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#About the city of London
The capital city London is a mega city - a huge city that is one of the largest in the world. It covers 1,000 square kilometers and has 8.5 million residents.

In London, the best of Western culture was created. Great monarchic figures, from Henry VIII, through Queen Victoria, Elizabeth I and Elizabeth II. From here, warlords and legendary leaders from Wellington to Churchill determined and shaped the world we live in today. The greatest playwright in the history of the world theater, also worked, created, and directed groups of actors in London, William Shakespeare.

Among the somewhat grayish houses of this conservative, traditional city, among its great palaces and gardens, a vibrant young life developed, full of sounds and modern art. This is where the Beatles started the revolution in the world pop. From here Rock 'n Roll regiments were sent from England to invade American soil, where the mini skirt and the bikini swimwear were developed and adopted. Here the punks of the '70's operated, and today some of the most fascinating artists of modern art do their work.

Oh, and London operates the best public television station in the world, BBC, but who wants to watch TV when they are in London?

#UK Country Code

For public transportation - Buy an Oyster Card.
Most of the museums here are free. This is not only a huge money saver, but also a wonderful entertainment in this city.
Supermarket - the Asda and Tesco chains are cheap and very available. The first is very economical but not always pampering or luxurious, and the second is a bit more expensive, but still cost effective and offers a large variety of products.
Museums - some of the best museums in London are free and are amazing.
Tickets to musicals - tickets to musicals at cheap prices can be found at the cheap ticket stand in Lester Square.
Wanta wonderful and free view of all of London? Go to the Roof Garden on 120 Fenchurch street, and skip all the expensive viewpoints of the city.

Bus - a great way to get to know London.

Many things in London are free - click on the tag "Free in London" to find out more.

Buy a SIM card in one of the kiosks (not at the airport where it is the most expensive). You can buy SIMS for Vodafone and Three at their stores. EE in every kiosk you can buy a SIM with 5 GB for 15 pounds.

From the airport to the city - from Heathrow or Luton you can arrive by train in less than an hour to Kings Cross. From Stansted airport there is a train and metro, or a bus that arrives at the center of London in about an hour or two, depending on traffic. From Gatwick there is an Easybus or private cars.

In the city it is recommended to buy an Oyster card, saves a lot and easy to use in the tube, or regular bus, giving the option to see the city from above. For special rides it is better to get an Uber.

For departures from Luton a half hour train or Easybus is very cheap.


It is worth to stay at the West End in the center and the Camden area that is cheaper and still central.

#Must See
Want to see the most popular destinations? - Click on the tag "Must see in London".

#With Children
Family Vacation? - Click on the tag "Attractions for children in London".

Unforgettable meal? - Click on the tag "Must eat in London".

In most European countries service fees are already included in the check, so it is customary to give a 2 euro tip, regardless of the price of the check itself.

Two great shopping spots are Oxford Street and the Westfield London - the largest mall in Western Europe, which has the quantity and variety parallel to those of Oxford Street.

Want the best places to shop in London? Click on the tag "Shopping in London".


Want events happening now? In the link below.

For entertainment places in the city click on the tag "Entertainment in London".

#Electric Outlets
The required type of plug is only Type G.

A taste of the upcoming trip? - Here's a video that will show you the city in all its beauty:

And one more:

City experiences:


Some of the Local street food:

Big Ben
Big Ben
#Important - the Big Ben will be under construction until 2021

Many tend to think that Big Ben is the name of the clock you're facing. The truth is that the nickname "Big Ben" refers to the bell above the clock.

Can you see it at the top of the tower? The truth is that the name of the clock is The Great Bell, but even on Big Ben's official site they gave up the official name in favor of its more popular nickname- Big Ben.

The clock was named after Sir Benjamin Hall, who was in charge of the bell’s installation in 1859. It is told that Benjamin was a large man, prodding his co-workers to call him Big Ben.

The project of raising the bell, which weighed about 12 tons of cast iron, to the top of the tower, was complex and required great effort. Due to its size, it took 30 hours to hoist it up. This was done while the giant bell was tilted parallel rather than perpendicular to the ground. When they finally managed to place the large bell at the top of the tower, they naturally called it Big Ben.

Who would have thought that the director’s name would become one of the most prominent symbols in the kingdom?!

#Is the Big Ben Collapsing?

A survey published in 2011 revealed that the clock tower of the British Parliament is leaning sideways. The tower is 98 meters high, has apparently shifted by 48 cm to the northwest, with a slant of 0.26 degrees (one-sixth of the Pisa tower’s slanting angle).

In the past, Big Ben's slant was only a rumor, and only engineers seemed to notice. Today, if you look well, you will see it with your own eyes: the tower seems to have "bent." It is widely believed that the gradual deflection was caused by intensive construction work around the base of the tower, construction of an underground parking lot for members of the parliament and the introduction of a sewer line laid in the 1960's and underground trains. These all affected the land on which the structure stands and caused its instability.

According to the engineers' measurements, since 2003 the tower is slowly leaning over at a rate of 0.9 millimeters a year. The report also revealed that a "mysterious" incident occurred between November 2002 and August 2003, which caused the tower to tilt sideways by 3.3 millimeters. But you can remain calm at the pace of the current shift, it will take Big Ben at least 4,000 years to fall!

A Closer Look:

#The Neighborhood of Graffiti and Young Creatives

In recent years, the Shoreditch neighborhood of East London
has become one of the youngest, most colorful and vibrant neighborhoods in London. It’s hard to believe that not long ago, this trendy and sought after neighborhood populated by millennials and perceived as a vibrant artistic and cultural center, was a failed neighborhood in the city, identified by its unflattering moniker, "the Slums." However the rising housing prices in London, as well as the potential of the aging and neglected neighborhood brought young people here in droves. Thus, Shoreditch became a neighborhood that piqued interest and attracted many young people looking for the cheap and simple life in the big city, but notwithstanding cozy cafes and other charms of the neighborhood.

In fact, bars, cafes, restaurants, galleries and shops are now being opened in Shoreditch which have become a magnet for young people who come in throngs from all over the region. Naturally, this cultural change is expressed chiefly by graffiti art which covers the neighborhood’s walls in vibrant color. Every tour of Shoreditch exposes the visitors immediately to what has become the identifying symbol of this newly awakened neighborhood - the paintings of street artists and talented graffiti artists.

