Time Out says
A sightseeing icon that’s as beautiful to look at as it is to look out from
Much like the Millenium Dome – or, as its known to those who don’t remember the twentieth century, the O2 Arena – the London Eye was built to celebrate the year 2000. But unlike the ill-fated Dome, the Eye was a resounding success, and it’s hard to picture London’s skyline without it. Actually, this astonishingly popular attraction boasts a mouthful of a title: the highest cantilevered observation wheel in the world. It’s hardly any surprise that tourists arrive in their hordes to climb on.
Queues are generally pretty hefty; the ovular pods each carry a maximum of 25 people to a height of 135 metres. It rarely ever comes to a full halt – except for upkeep and to allow visitors who are elderly or have mobility issues on – so you won’t be standing on ceremony when you get on! Before you know it, you’re halfway into the sky and taking in the sweeping vistas of the Thames and wider London.
Before that, though, you begin with a brief 4D film in County Hall to witness a series of dazzling aerial shots of the capital – a nice prologue to what you’ll see first-hand. The pods themselves are surprisingly spacious, which means you’ll be able to roam and find a decent view. And on a clear day, you can even catch sight of Windsor Castle in the distance. Oh, and if the Queen’s opened the curtains at Buck House.
Thirty minutes later you’ll find yourselves back on the ground as the wheel completes one full rotation. The ride is smooth and steady, so any age will enjoy the trip – so long as they don’t have a fear of heights. The wheel is also entirely wheelchair accessible.
The popularity of the London Eye has drawn other attractions to the same stretch of the South Bank, between Westminster Bridge and the Golden Jubilee walk bridges. County Hall is a pleasure palace that houses a hotel, the Sea Life London Aquarium, the London Dungeon and Shrek’s Adventure London. Nearby Jubilee Gardens offers a chance for young families to run off steam after the queues and crowds, and the London Eye Pier directly below the wheel is a great place to jump onto one of the regular riverboat services that stop off at several points between Westminster and Greenwich.
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Users say (86)
Average User Rating
4.1 / 5
- 5 star:31
- 4 star:38
- 3 star:13
- 2 star:1
- 1 star:2
As I walked across Westminster Bridge today I had to stop and take this photo. London is such an amazing city - and The London Eye is a worthy modern landmark contrasting with the history of Parliament opposite.
I would have reviewed 5, but it turns out I am surprisingly afraid of heights. My girlfriend loved it though, and thought seeing me go pale every time it stopped was incredibly funny. It was our 1 year anniversary, and I thought it would be nice to do something spectacular, and the views (what I could see of them sitting down with my eyes half shut anyway) certainly were spectacular. overall had a good time, and would probably do it again now I know there is no chance of dying horrifically. Thanks guys!
I’ve done this four or five times, both as a London-living-tourist and as a school teacher. It’s such a great way to view London, especially in the Summer! You need to go early or not at peak times so that you don’t get bogged down in queues.
Gorgeous view, and you definitely have enough time, since the ride is exactly 30 minutes long! But it's going to make a serious dent in your travel budget; it was over $120 for my family to all go. My little sister was very bored, but the rest of us enjoyed taking photographs. The line was short, we went in late November, but I've heard it's usually a nightmare so I recommend getting tickets online!
Even by London standards the 'eye' is busy, by booking in advance you can avoid some of the lines (but you do risk the weather). I took my mum when she was visiting, and we were lucky enough to be placed in a pod that wasn't too crowded. The London Eye may have a lot of hype but it is worth it, the views are incredible, unobstructed and vast.
It moves slowly, but feels just right. A definite must do for any London bucket list!
The London Eye always seems to be the busiest attraction in London. There are always queues and on weekends they pile quite a few customers in to each pod so it can be a bit tricky to get a full view from e dry side of your pod but despite these negatives it is one of those things that everyone should do once.
You get great views of Big Ben and the Houses of Parliament as well as various other iconic landmarks in the city. Just having this big wheel located by the Thames makes the view instantly perfect.
It’ll take you half an hour to go round once so get those photos swiftly. And that’s what this attraction is really about...getting those special London photo memories.
There are less packecsites for good views but nothing gives you quite as good a view of Parliament. Worth doing once.
I agree with Todd N that this is something to do once. Great views, but pick a clear day to make the most of the entrance price.
It’s an iconic part of London where it sits right along the Thames River – you won’t miss it as it’s right near Big Ben.
