London Eye

Visit London’s most popular tourist attraction – The London Eye

The London Eye has become an iconic landmark, a must-see attraction offering visitors breath-taking views across one of the world’s most vibrant cities.

Highlights:

  • Board one of the 32 capsules for an approximate 30-minute rotation, giving you a 360-degree view across London and its many historic landmarks.
  • Watch the revolutionary 4D film at the London Eye Cinema experience to experience the sights and sounds of the capital through stunning 4D effects.
  • Head on to the river Thames from the London Eye’s own pier for a 40-minute circular sightseeing cruise.

What to See and Do

Unique views of London

The London Eye stands 135 meters tall, offering a unique perspective across London and down on to its iconic landmarks. With a riverside location, opposite the Houses of Parliament, visitors can relax and enjoy a 30-minute rotation. You can either stand and gaze out the windows across the city or take advantage of the central benches located in every capsule as the wheel slowly rotates.

On a clear day they say you can see over a distance of 40km. The London Eye caters for groups too, offering a unique day out for friends, families and work colleagues.

A Capsule to Yourself

The London Eye is a hugely popular attraction, but sometimes you may feel you want that extra-special London experience by hiring a private capsule. You can invite up to 25 of your friends to enjoy your own personal rotation on the wheel, with a choice of food and drink enhancements available for a VIP feel.

Celebratory Capsules

The London Eye is a spectacular location to hold a celebration. If you are scratching your head for a venue to mark an occasion then a London Eye capsule will take some beating. From birthdays, family celebrations, proposals and weddings this iconic London landmark has you covered. As well as a range of wedding ceremony and reception packages you can also visit for the all-important preliminary hen and stag do celebrations.

The Dining Experience

Dining at 135 is the London Eye’s unique dining experience, offering 8 guests a private capsule for a meal to remember. Out of normal hours, when the visitors have left, you and your friends can enjoy a champagne reception, followed by a three-course meal. You will enjoy three leisurely rotations as you dine, with a 10 minute stop on the final rotation at the top, 135 meters up, for the opportunity to take photos and record your experience.

River Cruise

Just below the wheel, the London Eye has access to its own pier. From here 40-minute river cruises will take you past many of London’s historic sites including the Houses of Parliament, St Pauls’ Cathedral and the Tower of London. Knowledgeable on-board guides provide a commentary informing you about all the sites you see.

4D Cinema Experience

As a prelude to your trip on the wheel watch the four-minute 4D attraction film which provides a further dimension to how you may view London. Including incredible 3D aerial views, the cinema is located inside the ticket office and is a great starting point for your visit.

Did you know: (5 interesting facts!)

  1. The wheel was originally meant to be temporary, standing for five years having been constructed to mark the new Millennium. It was given a permanent license in 2002.
  1. Although there are 32 viewing capsules the numbers on the capsules range from 1 through to 33. This is because number 13, deemed unlucky, was omitted.
  1. At 135 meters high, The London Eye is Europe’s tallest wheel of its kind. When it was built in 1999 it had been the world’s tallest, but since then it has been nudged down to fourth, though still the tallest in Europe.
  1. London has seen a large wheel like this before. In July 1895 the Great Wheel was opened to the public, standing at an impressive 94 meters tall and with 40 capsules or cars. This one was built for the Empire of India exhibition before ending its service in 1906 and being demolished the following year.
  1. The second capsule on the wheel was named the Coronation Capsule in 2013 to mark the 60th anniversary of the coronation of Queen Elizabeth II.

History 

  • 1998 – Construction on the London Eye begins.
  • October 1999 – The wheel is erected.
  • December 1999 – The Eye is formally opened by Prime Minister Tony Blair.
  • March 2000 – Opened to the public for the first time. 
  • July 2002 – Granted permanent license to remain. 
  • 2006 – Decorative LED lighting system installed.
  • 2009 – Capsules upgraded ahead of the 2012 London Olympics and used as part of the ceremony. 
  • 2013 – Records 50 millionth visitor.
  • 2020 – 20 year anniversary.

Facilities and Accessibility

The London Eye is served by a ticket office located inside County Hall, directly next to the wheel, where you can also find male, female and disabled toilet facilities. The location of the London Eye makes it easy to reach by public transport. 

It is a fully accessible visitor attraction, though there are restrictions on the number of wheelchairs permitted on the wheel at any given time for health and safety reasons. Therefore pre-booking is highly recommended.

Binoculars are available to enhance your experience, as is Wi-Fi. The capsules are fully air-conditioned and climate-controlled to allow you to enjoy your trip regardless of the weather outside. 

Once you have completed your rotation there is a gift shop at the exit for you to buy your souvenirs. You can also relax over a drink in the Eye Lounge located above the ticket office, watching the world go by and reflecting on your visit.