Shoreditch has artworks on its walls, though these are not simply inscriptions and scribbles. They are real works of art. Here you will find works by artists such as Noir, the French graffiti artist who was the first to paint on the Berlin Wall and his characters are known to graffiti enthusiasts from all over the world, StinkFish is known to spray through stencils he creates with characters he has photographed in the past. Some of Stik’s work, the world's most famous street artist, is around the neighborhood walls for admiration. There are areas that are a product of collaboration with other artists. Besides the art, it is also a form of criticism on the distortions and breakdowns in modern society, which has long become the hallmark of this mysterious and invisible art.

A Closer Look:


Virtual visit:





Covent Garden
Covent Garden
#About Covent Garden

Covent Garden was the first shopping and entertainment square built in London, and one of the most charming places in town.

Covent Garden is one of the most recognized and popular areas in London. One of the most prominent features of the area is the theater and street performances which take place. Despite the modern shops and cafes that are located in every corner, there is still a clear sense of what London was like 100 or 150 years ago. Street shows and rose sellers were popular then as well. It is no coincidence that the best and most successful street performances in the city are concentrated here. The actors in the compound undergo auditions and only the best are accepted.

After seeing the colorful street performances of the complex, you can look at the square of the seven dials (the whole area is called "the seven dials" - not only the square itself, but also the seven streets emerging from it). In the past, this area was very poor and in fact was one of the inferior areas of London riddled with crime. At that time, seven families could live in one building without electricity or running water. Today there are prestigious boutiques, excellent coffee shops and restaurants. However at that time, these stores sold second-hand items in completely worn condition.

Also, note the Royal Opera House located in the area. Next to it you will see four red telephone booths and a gorgeous dancer statue - a perfect picture for your next Instagram!


In 1728, John Rich, an actor and theater director, commissioned The Beggar's' Opera. The Opera had three acts, and is the only example of this specific genre- a satirical ballad opera.
This genre has remained popular to this day. New lyrics were fitted to popular ballad tunes, known arias of the time, church hymns and folk songs.

The success of the project provided the capital sum enabling the establishment of the first Royal Theater which opened on December 7, 1732. During its first 100 years, the theater was used mainly for plays. Covent Garden, along with the Drury Lane Theater, were the only theaters to own exclusive rights to a drama show in London.

Handel’s operas were the first serious musical creations played at Covent Garden. From 1735 to 1759, these works maintained opera seasons regularly. Handel’s organ was bequeathed to John Rich, the same actor and theater director mentioned earlier. The organ was then placed in a prominent spot on the stage at Covent Garden. However, as a result of a fire in 1808, the organ was destroyed among many other valuable items in the theater.

A Closer Look at Covent Garden:





London Eye
London Eye
#The Largest Ferris Wheel in Europe, The Eye Gazing of London

London Eye, known as the "Millennium Wheel," was opened for the millennium celebrations on December 31, 1999. 8.5 million visitors road the wheel in its first two years alone, and is undoubtedly one of the top tourist destinations in London. It stands at 135 meters high. The ferris wheel is located on the south bank of the Thames, north of the Westminster Bridge and across from the Westminster Palace.

The construction of the ferris wheel was conducted with the cooperation of several European countries. The wheel was supposed to operate for only five years, but was later given permanent approval. Since 2005 the London Eye has been used as an area for the celebrations of New Year's and dozens of spectacular fireworks are sent from the body of the wheel itself.

Architect Richard Rogers said: "The Eye has done for London what the Eiffel Tower did for Paris, which is to give it a symbol and to let people climb above the city and look back down on it. Not just specialists or rich people, but everybody." The wheel has 32 air-conditioned and pleasant capsules, each seating up to 25 people. Each capsule weighs 10 tons and represents one of London's neighborhoods. The ride in the wheel is very slow. It takes about half an hour while you look down at London. London itself is flat and has no hills or mountains. Therefore, the owners of the wheel claim that on sunny and pleasant days visitors can see for a distance of 40 kilometers. The capsule seats are comfortable to sit on, or, if you opt for it- there is enough space to stand up and enjoy the ride.

Have you noticed something interesting? Even when new passengers board it, the giant wheel does not stop! The huge wheel of London, the eye of the British capital, continues to move slowly, all the time ...

A Closer Look at the Wheel:


At night:





The British Library
The British Library
#About the Library

The National Library of London is one of the world's largest research and study institutions. You will find 150 million items, while approximately 3 million books and other historical items are added every year. The oldest historical item found here is from the 3rd century BC.

The library was established in 1973, but already operated as a library in 1753, even when it was located in the British Museum building. The reason for the expansion was the necessity for a larger and more respectable reading space.

The library has more than 13 million books, 60,000 journals, 9 million articles, 860,000 newspapers, 1.5 million printed music, 57 million patents and trademarks, and 3 million voice recordings. In addition, this huge space hosts large and interesting exhibitions.

The library is defined as a deposit library (a library that is legally required to transfer copies of various publications) and, by law, receives a copy of any book published in the UK and even tries to purchase books printed outside the UK.

In the library you will find some particularly exciting works and documents: the Magna Carta, the first copy of Shakespeare, Lewis Carroll's manuscripts (Alice in Wonderland), lyrics of the Beatles written by John Lennon, drawings by Leonardo da Vinci and the Codex Sinaiticus (A manuscript from the fourth century).

A Closer Look at the Library:

Hyde Park
Hyde Park
#About the Park

Hyde Park is one of the Royal Gardens of London. It is located in the center of London and was originally purchased by King Henry VIII, from the Westminster Abbey monks in 1536. Like many royal gardens at the time, it was also closed to visitors at first, and the roads were open to the carriage of the aristocracy only.

In earlier periods, the area served as a hunting ground and an arena for battles, horse races, executions, and more. During World War II, the land in Hyde Park was used to grow potatoes.

In 1728 Queen Caroline took 300 acres from the west side of the park and turned it into Kensington Gardens. It was also the same period the Serpentine lake was built. This is a snake-shaped lake where you can sail or watch the ducks.

It also has a touching memorial to Princess Diana, the "Princess of Hearts", may she rest in peace.

You can stroll around the park easily and see its monuments, enjoy the café or the children's playground.

