What are the best landmarks in London to visit? There are so many incredible landmarks in London, from historical buildings to extensive museums to sporting attractions- London has it all. In this post I will tell you about the most famous landmarks in London. Ready to learn more? Keep scrolling…
- The Most Famous Landmarks In London
- 1. Buckingham Palace
- 2. Palace of Westminster
- 3. Big Ben
- 4. Westminster Abbey
- 5. St. Paul’s Cathedral
- 6. Tower Bridge
- 7. Tower of London
- 8. London Eye
- 9. Hyde Park
- 10. The British Museum
- 11. Kensington Palace
- 12. The Shard
- 13. Borough Market
- 14. Millennium Bridge
- 15. Monument to the Great Fire of London
- 16. Hampton Court Palace
- 17. Natural History Museum
- 18. Tate Modern
- 19. Madame Tussauds
- 20. Science Museum
- 21. The National Gallery
- 22. HMS Belfast
- 23. Piccadilly Circus
- 24. Covent Garden
- 25. Camden Town
- 26. Trafalgar Square
- 27. Sky Garden
- 28. Kew Gardens
- 29. Carnaby Street
- 30. Portobello Road
- 31. Regent’s Park
- 32. St. James’s Park
- 33. The Churchill War Rooms
- 34. National Portrait Gallery
- 35. Chinatown Gate
- 36. Westminster Cathedral
- 37. The Wallace Collection
- 38. Somerset House
- 39. Royal Albert Hall
- 40. Victoria and Albert Museum
- 41. Holland Park
- 42. St Mary Axe
- 43. Museum of London
- 44. Barbican Centre
- 45. Stamford Bridge
- 46. Shakespeare’s Globe
- 47. Southwark Cathedral
- 48. Imperial War Museum
- 49. Sea Life London Aquarium
- 50. Emirates Stadium
- 51. King’s Cross
- 52. London Zoo
- 53. Abbey Road Studios
- 54. Hampstead Heath
- 55. Royal Observatory Greenwich
- 56. National Maritime Museum
- 57. Tottenham Hotspur Stadium
- 58. Cutty Sark
- 59. Craven Cottage
- 60. London Stadium
- Landmarks in London- Final Thoughts
The Most Famous Landmarks In London
The vibe of London is unmatched. We all need to experience it at least once in our lives. It is a city that strikes the curiosity of every tourist. Along with London’s rich history, several landmarks in London that have helped it to gain popularity.
Today I will reveal the 60 most famous landmarks in London. The list also includes historic landmarks reflecting the city’s culture and identity.
Here are some of the finest landmarks of this vibrant city.
1. Buckingham Palace
The first of the landmarks in London on my list is Buckingham Palace, located in the City of Westminster in Central London. It is the Queen’s London residence and her administrative headquarters. Several royal family members have private apartments here and use the Palace as their home base in London.
There isn’t any other more iconic place in the city than where the royal family resides. Buckingham Palace is one of the few working royal palaces today.
2. Palace of Westminster
The second of the landmarks in London to make the list is the Palace of Westminster. The Palace of Westminster serves as the meeting place for the House of Commons and the House of Lords. The two houses of the Parliament of the United Kingdom. It lies on the north bank of the Thames in the City of Westminster in the heart of London. This architectural marvel is well known worldwide and is present across the River Thames.
3. Big Ben
The Houses of Parliament’s clock tower is one of the most famous landmarks in London. Big Ben is the name given to the massive bell inside the clock tower, which weighs more than 13 tons.
The clock tower looks incredible when all the four clocks’ faces light up at night! Also, a special light above the clock face illuminates when parliament is in session. Pretty cool, right?
4. Westminster Abbey
Westminster Abbey is a large Gothic abbey church west of the Palace of Westminster, a traditional place of coronation and a burial site for British monarchs. The Church came into existence in the seventh century, a Bishop of London at the time of Mellitus. Westminster Abbey is also known sometimes as “The Valhalla of Britain.”
