If there’s one attraction that everybody coming to the UK capital – especially with the family in tow – has heard of it has to be the world-famous London Eye. Offering guests panoramic views of the entire city, it’s a terrific hour’s worth of fun and fascination for all the family and perfectly located slap-bang in the centre of London on the South Bank. But it’s also far from the only attraction in the vicinity. Indeed, here’s a trio of further things to do that are a just few metres away from the awesome Eye…
The London Dungeon
Have you ever wondered what it would be like to meet Guy Fawkes? Sweeney Todd? Or Jack the Ripper? Well, now you can thanks to the London Dungeon; the attraction that celebrates and revels in the gruesome and gory aspects of London’s past while being firmly family-friendly at the same time. An entire millennium of the darkest and most notorious episodes in the capital’s history are brought to bloodcurdling life by a score of different performers, as well as state-of-the-art special effects, animatronics and waxworks, plus theme park-style rides and marvellously ‘repellent’ offerings at the gift shop. All this and there’s Brian Blessed’s booming voice as part of the 3D-CGI recreation of King Henry VIII – how can you say no to that, honestly?
Sea Life London Aquarium
There’s only one place in Central London where you can be sure to find starfish, seahorses, gigantic conger eels and, yes, piranhas and sharks. No, it’s not a particularly daring restaurant in Soho’s China Town, but Sea Life London Aquarium, located just across from the Eye in the South Bank’s County Hall building (also where you’ll find the London Dungeon). And if you arrange your visit just right, you can pop in on a Monday, Wednesday or Friday (between 12noon and 12.30pm) in time to catch the fish enjoy feeding time. One of the reasons why it’s hugely popular with tourists from all over the world wherever they may be staying – nearby or further out at, say, one of the hotels near Osterley like the Grand Park hotel London Hounslow.
The loveable green hero of three blockbusting movies, Shrek has already graced London with his own musical which was a huge hit in the West End, and now big and little kids alike can get their fill of everything Far Far Away kingdom-related at another hugely popular County Hall exhibit, namely Shrek’s Adventure. Inside, guests board a magical red London bus that takes them on a jaunty journey through 10 weird and wonderful showcases – check out Shrek’s swamp, travel through a crystal ball, try not to get lost in a mirror maze and take the chance to meet the ogre himself and all his friends (not least Donkey, who doubles as the bus’s conductor) – in fact, these include a host of characters from DreamWorks’ other much-loved animated adventures like the Kung Fu Panda, Madagascar and How To Train Your Dragon movies.