In 1851, the Crystal Palace was built in Hyde Park for a large exhibition held in London that year. In 1857, the Marble Arch was moved here - a marble arch designed by architect John Nash as the entrance gate to Buckingham Palace and inspired by the Arch of Victory in Rome.

#The Speakers' Corner in the Park

A popular point in the park is "speakers' corner," where many people gather and conduct public discussions to this day. At the "Speakers' Corner" any person may stand and speak at will. People milling about or those who come especially may listen and participate.

Some of the speakers are particularly smart, for example past speakers include Karl Marx, Vladimir Lenin and George Orwell. Others might poke fun or provoke arguments... This particular custom of speeches has been partially preserved to this day, and every Sunday you will be able to hear various speakers who talk about political, economy and other issues.

#Hyde Park

This park is the perfect pace to take a break from your demanding routine. Locals come here to wander about, get some fresh air and exercise or bike around. The park is one of the eight royal parks within the capital of the United Kingdom and is one of the most prominent green spaces in London.

This park, with 350,000 square meters of a pastoral and green landscape, has hosted quite a few exhibitions, demonstrations and large concerts. The name "Hyde" may be related to a unique space measured in according to the fertility of the soil. The area contains a range of 60,000 to 120,000 square meters.

The southeast corner of the park is actually connected to the backyard of Buckingham Palace, which incidentally is also connected to St. James Park. The palace cavalry uses the park on a daily basis.

#Hyde Park for Tourists

Entrance to the park is possible between 5 am until midnight. There are about 5 million visitors each year. The park has miles of bicycle lanes, special pathways for horses, hiking trails, playgrounds and sport fields for football, tennis, golf, bowling and cricket. The park has street lamps which allow a pleasant atmosphere in the evening, benches which allow relaxation, taking in a view of the park, cafes, restaurants, water fountains and even a police station. In the summer, about 500 green and white sun loungers are regularly placed in the open air.

Children can also be entertained here, especially in the park named after Princess Diana located inside the big park, where children can play in sand and water. Admission to adults is only possible if they have children.

Some very large musical performances took place in this park. Among others; Rolling Stones, Pink Floyd, Kevin, Red Hot Chili Peppers, and many more. Hundreds of thousands of spectators attended the performances.

If you're looking for what to incorporate on the day you visit the park, you can add Westminster, Oxford Street, Notting Hill or the Museum Quarter to your plan.

A Closer Look:

Temple Church
Temple Church
#About the Church

The rounded Temple Church was established in the 12th century in London and its impressive presence lent its name to the entire region. The round church is 16.7 meters in diameter and supported by marble pillars. It was first inaugurated in 1185.

Originally, the purpose of the church was to serve as Templar headquarters, a military order that operated during the Crusades. The Templars required a large site where they could meet. They purchased the area on which the church was located for this purpose. Buildings were erected to serve the Order: a training area, residential and leisure areas. The Knights Templar fell in the 14th century and the church became the property of the kingdom.

In 1215, negotiations were held between the nobles and King
John over the signing of the Magna Carta, the great charter of liberties. In the 14th century, after the fall of the order, the land of the church became the property of the kingdom and since then it has been the center of two of London's law offices.

Unbeknown to most, the circular structure of the church was designed in connection with the Church of the Holy Sepulcher located in the capital of Israel, Jerusalem. Graves in the church are of many familiar people, among them William Marshall and King John.

The church was completely destroyed during World War II and in the Great Fire of London in 1941, but it was renovated and restored in 1958.

#About the Magna Carta

There is no other historical symbol of the rule of law, human rights and democracy more iconic than the Magna Carta. It was a scroll that the English King John was forced to sign in 1215, by his barons, owners of great estates, who decided to limit king's unrestricted power. In a meeting between the king and his barons, his hand was forced to sign a waiver on his ownership of the noble lands. Although the 40 landlords forced him to sign, in order to avoid a situation where the king could blame a noble Baron who sinned and then confiscate his land or transfer it to another nobleman, this was the first time in history where constitutional monarchy was created and landowner rights were agreed upon.

Important principles that we now recognize as basic principles in civilized countries stemmed from the historical signature of the Magna Carta. For example, the fact that "no one is above the law" means that a king is not authorized to do as he pleases. He cannot attack other countries and then impose taxes on his citizens in order to finance these military expeditions. The same decision that a king cannot impose taxes at his will not only a financial matter - it is the basis of the rule of law, which was later established as a cornerstone of democracy.

The Magna Carta led to the establishment of parliaments and legislatures. Those fortunate enough to be voted in by the people are to represent the citizens and preserve their rights. The paramount right of due process – a fair trial and consequent punishment which can only be carried out after the accused has been found guilty. Furthermore, freedom of speech, freedom of religion and the right to a fair trial are all principles born of this signature and have since become the rights of all citizens. It should be noted that in the Middle Ages, they were only intended for nobility. Today, all democratic states, starting from the American Revolution and other democracies declared since then, draw from the International Magna Carta declaring a demand for freedom and the protection of human rights for every person in the world.

A Closer Look at the Church:


Tate Modern
Tate Modern
#About the Museum of Modern Art of Britain

The Tate Modern is a Museum of Modern Art, and a section inside the Tate Gallery. Is one of the most prestigious and valued museums in the world and has made the entire South Bank region a particularly trendy area.

The museum is located inside the Bankside Power Station, built in 1947-1963 by architect Giles Gilbert Scott. It was only after the station was shut down in 1981 that the building was redesigned and turned into a museum by the architects Herzog and De Meuron. The appreciation of architecture is an integral part of the museum's visit. The museum opened in 2000. Among the exhibits, you can find works by Pablo Picasso, Salvador Dali and Andy Warhol.

On the first floor, you will pass through the impressive Turbine Hall. On the second floor is a café surrounded by transparent windows through which you can take in the beautiful view of the Thames. Though we are accustomed to museums displaying their exhibits by historical periods, in this museum you can walk around on the third, fourth and fifth floors, which are arranged according to themes. On the third floor, you will find mostly abstract art and expressionism, while the fifth floor features conceptual and minimalist works of art.

#Turbine Hall

On the first floor, you will find a large hall called the "Turbine Hall" since it used to be the turbine of the power plant. Due to the height of the hall (5 stories) and its wide area (3,400 square meters), very large pieces can be displayed in the hall.

Turbine Hall is the nexus of visitors, a place to rest and the heart of the entire structure. It is in this point that the traffic to and from the museum leaves and enters. It certainly provides a special experience.

