Top 10 Tourist Attractions in the UK
Graphics & Words by Caitlin Chuah
Studying abroad in the UK grants you access to some of the world’s most famous and iconic tourist attractions! It is important to establish a work-life balance, hence, we have compiled a list of our top 10 UK tourist attractions for you and your mates to explore. Happy adventuring!
1. Stonehenge, Wiltshire
Stonehenge is regarded as one of the most famous prehistoric monuments. Built more than 5000 years ago, folklore says that the mystical stone circle was created by Merlin, the wizard of Arthurian legend, who magically transported the massive stones from Ireland, where giants had assembled them. Another legend says that invading Danes put the stones up, and another theory mentions they were the ruins of a Roman temple.
2. Abbey Road, London
Made famous by the Beatles, Abbey Road leads to EMI’s Abbey Road Studios, where Kanye West, Queen, Lady Gaga, Pink Floyd, ABBA, the Beatles and many other world-renowned artists have recorded their music at. Gather your friends and have a go at recreating the Beatles album cover on this iconic road!
3. Big Ben, London
How could one not visit the Big Ben when in London! The clock tower’s actual name is the Great Bell of the Great Clock of Westminster, and is located next to the Palace of Westminster. The tower was designed by Augustus Pugin in a neo-Gothic style and stands at 96 metres. Big Ben is regarded as a national symbol of the UK and has been listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1987.
4. Buckingham Palace, London
If you didn’t know already, Buckingham Palace is the Royal Residence and administrative headquarters of the UK’s Monarch. It is also a gathering place for the British people during times of national rejoicing and mourning. The palace opens up its state rooms to the public during selected months of the year. Other than that, tourists can take pictures with the palace from the outside and watch the changing of the guards at 10.45am on Mondays, Wednesdays, Fridays and Saturdays.
5. Tower of London, London
The Tower of London is a historic castle situated on the north bank of the River Thames in central London. It’s where the crown jewels are kept; a world-famous collection of treasures with more than 100 objects, including the crown, and over 23,000 gemstones. A ticket to the Tower of London will also allow you to visit the castle’s moat, the Yeoman Warder Tours and get up close and personal with the ravens that are regarded to be the guardians of the castle.
6. Loch Ness, Scotland
Loch Ness is a large freshwater loch in the Scottish Highlands. It takes its name from the River Ness, which flows from the northern end. However, its rise to fame came from the various sightings of the “Loch Ness Monster”, affectionately known as “Nessie”, which is a creature in Scottish folklore said to inhabit the Loch Ness. Myth or not, the loch is still a stunning site to take picturesque photos with regular guided-tours for tourists.
7. The Cliffs of Moher, Ireland
The Cliffs of Moher are sea cliffs located in County Clare and span for a total of 14 kilometres. The cliffs are believed to be formed around 320 million years ago and reach heights of up to 214 metres. The cliffs have been featured in critically acclaimed films such as Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince (2009), Leap Year (2010) and The Princess Bride (1987).
8. St Paul’s Cathedral, London
Circling back to London, next up on the list is St Paul’s Cathedral. The cathedral is one of the most famous and recognisable sights of London. At 111 metres high, it was the tallest building in London from 1710 to 1963; the dome at the top of the cathedral is still one of the highest in the world. It is most famous for its Neoclassical English Baroque-style architecture, which will leave you breathless as you walk through its hallowed halls.
9. The Roman Baths, Bath
The Roman Baths are well-preserved thermae in the city of Bath, Somerset, England. In ancient Rome, thermae were facilities that the public used for bathing. The Roman Baths are preserved in four main features: the Sacred Spring, the Roman Temple, the Roman Bath House and a museum which holds artefacts from Aquae Sulis, which was a Roman settlement in the area at the time. Visitors can tour the baths and museum but cannot enter the water.
10. Angel of the North, Gateshead
Last on the list we have a more contemporary but still mystical sight. Created by Antony Gormley, the Angel of the North is believed to be the largest angel sculpture in the world. It stands at a height of 20 metres with a wingspan of 55 metres, larger than that of a Boeing 757 aircraft. Though it faced opposition in its design and construction phase, the sculpture is now recognised as a symbol of Gateshead and the wider North East region.
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