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8 Places for Great Views of the London Skyline

10 September 2020 Simon Banks Read time: 3 min
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Simon Banks

From city skylines to lush greens, London is all about the views. The capital provides an abundance of vantage points throughout the city that will leave you in awe of the fantastic scenery on offer. 

But where are the best places for great views in London? We’ve been out and about, ascending the hills (and lifts) of London to get some incredibly impressive panoramics of the capital. And we’ve listed them all here in this handy guide so that you know where to go for a picture-perfect moment.

1) The Shard

Let’s start with the tallest building in London. The Shard is located in London Bridge and offers excellent panoramics over the capital. Even if you’re a seasoned Londoner, you will still be taken aback by the views on offer at The Shard.

View from the Shard

It has 360, uninterrupted views, meaning you can see just about every famous landmark the capital has to offer. St. Paul’s the River Thames, The Gherkin, Tower Bridge, and Canary Wharf are all visible from The Shard. Views span an impressive 40 miles.

2) The London Eye

Over on Bankside, the London Eye has you covered when it comes to great views. Hop in a pod and sit back and relax while soaking up sights of the capital. Landmarks that you can see from the London Eye include St. Paul’s and Westminster, including Big Ben.

View from the London Eye

Get a seat close to the window for the best views, though you’ll get a good look no matter where you end up sitting. The ride lasts for around 30 minutes and, just like The Shard, offers 360 views of good ol’ Londinium.

3) Parliament Hill

If you’re looking for tip-top views of the capital without spending a penny, get yourself over to Parliament Hill on Hampstead Heath. It’s 322 feet high and offers one of the best vantage points in the capital.

View from Parliament Hill

On a clear day, you can see the very best that London has to offer – including the Houses of Parliament and Canary Wharf towards to east. Get to Parliament Hill early on New Year’s Eve and watch majestical firework shows from one of the best positions in London.

4) Greenwich Park

For those living in South London, the views on offer at Parliament Hill might be a bit of a trek. Worry not, though; Greenwich Park in the SE10 postcode of Greenwich provides its own enviable viewpoints of the city.

View from Greenwich Park

There’s something super tranquil about standing in the green serenity of Greenwich Park while looking on at the shiny high rises in Canary Wharf. Other notable landmarks include the O2 Centre in North Greenwich, The Shard and The Gherkin.

5) Sea Containers

What’s better than first-hand views of the capital? A room with the view, that’s what. Book yourself in for a night at the Sea Containers hotel and get a room with its own private balcony. Then spend the rest of your stay gasping at the fantastic views of the River Thames and beyond.

View from Sea Containers

And when you can pull yourself away from the room, head to Bar 12thknot on the top floor and get your phone at the ready to snap a few pics of the panoramic sights on offer. The views from Sea Containers are about as Instagramable as it comes.

6) Duck & Waffle

Tuck into some grub while looking at the most iconic sites in the city while you’re at Duck & Waffle. The 24/7 restaurant sits on the 40th floor in East London’s Bishopsgate and provides floor-to-ceiling windows that offer panoramic views of the capital.

View from Duck and Waffle

The food is pretty darn good too, with, you guessed it, duck and waffle dishes ready to be sampled. After the grub, wash your food down with eclectic cocktails while soaking up some of the most impressive views of the capital.

7) Crystal Palace

The South London gem that’s otherwise known as Crystal Palace provides elegant views of the capital. The SE19 postcode is set on a hilltop and offers views towards the centre of London from several vantage points around the neighbourhood.

View from Crystal Palace

And when you’re not taking in the local views, you can wander Crystal Palace park or dine at one of the many cafes and restaurants. It won’t come as a surprise to learn that Crystal Palace is one of South London’s most popular postcodes.

8) Sky Garden

Right in the heart of The City of London is where you will find Sky Garden, a bar and restaurant set in the Walkie Talkie building. But it’s the viewing gallery on the 43rd floor where you’ll want to go with its foliage-filled atrium that has floor-to-ceiling windows looking out over London.

View from Sky Garden

Enjoy panoramic views of the capital before or after dining at the restaurant and sipping back on a few cocktails. Set your sights on views that span across the River Thames and beyond while you experience London from a different perspective.

A room with a view

Any of the places on our list will make for a great choice when it comes to soaking up the best views on offer in London, whether you’re on hilltops at the park of fancy restaurants. Living in London means you’re never far away from a vantage point that offers unrivalled views of the capital.

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