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High risers: the 10 best buildings in London

Written by
Kate Lloyd

Who says buildings are boring? We've chatted to city architects, leading authors, Instagrammers and the Mayor of London himself about their favourite structures in London to create the ultimate list of London's 50 best buildings. Here's the top ten.

1. The Shard


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Don't miss: The sides of the Shard don’t touch at the corners. It’s to allow the building to ‘breathe’ apparently.

2. Balfron Tower


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Don't miss: More modernist architecture nearby. Robin Hood Gardens estate is a 15-minute walk from Balfron and also made our Top 50 list.

3. Victoria and Albert Museum


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Don't miss: The statue on top of the central tower. She represents Fame... and you might spot that her nose is missing.

4. National Theatre

Don't miss: The aluminium fins and crumpled steel mesh of the new Max Hayne Centre, added during the recent refurbishment.

5. NCP Car Park Welbeck Street

Don't miss: Actually parking your motor in this building while you still can – it’s been bought by a hotel company.

6. Westminster Underground station


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Don't miss: The deep level platforms. The Jubilee line extension is the deepest excavation ever attempted in central London. A special system of tubes pumped material under Big Ben and the Houses of Parliament to stop them from sinking during the digging.

7. Christ Church Spitalfields


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Don't miss: It also has an amazing interior, with a giant Georgian organ. Oo-er!

8. Broadcasting House


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Don't miss: Eric Gill’s sculptures of Ariel on the walls of the original building. Completed in 1933, the ‘spirit of the air’ from Shakespeare’s play ‘The Tempest’ was seen as a personification of the medium of broadcasting.

9. Tate Modern


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Don't miss: The view from the platform in the new extension, which not only has great views of the city but lets you stare into the living rooms of the neighbouring apartments. Creepy.

10. London Aquatics Centre


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Don't miss: Take a spin round the track at the nearby Olympic velodrome, which was also selected for our Top 50 buildings list.

Want more brilliant buildings? Check out our list of the 50 best buildings in London

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