A couple of months ago I had an amazing Sunday afternoon spent visiting the ultimate London tourist attraction The View From The Shard. I’ve wanted to take a trip up the tallest building in Europe since it opened to the public in February 2013, wanting to take in the amazing views of my wonderful city! My dad is an architect, and has worked on some great building projects around London, so a trip up the tower seemed like the perfect way to celebrate his birthday.
Luckily we had a beautiful clear sunny day, and had a really fantastic time. A trip up The Shard really is an experience from start to finish, and much more than just a viewing platform. As you make your way from the entrance to the elevator, your party is stopped to take a photograph in front of a green screen (which then has the view from the top superimposed upon it, which you can view and buy at the end of your adventure). You’re then ushered into a lift which has only one button – Floor 33! It zooms up so quickly! You feel your ears pop and watch the numbers rapidly increasing as you ascend! It reminded us of Charlie and the Great Glass Elevator! Once you get out on the 33rd floor, you then get into another lift, which zooms you up to the 68th floor, where you’re ready to hit the viewing platform!
|Tower Bridge, with the shadow of The Shard|
It really is an incredible view! It actually takes your breathe away slightly- not only being up so so high, but also the beauty and vastness of the great city below. The windows are floor-to-ceiling, so you don’t miss a single thing, and really feel like you’re up in the clouds! The viewing platform is a big open space, which allows you to look out of each 4 sides of the building. There are these awesome binocular computer machine things (!) which you can use to focus in on certain landmarks, bring up information about them, and also switch the view from night view, day view and real view. I thought this was really cool, as I had literally just said to my boyfriend “I’d love to come and see what it looks like at night with all the lights on” and we found the machine which could show us exactly that!
|The London Eye|
From this lower viewing platform, you can then walk up to an even higher platform! This has an even more incredible view. Whilst only 2 flights of stairs higher than the lower platform, it makes all the difference, and you feel 10 stories higher! This level is nice and airy too as you’re at the jagged open topped part of the tower (so I imagine it could be very cold and wet if you aren’t as lucky with the weather as we were!) It was very cool standing at that height, looking over the city with a light breeze playing round us, as it literally felt like we were having a real bird’s eye view!
|The jagged open roof|
You’re free to spend as much time as you like enjoying The View From The Shard, and we spent a good 2 hours up there! I think if I could make one improvement for the experience, it would be to have some chairs / benches to sit on, as I was feeling pretty weary by the end, and would loved to have sat and looked out over the city for a bit longer!
xx emsypickle xx