The London Skyline: How to get the top views, without paying top dollar!

The architecture of London is stunning. I’ve lived here for a long time, and I can honestly say it never gets old. One of our tour guides recently wrote a list of his top tips for London visitors, and one of the best pieces of advice he imparted was simply this: look up. It’s true – there’s so much more going on just above your eyeline than you would initially think.

London is an old city – in fact, it’s about 2000 years old. As you might expect, the city has a rich history, and this is reflected in the buildings that make it up. For example, the skyline these days is dominated by skyscrapers, but nestled in amongst these towers is the green dome of St Pauls, which has stood since 1675. It’s a wonderful collection of old and new, and they sit alongside each other to create something truly wonderful.

Looking up is all well and good, but sometimes you want to see it all at once and get a real feel for the grandeur that is London’s architecture. Here are some of our top picks:

Firstly, there are a few bars and restaurants that offer views of London’s skyline. There’s the Sky Garden, and the restaurants and bars in the Shard, for example. There’s also Madison, which offers particularly great views of St Pauls. If you want to soak in the London skyline in the lap of luxury, these places could be for you.

Alternatively, you could head to Greenwich for a totally free view of the skyline – as you enter the park and head up to the Royal Observatory, it becomes clear what a wonderful view awaits you. This one is really impressive, and if you wait until night fall you can sometimes catch a glimpse of the Meridian Line marked by a green laser. Greenwich has plenty more to offer besides, if you’re interested in making a day of it.

Lastly, and completely on the other side of London, is the Parliament Hill viewpoint from Hampstead Heath. This is another real beauty, complete with a sprawling heath for picnics. The heath also boasts some outdoor ponds if you fancy going for a dip!

Have we missed anything? Send us your recommendations for viewing the London skyline @SeeYourCity1

If you’re interested in getting to know another side of London, why not take our Ghost Boat Tour. Click here for more information.