August 2012
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London Eye – A giant Ferris wheel located on banks of River Thames, London.

The London Eye is a giant Ferris wheel which is located on the banks of the River Thames, in London, England.


• The entire Ferris wheel structure is 135 meters (443 ft) tall.
• The wheel has a diameter of 120 meters (394 ft).
• It is the tallest Ferris wheel in Europe.
• It is the most popular paid tourist attraction in the United Kingdom.
• It is visited by over 3.5 million people annually.
• It was erected in 1999.
• It was surpassed first by the 160 m (520 ft) Star of Nanchang in 2006, and then the 165 m (541 ft) Singapore Flyer in 2008.
• It is still described by its operators as “the world’s tallest cantilevered observation wheel”.
• This wheel is supported by an A-frame on one side only, unlike the Nanchang and Singapore wheels.
• The London Eye, or Millennium Wheel, was officially called the British Airways London Eye.
• Later, it was called the Merlin Entertainments London Eye.
• Since 20 January 2011, its official name is the EDF Energy London Eye following a three-year sponsorship deal.
• The London Eye is located in the London Borough of Lambeth at the western end of Jubilee Gardens, on the South Bank of the River Thames.
• This is between Westminster Bridge and Hungerford Bridge.
• The site is adjacent to that of the former Dome of Discovery.
• This dome was built for the Festival of Britain in 1951.

Quick facts about London Eye

• Type : Ferris wheel
• Location : Western end of Jubilee Gardens, on the South Bank of the River Thames, London Borough of Lambeth
• Construction started : 1998
• Inaugurated : 31 December 1999
• Opened : 9 March 2000
• Cost : £70 million
• Height : 135 meters (443 ft)

Technical details of London Eye

• Diameter: 120 meters (394 ft)
• Engineer: Arup

Design and construction of London Eye

• Architects involved are: Frank Anatole, Nic Bailey, Julia Barfield, Steven Chilton, Malcolm Cook, David Marks, Mark Sparrowhawk.
• The wheel has 32 sealed and air-conditioned ovoidal passenger capsules.
• They are designed and supplied by Leitner-Poma.
• They are attached to the external circumference of the wheel and rotated by electric motors.
• Each capsule represents one of the London Boroughs.
• Each capsule weighs 10 tonnes.
• Each capsule holds 25 people who are free to walk around inside the capsule, though seating is provided.
• The wheel rotates at 26 cm (10 in) per second (about 0.9 km/h or 0.6 mph).
• One revolution takes about 30 minutes.
• It does not usually stop to take on passengers.
• The rotation rate is slow enough to allow passengers to walk on and off the moving capsules at ground level.
• The rim of the Eye is supported by tie rods and resembles a huge spiked bicycle wheel.
• The lighting for the London Eye was redone with LED lighting from Color Kinetics in December 2006.
• This was done to allow digital control of the lights as opposed to the manual replacement of gels over fluorescent tubes.
London eye
• The wheel was constructed in sections.
• This was floated up the Thames on barges and assembled lying flat on piled platforms in the river.
• Once the wheel was complete it was lifted into an upright position by a strand jack system made by Enerpac.
• It was first raised at 2 degrees per hour until it reached 65 degrees.
• Then left in that position for a week while engineers prepared for the second phase of the lift.
• The total weight of steel in the Eye is 1,700 tonnes.
• The steel was supplied from UK.
• Fabricated in The Netherlands by the Dutch company Hollandia.
• The cables came from Italy, the bearings came from Germany (FAG/Schaeffler Group).
• The spindle and hub were cast in the Czech Republic.
• The capsules were made by Poma in France.
• The glass for these came from Italy.
• The electrical components from the UK.
The Observation Wheel
• The observation wheel turns slow enough for people to embark while it is moving.
• A complete turn takes about 30 minutes.
• Thanks to the construction of the glass capsules on the outer side of the rim.
• The passengers have a great 360° view over London.
• Many famous landmarks are clearly visible.
• One can view including Buckingham Palace, St. Paul’s Cathedral and the Houses of Parliament. On a clear day you can see as far as 40 km (25 miles).
• It’s less crowded at night when the views are even more spectacular.

