If you’re looking to get a bird’s-eye view of London, there are several spots in the city that offer spectacular views. Don’t worry if you’re afraid of heights, as you’ll be sure to find a spot that fits both within your comfort level and budget.
I personally loved the view from the top of St. Paul’s Cathedral and if you visit just one place, I highly recommend this spot!
It may seem expensive at £18 per ticket, but London offers a 2 for 1 special to enter the cathedral when you present a National Rail ticket.
Whether you choose to pay the steep price at The Shard or enjoy a free view at London’s Sky Garden, here are the eight best spots to find the best view of the city!
1. The Shard
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The Shard, once the tallest building in Europe, provides one of the best views of London. However, it can be quite expensive to head to the top just to catch a view over the city.
While Groupon vouchers are sometimes available, another option is to grab a cocktail at one of the restaurants in The Shard and enjoy the view.
Price: £25.95 (Groupon vouchers are sometimes available)
2. London Eye
If you’re looking for a great view of Big Ben and the houses of parliament, the London Eye could be your best bet!
Visitors have 30 minutes to enjoy views of London in one of the capsules, which can be booked privately or with a group. We went first thing in the morning and were able to share our capsule with only a few other people.
The only con is that you are stuck in the same capsule for 30 minutes and most of my photos have reflections in them.
Price: £19.35 (2 for 1 available)
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3. St. Paul’s Cathedral
St. Paul’s Cathedral was one of the highlights of my trip to London. While you cannot take photos inside the cathedral, visitors are able to take photos outside and from the top of the cathedral.
It’s 528 stairs up to the Golden Gallery — which I highly recommend you do if you visit St. Paul’s. The views from the top are incredible and well worth the climb!
Price: £18 (2 for 1 available)
4. The Monument
This is one of the most affordable options to get a bird’s eye view of London. It’s 311 steps up to the top and provides a nice view of the Tower Bridge.
While the view from the top is not as spectacular as other spots on this list, it’s worth a visit to this historic landmark, even if you don’t do the climb up to the top.
Price: £4 (2 for 1 available)
5. The Tower Bridge Exhibition
Another affordable spot to get great views of London is from the Tower Bridge Exhibition. Visitors can walk across the glass floor and experience panoramic views from the high-level walkways.
I also recommend a visit to its Victorian engine rooms, which is included in the price of your ticket.
Price: £9 (2 for 1 available)
6. The Emirates Airlines
This is a cable car link across the River Thames in London which provides an unique view of the city. The duration of a single crossing is ten minutes (reduced to five minutes during rush hour) and can be paid by cash fare or with your oyster card.
Price: Single fares from £3.40 (with Oyster Card)
7. Up at the O2
Enjoy 360-degree views of London and its landmarks including: Canary Wharf, the River Thames and the Olympic Park.
The 90-minute experience will take you up across the roof of this popular entertainment venue which boasts views up to 15 miles away on a clear day.
Price: From £28
8. Sky Garden
For a free view of London, the best spot is to head to the Sky Garden. A limited number of tickets are available each day, which can be booked anywhere from three weeks to one hour in advance.
The tickets are valid only for the date and time scheduled which allows visitors to enjoy one hour of beautiful city views. You may also choose to make reservations to dine here as well.
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Over to you — what is your favorite place to get a bird’s eye view of London?
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