Due to its enormous size (it makes up almost half of the entire building), the space allows for a display of large and impressive works. Up to 2012, “The Unilever Series” was exhibited in the hall, which was exposed in 2000. Note the spider at the entrance to the museum and the silver slides you can take to the lower floor.

#Tate Modern for Tourists

The Tate Modern, located at the end of the Millennium Bridge, brings 5 million visitors a year and is one of the most successful museums in the world. When the Queen of England first opened the gallery in 2000, no one imagined it would be such a spectacular success. The museum succeeded in increasing the prestige of the entire region and even led to a significant increase in property prices.

Items from 1900 until today are exhibited in the museum, and the entrance to the permanent exhibitions is free. If you decide to add a view to the temporary exhibitions there is a special fee for entry. A tour of the entire museum takes over an hour and a half to two hours for the average tourist, but art lovers can find themselves drifting here for a whole day. The museum tries to encourage the arrival of children and therefore offers various activities and guided tours (free) on a daily basis.

Tourists arrive by public transport and not in a private vehicle, because the entire area is jammed and parking is free. Young people enjoy a nighttime visit to the museum (it is open until 22:00). It is highly recommended to combine the museum visit with the interesting sites nearby - the Globe of Shakespeare, the London Bridge and the Borough food Market.

#The Basement Floor

One of the museum's most interesting spots is the basement, which is a nostalgic remnant of the original power station. On this floor you can see the three huge gas tanks made of concrete.

The reason why archeology was expressed in the structure lies, of course, in the selection of the architects Herzog and de Meuron, who discovered and exposed interesting underground spaces during their excavation. The architects used what they found inside the tanks: the sloping concrete columns and concrete openings that emphasized the special nature of the containers themselves. These spaces were the first to be designed specifically for the stronghold itself.

From the basement level you can ascend to the ground floor by a spiral staircase.

#The Museum's New Wing

The Swiss architects Jacques Herzog and Pierre de Meuron accepted the project of expanding the museum. The new wing was built as the Switch House. The purpose of the nickname was to illustrate the difference from the existing structure of the power station, called the Boiler House.

According to the plan, the new wing was supposed to be inaugurated in 2012, but the design plans encountered quite a few objections, causing the architects to adjust their plans. In addition, those years suffered from an economic crisis, which did not help promote the project, only delaying it.

The new wing consists of 10 floors, but there were several challenges and limitations that eventually led to the pyramid shape that characterizes the new wing of the building. The factors taken into account were the angles of the streets that enclosed the building, the height restrictions imposed on it to avoid harming the sunlight of nearby buildings, an attempt not to damage the view of central London, and especially not harm the view of the dome of St. Paul's Cathedral.

The wing was built by concrete from the factory, but was assembled here, at the construction site. The architect, Giles Gilbert Scott, planned the taut front on the concrete. The idea was to create a kind of detachment between the entrance and the concrete structure itself - and therefore the architects omitted the bricks from the front, so that light and refreshing air would enter the building. The missing bricks create the illusion of lace and add value to the wide surfaces within the structure. The architects say they wanted to provide a different perspective on the art within the museum. This was also the reason they chose traditional construction materials, yet looked for a different way to use them.

#The Tale of a Treasure

The curator's role in the museum is to produce events that cause diverse audiences to come and view the collection at the Tate Modern Museum. The truth is, this museum is so special that it does not concern only art lovers. Even people who do not dabble in this field frequent the museum. You know, painting is just a color on canvas. It is simple and not at all complex - pigments mixed with oil. When the artist's hands touch the color, it becomes a kind of inexplicable magic for something that manages to express human emotion to another person.

On the tour of the Tate Modern Gallery, one can notice that the simplicity of the building and the spaces allows these works of art to receive the respect they deserve. The cause for his is the architecture in the entrance which draws attention, while the interior is relatively clean and does not attract much attention.

#The Roof of the Museum

One of the most beautiful and spectacular parts of the museum's new wing is its rooftop. Go up to the roof and for a glimpse of a stunning 360-degree panoramic view across central London. The urban landscape is full of tall towers and cranes.

Have you seen the movie “Rear Window”? The museum's roof will provide you with a particularly intriguing experience. Pay attention to the new Bankside luxury tower, designed by Richard Rogers and located next to the museum. The proximity to the residential tower and the great visibility on the exposed side of the tower provide a direct glimpse into the apartments of the tenants, some of which are so expensive that they cost 20 million euros.

So even though not all visitors might admit it, the thrilling spying on the luxurious apartments across the street turned into a the talk of the day on the roof of the museum. Dozens of visitors gather every day on the roof, point to the various apartments, wait to see the tenants and identify luxury pieces of furniture. It is very possible that this is one of the most interesting and popular objects in the museum, which sometimes surpasses the art inside the museum.


The arrangement of floors in the museum building presents a clear purpose: efficiency in the use of space rather than spaces that provide an experience for visitors. The impressive front of the building is almost never reflected inside. This is an original decision that does not characterize the usual museum architecture. It represents a statement about the gallery and the art presented in it.

The spaces are almost overcrowded, especially as the floors are higher.
In order to understand the difference, let us mention the original wing of the museum (the Turbine Hall), where the high industrial spaces provided added value in the form of a relationship between the size of the Turbine Hall and the exhibition spaces that are hidden and exposed in turn.

This, by the way, is not accidental, of course. In 2000, Jacques Herzog and Pierre de Meuron undertook the expansion of the museum. The Swiss architects were responsible for planning the gallery and were entrusted with the project. They emphasized that the direction of the art world is very influenced by the urban environment. This was the reason they made the "brave" decision to establish the new wing within an office tower. If you walk around the gallery, you will notice the difference between the original wing and the new and corporate wing.
The Shard
#About the Tallest Tower in Western Europe

The Shard Tower, an impressive skyscraper, is also known as the London Bridge Tower, due to its location. The height of the Shard Tower is almost 310 meters and has 95 floors. The interesting building is reminiscent of "a glacier rising from the Thames." It was designed by Italian architect Renzo Piano, the same architect who designed the Pompidou Center in Paris. This tower is one of the tallest buildings in Britain and the European Union.