Opening times of the London Eye

• January – March: 10.00am – 8.30pm
• April – June: 10.00am – 9.00pm
• 1st – 26th July: 10.00am – 9.30pm
• 27th July – 12th August: 10.00am – 12.00am
• 13th August – 31st August: 10.00am – 9.30pm
• September – December: 10.00am – 8.30pm

Tickets for London Eye

1. Flexi Fast Track
• Priority boarding.
• 30 minutes on the London Eye.
• Flexible admission on the day of your choice.

2. Online exclusive ticket
• Adults from £31.50

3. Fast Track
• Priority boarding.
• 30 minutes on the London Eye.
• Up to 20% online discount.
• Adults from £25.92.

4. Flexi Standard Ticket
• Flexible admission on the day of your choice
• 30 minutes on the London Eye
• Online exclusive ticket
• Adults from £19.98

5. Standard Ticket
• Standard admission
• 30 minutes on the London Eye
• Up to 25% online discount
• Adults from £15.00

6. Champagne Experience
• Priority boarding.
• 30 minutes on the London Eye.
• One glass of Pommery Brut Royal Champagne.
• Complimentary London Eye View 360 degrees.
• 10% online discount.
• Adults from £31.54.

7. Vinopolis Wine Tasting Experience
• Priority boarding.
• One hour on the London Eye with a Vinopolis trained expert.
• Taste five wines with nibbles.
• Includes tasting notes.
• Complimentary London Eye View 360 degrees.
• Adults from £40.00.

8. Night Experience
• Standard admission.
• 30 minutes on the London Eye.
• Enjoy views of the London skyline by night.
• 10% online discount.
• Adults from £17.01.

Best time to visit / climate

• There is no good or bad time to visit London
• The attractions are mostly open all year round
• July and August are the height of summer
• These would also be the most expensive months
• This is the time when London has the biggest crowds mainly because of the school holidays and the ‘good’ weather.
• New Year and Easter are also busy periods and expensive.
• In the winter it is dark by early evening (16.00).
• In peak summers, there is light till 22.00.

Location on Google Maps

View Larger Map

How to get to London Eye?

EDF Energy London Eye
Riverside Building
County Hall
Westminster Bridge Road
London SE1 7PB

1. By Tube
The London Eye is located within easy walking distance from several London Underground stations:
– Waterloo
– Embankment
– Charing Cross
– Westminster
• Waterloo is the closest tube station to the London Eye.
• Waterloo is about five minutes walking distance.
• Exit the station following signs for the South Bank.
• Embankment and Charing Cross stations are close together on the north side of the River Thames.
• Both tube stations are a ten-fifteen minute walk to reach the London Eye.
• From the station, cross over Hungerford Bridge.
• Westminster tube station is the closest station to Big Ben and the Houses of Parliament.
• From Westminster tube station, take exit one and follow signs for Westminster pier.

2. By Rail
• The closest rail stations to the London Eye are Waterloo and Charing Cross.
• Waterloo is the closest rail station to the London Eye.
• Waterloo is about five minutes walking distance.
• Take exit six for the South Bank and follow the signs.
• Charing Cross is about a fifteen minute walk to the London Eye.
• Cross over Hungerford Bridge.

3. By Bus
• Buses to the London Eye include the 211, 77 and 381.
• The London Eye is on most London sightseeing bus tours.
• On the RV1 route that connects the London Eye to the Tate Modern and Covent Garden.

4. By Coach
• This service is free, but space is limited.
• Your booking gives you twenty minutes to drop off and pick up your group.
• You are not permitted to use the coach parking bays whilst your group visits the London Eye.
• To book a coach parking bay, call us now: Call +44 (0)870 990 8886.

5. By Car
• Driving to the London Eye may be challenging due to our central London location.
• It is quicker and easier to take public transport to reach the London Eye.
• There are three car parks within walking distance located around the South Bank area.
• Please note that the London Eye is within the Congestion Charge Zone.
• For more information, please phone +44 (0)845 900 1234 or visit the Congestion Charge Zone website.

6. By Boat
• There are a number of services which stop off at the Millennium Pier.
• You can travel here from O2.
Travel from:
– Millbank
– Bankside
– Embankment
– Blackfriars
– London Bridge
– Tower
– Canary Wharf
– Hilton Docklands
– Masthouse Terrace
– Greenwich
– Royal Arsenal Wollwich
– St. Katherine’s or Westminster Piers

DK Eyewitness Travel Guide: London Streetwise London Underground Map London Travel Guide

Places to stay (hotels / restaurants along with website / contact numbers)

Hotels at
Hotels at
Hotels at

Blogs / Sites about London Eye

Blogs and reviews at
Blogs at
Blogs and reviews at

Images and photos of London Eye

Images at
Images at
Images at
Images at

Videos of London Eye

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