London is the capital city of England and the seat of the Government of the United Kingdom, which is located around the Palace of Westminster. It is situated in the South East of Britain on the Thames River just above Kent and in great proximity to surrounding European countries.
The outpost which eventually became London first makes an appearance in history as a small military storage depot employed by the Romans during their invasion of Britain, which began in A.D. 43. It went from trade centre to bustling port and acquired the name Londinium in Tacitus’ annals. It quickly became both the provincial capital and the administrative, commercial, and financial center of what was then Roman Britain with a population of about 30,000 by the third century.
London has a temperate climate devoid of the extremes found in Europe. The seasons are distinct but weather can be unpredictable with out-of-season storms, icy spells and often heat-waves too. Most visitors prefer to travel to London between April and October when the temperature is warm and the days are long.
London’s global reach has turned it into a leading centre for the enjoyment of international cuisine. It has been adapted to the local climate but influences stretch far across the world from North America to India. Traditional dishes of this city include meat and vegetable patties, lamb and mint sauce, Yorkshire puddings, meatloaf, cheese on toast, roast beef with horseradish sauce, fish and chips and bangers and mash. Another tradition is tea time. In the afternoon tea is enjoyed with scones or sandwiches or both.
These are the top 10 London attractions compiled by London Visit’s website: The British Museum which exhibits the works of man from prehistoric to modern day, displaying works from all around the world; Tate Modern, Britain’s modern and contemporary art museum. It has a unique shape due to it previously having been a power station; the National Gallery, Trafalgar Square’s crowning glory – a vast space filled with Western European paintings form the 13th to the 19th centuries; the Natural History Museum – a collection of the biggest, tallest and rarest animals in the world and also a dinosaur exhibition; London Eye – a major feature of the skyline and a wonderful way to take in the skyline too; the Science Museum – from the future of space travel to exploring the biggest question of all (who am I?), there are interactive and educational exhibits to keep you and your family amazed; the Victoria and Albert Museum which has 3,000 years worth of amazing artifacts from around the world; Madame Tussauds – wax models of everyone who’s anyone (Her Majesty the Queen, Lady Gag, Usain Bolt); the Royal Museums Greenwich – the world’s largest maritime museum and, finally, the Tower of London – one of the world’s most famous buildings with a 900 year history as a royal palace, place of execution, arsenal, prison, jewel house and zoo!
London is so rich with cultures and places to see that this is only a brief introduction, a taster of the mainstream wonders it can offer. We haven’t even begun to touch down on the music, nightlife, industry, accommodations and entertainment that await you in this city that never sleeps.