London is one of the most popular destinations for tourists in the world as can be seen by the 17.4 million tourists who flock to the city every year. Whe3ther you are here as a lone, soul searching traveller, on business in our monolith of a financial district or are here on a family holiday, there will always be something for any and all tastes to do in London. This is due to our fantastic heritage of arts and culture, and the fact that so many people flock here for work and therefore the tourist and entertainment sectors of this great British city begin to swell. Here are a list of defining features of London, which makes it irresistible to visitors.
The history of London dates back to the 11th century and even has traces of the Roman Empire. This is due to the River Thames being a great trade route through the country and therefore having a city build up around it since ancient times. The city plays host to a host of historic sites due to its being the hub of government and rule in the UK. Buckingham Palace is a great place for tourists to visit due to the presence of the royal guard outside and occasional tours around the residents of the Royal Family. The royal parks of London also prove an idyllic trip on a sunny day and the tower of London has a long spanning history of political intrigue and strategic importance.
London has played host to many great musicians, from The Beatles to Jimi Hendrix and since the “swinging sixties” has cultivated its home grown talent in venues spanning the entirety of the city. Music often brings with it entire scenes and therefore areas of London have grown and become some of the hip go to places in the city. With Brixton being home to a large Afro-Caribbean community, musical influences from overseas began to influence bands such as The Clash. The Leicester Square Theatre’s previous incarnation as a music venue saw one of the first and most influential performances by The Sex Pistols whilst areas such as Camden hold many venues which focus on music ranging from hip-hop to blues and everything in between. Classical music venues include The Coliseum and The Sadler’s Well’s Theatre. There are many notable artists to come out of London throughout the 20th century. These include Amy Winehouse, Adele, Dizzee Rascal, The Clash and The Jam.
London is also well known for its nightlife and dance music, home growing artists such as Groove Armada and Basement Jaxx and with many prominent clubs in the city. These include Corsica Studios and Fabric where up and coming dance and electronic artists and DJ’s can be found to play into the next morning. For those visitors looking for nightlife, London will not disappoint if you don’t mind missing out on a bit of sleep that is.
Theatre, art and performance
London has a long history of theatre and the arts. Since the middle ages, many theatre companies and actors would compete to be seen by the Royalty, often playing at such venues as Buckingham Palace. Whist the amount of venues has grown from just a handful including the Globe Theatre, London ahs become even more of a hub of creativity. On the Southbank you can find the double whammy of the Southbank Centre and the National Theatre where audiences can see the best in the performing arts. There are also a wide range of theatres across the city, including the Battersea Arts Centre and the Royal Court Theatre.
If the arts aren’t your thing then there is always a lot of shopping you can do in London. Areas such as Oxford Circus and Covent Garden host many of the best in high end high street retail and fashion. These include shops such as Topshop and department stores like Harrods and John Lewis, some fot he biggest department stores in the country. If you want the more boutique shops then there are local markets selling everything from vintage clothes to fresh food and produce. Whatever your shopping tastes, London will definitely be able to cater to you.
London is also well renowned for its impeccable hospitality services. If you’re looking for somewhere to stay in the city then look no further than Park Grand Lancaster Gate. With great transport links to airports such as Heathrow and Gatwick, the Lancaster Gate is located right next to Hyde Park in the heart of the city. With so much of the aforementioned on your doorstep, you’ll still find it hard to leave the hotel, with a range of amazing five star bedrooms at affordable prices and a concierge service like no other.