5. St. Paul’s Cathedral
This Cathedral is an Anglican cathedral in London and is the seat of the Bishop of London. It serves as the mother church of the Diocese of London.
It is on Ludgate Hill at the highest point in the City of London. The present structure of this building dates back to the 17th century when it was designed first in the English Baroque style by Sir Christopher Wren.
6. Tower Bridge
Another Grade I structure, the Tower Bridge, is a two-in-one structure consisting of a bascule and suspension bridge. The building of this Bridge began in 1886 and was completed in 1894.
With Henry Marc Brunei’s help, John Wolfe Barry gave the Bridge’s plan. It crosses the Thames close to the Tower of London and is one of the five London bridges owned and maintained by the Bridge House Estates.
7. Tower of London
The Tower of London is a historic castle on the north bank of the Thames in central London. It lies within the London Borough of Tower Hamlets.
The White Tower gives the castle its name. The maker of this tower was William the Conqueror in 1078. It symbolised oppression inflicted upon London by the new ruling elite.
This castle is very impressive and is definitely worthy of a spot on this list of the top landmarks in London.
8. London Eye
The London Eye, also known as the Millennium Wheel, is one of the most famous landmarks in London. It is Europe’s tallest cantilever observation wheel, located on the South Bank of River Thames, London.
With over 3 million visitors annually, it is the most popular tourist attraction in the United Kingdom. The Eye has several appearances in popular English culture, including in movies, T.V. shows, and documentaries.
9. Hyde Park
Hyde Park is a major park in Central London. Out of the four Royal Parks, it is the largest one. Its entrance is through Kensington Palace through Hyde Park via Hyde Park Corner and Green Park, past the main entrance to Buckingham Palace. It is present in the National Register of Historic Parks and Gardens.
10. The British Museum
Another one of the important landmarks in London is the British Museum. The British Museum is a public museum dedicated to art, history, and culture present in the Bloomsbury area of London. This Museum documents the story of human culture from its beginnings until now. The British Museum was the first public national Museum in the world.
Anglo-Irish physician and scientist Sir Hans Sloane was the inspiration for this Museum. It was open to the public for the first time in 1759.
11. Kensington Palace
Kensington Palace – located in Kensington Gardens is a royal residence in the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea in London – England. It has been the residence of the British royal family since the 17th century.
It is currently the official London residence of the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, the Duke and Duchess of Gloucester, the Duke and Duchess of Kent, and Prince and Princess Michael of Kent. The State Rooms are open to the public, and an independent charity manages them.
12. The Shard
The Shard is a 72-story skyscraper in Southwark and is one of the most unusual buildings in London. Renzo Piano is the man responsible for Shard’s design. At the height of 1,016 feet, the Shard is the tallest standing structure in the United Kingdom, number seven on the list of Europe’s tallest buildings.
Construction of the Shard began in March 2009 and peaked in March 2012. The pyramidal tower has 72 floors, a viewing gallery, and an open-air observation deck on the 72nd floor. Stellar Property Group developed the Shard.
The Shard is one of the most modern landmarks in London and is in stark contrast to the cities historical features.
13. Borough Market
Borough Market is a wholesale and retail market hall present in Southwark, London. It is one of the largest and oldest food markets in London. The market dates back to the 12th century, with the present buildings dating from the 50s.
The main selling items in this market are usually food items with foods of different cultures sold here. Stallholders come from other parts of the U.K. to sell their products.
14. Millennium Bridge
The Millennium Bridge is a bridge for pedestrians who cross the River Thames. It links Bankside with the City of London. Bridge House Estates is the company that owns and maintains it. It is a charitable trust led by the City of London Corporation.
Londoners named it the “Wobbly Bridge” after pedestrians felt swaying motion on its opening day. It was closed on the same day for two years – modifications were made to stabilize the bridge.
