For almost 20 years, I’ve wanted to go to Paris to see the Eiffel Tower. Nothing else – all I wanted to do was just see in person that iconic landmark. While staying in London, I knew I would be so close to Paris that I might as well just book a seat on the Eurostar and hop over to France for a couple of days. Below are variations on a theme, from sunrise to sunset over the course of 2 days (actually, just a day-and-a-half, not counting the travel time from London to Paris).
Daily Archives: February 7, 2016
Continuing my 8-day stay in London. The museums and many of the other sights were closed the day after Christmas, “Boxing Day” in the UK, but I had tickets to the observation floors in the Shard. Yes, that’s two tickets. As a photographer, I naturally wanted to see the view during both the day and at night. Worth the price, IMO. The view is amazing, both day and night (although I believe I liked the day view better).
During the first visit, I walked all the way there, stopping at Southwark Catherdral to capture a photo before continuing on. (I wised up and took the Tube for my night visit).
Morning is an excellent time to go to the Shard. Crowds are minimal to practically non-existent. My ticket was for 10:00am and I think during my time there, I could count maybe 10-15 people at most. By the time I left, the crowd was starting to build.
Soft new-age mood music played both during the day and night. You could visit two floors. One is the main observation floor, totally enclosed. Heading up a couple of short flights of stairs brings you to the 72nd floor where, while you are still safely enclosed, the top and sides have open spaces and you can feel and hear the cool wind filtering through. It’s a neat feeling and I was a little sweaty after my walk there, so the breeze was a welcome relief.
The night view was lovely, but a little more crowded. The inside of the viewing areas is lit with a little bit of mood lighting (as well as mood music) in the enclosed observation area, so photos without reflections are a little more difficult to achieve. I brought along my polarizer filter thinking that would help, but it did not. Artful cropping helped to an extent.
If you ever visit London, I recommend a trip to the Shard. It’s not free, but the view is amazing.