Metro Girl’s Must Do Series – Part 1: London Eye

Welcome to part 1 of ‘Metro Girl’s Must Do’ series, a guide to my essential sights or activities to do during your visit to London. Many tourists may only spend a few days in the capital before escaping to the likes of Oxford or Bath or jumping over the English Channel to see the continent. So if time is of the essence and you’re torn between where to go, this is my opinion on London’s top attractions.

© Memoirs Of A Metro Girl 2013

The London Eye stands on the South Bank of the Thames

1: London Eye

© Memoirs Of A Metro Girl 2013

At night, the London Eye is one of the illuminated landmarks

Although the London Eye has only stood in the capital since 2000, it has quickly integrated into the city’s skyline and is now an iconic piece of ‘architecture’, with its silhouette appearing on postcards and T-shirts at tourist shops. Situated in front of the former County Hall building, casting a shadow on Jubilee Gardens, the London Eye is located on the South Bank of the Thames. Although The Shard can now boast higher viewing platforms, the London Eye’s close proximity to Westminster means it is often favoured by tourists looking to see those famous London landmarks such as Big Ben and Buckingham Palace.

The Eye itself is a huge Ferris wheel of sorts – but with capsules you can move around in instead of little passenger cars. There are 32 capsules – one for each London borough – and can hold up to 25 people at a time. The 135 metre (443 foot) high wheel is generally constantly moving during operating hours, but moves alongside the boarding platform slowly enough for passengers to board. Although I have heard many friends fear being travel sick or scared of heights, it moves so slowly it shouldn’t be an issue. If you are feeling a bit nervous of the height, the bench in the middle means you can observe the views without feeling insecure standing against the floor to ceiling glass walls. The rotation pattern of the London Eye means you will see North-East (ish) first before finishing looking South West over the 30 minute journey.

© Memoirs Of A Metro Girl 2013

Looking over the West End, including Charing Cross station and the BT Tower

© Memoirs Of A Metro Girl 2013

The London Eye stands tall at 135 metres (443 foot)

The London Eye is open all year round and I myself have been on it at different times of day and different seasons. While summer is a great time to visit, it is incredibly popular so you may find you spend time queuing or have to book tickets far in advance. With this in mind, the Spring is probably the best time to go. If its heavy rain, I would say don’t bother at all, and low cloud will also diminish the views. I highly recommend timing your visit for just before sunset and watching London start to twinkle as the lights come on. You can buy guides that can help you find landmarks across the city, even Wembley Stadium or the Olympic Stadium on a really clear day. While I’ve known friends to dismiss the London Eye as ‘so touristy’, it’s a great place to start your trip to London to give you a feel for the city and how it is spread out.

After you’ve disembarked, there’s plenty of other attractions nearby, including the London Aquarium, London Dungeons or London Film Museum. Alternatively, you could walk along the South Bank to the many bars and restaurants around the Southbank Centre and beyond. During the Christmas season, there is also an open-air ice rink under the gaze of the wheel.

  • Standard tickets start from adults £19.20 (walk up) or £17.28 (online), children £12.30 (walk up) or £11.07 (online). Tickets can be bought from the Riverside Building, County Hall, Westminster Bridge Rd, SE1 7PB. Nearest station: Waterloo, Westminster or Embankment. Opening times vary depending on season. For more information, visit the London Eye website.
© Memoirs Of A Metro Girl 2013

Each of the 32 capsules holds up to 25 people


For Part 2 of Metro Girl’s Must Do series on Borough Market, click here

Or for Metro Girl’s review of the nearby London Dungeon, click here.

Follow my blog with Bloglovin

Advertisements

About LondonMetroGirl

Media professional who was born, brought up and now works in London. My blog is a guide to London - what's on, festivals, history, restaurant reviews and attractions, as well as the odd travel piece. All images on my blog are © Memoirs Of A Metro Girl, unless otherwise specified. Do not use without seeking permission first.

Posted on 19 November 2013, in Activities, London, Tourist Attractions and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 17 Comments.

  1. Pingback: Just cruisin’: Sailing down the Thames | Memoirs Of A Metro Girl

  2. Pingback: Valentine’s Day 2014 in London: Ideas and tips on where to treat your loved one | Memoirs Of A Metro Girl

  3. Pingback: Millennium Bridge: A piece of modern London, aka the wobbly bridge | Memoirs Of A Metro Girl

  4. Pingback: Enjoy an Olympic view as The Orbit opens to the public | Memoirs Of A Metro Girl

  5. Pingback: Egg-cellent guide to what’s on in London over the Easter holidays | Memoirs Of A Metro Girl

  6. Pingback: London Dungeon review: Scare yourself silly as you travel through the city’s gruesome past | Memoirs Of A Metro Girl

  7. Pingback: Guide to what’s on in London for Halloween 2014 | Memoirs Of A Metro Girl

  8. Pingback: Silent Disco at View From The Shard: Shaking your booty at 800ft | Memoirs Of A Metro Girl

  9. Pingback: Metro Girl’s Must Do Series – Part 2: Borough Market | Memoirs Of A Metro Girl

  10. Pingback: Valentine’s Day 2015 in London: Guide to where to treat your love | Memoirs Of A Metro Girl

  11. Pingback: Guide to what’s on in London for families over the summer holidays 2015 | Memoirs Of A Metro Girl

  12. Pingback: Guide to what’s on in London in September 2015 | Memoirs Of A Metro Girl

  13. Pingback: Guide to what’s on in London for Halloween 2015 | Memoirs Of A Metro Girl

  14. Pingback: Guide to open air ice rinks in London this winter 2015/2016 | Memoirs Of A Metro Girl

  15. Pingback: Valentine’s Day 2016: Guide to what’s on in London | Memoirs Of A Metro Girl

  16. Pingback: Guide to what’s on in London this Halloween 2016 | Memoirs Of A Metro Girl

  17. Pingback: Valentine’s Day 2017: Guide to what’s on in London | Memoirs Of A Metro Girl

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: