But as I walked from London Bridge tube station past the tallest building in Western Europe to the office this morning, on the day of the viewing, the weather didn't seem to be suitable at all. I couldn't even see the top of the Shard.
Luckily when I walked back towards London Bridge Station some eight hours later, the darkening skies were clear. I found the entrance with the help of some friendly men in fluorescent jackets (builders) and was welcomed to a waiting area. Then it was time for the (now) compulsory security check which was followed by a photographic session. I found out later this is a way to fleece you after the visit. The picture is turned into a tourist shot with London skyline in the background which will cost you £15-£20. Oh well, it is a tourist attraction after all.
|Just to prove it was the 68th floor...|
But back to the main aim of the visit - the View! At last it was time to go into the lifts - there are two. The first one takes you to floor 38, then you wait for the final one which takes you the rest of the 30 (!) floors. After a very smooth ride (Finnish Kone knows their stuff), I was at the top and was rewarded for my patience.
Only a few steps up and there it was - London at my feet.
It was fully dark now and the lights of all the famous buildings were twinkling. The first thing that I noticed was The London Eye, shining blue in the distance. Moving along the windows which cover all the walls, I saw The Tower Bridge, looking like a little Lego model from nearly 300 metres up. Thames with a barge going along it looked dark and fairy-like. Trains and cars were mere toys. It was just breathtaking.
|I was a happy bunny...|
|On the way up to the topmost floor you can see London afresh.|
|The uppermost floor is open to the elements.|
|The view up to the jagged roof.|
|Another corner of the Shard.|
|A loo with a view.|