15. Monument to the Great Fire of London
More commonly known as the Monument, this landmark is situated near the northern end of London Bridge, commemorating the Great Fire of London. It is made of Portland stone and topped with a gilded urn of fire. Christopher Wren and Robert Hooke designed it.
16. Hampton Court Palace
Another one of my favourite landmarks in London, Hampton Court Palace is a royal palace located in the London Borough of Richmond upon Thames. The Palace is open to the public and is a significant tourist attraction. One can easily reach this Palace by train from Waterloo station in Central London.
The grounds for the Palace are taken care of by an independent charity, Historic Royal Palaces. The Government or Crown does not fund this charity.
17. Natural History Museum
The Natural History Museum is one of the landmarks in London which is a museum that exhibits a wide range of subjects from different tenures of scientific history. It is one of the three major museums present in South Kensington and tops the list of free things to do in London.
The Museum exhibits scientific specimens from paleontology, epidemiology, botany, and zoology. The total number of samples amounts to 80 million.
18. Tate Modern
The Tate Modern is an art gallery located in London. It has the United Kingdom’s national collection of international modern and contemporary art and is in the Bankside area of the London Borough of Southwark.
It is one of the largest museums in the contemporary world, and the best part about this Gallery is that there is no admission charge for access to the collection displays, making this one of the most popular landmarks in London.
19. Madame Tussauds
One of the most popular landmarks in London – Madam Tussauds is a wax museum founded by Marie Tussaud in 1835. It displays waxworks of famous historical figures and iconic film and television characters.
The Museum is also in other locations worldwide, such as Berlin, New York, Washington D.C., Shanghai, and Blackpool.
20. Science Museum
This Museum is one of the city’s oldest tourist attractions, attracting about 3.5 million visitors annually.
It is a public-funded museum that does not charge an admission fee for visitors, although they are requested to donate if they can. Temporary exhibitions may incur an admission fee. It is one of the five museums in the Science Museum Group.
21. The National Gallery
Founded in 1824, the National Gallery contains a collection of over 2,300 paintings dating from the mid-13th century to 1900.
This Gallery’s collection belongs to the government on behalf of the British public, and entry to the primary display is free. Moreover, it was materialized when 38 paintings were bought by the British government from John Julius Angerstein’s heirs. The current director of the National Gallery is Gabriele Finaldi.
22. HMS Belfast
The HMS Belfast is a Town-class light cruiser for the Royal Navy. She is now permanently moored as a museum ship on the River Thames in London. The Imperial War Museum handles her operations.
She was launched on St. Patrick’s Day in 1938 and was initially part of the British naval blockade against Germany in the Second World War. In 1967, efforts were made for her preservation.
23. Piccadilly Circus
Piccadilly Circus is a street intersection and public space in the City of Westminster on the West End of London. The word circus has Latin origins from the word “circle.”
The Circus now connects Piccadilly, Coventry Street, the Haymarket, and Regent Street. It is close to major shopping and entertainment areas in the West End. This street area is one of the most popular landmarks in London and is often featured on the media and in movies.
24. Covent Garden
Covent Garden is at the West End between St Martin’s Lane and Drury Lane. Vegetables and fruits markets in the central square are linked to this garden. The Central Building of this garden was a shopping centre in 1980 and is now a famous tourist location containing pubs, cafes, and small shops. This area has a great vibe about it and taking a trip to Covent Garden is one of the best things to do in London at Christmas because there are so many cool things to do in Covent Garden.
25. Camden Town
Camden is a district northwest of London, 2.5 miles from Charing Cross. It is the administrative Centre of the London Borough of Camden, identified in the London Plan as one of the 34 major centers in Greater London.
Currently, this town has multiple street markets and music venues for the tourists and locals alike, making it one of the most popular landmarks in London.
26. Trafalgar Square
Trafalgar Square is a public space in the City of Westminster established in the early 19 century. Its name is a tribute to Admiral Nelson’s victory at the Battle of Trafalgar against the French and Spanish forces.
The square is famous for community gatherings, political demonstrations, war protests, and campaigns against climate change.
