London


Lon­don has some­thing for ever­yo­ne. It is a big city with a lot of life and pos­si­bi­li­ties. Below you can read descrip­ti­ons of dif­fe­rent sights and may­be you find some­thing for your own tour.

Lon­don is one of the grea­test cities of the world. It is the big­gest city in Euro­pe and it is situa­ted in the south-east of Bri­tain. Lon­don has a popu­la­ti­on of about 8,000,000 but not all of them are real Lon­do­ners. Peop­le come to the capi­tal from many dif­fe­rent coun­tries. As a result, you can hear almost 300 lan­guages.

My mother and I went to Lon­don in 2013. We stay­ed the­re for about six weeks. The part of Lon­don that we lived in was cal­led Gro­ve Park and from the­re we took the train into the city cent­re.

L_01Accom­mo­da­ti­on in the city cent­re is expen­si­ve. It is often a bet­ter idea to stay a bit out­si­de. Moreo­ver, it is also more quiet and rela­xing.
You could also stay with a host fami­ly. We used the Inter­net web­site https://www.homestay.com/de to book a room with a nice hos­tess in Lon­don. It was nice to live in a pri­va­te house and we could also cook the­re.

Ano­t­her good opti­on in Lon­don is wal­king. We some­ti­mes wal­ked five hours a day. You can see a lot that you miss when you are only on the main streets.

L_03We usual­ly star­ted our day at Tra­fal­gar Squa­re. Tra­fal­gar Squa­re is a big squa­re in the midd­le of Lon­don and near Cha­ring Cross Sta­ti­on, whe­re we got off the train. It is a monu­ment for the Batt­le of Tra­fal­gar. In that famous batt­le, Bri­tain won against Napo­le­on and Fran­ce. The­re are big lion sta­tu­es that you can climb.

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One day we wal­ked past the squa­re. The­re was a foot­ball match on TV and many foot­ball fans met the­re. When we came back in the evening, the squa­re was very dir­ty. Rub­bish ever­y­whe­re! And the worst thing of all: they had put washing pow­der into the foun­tain. Look and com­pa­re the pic­tures of befo­re and after­wards.

Chan­ging the Guard: London’s guards are very famous all around the world. They are sol­di­ers who guard the Queen and the roy­al fami­ly. They para­de the streets. This is some­thing very spe­cial to see. You can look up the times by cli­cking here. Be sure to go the­re very ear­ly. A lot of peop­le want to see the guards and it is always very full. The cere­mo­ny takes place direc­t­ly in front of Buck­ing­ham Palace.

Buck­ing­ham Palace is one of the most famous sights in Lon­don. It is the resi­dence of the King or Queen of the United King­dom. The area of the palace is cal­led West­mins­ter. In 2013 when we went to Lon­don, Prince Geor­ge was born. All Lon­don was cra­zy about this litt­le roy­al baby. Most of the Bri­tish still love their royals. In sum­mer, if the Queen is away for the holi­day, it is some­ti­mes pos­si­ble to go insi­de the palace.

L_12The palace beca­me the most important roy­al place in 1837. In front of it you see the Vic­to­ria Memo­ri­al, crea­ted in 1911. Buck­ing­ham Palace was bom­bed many times during World War II, but most of it still sur­vi­ves until today.

Ano­t­her famous sight of Lon­don is West­mins­ter Abbey. It is a very lar­ge abbey church. The main style is Gothic, as you can see in the win­dows. Tra­di­tio­nal­ly, the kings and queens of the United King­dom have been crow­ned and buried here. What is more, the roy­al fami­ly also usual­ly mar­ries here. In 2011, the wed­ding of Prince Wil­liam and Cathe­ri­ne Midd­le­ton took place here.

L_13The pri­ces to get into the abbey are qui­te high. A tip is to go to an even song in the evening. That is a usu­al church ser­vice, some­ti­mes choirs also sing the­re, and you may go in for free. Take a look at the ser­vices on their web­site: http://www.westminster-abbey.org/. It works best when you don’t look too much like a tou­rist.

Near West­mins­ter Abbey you also find the Houses of Par­li­a­ment.

L_14They are the cent­re of Bri­tish poli­tics. Insi­de the buil­dings, the House of Com­mons and the House of Lords meet to dis­cuss laws and poli­tics in gene­ral. It is part of a UNESCO World Heri­ta­ge Site.

A well-known part of the Houses of Par­li­a­ment is Eliza­beth Tower. You don’t know the name? Then may­be you know Big Ben? It is what you see in the pic­tures below, isn’t it?

Well, … that’s not qui­te cor­rect. Most peop­le call the tower Big Ben, but Big Ben is in fact only the nick­na­me of the bell that is insi­de tower. The­re is a big clock that you can see from many pla­ces in the city. The tower has beco­me a famous sym­bol for Lon­don and is on blan­kets, cups, and many other sou­ve­nirs.

Let’s con­ti­nue with ano­t­her popu­lar tou­rist desti­na­ti­on: Tower Bridge. This is a bridge across the Tha­mes on which also buses and cars cross the river.

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One of the oldest buil­dings in Lon­don is the Tower. The Tower has a long histo­ry: It was built by Wil­liam the Con­quer­or in 1078. It was not only a palace, but also a pri­son whe­re many peop­le died and lost their heads.

L_19You can always see some black ravens around the towers. A legend says that the king­dom will fall if the ravens lea­ve the tower. The guards at the Tower of Lon­don are cal­led “Bee­fea­ters”. Don’t for­get to have a look at the Crown Jewels when you visit the Tower of Lon­don!

