This past week we had the chance to attend the summer launch party for Skylight rooftop bar at Tobacco Dock in east London.
We didn’t know Skylight rooftop bar existed but wow, what a venue! We’ll definitely be back. Spread across three huge levels, Skylight includes undercover spaces (for when London weather isn’t playing nice), games, comfortable seating and unbeatable views over London.
Summer in London is here, and it means our rooftop bars are beginning to open their doors again, just in time for May’s first long weekend. After a long cold winter, we are ready to play.
Take a look around Skylight …. see you soon for summer in London.
When Cooper said he was taking me to Walthamstow to explore a cool London secret he’d heard about called God’s Own Junkyard, well, I thought he’d slightly lost the plot!
But, as it turns out, this place is extraordinary. Housed in an unassuming warehouse, the immense collection of neon signs and vintage finds from old nightclubs, bars, film sets and abandoned stores really lights you up. It’s fascinating. There’s a bar and cafe too.
Take a look around God’s Own Junkyard with us…
Do you know somewhere quirky and cool we should visit in London? Drop us a line in the comments below.
If you’re visiting the city, don’t forget to explore via the Thames as well. The river bus isn’t very expensive and gives you so many beautiful, historical old views of this fab city we are lucky enough to call home.
Here’s a recent adventure we embarked upon starting at the Tower of London and riding the Thames Clipper to Greenwich.
London is truly one of the best cities in the world, and for that reason plenty of people want to visit. As a visitor it’s easy to fall into the trap of paying to go to the top of buildings to see this lovely cityscape. There are free options though!
It can be expensive – but we’re here to share money-saving travel tips.
St Paul’s Cathedral is a top pick for visitors and opposite is a shopping centre called One New Change where you can get some of the best free London views!
It seems no matter where you look in London a crane isn’t too far from sight. Construction is cranking at a frenetic pace, with new skyscrapers and tower blocks quickly altering the cityscape. Contemporary architecture boasting eccentric names means unique structures like the Shard, ‘Gherkin’ and ‘Walkie Talkie’ now rub shoulders with older smaller cousins like St Paul’s Cathedral, Monument and London Eye.
There is one thing most of these structures have in common – they’re expensive if you want to enjoy their views! So, here we have presented some of our fave alternatives that are free or inexpensive to enter.
6 of the best London views free or under £5
Walkie-Talkie building (20 Fenchurch Street)
The Walkie-Talkie is one of our ultimate go-to destinations when family or friends arrive in London. The viewing platform is called the Sky Garden and it’s set over three storeys of elegantly landscaped public gardens.
As you exit the lift you’re greeted by a spacious and airy cafe/bar which connects seamlessly to the outside viewing platform. The Sky Garden boasts wonderful uninterrupted views across London, plus three restaurants if you fancy a meal. Entry is free BUT you need to book your place in advance.
Nearest tubes to the Sky Garden: Monument, Bank, Tower Hill, Cannon Street
The Great Fire of 1666 blazed for three days and destroyed much of medieval London. To commemorate this significant tragedy, Sir Christopher Wren designed the world’s tallest stone column, the Monument.
Monument is 202ft (61.5m) high and is situated 202ft away from the house of Thomas Farynor, who was the king’s baker in Pudding Lane (where the fire started). Climbing the 311 steps won’t you leave breathless but it will surprise with great views of the ‘Cheese Grater’ (122 Leadenhall Street) and Tower Bridge.
Dating back to Roman times, the former hunting park of Greenwich offers the best views of Docklands, Canary Wharf and the city of London. Additionally, it is home to the historic National Maritime Museum, the Queen’s House and the Royal Observatory perched on top of the hill. The world-famous prime meridian and home of Greenwich Mean Time (GMT) is only a stone’s throw away. Pack a picnic basket and make a day of it in one of London’s best and most beautiful Royal parks. There’s much to see and do in Greenwich, so we’d suggest setting a day aside to explore. Park entry is free.
Nearest tube: Cutty Sark or Greenwich (or catch a Thames ferry)
We first discovered the lovely view from Tate’s restaurant when our friend, Nicole, invited us up there for a catch-up drink when we were visiting London as tourists in 2009. We now take our own guests here!
Aside from housing an amazing art collection dating back to the 16th Century, Tate’s positioned on the Thames, and you can make your way to the cafe/bar for free to check out the amazing river view, Millennium Bridge and St Paul’s Cathedral. It’s worth splashing out on a beer or glass of bubbles (like Sarah does) when you’re visiting, and head up at nightfall to see the city sparkle. Entry is free (although special exhibits do have a separate charge).
Nearest tube: London Bridge, Blackfriars, St Pauls, Southwark
Emirates Cable Car
If you don’t mind being suspended by a thin cable 90m (300ft) above the River Thames, then the Emirates cable car is a truly memorable experience.
The journey between the Greenwich Peninsula and Royal Dock lasts an unforgettable ten minutes and provides a spectacular setting against the glass and steel of London’s skyscrapers. From the comfort of your cabin, you’re presented with bird’s eye views of the O2 arena, Canary Wharf, Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park and the Thames Barrier. Use your Oyster Card (London transport card) and receive a 25% discount.
Heron Tower (officially 110 Bishopsgate) is a commercial skyscraper near Liverpool Street station in the city and is home to two of London’s finest restaurants, the acclaimed Sushi Samba and the Duck and Waffle.
Sarah and I have indulged in many a cocktail at Sushi Samba while enjoying the 360-degree views of the city. You can almost touch my favourite building, the ‘Gherkin’. The elevator ride to the top is both terrifying and exciting as it shoots up the side of the building like a bullet train. Entry is free.
Nearest tube: Liverpool Street
Have other tips or a comment to share on the best London views? Drop us a line below…
Welcome to Travel Live learn, where we are passionate about living a life full of great adventures. We are Sarah + Cooper: we know life's short, and we're here to encourage you to make the most of it! We have worked in media, communication and creative roles for many years, and have spent over 10 years living and working abroad. Our hottest content topics here are pet friendly travel, house + pet sitting, and designing a life as expats or digital nomads wherever in the world you want to be. Join our community of over 11,000 like-minded adventurers - find out more by signing up for the mailing list and our Facebook Group. Find us on YouTube too. NEW podcast now live: search 'Freedom and Four Paws' on Apple podcasts, Spotify, Google podcasts or your fave podcast service provider.