It’s a cool concept where you’re in a giant ferris wheel and have about a 30 minute rotation in the pods and you’ll get good views. I think it’s worth at least once! I think it recently became sponsored by Coca Cola so now it’s called the Coca Cola London Eye – prices appear to have increased since their sponsorship.
Probably the busiest tourist attraction in London, but by far the best views of the London skyline you can find! The ride itself takes around 30 minutes to complete a full rotation, which is the perfect amount of time for a little rest and warm up. Once we got through the queue, which took about an hour on a Saturday evening, we were shuttled into a large capsule pod. Although spacy, there were a lot of people crammed into our pod which made it hard to move around and to look at the views on the other side of the pod. There was also only one small bench in the middle of the capsule which was occupied the entire rotation, so we spent the 30 minutes standing. Although there were some negatives to our experience, the view we got looking over London with the sun setting was breath-taking and made up for it! A good experience, however bear in mind that it will be very busy!
The London eye is probably the second most iconic London landmark after Westminster and I hugely recommend everyone to try the experience at least once.
Despite the crowd and the price it's worth visit it to see one of the best view over London (the best one is probably the one from the Shard). It's also nice to see the landscape opening up from the bottom until the top, something you can't experience at the Shard. If you are visiting with friends or family try guessing the different buildings and hills of London and then check them on the screen provided, it's usually a fun activity to do.
Two things bothered me a little, despite booking online I had to queue or buy a skip the queue special ticket, I find it a little be too much to ask and silly. The other thing was the nausea caused by the fact that the cabin moves in a circular way over itself (difficult to explain but you'll understand by looking at it closely), I could barely stand but my husband was ok.
An unobstructured view of London's skyline. Soar above the Thames and spot the iconic sights of London in this slow and steady experience. A must do for everyone visiting London!
I was fortunate enough to be invited in The London Eye by my fellow tastemaker and friend “Hollibakes” for a champagne experience – lucky me! This is a remarkable and iconic structure that we’re blessed with in our capital, a must see and do for most visitors to the city – although I’ve seen it hundreds of times, I’ve found that having it effectively on my doorstep meant that I never actually got round to visiting before now! And what a way to do it, the VIP offering from The London Eye was exceptional as well as providing the wonderful views you can expect as standard, we were offered complimentary champagne and nibbles on our rotation which made the whole thing feel so much more special and exclusive. Afterwards, we were taken on a Thames sightseeing cruise with you guessed it – more free flowing bubbles! Then in case we weren’t all fizzed out, there’s even a champers bar to end our visit. I left feeling very content and elated to have finally ticked this off my bucket list… and perhaps just a little tipsy!!
Standing tall and proud diagonally opposite the Big Ben is this giant Ferris wheel of London. On New Year's Eve, there is spectacular fireworks show here but in my opinion it is not worth viewing them live whilst being crushed in the crowd. You get better view from the comfort of your living room thanks to the BBC!
I have been to the wheel several times, each time with visitors. On a nice clear day, try to go at sunset time as the view from above is beautiful. However, the queue could be crazy. My suggestion is to buy the tickets in advance and avoid school holiday times. Yes the tickets were on the expensive side but the majority of my (overseas) visitors were impressed with the spectacular view of the Big Ben, the Thames, and the London skyline once our pod came close to or at the highest level. Each pod had plenty of space for people to move around in as they purposely did not stuff them full ensuring a comfortable ride for everyone.
I always said to myself I'd never go on the London Eye because it was such a tourist thing to do! A few weeks ago I had to eat my own words, as one of my friends treated me to a ticket! There wasn't much of a waiting time as she had got the fast tracked tickets, the pod was quite large, we had about 10 people in ours.
The champagne experience was a good move I reckon, anything with bubbly in my hand is a good move!
It moves really slowly, like you can't even feel it! We went on a weekday and the sky was so clear, giving the perfect view of London, a 360 degree angle once you reach the top! Its a photographers dream.... We also witnessed a surprise proposal, it was so cute, unfortunately for him though, she declined!
Not the best of pods to be in after a while, as the mood sombered a bit! But hey, thank gawd for champers and sunshine!!
Nonetheless, I have fully eaten my words and recommend this to anyone, londoner or tourist or not, just go enjoy it and see what London has to offer! It makes you fall in love with the city you live in!
I went to the London eye few months ago whilst I had cousins visiting.
They really wanted to go and I must be honest, I thought I was going to hate it....
In the end they convinced me and I joined them.
If there is one tip you need to keep in mind whilst booking, it's the sunset.
