The City of London, also known as ‘the City’ or ‘the Square Mile’, is a small district at the heart of the capital and is governed by The City of London Corporation. It is the oldest and most historical part of London and is world famous for being the leading international financial and business centre.
It is a unique part of London that is steeped in history with its wonderful medieval buildings and remains of the Roman city wall. Its unique status means it is not classed as one of the 32 boroughs of London, but stands alone as a district, governed and policed independently. It may only have approximately 8,000 residents but its numbers swell daily with the arrival of 500,000 commuters and 10 million tourists every year.
Here’s our top 5 things to do on a day trip to The City of London.
Tower of London
Situated on the north bank of the River Thames, The Tower of London dates back over 1,000 years. It is a world heritage site and attracts well over 3 million people every year. Over the years it has served many purposes such as royal residence, barracks, armoury, prison and museum. It is famous for housing the crown jewels and for holding famous prisoners, many of which met an untimely death. For tales of ghost stories and hauntings, as well as the daily Beefeater traditions visit their website: https://www.hrp.org.uk/tower-of-london
St Paul’s Cathedral
St Paul’s Cathedral was rebuilt by Christopher Wren after the great fire of London in 1666. It has hosted many state occasions such as the Royal Wedding of Prince Charles and Lady Diana Spencer and the funeral of Sir Winston Churchill. As a working church it has daily prayer services which anyone can join for free. If you would like to tour around the building, there is an entrance fee and it is recommended that you allow an hour and a half to two hours to take in the spectacular sights. You can enjoy the panoramic views from the Stone and Golden Galleries, listen to the wonderful acoustics in the Whispering Gallery and go down to the crypt, where the tombs of Nelson, Wellington and Sir Christopher Wren can be viewed. Visit the website for more details: https://www.stpauls.co.uk/
The Sky Garden is the perfect place to view London’s famous skyline. Located at 20 Fenchurch Street in the building affectionately known as the ‘Walkie Talkie, the Sky Garden spreads over three floors and are free to enter. There are several places where you can enjoy the atmosphere from the exclusive Fenchurch Terrace to the vibrant Sky Pod Bar. Booking is recommended for both visiting the gardens and dining. Visit https://skygarden.london/sky-garden for opening times.
The City of London has many famous restaurants located within it’s boundaries, but if you fancy something a little different there are several live music restaurants in London where you can enjoy a wonderful dining experience alongside great entertainment. Boisdale in Bishopsgate offers a fantastic British menu which includes shellfish, British tapas as well as a variety of salmon and succulent beef dishes. Live jazz music is played every Tuesday to Friday.