St Paul’s Cathedral
The iconic dome of St Paul’s Cathedral is an instantly recognisable part of London’s famous skyline. Set on the highest point of the City of London, the cathedral is located moments from the River Thames and a short walk from the Bank of England.
Sir Christopher Wren
Originally founded in 604, St Paul’s Cathedral has been raised up and rebuilt throughout its long history. The current cathedral was built by the architect Sir Christopher Wren following the Great Fire of London in 1666. Eventually consecrated in 1697, the cathedral was built in a restrained Baroque style and given its landmark dome which draws inspiration from Michelangelo's dome at St Peter's Basilica in Rome. From 1710 to 1962 it was the tallest building in London.
One of the most interesting aspects of St Paul’s Cathedral is the Whispering Gallery. The particular acoustics of the dome interior mean that sound is carried along the circumference of the walls and, if the gallery is quiet enough, a whisper from one end of the room can be heard at the other end, 112 feet away. If you clap your hands you should also be able to hear it echo four times.
Tombs and memorials
As well as breathtaking architecture and stunning interiors, visitors to the cathedral can find monuments to a range of famous figures, including the tomb of Lord Horatio Nelson and memorials to J. M. W. Turner, Lawrence of Arabia, Sir Alexander Fleming, Samuel Johnson and Florence Nightingale. Funerals for a number of political leaders have also taken place in St Paul’s Cathedral, from Winston Church to Margaret Thatcher. The cathedral crypt is the largest in Western Europe, with over 200 memorials.
Situated in the City of London, St Paul’s Cathedral is only a few minutes on foot away from the Bank of England and Liverpool Street railway station. Stoll down to the River Thames, cross the Millennium Bridge and you’ll find yourself beside the Tate Modern and Shakespeare’s Globe Theatre. Take a bus or hop on the tube from St Paul’s Underground station and within moments you’ll be in the West End.
Places to stay
If you’re looking to find a place to stay close to St Paul’s Cathedral, we’ll help you find the right sort of accommodation for your needs. In the local area you’ll find everything from 5-star hotels to budget hostels, and across the river in the borough of Southwark there are even more options for your stay.
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