To fully appreciate the London skyline one must see it from many of London’s best viewpoints.
A sunset in London in the summer is truly magical. A sunrise in London even better. Here I share 5 of London’s best places to get a taste of the best places for spotting a sunset in London. Read on for tips from a local!
We all take for granted things that are only a stone’s throw in our cities. At the end of 2014 I thought it was time to suck it up and explore places I have come to label as tourist traps. One such place I have avoided in all my 20+ years of living in London
The Best Viewpoints In London | Top Places To Catch The Sunset in London
Among the many paid and free things to do in London is to check out the skyline and the views they offer. Below is a list London viewpoints that are just too good to miss.
Paid entrance but great views of London’s Westend, Big Ben, and sights on the Thames. The captivating ‘London Eye’ at the Riverside Building, County Hall is the cantilevered observation wheel, the largest in the world.
Designed by Marks Barfield Architects, it rotates over the River Thames. Rotating at 135m, you will have a mesmerizing 360-degree view of Waterloo station and the capital.
One can also experience Champagne there. The amazing ride on London Eye takes 30 minutes. It rotates at a speed of around 0.6 miles per hour. The ticket for the London Eye starts from £32.50. You can also arrange school and family trips to enjoy this majestic ride with captivating scenery.
Sky Garden at the Walkie Talkie
Paid (you book to eat at the restaurants) and free entrance tickets available via their website, although there is a waiting time if you are particular about dates you can go.
I have also linked on my blog post on the views and what to expect. Sky Garden, the highest public garden in London, is one of the city’s most vibrant and lively places, located between floors 34 and 37 of the Walkie Talkie, 20 Fenchurch Street.
Its ideal location gives 360-degree views of London’s skyline. The garden is replete with greenery and many Mediterranean and South African plants. It also comprises luxurious restaurants, including Darwin Brasserie.
This beautiful viewpoint is accessible to all without any entry fee, but you must book your tickets three weeks before your visit. You can even book a Yoga class in between this beauty.
One Change Root Top Terrace
Free entrance and the views are pretty cool. I have linked to a post on my blog. One New Change is a modern dining and shopping place in London in the heart of a city near St. Paul’s Cathedral.
The destination is a collection of hundreds of modern shops of menswear and womenswear fashion brands. It is home to cafes and restaurants offering cocktails and delicious cuisines. It is open seven days a week.
The rooftop terrace is also there for an incredible view of the city and St. Paul’s, along with enjoying the drink. The building, New One Change, is owned and managed by Landsec, renowned property holders of London.
This is a paid entrance but the views are amazing! They open late and early so its perfect for sunrise and sunsets views. Western Europe’s tallest building is at 32 London Bridge Street, London Shard, or the Shard of Glass. This skyscraper is 309.6 meters high, having 95 storeys.
It includes the highest habitable floor at level 72. Designed by Italian architect Renzo Piano, London Shard is the free-standing second tallest building in the United Kingdom. Apart from visiting the site, the Shard is a building with various uses, including a vertical city for living and a workplace.
It is home to the 5-star Shangri-La Hotel and the UK’s highest viewing gallery. Its entry ticket starts from £33.89 per person.
Paid entrance as you have access to the cathedral and audio tour. Shots below were all taken from one of the open galleries at the top of the cathedral.
Along with worship, St Paul’s Cathedral greets visitors for sightseeing from its amazing viewing gallery. With its spectacular dome, St Paul’s provides a view of the London skyline.
Here, you can explore the collection exhibiting stories from the past. With tickets, you can assess the Dome Galleries and exhibitions. Tickets for the tour of Cathedral Triforium start from £18 for adults and £7.70 for children. However, the sightseeing or complimentary tickets are free.
Duck and Waffle
Duck and Waffle is the highest restaurant in London, serving from sunrise to sunset to sunrise again and seven days a week.
Positioned on the 40th floor of 110 Bishopsgate in London, Duck and Waffle homes traditional British cuisine having a taste of local, rustic, and seasonal ingredients.
It provides you lively environment and serves cocktails 24/7. It is one of the best places for breakfast, lunch, and dining. However, payments at the restaurant can only be charged via Visa, MasterCard, or Amex.
LSQ Rooftop Leicester Square
Situated on the ninth floor above the magnificent Leicester Square, LSQ Rooftop is the city’s top-ranking rooftop bar and restaurant.
Providing the best view of the City of London, LSG Rooftop is a perfect place for family lunch, a cocktail with friends, and a gathering with workmates.
You can also enjoy a post-theatre drink there. With floor-to-ceiling glass, both the indoor lounge and outdoor terrace give a scenic picture. Its services are available day to night. The price range for cuisines starts from £5 to £30.
Switch House – Tate Modern
Located on the south bank of the River Thames, the magnificent, cylindrical Switch House is a marvelous work of Swiss architects. The exterior view of brickwork and folded surfaces wonders visitors. However, its interior comprises galleries, overground and underground.
Visitors also have access to the rooftop for an amazing view of the City of London. Tate Modern art gallery is its new extension with an excellent collection of old and new art forms. The vast and dramatic Turbine Hall is also open to viewers. Switch House is open on all days, and its entry is free.
Oxo Tower Public Viewing Gallery
Oxo Tower Public Viewing Gallery is not less than a hidden gem of London. Built on the south bank of the River Thames, Oxo Tower is an attractive building containing a collection of design, art, and craft shops.
Its public viewing gallery is located on the top floor featuring picturesque scenery of the River Thames and the London skyline.
You also have a panoramic view of Millennium Bridge and St Pauls. On its eighth floor, you will find OXO Tower Restaurant, Bar, and Brasserie for foods, tea, or cocktails.
The Garden At 120, Fenchurch Street
The Garden at 120 is one of London’s biggest public rooftop spaces, located at the top of Fen Court building at Fenchurch Street. It attracts visitors with its spectacular 360-degree views of the city at the 15th storey. German landscape architects designed it.
It comprises over 30 fruit trees, 85 Italian wisteria trees, wildflowers, hedges, and a flowing water stream. Its entry of free of charge with no booking required. You can also have a coffee hut there featured with relaxed seating. The garden is open on weekdays while closed on weekends.
Monument to the Great Fire of London
The Monument to the Great Fire of London commemorates an event in London’s history, the Great Fire of 1666. Located at the junction of Monument Street and Fish Street Hill, the Monument provides eye-catching views of London. It stands to the west of a spot where the Great Fire started.
It is also home to many coffee shops and plates to eat. Tickets are available for booking. For visitors’ facility, a limited number of people is allowed to be inside. The charges for adults (aged 16+) and children (aged 5 to 15) are £5.80 and £2.90, respectively. However, the child under 5 is free.