City Guide to London, UK: Part 1 | Best Skyline Views
London is one of those cities that just begs to be seen from afar and above. There are many places to see the London skyline, the most popular being from the London Eye. However, we found a much better spot! Read on to see where, in our humble opinion, is the best place to see the London skyline!
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London, United Kingdom City Guides
We explored London from top to bottom and couldn’t fit it all in just one article. Be sure to read the rest of our London, United Kingdom City Guides!
We wanted to start our exploration of London from a good view point, so we set out to find the best skyline view of the city!
Seeing the London Skyline
The London Eye
As we started to explore all the sights in London, we knew we wanted to see the skyline from high above.
The most marketed and well known attraction to do this from is the London Eye. We put it on our list of must-do’s, thinking the best views would be from here.
However, standard retail price of a ticket is £24.95 at the gate. That gets you a ride on the attraction, but comes with a long wait time to get on. That’s a hefty price tag for two people to go on a Ferris wheel. In US dollars, for tickets and a long wait line, two people are spending over $60! (conversion rate at time of article publishing). Thankfully, we were able to get discounted tickets.
For the high price tag and all of the highly rated reviews, we expected amazing views and great pictures from the London Eye! Perhaps, it was the lack of a sunny clear day, or maybe it was our expectations. But sadly, we took only one picture, and it wasn’t of the view, it was of us.
We felt obligated to take out the camera for something. Of course, the London Eye is great for a lot of people. Everyone we were with on the Ferris wheel seemed to enjoy it. It just wasn’t our favorite attraction.
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St. Paul’s Cathedral
The next day we went to St. Paul’s Cathedral. We knew it would be beautiful inside and it was one of our must see attractions.
We had no idea what was in store for us!
We’d been to many cathedrals in the previous few months, so many that it’s becoming more difficult to impress us and to justify the cost of entry. We must admit though, the cost at £18 per person to get into St. Paul’s is well worth it.
This is the only cathedral we’ve been to so far that allows visitors to climb to the top of the dome. And it’s not only to the first and base level of the dome, but you're climbing to the very top!
The views of London are spectacular and blow away what we saw from the London eye.
We had 360 degree views of the city, unobstructed by any glass or fence. We took dozens of pictures and now have panoramic views of London that we’ll cherish.
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Visiting St. Paul’s Cathedral
To see these amazing views at St. Paul’s Cathedral, you must be up for some stair climbing.
We like to think of ourselves as in good shape. We jog regularly, walk an average of five to eight miles a day, and do some body weight strength training and stretches. This climb pushed us though! We kept moving without breaks all the way up at a brisk pace, but it wasn’t easy. We certainly found ourselves a bit weak in the legs and out of breath.
If you’re not as stubborn as us though, there are places along the way to stop and rest.
Wait, There’s More to See
Beyond the amazing views from the dome of St. Paul’s Cathedral, we were awed by the interior!
It’s a gorgeous cathedral. The tile-work, artwork, detail, and architecture are breathtaking. Sadly, visitors are discouraged from taking pictures inside, but just seeing it is amazing.
We actually liked this cathedral more than Westminster Abbey. We were able to walk around and explore more freely and there were fewer crowds to contend with.
We’re glad we did the London Eye for the experience; it’s the quicker, less demanding way to see the London skyline. However, don’t miss out on St. Paul’s Cathedral, it’s a hidden treasure for amazing views!