27. Sky Garden
The Sky Garden is a famous enlarged glass dome dedicated to public gardens and London’s most exotic social spaces. These areas include observation decks and an open-air terrace.
Sky Garden also has restaurants such as Darwin Brasserie and Sky Pod Bar.
28. Kew Gardens
Kew Gardens is one of the world’s largest botanical gardens, found in Southwest London. It is home to several mythological and botanical species. Founded in 1840 from the exotic garden at Kew Park, its living collections include data on 27,000 taxa.
Its library contains more than 750,000 volumes and an illustration collection containing more than 175,000 prints and drawings of plants.
29. Carnaby Street
Carnaby Street is a central shopping region in Soho, Central London. It is near Regent and Oxford Street and is home to some of the world’s biggest fashion brands.
The Street’s name comes from Karnaby House, built in 1683 to the east. The origin of this name is unknown, however. There were tiny houses on The Street by the year 1690.
30. Portobello Road
In the Notting Hill district, there is a Portobello Road. It is the London’s most notable street market, known for its second-hand clothes, pastries, and antiques.
With more than 1000 dealers selling several different kind of antiques, it is the world’s largest antique’s market, making this one of the most important landmarks in London.
31. Regent’s Park
Regents Park is one of the Royal Parks of London, occupying high ground in northwest Inner London, split between the City of Westminster and the Borough of Camden.
Apart from its extensive parkland and lake, it contains several structures and various organizations, both public and private – the famous ones being Regent University and London Zoo.
32. St. James’s Park
St. James’s Park is in the heart of London, named after a leper hospital dedicated to St James the Less. Buckingham Palace bounds the park to the west, the Mall to the north, Horse Guards to the east, and Birdcage Walk to the south. It meets Green Park at Queen’s Gardens with the Victoria Memorial at its Centre.
33. The Churchill War Rooms
Churchill War Rooms is a museum in London and one of the five branches of the Imperial War Museum. The Museum comprises the Cabinet War Room, a historic underground complex housed a British government command centre throughout the Second World War.
After the Second World War, the Ministry of Works and the Department of Environment worked on preserving the Rooms.
34. National Portrait Gallery
The National Portrait Gallery (NPG) is an art gallery in London that contains a collection of portraits of historical, critical, and famous British people.
It was the first national public Gallery dedicated to portraits worldwide when it opened in 1856. Its expansion took place twice. The Gallery is a non-departmental public body sponsored by the Department for Digital, Culture, Media, and Sport.
35. Chinatown Gate
Chinatown Gate is a Chinese territory in the City of Westminster that borders Soho in its north and west. This territory is present in the area surrounding Gerrard Street.
The area contains several Chinese supermarkets, restaurants, and stores where you can buy souvenirs.
36. Westminster Cathedral
Westminster Cathedral is the mother church of the Catholic Church in England and Wales. It is the largest Catholic Church in the U.K. and the seat of the Archbishop of Westminster.
The Diocese of Westminster purchased the site on which the Cathedral stands in the City of Westminster in 1885. Its construction was complete in 1903. John Francis Bentley designs this Cathedral in a neo-Byzantine style.
37. The Wallace Collection
The Wallace Collection is in Manchester Square, named after Sir Richard Wallace. He built the extensive collection along with the Marquesses of Hertford in the 18th and 19th centuries.
The collection features fine and decorative arts from the 15th to the 19th centuries, with significant holdings of French 18th-century paintings, furniture, arms, and armor.
38. Somerset House
Somerset House is a large neoclassical complex on the south side of the Strand in Central London overlooking the River Thames, just east of Waterloo Bridge.
Sir William Chambers designed the present Somerset House, and its extension occurred in the Victorian era. It was a grand public building housing various government and public benefit society offices.
Somerset House hosts different events and activities throughout the year, making this one of the most important landmarks in London.
39. Royal Albert Hall
The Royal Albert Hall is a concert hall on the northern edge of South Kensington, London. It is one of the most prized and distinctive buildings in the U.K.
