Guest Post by Adrian Neville
Unlike in tropical countries where you have to plan your trips ahead to make sure you won’t go during monsoon season, the United Kingdom – more specifically London – is a great place to visit all year round.
From a shortcut guide to the city through an infographic to all the top sights during a walking tour, there are a couple of tips here on Savored Journeys that will make your European vacation more memorable.
However, behind the usual endeavors of riding double deck buses, taking the obligatory selfie with Big Ben, and going on an afternoon tea date, sits a couple of equally beautiful places to see and exciting things to do.
Although these locations aren’t as sonorous as the popular tourist destinations, they still offer travelers – even locals – a glimpse of the true, all-around beauty of the capital.
Here are some of the not-so-hidden iconic structures you might want to visit in London the next time you’re there:
St. Mary Axe, or The Gherkin, isn’t proclaimed as an architectural marvel and a global icon for nothing. Since the building is centrally located, you can access it via the London Underground with ease. The nearest tube station is at King’s Cross St. Pancras, which is about 7 minutes away. Alternatively, if you’ve just visited the Getty Images Gallery or had a few cocktails at the Courthouse Hotel, you can walk to The Gherkin in less than 10 minutes. Other than being in the middle of London’s main financial district, its majestic stature truly defines the city’s skyline, which is why it’s considered as ‘the most civilized skyscraper in the world’.
Although it has recently moved sites, Wembley Stadium remains one of the most iconic centrepieces in London. Major concerts are showcased here, including Bruce Springsteen and AC/DC last year as well as a host of football games that feature England’s national team. However, Wembley’s schedule is set to get busier this year, as Betfair states that Premier League club West Ham will now be playing their home games at the stadium for the foreseeable future.
Even if you aren’t a football (or soccer) fan, it doesn’t mean that Wembley hasn’t got a ton of stuff to offer tourists. As aforementioned there are regular concerts, events and it has a lot of informational resources regarding the Olympics which it hosted in 2012.
Fans can look at all the artists who’ve rocked this iconic venue, as well as making the most of this experience by going on the world’s most advanced stadium tour. The first-of-its-kind trip lends sightseers an EE SmartGuide, which is a device that allows them to relive significant moments inside the stadium on a 360-degree augmented reality video platform.
Hot on the heels of its predecessor The Great Wheel, the world-famous Coca-Cola London Eye is more than just a glorified Ferris wheel; it’s a familiar landmark of England’s capital. With a diameter of 394 feet (120 meters) and a height of 443 feet (135 meters), it stands head and shoulders above the main horizon to offer everyone a distinct aerial view of the city. At the turn of the century, the Millennium Wheel once held the record for being the tallest of its kind on earth. However, today, it’s not just considered as a Ferris wheel, as according to an official British tourist board, it’s the world’s tallest cantilevered observation wheel. In addition, on average the London Eye welcomes more visitors annually than cultural heritage sites such as the Great Pyramids of Giza and Taj Mahal.