Once you're done with the horrible queue to get your tickets + the horrible queue outside before getting in one of the capsules, you really access a fantastic view of London and trust me, you want to see it with a lovely sunset.
The London Eye is over 15 years old and still brings in tourists and Londoners as it is such a iconic structure and experience to have. From the pods you will be able to take in breathtaking views of London, the Houses of Parliament, Tower Bridge, Big Ben etc. just so much to see. It is obviously best to go on a dry day be it during the day or night as both bring a different look to London. They also do many events throughout the year now on the London Eye from champagne flights to special talk events which in turn then makes you want to go back on the Eye without this I don't think I would go back on it.
I was against visiting the London Eye for so long. In my eye this attraction was always for tourists who doesn't know other places to watch the skyline from (e.g. SkyGardens). Then a friend got me a standard entry ticket and we went one February evening.
I liked that there wasn't any queues or crowd around, we got in about 2 minutes (hail the off season, I've seen people lining up and waiting forever). Being in the capsule was fun and the view was mesmerising. It was an amazing experience to see London at night from above. I think the timing (30 minutes) was just right: long enough to truly enjoy ourselves and not get bored.
I liked the experience: this is a "classic" attraction, the view is beautiful, going around is exciting...although I believe 23 pounds as a standard entry is overpriced. I don't know much about the other options (VIP experience etc.), but maybe (as I reckon this is more like a "one-time" activity) overall it's worth to go for the more exclusive ones if you visit the London Eye.
Not just for tourists! I treated my sister to the VIP experience to show off my beautiful city and ended up falling in love with London all over again. The highlight for me was the river cruise tour at sunset with mimosa in hand. The tour guide had unlimited facts and entertaining stories about the architecture and history of the city along the way but also had us in fits of giggles with his terrible jokes.
Last month, I was fortunate enough to have the opportunity to try out the new VIP experience for the London Eye. This comprised of a ride on the London Eye, a ride on the London River Cruise, and some time in the new VIP lounge. The first came complete with nibbles and a glass of champagne, the second included more champagne, and nibbles and drinks were served throughout the night at the VIP lounge.
We were blessed with a sunny and warm evening that night, which was the perfect weather to take sunset pictures aboard the London Eye and while cruising down the River Thames. It made the experience even more enjoyable than it already was. I thought the views aboard the London Eye were pretty stunning! As it turns around at a slow speed, you have the chance to take some really decent pictures both north and south of the river. My favourite shot was definitely when we reached the peak - the view of Big Ben and the Houses of Parliament against the backdrop of a beautiful sunset was rather romantic. I liked that the the capsules of the London Eye were spacious, so you weren't knocking into others during the ride and that it was air conditioned, especially in the warm weather.
For the London River Cruise, we were lucky enough to find a seat on the upper deck to enjoy the sun (and get some of that much needed vitamin D coming out of winter) and the sunset. As we boarded, we received a glass of champagne in the lower deck and were topped up throughout the ride. I very much enjoyed our guide for the cruise as well! He kept us informed and entertained with his witty comments on the history of the surrounding buildings as we cruised down the Thames. The ride lasted a good amount of time - enough to take more stunning pictures and to enjoy being on the cruise.
After disembarking the cruise, we headed into the VIP lounge. I liked the layout of the place because the bar was placed in the middle in a circle and surrounded by loads of sofa seating. Waiters kept us satisfied with small canapés and making sure our glasses were always filled. When I declined another top up of champagne, the waitress was kind enough to offer me some juice to go along with it to make it into a cocktail, which I thought was quite nice. It was also easy to ask for water at the bar and it never got too crowded or noisy. The nibbles were quick to go as soon as the waiters and waitresses came out with new servings but I thought they were quite on the ball with making sure everyone got some.
Overall, it was a lovely experience and probably something I'd recommend doing as a romantic gesture. Just make sure the weather's predicted to be good that evening and I'm sure it'll be an evening to remember!
I was one of the lucky tastemakers who tried out the new VIP experience on the London Eye recently, complete with nibbles and as much champagne as you can drink. On this particular evening, it was the warmest and clearest weather we'd had all year, so we couldn't have asked for more perfect conditions for our first trip on the Eye. It definitely exceeded my expectations, the views across the London skyline are unparalleled and the whole experience was spot on.
The London Eye rotation was followed by a brilliant champagne river cruise down the Thames, which couldn't have been a better way to finish off the evening. The tour guide was very funny, and told us many fun and interesting facts about London!
