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LONDON AND ITS CULTURE

LONDON AND ITS CULTURE

London is widely believed to be the cultural capital of the world, with music, comedy and theatre it keeps night and day very much lively. The diversity of the country has shaped it over time. Be it architectural sites, beautiful streets and squares, museums and exhibition centers- london has it all. Be it their way of living to the monuments also home to 4 UNESCO world heritage sites, the vibrant culture is something that we should all witness and know more about. 

Here are a couple of Cultural attractions you shouldn’t miss being at london: 

Westminster Palace

Also known as The Parliament with 1200 rooms, 5 kilometers of corridors, and 100 stairways- you can tell from this that it was one of the largest buildings in the world. 

The most famous among the palace’s towers is the Big Ben, In fact that’s the tower of St. Stephen’s and the name of the bell that was specially cast for the tower is big ben.

One of the oldest in the palace is the Westminster Hall stands 28 meters tall, the highest tower of the palace is the Victoria Tower that stands 102 meters tall. 

Westminster Abbey

Being a huge necropolis, this place is known for the most of the famous personality’s burials. There are over 3300 burials here, damn creepy isn’t it? Haha, don’t worry, today it’s an active church and the west wing serves for royal weddings, but there are also concerts of religious and secular music that happen every now and then. Prince William and Catherine Middleton’s wedding was held here in 2011 as well. A beauty in itself when it’s lit up during the evenings. 

Buckingham Palace

This Palace houses the royal collection of works by Rubens, Rembrandt and a couple of other artists. With 775 rooms- royal and guest quarters are 52 of them, 19 are aimed at state servants, 188 chambers are reserved for the staff, 92 for offices and 72 are bathrooms. But during your visit to the palace only 19 rooms can be seen out of which Throne, Ballroom and Banquet Hall, Music Room and Art Gallery are a few.

There isn’t a thing that is not a part of the Buckingham territory, from its own post office to swimming pool and cinema hall- they have it all! No better icon that shows us  how the monarch’s continued in British culture.

National Gallery

Displays about 2,300 paintings in chronological order from the 13th to 19th century with famous works including Leonardo da Vinci, Botticelli, Van Gogh, Turner, Cezanne and others. This gallery is a great example of western European art.  Apart from masterpieces, the exhibition is very popular for its audio listening to or watching detailed video presentations which are about the  paintings and artists. Admission is free whereas Temporary exhibits however have fees and note that they have 3 venues inside for food and drinks as well. 

St. Paul’s Cathedral

Visually and ceremonially significant, this cathedral has hosted the funerals of icons like Lord Nelson, the Duke of Wellington, Sir Winston Churchill, Margaret Thatcher, and also the wedding of Prince Charles and Princess Diana. The Golden Gallery, the top of the dome which would require you to pass through the Whispering Gallery where you would hear murmurs from 30 meters, you’d witness panoramic views of London. The crypts of the icons can be seen downstairs if you’d like to pay a visit that is also very much possible.

British Museum

The cycle of prehistory to the present can be seen at The British Museum. Home to 8 million significant items like the Rosetta Stone and the Parthenon Frieze. There are various departments in here each covering a specific place and time and the works range from a broad spectrum of styles. A map of the museum helps you navigate efficiently and you would also have to pick the things you want to see for sure because one visit would not suffice to cover it all.  If you are unable to make up your mind,  you can join a highlights tour as these guided tours show you the museum’s most important piece. Tours happen twice on every Friday, Saturday, and Sunday. If you are into specific galleries, you could try to catch one of the free daily Eye-Opener tours as they host a 30- to 40-minute tours everyday, giving you a deeper insight of all the categories. However, the entry remains free.

Victoria and Albert Museum

At Victoria and Albert Museum you would get to see the world’s largest decorative arts and design collection. With close to about 145 galleries, it’s not humanly possible to see it all in a single visit. The best way to narrow down the rooms you want to see take a look at the floor plan. There are about 5,000 years worth of art to choose from, including ceramics, glass, textiles, ironwork, sculptures, furniture, photographs, and more, which are from different parts of the world. At 80,000 objects, the world’s largest ceramics collection features pieces by William De Morgan and Bernard Leach. Henry VIII’s writing desk that dates back to 1525 stands out in the british collection. You could opt for a guided tour here as well after checking the schedule if you are interested to learn more about the items in the gallery. 

Imperial War Museums

Originally established in 1917 to memorialize British sacrifice in World War I, Imperial War Museums helps you understand the wartime experience which has been documented in World Wars I and II. the museum expanded its record with even greater sacrifices a little over two decades later. In the complex, you can see documents starting from official orders, letters, diaries, and memoirs, as well as artwork including paintings, photographs, and sculptures. You could also listen to few of the 33,000 oral-history recordings and view over 350 vehicles and aircraft on display.  Unveil the tails  of those who lived, fought and died in conflict from the beginning of the  First World War to the present at the Imperial War Museum with a free entrance ticket. 

Well, this is a short insight of what London offers in terms of culture, there are places where you can witness more of different cultures and architecture say in the house of parliament or Shakespeare’s Globe Theatre or National Portrait Gallery and Churchill War Rooms as well. Excited to visit London and explore its culture? Book your London packages with Pickyourtrail and have a fantastic experience exploring London.

There’s never a dull day in london!

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