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Indulge in the best that luxurious London has to offer

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As the UK’s capital city, and part time home of the Queen, London certainly has a lot going on. Whether you are visiting with friends, family or have just moved there, you will be spoilt for choice. It is definitely the place to go if you are looking to enjoy a relaxing yet luxurious break in a big city.

If you want to indulge in some of London’s most sumptuous offerings then look no further. Below is a guide to some of London’s top class, 5 star accommodation, cuisine and activities.

 

Hotels

London has many luxury hotels offering stylish accommodation. Some of the top hotels include The Ritz, The Dorchester and The Four Seasons at Park Lane.

The Ritz is world famous and one of London’s most popular high-end hotels. Its ornate décor and high quality service are definitely worthy of the 5 star rating that the hotel proudly boasts.

London eye

This is perhaps one of the greatest views of any city in the world.

The Dorchester is located in Mayfair, one of London’s most wealthy areas. It has a large number of rooms and suites on offer. The cuisine in the Dorchester is unmatchable; with such delicious food and spacious rooms there’s no doubt this is one of the top luxury hotels to stay in while in London.

The Four Seasons is surrounded by greenery and is also located in Mayfair. It houses a glass walled roof-top spa with an accompanying lounge with panoramic views across the city.

 

Restaurants

London is home to many Michelin-starred restaurants, so you can dine in style while you’re in the big city. Why not try out Gordon Ramsey’s personal restaurant if you fancy that celebrity touch? However, if you want a table here you definitely need to book well in advance as demand is high. But if you are lucky enough to get a reservation you will find that the restaurant serves wonderfully unusual dishes as well as many traditional and somewhat simple meals that taste absolutely scrumptious.

London at night has many great places for the rich to visit.

London at night has many great places for the rich to visit.

If foreign food is more your style then why not try Momo? Located in Mayfair, Momo is easily London’s most glamorous Moroccan restaurant. The restaurant makes every effort to completely set the atmosphere with relevant music and lanterns as well as food. If you’re looking for a quirkier high-end restaurant then Momo is definitely the place to eat.

 

Spa

One of the most popular activities to do if you’re looking to indulge in some of the luxuries that London has to offer is to visit a spa. Despite London being a bustling city brimming with excitement, there are a few tranquil havens located in and around the city itself.

Spending a day at the spa is a brilliant way to relax and you can indulge in various treatments to help you, including full body massages. With so much opportunity for pampering, the 5 star spas that London has to offer are a great way to spend a luxurious day lounging around the big city.

 

Shopping

Whatever you are looking for, London is packed with luxury shops waiting to be explored. Mayfair and Bond Street are the primary high end shopping areas where you will find shops such as the world famous store Harrods.

There are also a large number of independent shops in these areas that carry many hidden treasures. If you’re looking to buy something unique yet luxurious then London is definitely a great place to go.

 

Conclusion

Although overflowing with life, London also has many hidden treasures and luxurious locations. Whether you’re looking for accommodation, restaurants, activities or an entire holiday package, you are sure to find the perfect luxurious escape in this wonderful city. 

Image credits: martie1swart and ramonbaile

From London to outer space at the National Maritime Museum

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The National Maritime Museum is the UK’s leading establishment of its kind, and is considered one the biggest maritime and observation centres in the world. The museum forms a part of the World Heritage Site, and its value and quality has been recognised by UNESCO for the amazing things it has offered throughout the years. The museum doesn’t just deal with seafaring spectacles, however, it also gives an incredible view of the other vast expanse of blue; the sky! As part of the site, the Royal Observatory boasts unparalleled star-gazing equipment and exhibitions that are simply out of this world.

The National Maritime Museum, Greenwich, London

The National Maritime Museum, Greenwich, London

 

We Have a Visual

This summer, the museum will host a new exhibition called ‘Visions of the Universe’. This amazing display of galactic goodies will be like nothing you’ve ever seen before.

Take a stroll through the stars, and venture through space to see a stunning collection of images of our universe as they surround you. From breath-taking footage taken by NASA and other telescopes all over the world, all the way back to man’s early hand drawings of our skies, you can see how we’ve captured and observed the heavens through the centuries. Peer at planets, galaxies and great entries from the Observatory’s own Astronomy Photographer of the Year competition.

This really is a show not to be missed; singles, couples, friends and family alike can all experience something truly unique on their visit. Something that will always stay in your memory will, no doubt, be the Mars Window. This amazing panorama of the landscape of Mars is a 13 metre long image made up of individual pictures, all taken by NASA’s red planet rovers. Visitors will feel like they’re stepping out onto the planet’s surface!

