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London is situated upon both banks of the River Thames; it is the largest city in Britain and one of the largest in the world. Its population is about 7 million people. London dominates the life of Britain. It is the chief port of the country and the most important commercial, manufacturing and cultural centre. There is little heavy industry in London, but there is a wide range of light industry in Greater London. London consists of three parts: the City of London, the West End and the East End.
Buckingham Palace is the London home of the Queen. Although in use for the many official events and receptions held by The Queen, areas of Buckingham Palace are opened to visitors on a regular basis. When the flag is flying on the top she is at home. There is the Victoria Monument just outside the gates.
The Houses of Parliament, officially the New Palace of Westminster, is the seat of The British government. Parliament consists of the House of Lords and the House of Commons. The Houses of commons sits to the side of the Clock Tower (Big Ben), the Houses of Lords – to the Victoria Tower. The current building was built in the mid-19th century and was designed by British architect Sir Charles Barry.
Westminster Abbey is the best-known church in England. It is the crowning and the burial place of British monarchs. It has its world famous Poet’s Corner with memorials to Chaucer, Shakespeare, Dickens, Hardy, Kipling and others. It was begun in 1245 for King Henry III. The chapel of Henry VII, designed in the Tudor style, was added in 1503. Chapel Henry VII Coronation Chair
The Tower of London is a very big castle. It is the oldest place and the most famous of all historical buildings in London. It stands today almost unchanged since first it was built in the 11th century. It was a castle, a palace, a zoo, a prison, but it is only a museum today.
Ravens have always inhabited the Tower of London, and a centuries old legend says that if the ravens leave, the Tower and kingdom will fall. Being a superstitious person, Charles II decreed that there should always be at least six ravens in residence at the Tower of London. One of the Yeoman Warders is a Ravenmaster and cares for the ravens, feeding them meat and bird biscuits. The ravens are well cared for and can live a long time. The oldest raven died at age 44.
Saint Paul’s is the cathedral of the City of London. Its dome is a symbol of London. Old Saint Paul’s was destroyed by the Great Fire of London in 1666. The fire was so hot, it melted the cathedral bells. After the fire, Sir Christopher Wren designed a new Saint Paul’s. During World War Two, a lot of bombs hit the buildings around Saint Paul’s, but the cathedral survived.
The huge rotunda offers room for 5000 people and the magnificent concert hall, with its purple seats and curtains in the countless boxes, truly has a royal splendor. Completed in 1871, Royal Albert Hall in London, was designed by British Army engineer General H. Scott. It is one of the city’s principal concert halls.
The Planetarium is over forty years old and offers star shows in the great green dome and two interactive zones. The shows last 10-12 minutes with commentary. You can enjoy interactive exhibits before watching the star show. Tussauds London Planetarium, part of Madame Tussauds interactive celebrity experience, is one of the most visited attractions in Europe.
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