Construction of the building began in 2009 and ended in 2012. It was not easy to convince the local residents and activists in the area that it was an environmental building. At one point, even UNESCO warned that the status of the London Bridge as a world heritage site could be damaged in consequence. The space where the building was located was a poor and underprivileged neighborhood.

The Shard Tower was built in an underprivileged area, struck with poverty and unemployment. This was the complete opposite to what this exclusive tower brings to the table: five-star hotel and Michelin star restaurants.

The most interesting part of the tower is its spectacular view, which offers an observation post overlooking London. Take the elevator to the 69th floor where you will find the observation post. The 72nd floor also offers a view, having an external section for visitors..

For souvenir and trinket fans, there is a souvenir shop on the 68th floor.

#Getting Stuck in the Tallest Building Ever

We do not mean to startle or frighten you, especially if you decide to enter the tallest skyscraper in Western Europe, but by 2013 the attraction became a particularly unpleasant event for some visitors. More than 200 tourists who crammed into the building's elevator were stuck at a height of 243 meters above ground, after it stopped working due to fear of a fire. The visitors remained trapped in the building for more than an hour. We can only imagine what the claustrophobics went through. The impressive building, which probably offers the most spectacular vantage point in London, must have been less pleasant that day ...

#About Disputes and Luxury

One of London's known controversies is whether it is right to build skyscrapers or not. Those who support high-rise construction explain that the city must adapt itself to the 21st century, broadcast a modern and innovative vision and let the glass buildings take their place as part of the city's appearance.

Other opinions are that the beauty of the city is found in the shorter, lower houses from different periods, mainly from the Victorian and Georgian periods. Building tall skyscrapers is simply submitting to falling in love with other modern cities around the world.

The Shard Tower is one of the most controversial buildings, mainly because it is blatant excess. The building has impressive offices, a luxury apartment hotel and expensive restaurants. Rumor has it that during the week the most beautiful people in London gather in the bars of the building, those on the 31st and 32nd floors, sipping some quality alcohol while taking in the breathtaking view.

A Closer Look at the Tower:

The Gherkin
#About the Tower that Became a London Icon

Thanks to its unique shape, the 40-story and 180-meter Swiss Re Tower is one of London's best known towers. But this official name is generally unknown, making way for more amusing nicknames, including names such as "the sour cucumber", the erotic sour cucumber, the "Dick" and the "high hint."

This famous skyscraper was given these amusing nicknames due to its unique shape, reminiscent of something between a cucumber and a vibrator. Designed by architect Norman Foster, one of the world's leading architects who has already built some iconic buildings which are hard to forget.

Since the inauguration of the "Gherkin" tower, or simply the "cucumber," it has become one of London's most prominent symbols. Its location in the city of London, the central business district of the British capital, has made it one of the most sought after office buildings among London businessmen.

The unique building has appeared in several films and television series that have been filmed in London since it was founded. It can be seen in movies like "Harry Potter", "Basic Instinct 2" and "Star Trek."

#History of the Gherkin

The "cucumber" tower was built in the city of London upon the ruins of the Baltic Stock Exchange, an old building destroyed by a bomb planted in 1992 by members of the Irish underground, the IRA. After the stock exchange building was completely destroyed to with no hope of reconstruction, the landowners decided to build an entirely new, modern and environmental building in its place.

Construction began in 2000 and the "cucumber" tower was completed in 2004.

#Architecture of the Building

Shortly after its construction, the "cucumber" was chosen as the world's most prestigious new building by a panel of judges comprised of professional architects in 2004. Currently, the "cucumber" is the second tallest tower in the city of London. The "cucumber" is not only an impressive building in its shape, it is also a "green" building, a structure that optimizes the use of environmental resources and reduces its environmental pollution to a minimum.

A Closer Look:


Virtual Tour:

Lloyd Building
#The Tower of Radical Architecture

The Lloyd building is a relatively old landmark in London, an icon that was opened in 1986, and remains a controversial building to this day. Its futuristic style is rich in glass and metal, mostly silver, cold and metallic, a structure that exposes its pipes and stairwells and preserves its softness and its beautiful rounded columns for its interior.

Richard Rogers, one of Britain's most famous architects and architectural stars planned and designed Lloyd's Building. The style was rightfully named the "Inside Out Architecture", because he took out all the systems that generally lie inside a building – pipes, ventilation ducts, air conditioning systems, power cables, elevators and more.

The debate over what made it one of the most important modern buildings in the world is related to the fact that the building, designed for the Lloyds insurance company in the 1980's, is the London equivalent and ultra-modern version of the Centre Pompidou in Paris. Richard Rogers was a partner in the design of the Pompidou Center as well. This masterpiece of the high-tech style of architecture is followed through the in the Lloyds Building.

There are those who consider the building a masterpiece of high-tech architecture. Others criticize the building’s style saying it reminds one of an oil refinery befalling London. The argument is that the architect forced his ideals and ideas of innovative design on the residents, and didn’t take their basic needs as tenants into account.

The supporters on the other hand, emphasize the advantage of removing the innards, enabling for a large, open interior space once the systems were removed.

Either way, the famous exterior staircases and its strikingly exposed design, despite their stunning visual effect, makes the Lloyds building a difficult and expensive building to maintain. It requires constant (and expensive) maintenance.

Despite its misgivings, this building is easily one of the most architecturally prominent in London. Before the construction of the Gherkin (the "cucumber" building) also located in London, Lloyds was the symbol of modern construction in the rich business district of London. It provoked debates on beauty and perverseness. One thing is certain; this building is not to be overlooked.

A Closer Look:


A Virtual Visit:

Tower Bridge
#About London's Most Famous Bridge

The Tower Bridge connects London's Citadel Hill to Southwark Quarter. It stretches above the Thames and combines elements of a suspension bridge and a raised bridge.

The reason for this is that at the end of the 19th century, the London municipality tried to solve two main problems in a creative way: one was allowing pedestrian and buggy traffic flow, while on the other hand maintaining ship passage entering the harbor near the bridge, also known as “The Pool of London." The public was invited to try come up with a creative solution and out of 50 different proposals the city engineer Horace Jones was chosen.