A model ship at the National Maritime Museum, London

A model ship at the National Maritime Museum, London

 

The Royal Observatory

The cornerstone of this great World Heritage Site, is the Royal Observatory. Home to some of the most coveted pieces of astronomical equipment in the world, it stands as the United Kingdom’s flagship of space observation.

The Observatory boasts the impressive 28-inch telescope lens that dates all the way back to 1893. It is said that only two glassmakers in the world were good enough at their craft to make it, and it took them 8 years to perfect the installation.

The dome that houses the telescope is perhaps the most noticeable part of the Museum’s aesthetic, the Onion dome has been lovingly likened to its namesake vegetable, as well as compared to India’s Taj Mahal! In the winter months, when the skies are darker in evenings, visitors can attend observation evenings and view the incredible night sky through the 28inch telescope; a starry sight you will never forget!

 

Time Line

Not only does the Observatory stay at the forefront of the space industry, it is also the first in time; literally.

The National Maritime Museum’s Observatory site is home to the world-renowned Greenwich Meridian Line. This physical monument represents the Prime Meridian of the globe. This line divides the East from the West, much like the equator shows the division between the North and South hemispheres. As incredible as it sounds, this point is longitude 0, which means it’s a starting reference point for all sailors, air navigators and geographical measurements. All from a point you can stand on in Greenwich, London!

As well as distance and position, it’s also the point where we measure world time from. GMT, or Greenwich Mean Time comes from this central point for world time; here is zero and plus or minus time is measured from the very spot!

 

Conclusion

These unforgettable experiences can be enjoyed at any age, and makes an trip all year round, whatever the weather! See the universe unfold right before your very eyes; even the sharpest of scientists and space fans may leave with a little more than they knew before. Stunning pictures of our gorgeous galaxies will leave you in awe of the beauty that exists beyond our Earth. Plan your next trip to the National Maritime Museum, where the sea and sky are no longer the limit!

Image Credits: Wikipedia and ell brown

London’s Historic Bridges

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As a city divided by the river that flows through it, London is a city of bridges. Connecting the banks of the Thames and allowing people and goods to flow from north to south has been a lifeline in the city for hundreds of years, and the development of new bridges has been the cause for much celebration through the years as they opened another link between one bank and another.

Each of London’s bridges has its own unique character and history of its role in the development of the city down the ages. From the very first crossing to the most modern, each has its own story to tell.

 

The first Thames crossing

It should come as no surprise from its name that the first bridge to cross the Thames is London Bridge. It’s believed that the first bridge stood on the site of the existing bridge in 50AD, erected by the Romans as a pontoon bridge to give rapid access across the then village-like London to the important Kentish ports.

Not the most glamorous of the bridges in London, this bridge has been refurbished through the years and has been rebuilt four times during its lifetime. The most recent renovation in the 1970s brought a simple design to the site and since its completion London Bridge has played a key role in a number of important celebrations in the city including on Remembrance Day 2004, marking 90 years since the First World War.

 

Is it a bridge? Or a gate?

Probably the most interesting of the London bridges is Tower Bridge, which has become an iconic symbol of the city and has become the star of stage and screen in many films and TV shows.

london tower bridge

London’s iconic Tower Bridge at dusk

The bridge has the most dramatic architecture and has two great towers that give the bridge its name, and which give stability to the mighty structure. Between the two towers is what is known as a bascule bridge. In simple terms, the bridge splits in the middle and the two sides can be hauled open by massive operating machinery housed inside the towers. Through the years, this has enabled the passage of large ships up and down the Thames. Although this is a relatively rare occurrence these days, particularly since the road over the bridge carries a significant amount of traffic, but on ceremonial occasions as part of river pageants such as that held for the Queen’s golden jubilee in 2012.

 

The thoroughly modern bridge

The most modern addition to the bridges across the Thames is Millennium Bridge, opened to mark the beginning of the 21st century. A purely pedestrian crossing, the Millennium Bridge was the subject of criticism and controversy when it first opened in 2000. The participants in the charity walk that christened the bridge on its official opening found the bridge bounced disconcertingly beneath them as they crossed the water, leading to its closure for two years to enable engineering work to stabilise the structure.

millennium bridge st paul cathedral

Millennium Bridge, with St Paul’s Cathedral in the distance

Reopened in 2002, the Millennium Bridge provides a pedestrian link to Shakespeare’s Globe and the Tate Modern gallery and is considerably less wobbly since the installation of movement dampers were installed at either end of its length.

 

Conclusion

The history of London can be told through its bridges and there are plenty of stories the many crossings along the central London stretch of the Thames can tell about the growth and development of the city. Whether you immerse yourself in their stories or just enjoy the view, there’s no doubt that London’s bridges add something to the capital’s unique character.

Source: Wikipedia 1 & 2

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