interactive exhibitions, such as ‘Exploring Space’, are always excitingly displayed and of great interest to young and old alike. The museum now holds a collection of over 300,000 items, including such famous items as Stephenson's Rocket and Puffing Billy (the oldest surviving steam locomotive)

9. Explore the Parks

Hyde Park is just one of eight Royal Parks and is well worth a visit to see such sights as the Serpentine, Speakers Corner and the Diana Princess of Wales Memorial Fountain. Start from Marble Arch tube and stroll around.

Did you know?

Each Christmas Day, a few mad bathers dive into the Serpentine, competing for the Peter Pan Cup.  It’s aptly named, by the Peter Pan author, JM Barrie, who donated the cup.  Worth noting though, that participation is for Serpentine Swimming Club members only, so maybe just focus on cooking the turkey!

10. Stroll the Markets

Why not feast on delicious food at the Borough Market, or watch the street performers whilst dining in Covent Garden?  These are some of the oldest and most charming London areas, with superb cheese and bread stalls, along with a memento or two to take home.

Did you know?

The name of ‘Covent Garden’ was a spelling mistake.  It was supposed to be CONVENT GARDEN, the market garden of the convent of Westminster Abbey!

So there you have it…a ‘listicle’ showing some strange facts about the top ten attractions in London.  Whilst weighing up your choices why not consider staying a while longer to tick some others off your ‘bucket listicle!’  You’ll be glad you did! 

Euracom has a range of serviced apartments to suit your every need, from budget studio flats to luxurious sprawling apartment suites.

Take, for example, the Luxury corporate serviced apartments in London E1, Bishopsgate, these stunningly spacious, recently converted, luxury serviced apartments are bright and well furnished.  Perfect for business travellers and tourists alike, they give easy access to the City and its main attractions like Covent Garden, Spitalfields Market and the Museum of London. From £1034 pw, these apartments offer a range of luxurious services & facilities that cater for everyone.  

Services & facilities include

  • Baby cot / high chair (upon request)
  • Bathroom/ toiletries provided
  • Concierge / security / reception/ door entry phone/ lifts/ telephone/TV / freeview/wi-fi
  • Daily or weekly linen change/ daily cleaning service/starter packs of groceries/ toiletries available
  • DVD player/  radio / alarm clock
  • Fully equipped kitchen/ laundry / dry cleaning facilities available/ tea / coffee making facilities
  • Gym in building or nearby

More about our luxury corporate serviced apartments in London E1, Bishopsgate ›

Slightly more expensive, at £1071pw, are the short stay apartments London, Earls Court Road, SW5.  These lovely, Edwardian styled apartments, feature high imposing ceilings and comfortable, well- proportioned rooms.  Close to Kensington Palace and the Natural History Museum, the four bedroom apartments can sleep up to 8 people, making them the perfect apartments to rent for a short stay in London.

Services & facilities include

  • Baby cot / high chair (upon request)/ daily cleaning service
  • Breakfast available/ dishwasher in some apartments/ welcome pack available
  • Concierge / security / reception/ door entry phone/ Lifts
  • En-suite bathroom in some apartments
  • Desk / workspace/ dining table & chairs
  • Ensuite bathroom in some apartments
  • Fully equipped kitchen/ laundry / dry cleaning facilities available/ tea / coffee making facilities
  • Telephone/ TV / Freeview/ DVD player/Wifi

More about our short stay apartments London, Earls Court Road, SW5 ›

Alternatively, you could opt for our corporate serviced apartments, Holborn Lambs Conduit Street WC1, which are set in a quiet street in the heart of London's Holborn district.  Close to Covent Garden, The British Museum and the City, these apartments make an ideal base for both holidaying and business.  Each apartment has been individually designed and furnished to a high standard, featuring Italian furniture, king-sized beds and comfortable living and dining areas.

Services & facilities include;

  • Baby cot / high chair (upon request)/ daily cleaning service/ welcome pack available
  • Balcony / Terrace (upon request)
  • Central heating/concierge / security / reception/ door entry phone/ lifts/ safe
  • Dining table & chairs/ fully equipped kitchen/ dishwasher in some apartments
  • DVD player/ hairdryer available
  • Grocery store onsite / nearby
  • Kitchen / kitchenette/ iron / ironing board/ laundry / dry cleaning facilities available
  • Radio / Alarm clock/satellite TV/ telephone/TV / Freeview/ Wi-fi

More about our corporate serviced apartments London, Holborn Lambs Conduit Street WC1 ›

By Bob Collowân (Own work) [CC BY-SA 3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

By Rob at 4 Aug 2017

There are 1 items on 1 pages.