The bridge has a sophisticated mechanism designed for its diverse functions. There are two main bascules which lift in order to allow river traffic to pass. These parts of the bridges rise to an angle of 86 degrees. The passage of the ships causes no harm to pedestrians, who can continue walking on the special elevated passage designed for this purpose (61 meters). Despite this, the elevated passage was not very popular due to dozens of stairs pedestrians were required to climb in order to reach the crossing. They preferred to wait until the ships passed. The elevated passage, which was abandoned most of the time, became a refuge for prostitutes and thieves, and it was closed in 1910. It reopened in In 1982, this time with an internal exhibition documenting the history of the famous bridge ...

#Construction of the Bridge

The construction of the bridge lasted 8 years and was built by 432 workers supervised by 5 engineers. The length of the bridge is 244 meters. It is comprised of two identical towers 65 meters high. The weight of each of the bascules that rise to allow river is 1,000 tons. In 1974, with the development of technology, steam engines were replaced by electric motors.

The colors of the bridge (identical to the colors of the flag: blue, red and white) were painted only in 1977, in honor of the 25th anniversary of Queen Elizabeth II's rule.

Recently, a glass floor at the height of 42 meters was added to the bridge, providing a spectacular view of the waters of the Thames, the roads and pedestrians. The cost of its construction amounted to $1.7 million. The glass panels are 11 meters wide and 8 inches thick, and their weight is approximately half a ton.
Palace of Westminster
#About the House of Parliament

One of the most famous symbols of London is the Palace of Westminster, commonly known as the House of Parliament. It consists of two houses: the House of Lords and the House of Representatives, also called the "house of commons". These bodies deal with legislation and have authority in the United Kingdom.

The Gothic-style palace is located on the banks of the River Thames in Westminster.

The Parliament House was built in the 19th century and includes the famous clock structure, the Big Ben. The House of Parliament has a distinguished history and represents values ​​are a cornerstone of British leadership - political honor. In its early days, the palace served as the residence of the king's legislative advisers. The changes made over the years were caused by unification and disconnection of the countries which make up the United Kingdom: Scotland, Wales and Ireland.

The palace is one of the largest buildings in the world. It features about 1,200 rooms and more than 3 kilometers of corridors. Although it has an especially ancient wing from the 11th century, most of the present building was built in the second half of the 19th century. This was after a great fire destroyed the palace in 1834.

On days when the parliament is active, visitors can even go inside and watch the discussions.

#Prohibition of Death in Parliament

It’s interesting to learn about some strange laws upheld in different countries. In London, we have come across one of the strangest ones yet; it is prohibited to die in Parliament. It may sound funny, but it is not a joke and the law actually exists. The law prohibits dying in any royal palace in Britain, claiming that anyone who dies in it will technically have to receive a state funeral, even if they are not part of the royal family. If you had any such plans, sorry to put a damper on them…

#About the Gunpowder Plot

The Gunpowder Plot was an attempt to assassinate King James I and all his men. It was a conspiracy in 1605, in which a group of Catholic extremists attempted to murder King James I of England, his family, and the proletarian nobility by blowing up the British Parliament building in Westminster Abbey.
The gunpowder plot was a scheme led by Catholics in England. They hoped to seize the monarchy in the kingdom and return it to Catholicism, so that England would return to the control of the Pope. The plot was foiled after a Catholic MP received a warning from one of the conspirators not to attend the opening ceremony of the parliament. He preferred to report it and searched the entire parliament building.

A guy named Guy Fawkes was caught in the search holding a lamp and a watch. In the basement of the parliament there were also 36 barrels of gunpowder. After research and modern experiments, it was discovered that had the barrels exploded, the king and everyone else in the building would have died immediately. Guy Fawkes betrayed the rest of the conspirators after severe torture. After a show trial all the conspirators were executed in a particularly cruel manner, treated as traitors of the worst kind.

The plot may have failed, but it was the anonymous Guy Fawkes who left a real mark in English history. As a general term for man, the word "guy" in English comes from his name. England also has a day called “Guy Fawkes Day” on November 5th, when bonfires are held with fireworks, it is a kind of celebration of the failure of the plot throughout the commonwealth: from England to Australia.

Today, masks of the "Anonymous" group – a group of permanent conspirators that are currently working against many regimes - were also designed according to Guy Fawkes' face.

The night of the thwarted conspiracy is mentioned in a ceremonial practice held in English Parliament before every opening ceremony of the Parliament. In this occasion, the members of the Parliament Guard search all the rooms in the building for bombs.
Golden Hind
#About the Ship

On the southern bank of the Thames River lies the reconstructed ship of Sir Francis Drake, the famous 16th century pirate who was also the first Englishman to circle the world.

This ship sailed around the world between 1577-1580. Today it serves as a museum comprised of its five deck floors. When there are no private events, you can tour it with a map and locate the deck, the weapons depot, the staff accommodation areas and more. The crew on duty is dressed in Elizabethan sailor clothes, and the ship also accommodates nighttime activities. Among the sessions you can attend a detective night where you will be asked to solve a murder mystery, or participate in a pirate party. Other activities include enjoying a sailor's meal in the sailor's dining room, spending the night on the cannon deck, or buying souvenirs like sailor shirts and more.

Although the original name of the ship was Pelican, in the middle of the voyage, Drake changed its name to the Golden Hind. The story is that Drake wanted to honor Sir Christopher Hatton, who was one of the chief superiors on the voyage. The symbol of his aristocratic family was a golden deer.

#Sir Francis Drake

Sir Francis Drake was what they call an "authorized pirate." Drake held the ship (which he received from the authorities) and received permission to attack enemy ships and rob them. Although he acted as a pirate, in the eyes of the authorities he was an "entrepreneur" and was therefore nicknamed the Queen's Pirate.

Drake was the first English navigator to circle the world in one voyage. He was the first captain to command the entire expedition. Drake was considered a hero by the English, but the Spaniards saw him as a threatening pirate and called him a "dragon." Philip II of Spain even offered a 20,000-ducats bounty ($ 6.5 million) to anyone who turned him over to the authorities.

Drake’s journey around the world began when the relations between England and Spain were on the brink of war. Drake convinced Queen Elizabeth that he would capture Spanish ships as they left the ports of Peru. The officers on the mission were told that the ships were going to discover the unknown continent of Australia. Only those involved, namely Drake and the Queen, knew that the true purpose was to ambush the Spanish transport routes and rob the gold ships sailing from Peru to Panama.