Ano­t­her tou­rist attrac­tion is the Lon­don Eye. This is one of the hig­hest Fer­ris wheels (135 metres high). It is near the River Tha­mes. A ride takes about half an hour. From the top of it you have a won­der­ful view of Lon­don.

L_24You can also book a pri­va­te cap­su­le for a spe­cial occa­si­on. The­re are 32 cap­su­les and each one of them can car­ry about 25 peop­le.

Britain’s most famous archi­tect, Sir Chris­to­pher Wren, built St. Paul’s Cathe­dral. It took 35 years to build it. St. Paul’s Cathe­dral has the second lar­gest dome in the world. Only the one of St. Peter’s Basi­li­ca in Rome is lar­ger. You can climb the impres­si­ve dome from whe­re you get a beau­ti­ful view over Lon­don.

L_27The­re is also the world-famous Whis­pe­ring Gal­le­ry insi­de St. Paul’s Cathe­dral. When you whis­per some words against the wall, ano­t­her per­son on the other side of the dome can under­stand you.

10, Dow­ning Street: This is the place whe­re the Prime Minis­ter lives and has his office.

Pic­ca­dil­ly Cir­cus is a very busy mee­ting place and tou­rist attrac­tion becau­se of the cine­mas, thea­tres, night­clubs and pubs. The place is also famous for its shop­ping are­as and adver­ti­se­ments and neon signs.

You could also go to Madame Tussaud’s.

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If the­re is a lot of rain, you can also take a look at the Bri­tish Muse­um. It is a very big muse­um with many inte­res­ting things to see and you don’t have to pay to get insi­de.

Ano­t­her place you could go to is Chi­na Town. The­re are many Chi­ne­se shops and restau­rants and the wri­ting is also main­ly Chi­ne­se.

L_39Are you inte­rested in thea­t­re? In Lon­don the­re are many famous thea­tres. One of them is Shakespeare’s Glo­be in which you can see plays by Shake­speare. Wil­liam Shake­speare is the most famous Bri­tish wri­ter. He lived from around 1564 to 1616 and was born in Strat­ford-upon-Avon. We don’t know a lot about his life besi­de that.

L_40Thea­tres and musi­cals: If you are more inte­rested in modern thea­t­re, the­re is also some­thing for you in Lon­don. The­re are many big thea­tres which show musi­cals. We went to see ‘Mam­ma Mia’ and it was real­ly good. You can try to get che­a­per tickets for the per­for­man­ces at Lei­ces­ter Squa­re.

Covent Gar­den is also a place which is full of life night and day. The­re are many street artists and mar­ket stalls with lots of things to see.

Shop­ping in Lon­don: Some peop­le pre­fer to go shop­ping in Lon­don. The­re are many spe­cial shops and also streets full of exclu­si­ve clo­thes. Howe­ver, shop­ping in Lon­don is defi­ni­te­ly not cheap. One famous street for shop­ping is Oxford Street.

Ano­t­her big street is Regent Street.

L_48Two of the most famous shops in Lon­don are Harrod’s and Hamley’s. Harrod’s is a big depart­ment store whe­re you can get almost ever­ything from food to clo­thes or jewel­lery. Hamley’s is a huge shop for child­ren whe­re you can buy all kinds of games and toys.

The South­bank is full of life. It’s a part of Lon­don with many attrac­tions, pubs, and spe­cial pla­ces whe­re you can just enjoy the life of Lon­don. It is the per­fect place to be on a warm sum­mer night.

It’s also inte­res­ting during the day. Here you can see Fran­cis Drake’s ship, the Gol­den Hin­de. He was a famous pira­te.

L_51Green­wich: What we also went to see is Green­wich. The zero meri­di­an runs through the­re and the­re is also the Natio­nal Mari­ti­me Muse­um and a beau­ti­ful land­s­cape.

Lon­don by night: Don’t miss Lon­don by night! It is fasci­na­ting to see the night­li­fe of Lon­don. Along the Tha­mes the­re is a lot to see and some­ti­mes the­re are also free events in sum­mer. The lights are bright and the­re are sur­pri­ses around every cor­ner. So don’t go to sleep too soon!

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Even though we stay­ed the­re for six weeks, the­re is still a lot that we haven’t seen. Of cour­se, we enjoy­ed going back home, but we deci­ded to come back some day. Lon­don is abso­lute­ly fan­tastic!

Fac­ts About Lon­don

  • Capi­tal city of Eng­land and the United King­dom
  • Lar­gest city in Bri­tain and in Euro­pe
  • Situa­ted in the sou­the­ast of Eng­land
  • The world’s first under­ground sys­tem, the ’Tube’
  • The River Tha­mes flows through Lon­don
  • Popu­la­ti­on over 8 mil­li­on
  • Peop­le of dif­fe­rent natio­na­li­ties and cul­tures – peop­le from all over the world
  • Peop­le the­re speak more than 300 dif­fe­rent lan­guages

Lon­don Trans­port

  • Excel­lent under­ground sys­tem: The first under­ground rail­way of the world (the “Tube”), but more than half of the sys­tem is not under­ground.
  • Dou­ble-decker buses: A gre­at way to see the important sights of Lon­don is from the top of a dou­ble-decker bus.
  • Tra­di­tio­nal black taxis: Today the­re are not only black taxis but taxis in many dif­fe­rent colours.
  • Train sys­tem

Lan­guage Schools in Lon­don

During our stay in Lon­don we also went to a lan­guage school for two weeks. Our choice was the Edgwa­re Aca­de­my. The school is real­ly recom­mend­a­ble. We enjoy­ed our les­sons very much and learnt inte­res­ting new things the­re.

L_60Our branch of the school was next to Covent Gar­den.

To visit their web­site, click here.

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