Since February 2013, there’s been a new tourist attraction and landmark addition in London: the Shard – an iconic new building designed by Italian architect Renzo Piano (you might know him for that little building in Paris called Centre Pompidou) and is styled as a vertical city. The building holds offices, restaurants, the five star Shangri-La hotel, residences, retail and The View from The Shard visitor attraction. Let’s take a closer look at the latter…
I do love a tall building – I’ve climbed to up the top of other world famous observation decks like the Eureka Skydeck in Melbourne and the Avaz Towers in Sarajevo … so I was excited to check out the view from London’s equivalent. The London Eye didn’t do it for me, so I was really curious how this would turn out.
After the lift arrives at 72nd Floor, 244 metres above the city, you get to walk around the platform and enjoy a 360° viewing platform at the top of Western Europe’s tallest building. When you’ve acclimatised to the sheer height of it all, you can try to find your house or hotel, explore the city with one of the 12 Tell:scopes (yes that’s its name), take lots of photos for your Instagram or pose for the perfect new Facebook photo (as I did) and all that with the most famous London landmarks in the background. You can tick all of them of the list: Tower Bridge, Tower of London, Big Ben, St Pauls, What is left of Battersea Power Station, Wembley Stadium … you get the point.
On a clear day you’re meant to be able to see for 40 miles (65 km). And if there’s bad weather (very cloudy, mist, storms) and you can’t see 3 of the 6 most important landmarks, you can get another ticket for another day for free.
The View from The Shard is located at Joiner Street, SE1 9QU, London and is daily open from 09:00 – 22:00. Tickets are generally pre-booked ( £24.95 for adults and £18.95 for children), but there are limited walk in tickets available.
The nearest tube/rail station is London Bridge, with lots of bus routes nearby.