Thank you TimeOut & the CocaCola London Eye - we had a fantastic time!
On a hot summer day when the London Underground is sweltering, there isn't a better place to escape the heat, than an air-conditioned London Eye capsule enjoyed with a glass of chilled champagne and accompanied by the breathtaking views of the sun-lit architecture along the Thames.
In case crowds put you off and this is the only reason why you still haven't been on the London Eye, take my advice - buy the champagne experience, it's well worth the price - you beat the queues with fast-track access and get to enjoy a glass of bubbly while admiring the glistening waters and the hustle and bustle of the city from above. I'm a sucker for bars with a view and utterly enjoyed turning this London landmark into one!
My third time on the London eye in 5 years, and it never gets old. The beautiful city of London is something else from this height! With few people in our capsul we took full advantage of all the best selfie angels. It's worth taking a decent camera to take stunning shots of the city. You can see for miles and take your pick of the view point, either over looking Westminster or out towards the shard of St. Paul's. What I found really helpful was the small information slabs which help point out the rest of the cities lesser known buildings.
What can make amazing views over London on a clear and sunny spring day, an interesting and fun river cruise and the chance to relax in the new Eye Lounge even better you ask? Bottomless champagne!
I recently got the chance to experience the VIP Experience courtesy of The Coca-Cola London Eye and Pommery Champagne and cannot recommend it enough. I had never been on the London Eye before and I felt so lucky that the weather was so wonderful on the day that I got to experience it for the first time.
When you go for the VIP Experience you get to skip the queues - which alone is a good enough reason to go for the VIP Experience! We quickly got into a capsule with our guide, who had brought the best picnic basket with snacks and lots of Pommery Champagne. I cannot describe what a wonderful experience it was to look over our glorious city with a glass of champagne in hand! The views were stunning and the ride is perfectly timed, lasting long enough for you to admire what you see and take it all in.
When the ride was over, we got out and were escorted to a cruise boat straight away as we were about to experience a London Eye River Cruise in the Thames. There, more champagne awaited and we chose our seats on the upper deck. The river cruise lasted around 40 minutes and the route was great - we got to see Big Ben, the Houses of Parliament, St. Paul’s Cathedral, Tower Bridge, the Tower of London and so much more. All was made even better by our excellent guide, who I think was called Martin, who really knew what he was talking about. He was informative but at the same time very funny, giving us extra fun facts along the tour.
After the amazing river cruise we ended our evening in the newly opened champagne Eye Lounge. The atmosphere in the Eye Lounge was great and the staff was very friendly. More great Pommery champagne was served and the evening was spent sipping bubbles and talking about the overall experience.
While many Londoners (myself included) would avoid such crowded tourist attractions the VIP Champagne Experience is an excellent way to do something touristy in a different (and better) way. Avoiding queues and getting to enjoy the views of our lovely city with champagne makes the experience unforgettable and it truly is worth it! It gives you the chance to stop up for a bit, look out and admire the beauty of London, which was amazing. Five stars!
I was lucky enough to experience a new VIP experience courtesy of Coca Cola London eye and Pommery champagne.
As part of the experience you get fast-tracked on to the Eye with your host. As soon as you're in the air conditioned pod (which was amazing because it was such a hot day), the champagne doesn't stop flowing. There's a box of nibbles too for all to share. The views are the best views you can get in London (in my opinion!) - you can see the Houses of Parliament clearly and all other major London landmarks. The host was very friendly and was happy to take photographs of us all.
We were then whisked onto a river cruise along the Thames with more champagne! Again the hosts on board were all friendly. The guide giving us information about the sights was funny and well informed. This is something you can chose to do but I'd definitely recommend it as I do enjoy a good fact session!
We were then guided to the Eye Lounge where there was more champagne! After enjoying the views outside, the lounge seemed a bit dingy and dark for the beautiful day we had our experience.
I brought my niece from Portugal has a reward for her good grades and this meant that I was able to be a tourist again and do many of the things I haven't done since I arrived, the London Eye was an obvious attraction to go.
Beautiful views (even with cloudy sky) and I would even say that it's much better then what you see from the shard.
Just been back to The London Eye for the first time in ten years. Man it's still a good ride and on a clear day you can see for miles - but the PRICE OF THIS ATTRACTION - I think it would be cheaper to hire a helicopter lol.
Went to a Time Out Card event here last night and had a great time! We started with champagne cocktails in the VIP Pommery Champagne Bar and then headed over for a private rotation with more champagne. The service and the views were both stunning!