The View from The Shard Champagne in the sky
What I loved about it:
I loved the whole experience.
Being able to see right out across London, for up to 40 miles, is absolutely breath-taking. It’s wonderful to be in a busy, world ranking tourist destination, but still have space to enjoy the luxurious, sophisticated surroundings.
The ice cold glass of Moët et Chandon was the perfect accompaniment to our visit and the staff were so friendly.
Value for money (out of 10):
The View from The Shard, Champagne in the sky
As someone who LOVES tall buildings, I was overjoyed when the day we were booked to enjoy The View from The Shard turned out to be crystal clear, with cloudless blue-sky as far as the eye could see!
To set the scene, I was visiting London for the day with Vicky, one of my very best friends. Living in Leeds, we can get to London on the train in just over 2 hours and we bought train tickets for each other as Christmas presents. So, we had a lovely, relaxed journey down on the train and got the tube from Kings Cross to London Bridge, nice and easy.
The entrance to The View from The Shard is immediately on the left as you come out of the tube station, which was good, the door staff directed us to the ticket collection point, and we were in. As you’d expect from such a sleek, shiny, modern building, the inside is all spotless, smooth surfaces, quirky art and well thought out lighting. There is an airport style baggage screening before you get to the lifts, but there wasn’t much of a queue and we were on our way in no-time.
Now, these lifts are pretty special, travelling upwards at about six metres every second, your ears pop and you really feel gravity at work! It took about a minute to get to floor 68 and when the lift opened the view was INCREDIBLE. We had the best weather and I think we definitely got the benefit of 40 miles uninterrupted view around 360 degrees! London was looking amazing!
Our tickets included a glass of champagne to enjoy along with the view, and we soon found two seats looking out over the Thames towards St Pauls, Monument and the Fenchurch Building (the walkie-talkie). It’s a lovely, relaxed environment, with plenty of space. I’ve been up a fair few tall buildings in my time, and this one definitely has more of a feeling of space than most. We had a great time walking around, taking in the view and trying to spot familiar landmarks.
Dotted around the viewing platform there are flower panels and arches for that perfect Instagram shot, and on floor 68 there is a baby grand piano, if you’re musically talented.
As we headed up to Level 69 and the open-air viewing deck on Level 72, I needed to pop to the ladies. ‘Make sure you’ve got your camera!’ said a friendly member of staff as we headed in, and it was good advice! Definitely take your camera if you have to use the facilities, that’s all I’ll say.
Tickets come with a general admission option starting at £28, add a glass of Moët and it’s £43 including admission. In fairness I think £28 for the general admission is a reasonable price, and if I was coming back with my husband for a special occasion, I *might* be tempted to spring for the extra and have a glass of champagne.
If we were in London and visiting as a family of five, would I pay the £140 price tag for general admission? Probably not. It’s beautiful, it’s right up my street as a tourist destination, but the kids would ‘ooh’ and ‘aah’ for about 10 minutes then want to leave, they’re just not that interested.
If admiring the view isn’t enough for you and you want to add a little bit of something to your experience, there are other ways to enjoy The View from The Shard. Time Out operate a silent disco here twice a month on a Saturday night from 10pm, advance booking is essential. If you’d prefer to party earlier in the day, the Weekend Warm-up might be for you, a daytime event, starting at 11am, before the platform opens to the public.
There is also a regular Family Fun Club for Blue Light cardholders, with activities for the children, hot drinks and juice are covered in the ticket price. These special events are scheduled five times per year and online booking is mandatory.
For £12 you can add onto your ticket with The View from the River, a 50 minute cruise running twice a day from nearby London Bridge City Pier. This ticket can also be bought as a standalone option and is a good alternative if you’re visiting with children.
If you’re looking for a special place to propose, and you really want to push the boat out, what could be better than exclusive booking of The View from The Shard for 30 minutes for you both, in a private section festooned with candles and rose petals? All toasted with a glass of Moët et Chandon, a bouquet of flowers and a take-away tote bag stocked with champagne and luxury chocolates. The moment is captured forever by a personal photographer with printed copies for you to take home.
Overall, The View from The Shard is a must-see destination in the capital. There’s nowhere else that you can get those views, and although it is a tourist hotspot, it doesn’t feel rushed or cramped, you have space to enjoy the experience.