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Top-Rated Tourist Attractions in London

London, capital of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, seat of the royal family, Parliament and government, lies in a gently undulating basin enclosed by hills, on both banks of the Thames some 50mi/75km above its estuary into the North Sea. The "Greenwich Meridian", longitude 0°, runs through the London suburb of Greenwich. London is not only the financial and cultural center of Great Britain but also one of the most interesting cities in the world, a real metropolis, where people from all different countries have made their contribution to a cultural melting pot which finds expression in music, theater, dance, literature, and not least, gastronomy.

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The City and The Tower

The City and The TowerThe City and The Tower View slideshow
The nucleus of London was on the north bank of the Thames. The Romans founded their first settlement here and erected fortified walls which ran from the Tower northwards via London Wall street, Aldersgate and Ludgate down to the Thames and back to the Tower. Today the City is the commercial center of London with the headquarters of legal and financial institutions.

Strand, Holborn, Covent Garden and Trafalgar Square

West End

London's West End is famous not for its historic sights or outstanding museums but for the exclusive shops and renowned department stores. Here are the theaters, cinemas and myriad of restaurants specializing in local and international cuisine and the no longer notorious district of Soho.

On the South Bank of the Thames

East End

Sights in the Outlying Area

Sights in the Outlying AreaSights in the Outlying Area View slideshow

London Underground

London UndergroundLondon Underground View slideshow
The London Underground was opened in 1863 and is the world's oldest. Sometimes called the tube, it is made up of 12 lines with 408km of track, much of which is underground. Although it's called the London Underground, almost half is above ground.
There are 275 stations. The fare system is fully automated with automatic checking on entry and exit at most stations and random inspections on trains. There is a penalty fare. The system serves just under a billion people yearly. During peak hours in the central area trains run every two and a half minutes.
The system serves Heathrow Airport.

Surroundings

Abbey Church in St AlbansAbbey Church in St Albans View slideshow

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