The Hall’s management is a registered charity that receives no government funding. The Hall has a capacity of 5,272 people, and it was opened in 1871 by Queen Victoria.
40. Victoria and Albert Museum
The Victoria and Albert Museum (V&A) is the world’s biggest Museum in applied arts, design, and decorative arts, which has a massive collection of 2.2 million items. Queen Victoria and Prince Albert were the inspiration behind it.
The Museum owns the world’s most extensive collection of post-classical sculptures, with the holdings of Italian Renaissance items being the largest outside Italy. The departments of Asia include art from South Asia, China, Japan, Korea, and the Islamic World. This is another example of one of the most important landmarks in London,
41. Holland Park
Holland Park is present in Kensington, on the western edge of Central London. It contains a street and public park of the same name.
This park has no boundaries, but several areas in all directions roughly bound it. There are tree-lined streets with large Victorian townhouses containing many shops, cultural tourist attractions such as the Design Museum, luxury spas, hotels, and restaurants.
42. St Mary Axe
St Mary Axe was a medieval parish in the City of London whose name survives as that of the Street which formerly occupied it.
The Street originates from Houndsditch, with traffic flowing from one direction. It originates at the southern end with a single turn at Leadenhall Market.
43. Museum of London
This Museum is on the London Wall close to Barbican Centre as part of the Barbican complex of buildings. The Museum of London has the world’s most extensive urban history collection, with more than six million objects.
It truly depicts the history of London from beginning until now. Moreover, the museum entrance is free for the public so the tourist can easily explore this place. It is for this reason that this museum is one of the most popular landmarks in London.
44. Barbican Centre
The Barbican Centre is a performing art centre in the Barbican Estate of the City of London and the most significant of its kind in Europe.
Classical and contemporary music concerts, film screenings, and exhibitions are some events which take place in the Centre.
It also has a library, three restaurants, and a conservatory. This Centre is owned, funded, and managed by the City of London Corporation.
45. Stamford Bridge
Stamford Bridge is the stadium of Chelsea Football Club. With a capacity of 40,341, it is the ninth largest venue in the top flight of English football, the Premier League.
The stadium was open in 1877, and since then, it has hosted several matches for the English Football team and cup competitions, including the F.A. Cup, League Cup, and Charity Shields. Many tourists choose to come here to watch a match or tour the stadium, making this a one of the most popular landmarks in London for sports fans!
46. Shakespeare’s Globe
Shakespeare’s Globe is a reconstruction of the Globe Theater, an Elizabethan playhouse for which Shakespeare wrote his plays.
The original theatre was built in 1599, destroyed by the fire in 1613, rebuilt in 1614, and demolished in 1644. Due to safety designs, it is only able to accommodate a capacity of 1,400 spectators.
47. Southwark Cathedral
The Southwark Cathedral lies on the south bank of the River Thames, close to London Bridge. It is the mother church of the Anglican Diocese of Southwark.
The Cathedral has been a place of Christian worship for more than 1,000 years now. It has been a cathedral only since the creation of the diocese of Southwark in 1905.
48. Imperial War Museum
This British national museum organisation has five branches, three of which are in London. It was founded in 1917 and intended to record Britain’s civil and military war effort and sacrifice during WWI.
It was initially in Crystal Palace but then moved to a bigger space in the Imperial Institute in South Kensington.
49. Sea Life London Aquarium
The Sea Life London Aquarium is on the ground floor of County Hall on the South Bank of the River Thames in Central London.
It opened in March 1997 as the London Aquarium and hosted about a million visitors yearly.
50. Emirates Stadium
Another one for the football fans, Emirates Stadium is the home of Premier League football club Arsenal F.C. This is one of those landmarks in London that football fans can’t miss! The stadium was completed in 2006 and had a capacity of 60,704 – making it the fourth-largest football stadium in all of England.
