|Sunset behind St. Paul's Cathedral, taken from One New Change.|
With the Unfinished City constantly changing, as new buildings are added to its skyline on an almost yearly basis, it becomes increasingly difficult to find the perfect spots from which to see these remarkable buildings, from either up close and personal, or from an unobscured vantage point.
Thankfully, London has a number of great vantage points from which you can see some remarkable views, many of which are free, or fairly cheap.
Free viewing areas (city):
- One New Change - EC4 - From atop this shopping centre you can get up close and personal with St. Paul's Cathedral, with spectacular views to the south, too.
- Sky Garden - EC3 - Sky Garden - One of the best free viewing areas in the City of London. Offering staggering views over the city, and up and down the River Thames, this is a perfect spot to take in the views. (Free, but tickets need to be booked.)
- Switch Room at Tate Modern - SE1 - One of London's newest viewing platforms offers 360 views of London.
Free viewing areas (parks):
- Alexandra Palace - N22 - From here you can see the whole of London, spread out before you, and, on a clear day, you can even see the mast at Crystal Palace.
- Primrose Hill - NW1 - For some amazing sights of London, especially in the evening, Primrose Hill is the perfect spot on a summer night.
- Mudchute Park and Farm - E14 - A wonderful 32 acre site in the heart of the Isle of Dogs, offering unparalleled views of the nearby Canary Wharf skyscrapers.
- The Point - SE10 - Located next to the Royal Observatory The Point offers great views of London and is the perfect place to watch the sunset.
Not free, but worth the expense:
- Westminster Cathedral - SW1 - The Tower Viewing Gallery offers amazing 360 views of London.
- View From The Shard - SE1 - This is fast becoming London's premier viewing gallery, which it thoroughly deserves.
- MillenniuM Wheel (London Eye) - SE1 - Offering a wonderful perspective of London, the London Eye is a unique way to see the sights, day or night.
- Emirates Air Line - SE10 & E16 - There is no other way to get these stunning views of the River Thames and Canary Wharf, than from one of the Emirates Air Line gondolas.
- St. Paul's Cathedral - EC4 - One of London's most iconic and historical buildings offers some incredible views, from the heart of the city.
- The Monument - EC3 - Climbing the 311 steps may not be easy for everyone, but the views make it a worthwhile venture.
Of course, there are many other viewing areas, including rooftop bars and restaurants, offering exceptional views, that are worth searching out, too.