The latest iconic landmark to alter the London skyline is The Shard. The building is a staggering 310 metres tall (1,016ft) making it the tallest building anywhere in Western Europe. The inspired design is the work of Renzo Piano a well respected master architect. His incredible design is now recognisable the world over as being in the heart of the City of London. Though not all of the building is open to the general public, floors 68, 69 and 72 have been given over to the public in the form of a viewing platform, a platform which it at least twice as high as any other viewing platform in the city. Needless to say the views on offer are incredible and allow you to see the expanse of the city in a very new and very dynamic way.
Ride The Tower
Overload your senses as you ride the high speed lifts that take you to the 68th floor in next to no time. Before you know it you will be 244 metres (800ft) above the city, enjoying what can only be described as a ‘cloudscape’ view of the world below. When you arrive on the 69th floor, you will discover that the view has opened up and there below you is the sprawling mass of one of the greatest cities in the world. From this fabulous viewing platform you have an incredible 360o view which extends for around 40 miles (64km) in every direction. From this incredible viewpoint you can see both the ancient and the modern aspects of the city sitting hand in hand in one of the most history filled, yet vibrant, cities you could ever hope to experience. Aside from the breathtaking views offered from the platform you will also find different aspects of the city brought to life in state of the art multimedia displays.
Take it Higher
If you want to push the boundaries of your senses just that little but further take a ride up to the 72nd floor. Now you are on the top most public level of the building. Here you are exposed to the elements, and the sounds of the city below you will be rising up to greet your ears. A glance above your head will give you a view of the immense shards of glass that form the iconic shape of the top of the tower disappearing into the sky.
Experiencing the View
Visitors to The Shard can expect to have a different experience depending on what time of day they choose to make the ascent, and again the view will be different in the evening and night time. The Shard is open to the public between 9 am and 10 pm, and those wishing to travel up the tower and take in the view are advised to book their tickets in advance. Once on the viewing platforms there is no limit placed upon the length of time that you can stay and enjoy the totally new perspective that the Shard offers across this ancient city.