Due to storms and hitches in the ships, two of the three ships were abandoned. Drake was left alone with his ship and the crew, though all along he was convinced the others were following.
In 1580 the Golden Hind returned to Plymouth. Drake and 50 crew members who survived were on board, along with expensive spices and their plunder. Drake was greeted enthusiastically as "the first Englishman to orbit the Earth." He then pursued a career in politics, as mayor of Plymouth and a member of parliament.

A Closer Look:

Tower of London
#About the Tower

The Tower of London is a majestic castle, located on the north bank of the Thames in central London. It was established in 1066 as part of the conquest of England by the Normans. The fortress is a complex of several buildings surrounded by two ring-shaped defensive walls.

The innermost ward contains the White Tower and is the earliest phase of the castle, and gave the castle its name “Tower of London". It was built by William the Conqueror around 1078. Inside the tower you will find St. John's Chapel, a collection of weapons and medieval armor, and a reminder of a terrorist attack that took place here in 1974. At the entrance of the citadel courtyard you can see the "Bloody Tower”, where it is presumed that King Edward V and his brother Duke of York were murdered.

Next to the "Bloody Tower" is the Wakefield Tower where the crown jewels were kept. In the Jewel House building you will find the Crown Jewels exhibition and on the ground floor you will see the Armor garments, noble and gallantry symbols, jewelry and crowns.

In the Middle Ages the Tower of London served as a prison. In this prison those opposed to the crown were arrested and beheaded. Over time, the Tower of London gained a reputation for the torture and death that took place within its walls. Seven people were executed at the Tower, and for 400 years there were more than 100 executions. Among the prisoners was Queen Elizabeth I, who managed to escape the execution.

The tower served as the residence of the British monarchs. The truth is that the control of the fortress in that era was critical for anyone who had aspirations of ruling the country. However, it was much more than a house, for it had many uses-starting from a gun warehouse, a treasure house, a zoo, through the residence of the Royal Coin, a public documents office and the home of the crown jewels of the United Kingdom.

Today, the Tower of London is a popular tourist attraction. It is crowded by visitors who come to watch the towers, the guards with the red uniforms and the crowns.

Every evening at 9:00 pm, you can watch the "ceremony of the keys," performed by the guards. During the ceremony the gates of the fortress are locked. This ceremony has been done for 700 years!

#Terror in the Tower

There are some chilling stories to tell about the Tower of London. The truth is, however, that it is not surprising considering what went on inside these walls. For hundreds of years, torture, murders, executions, suicides, and mourning have taken place here. To this day, it seems like a soft sobbing resonates throughout this vast structure, probably to remind us that the past is still a part of our present.

Ghost stories are an inseparable part of life for anyone who grew up in England. 40% of the city's inhabitants believe in ghosts and one in seven people can swear they saw one. Historically, the Tower London is one of the most prominent places for such stories.

For the record, 2,900 prisoners were held here over the years serving as a prison. These people were from all ranks and social classes. If you look in the direction of the White Tower where the torture chamber was built, know that quite a few people have died there in agony. The guards of the fortress, who used to patrol around, once testified to shouts being heard piercing the from the door of the White Tower. They assumed it was Anne Boleyn, the second wife of King Henry VIII. Queen Anne Boleyn’s fate was sealed when she was executed on the grounds of adultery and treason against the king.

A Closer Look at the Tower:

Horniman Museum and Gardens
#About the Ethnographic Museum with its Cultural Collection from the Great World

Rich with a diverse collection of art, this museum presents exhibitions from cultures from all over the world. The museum is located in the Forest Hill neighbourhood of South London. The initiative for the museum came from the tea merchant Frederick John Horniman. This man was interested in a proper place to present his collections of musical instruments, ethnographic collections, fossils, plants and animals. The museum was opened to the public in 1901. Presently, more than 350,000 exhibits in various fields are presented at the museum.

Among the buildings is the Center for Understanding the Environment. The museum is run by the UK Department of Culture, Communication and Sport.

Well-tended gardens surround the museum, where visitors may take a stroll around. These extend over 65,000 square meters. In addition, there are walking trails in the gardens, a small zoo, a glasshouse that is a historic building for preservation and an orchestra building.

National Maritime Museum
#About the Museum

This is the most prominent maritime museum in Britain and around the world. This museum captures its visitors by its uniqueness and illustrates Britain's great power as a great historical maritime power.

The National Maritime Museum is located in Greenwich, near the park. Most of its exhibits are available online so that those who cannot visit firsthand can still experience it from afar. The museum belongs to a series of historic buildings located on the National Heritage Site of Greenwich.

A collection describing the maritime history of Britain can be admired in the museum, along with archives of seamanship and shipping, some of which are located in the Queen's House which has been here since the 17th century. The museum has a variety of interesting historical items, including marine uniforms, paintings, maps and anchors.

The ground floor displays a large map, on which you can "travel" and let the children (and adults) study, take pictures and enjoy their time together.

The museum's beautiful gardens were designed in the 1870's. A railroad connecting Greenwich and London runs beneath the garden. It was only after the construction of the railway that the gardens were replanted in the fashion you see before you now.

A Closer Look at the Museum:

Royal Observatory Greenwich
#The Observatory of 0° Longitude

The famous Royal Observatory of Greenwich stands atop a hill in the heart of Greenwich Park. It was the observatory that gave Greenwich its unique geographic location called the 0º longitude, which many recognize as the Greenwich Line. This observatory is now used as a museum. It is at the top of the hill in Greenwich Park overlooking the Thames.

The observatory was established for Charles II in 1675. Originally it served as the study of the Royal Astronomer of the United Kingdom. The astronomer John Flamsteed was a director of the observatory and responsible for analyzing the exact location of the stars, correcting the charts of the sky movements and, in general, anything related to the knowledge of exploration and navigation.

This was building to be built and dedicated to scientific research, which explains its great importance to the culture of science. After World War II, due to heavy air pollution in London, the use of the building was discontinued. Today you will find attractions for the whole family: rooms with giant telescopes, an advanced astronomy center and an advanced planetarium.

#Meridian Courtyard

In the courtyard of the museum you will find the Greenwich Line (longitude 0°), marked as a green laser beam coming out of the building in the north. Many visitors like to be photographed on both sides of the line (one leg on the west side of the earth and the other on the eastern side) and set their clocks according to Greenwich Mean Time.

Greenwich Mean Time was set according to the 0° longitude, which served as an international clock in the past.