The stadium in Holloway, London, and apart from football games, this incredible landmark has also hosted music concerts.
51. King’s Cross
King’s Cross is a district in Central London on either side of Euston Road. Its current name is due to the presence of King George IV’s monument which was present here from 1830 to 1845.
King’s Cross has cheap rental properties which is why many designers and artists prefer living here. There are several cultural attractions which make people want to settle in this area. The British Library is present nearby.
If you are a fan of Harry Potter, you can also come to the train station here to visit platform 9 3/4!
52. London Zoo
This zoo is the world’s oldest scientific zoo, making is one of the most important landmarks in London. It was established in London on 27 April 1828 for use as a collection for scientific study. The zoo was open to the public in 1847.
Today, the zoo has 673 species of animals with 19,289 individuals – making it one of the largest collections in the United Kingdom. The name Regent’s zoo is also common for it.
53. Abbey Road Studios
Abbey Road Studios is a recording studio at 3 Abbey Road in the City of Westminster. It was set up in 1931 by Gramophone Company, a predecessor of British Music company EMI.
Some of the greatest English bands have recorded their music in this studio. The most famous one of them is the Beatles. For many innovative recording techniques, Studio Room Two was a popular room the band adopted in the 60s.
54. Hampstead Heath
An ancient heath in London, this area spans 320 hectares and extends along a sandy ridge. It is one of the highest points in London, running from Hampstead to Highgate.
The southeast part of the heath is Parliament Hill. Along the eastern perimeter, there is a series of ponds including three swimming pools that are open to the public.
55. Royal Observatory Greenwich
The Royal Observatory in Greenwich is situated on a hill in Greenwich Park in South East London, overlooking the Thames to the north. It has played a significant role in the history of navigation and astronomy, meaning that it is one of the most important landmarks in London.
The Prime Meridian passes through it, named Greenwich Mean Time. The observatory was commissioned in 1675 by King Charles II, with the foundation stone laid on 10 August.
56. National Maritime Museum
The National Maritime Museum is a maritime museum in Greenwich, London, a part of the Royal Museums Greenwich. The Museum was brought to life by the National Maritime Museum Act of 1934.
Like other publicly funded museums in the U.K., it has no admission charge. However, there are charges to enter temporary exhibitions, usually done in collaboration with other museums.
57. Tottenham Hotspur Stadium
As its name says, the stadium is home to Tottenham Hotspur, a team in the highest division of English football, the Premier League. This stadium is the team’s new stadium which was set up in 2016.
This stadium has a seating capacity of 62,850 people, making it the third-largest football stadium in England and the most significant club ground in London. It is a multi-purpose stadium and features the world’s first diving, retractable football pitch with synthetic turf.
58. Cutty Sark
It is a British clipper ship built on the River Leven and one of the last tea clippers to be made. It is because, after this, vessels of bigger size were better options.
Cutty Sark lists as part of the National Historic Fleet. She is among the only three clipper ships from the 19th century.
59. Craven Cottage
Craven Cottage has been the home of football club Fulham F.C. since 1896. It is a football ground team and is present in West London.
It is next to Bishop’s Park on the banks of the River Thames, where it was originally a royal hunting lodge having a history of 300 years old.
60. London Stadium
Previously known as the Olympic Stadium, this is a multi-purpose outdoor stadium at Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park in the Stratford district of London. It is in the Lower Lea Valley, 6 miles east of central London.
The stadium was for the 2012 Summer Olympics and Paralympics. Following the games, it had renovation for multi-purpose use, and it is currently the home of Premier League club West Ham United. It can seat 66,000 people.
Landmarks in London- Final Thoughts
As I have demonstrated in this post about the landmarks in London, London offers so much, from historical architecture and rich cultural heritage to world-class museums. Above I have shared 60 famous landmarks in London that many of you don’t know. So, don’t forget to add these landmarks to your bucket list before finalising your trip.
Did I miss any landmarks in London out? Let me know your favourite landmarks in London in the comments below!
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