Every day at 1:00 pm, the fall of the red "ball of time" can be seen from the top of the pole. The purpose of the time ball, which is on the observatory, is to mark the exact time for the Thames sailors.

A Closer Look at the Royal Observatory Greenwich:

Buckingham Palace
#The Palace of the British Monarchy

The royal palace is the most famous palace in London. It is the main residence of Queen Elizabeth II. Buckingham Palace is one of the symbols of the British monarchy, along with Victoria Square, just around the corner.

The palace was originally built in 1703 for the first Duke of Buckingham, John Sheffield. In 1762 it was purchased by King George III, who expanded and enlarged it. In 1826 King George IV hired John Nash to transform the building into a magnificent palace. In 1837 it became the main palace of the British royal family and Queen Victoria moved in.

The eastern front which you must be facing now, was added after the wedding of Queen Victoria to Prince Albert. In 1847 another wing designed by Edward Blur was added to the palace. He created the courtyard with its familiar square shape in the middle of the palace. Once completed, the palace contained 19 guest rooms, 52 royal bedrooms, 188 bedrooms for servants, 92 offices and 78 bathrooms. The exterior wall of the palace underwent further renovation and a monument was built for Queen Victoria in 1912.

Like many UK buildings, Buckingham Palace was also hit during the Blitz during World War II.


Though the palace hosted well-known artists and celebrities (from government officials to famous composers) in its early years, the palace was not open to the general public. This was due to the fire in Windsor Castle in 1992. After the fire the Queen had to pay for its renovation. She agreed to allow visitors to visit the Buckingham Palace for a fee in order to finance the necessary renovations.

Since it opened to the public in 1993, the palace attracts crowds of visitors. Please note that only 18 of the 600 rooms in the palace are open to the public, so you can only imagine the true size of the palace. Only 100 out of a collection of 7,000 oil paintings in the Queen's possession are presented to the public. It is of-course known, that this is only one of the Queen’s residences..

It is important to note, that when the royal flag is raised, it is a sign that the queen is in the palace. On the days when the queen is in the palace, it will be closed to visitors, but you can still admire it from the outside.

#Changing of the Guard

Many visitors like to wait for the changing of the guard ceremony at the eastern front of the palace. The guards are soldiers belonging to military units subject to the royal family. They wear traditional military uniforms, which are remarkable and no longer used by the British army. The soldiers begin a half-hour march, accompanied by a military band from St James' Palace to Buckingham Palace. The march is impressive, majestic and elegant. After the new group of guards arrives at the entrance to the palace, the exchange itself takes place, in which they salute each other. At the end of the switch, the new group takes its place at the entrance to the palace and the old group makes their way back to St. James' Palace. If you want to ensure a good spot for observation, you should arrive at least an hour before the ceremony and occupy a place as desired.


The ceremony is free to watch, be sure to come early to get a good spot to watch!

The changing of the guard is at 11:00 am daily, and 10:00 am on Sundays.

A Closer Look:


A 360-Degree View:


Changing of the Guard:

Richmond Park
#About the London Area Park

Richmond Park is the largest of London's royal parks. In addition, it gives the other parks a run for their money, mainly because it offers a real sense of nature, feeling more like a field trip than a well-planned park.

The total area of the park is 9.5 square kilometers, and is acknowledged as an official nature reserve. The diverse vegetation includes hundreds of types of trees, flowers, mushrooms and shrubs, and the animals in the park include deer, squirrels, foxes and gazelles. A duel between the red deer over the females is quite a magnificent sight that occurs in the fall. The birds are not to be missed, as they create pleasant sounds adding to the idyllic atmosphere.

The park was originally built for King Charles I, who used it
for hunting sport. In the past, the park was surrounded by a
16-kilometer long wall. Some of its remnants remain to be seen to this day. The British locals engage in various activities inside the park: fishing, playing rugby, boating or pedaling around the park.

#Theater in the Park

The classic historical drama "Anne of the Thousand Days", released in 1969, gives a glimpse into the 16th-century Richmond Park. It is a special film shot at Richmond Park, and it somehow reflects the dramatic history that took place in England.

The film tells the love story between King Henry VIII and his short marriage to Anne Boleyn. Because the film accurately describes the events that took place, it was only natural to film it in Richmond Park. The park was one of the king's favorite hunting spots. He and his wife Anne Boleyn spent their honeymoon not far away, at Hampton Court.

King Henry VIII, who was portrayed in the film by Richard Burton,
was obsessed with a male heir. But his wife, Anne Boleyn, was unable to have a son, so she remained a queen less than three years before being executed, to make way for another woman. Anne Boleyn was played in the film by the actress Genevieve Bujold. The film won four Golden Globes and one Oscar.

#Deer in Richmond Park

The deer played a major role in the history of the park and are an inseparable part of the landscape here.

Their special habitat depends on pastures and the trees in the park.

Their breeding season is during autumn. At this time, the males compete for the females, with the big males roaring, barking and colliding, trying to fight rival males and attract the females. The newly born babies are hidden by the mothers, because they are very vulnerable at this stage of their lives. The mothers will passionately defend their young.

Deer are wild animals, which means that it is important to maintain a distance of at least 50 meters from them and not stand between two, especially during the turbulent autumn season. It is also important to know that you can't touch, feed or photograph the deer from close range.

A Closer Look at the Park:

Leighton House Museum
Design Museum
Fulham Palace
Highgate Cemetery
The Sherlock Holmes Museum

אֵאוּרִיקַה - האנציקלופדיה של הסקרנות!

העולם הוא צבעוני ומופלא, אאוריקה כאן בשביל שתגלו אותו...

אלפי נושאים, תמונות וסרטונים, מפתיעים, מסקרנים וממוקדים.

ניתן לנווט בין הפריטים במגע, בעכבר, בגלגלת, או במקשי המקלדת

בואו לגלות, לחקור, ולקבל השראה!

אֵאוּרִיקַה - האנציקלופדיה של הסקרנות!

נראה שכבר הכרתם את אאוריקה. בטח כבר גיליתם כאן דברים מדהימים, אולי כבר שאלתם שאלות וקיבלתם תשובות טובות.
נשמח לראות משהו מכם בספר האורחים שלנו: איזו מילה טובה, חוות דעת, עצה חכמה לשיפור או כל מה שיש לכם לספר לנו על אאוריקה, כפי שאתם חווים אותה.