Of course there are many churches in London which is a place of worship for Christians in the capital. However, there are a number of specific churches that is a wonderful place to visit whether visitors are religious or not. The best two examples are St Paul’s Cathedral and Westminster Abbey, both of which are situated in the heart of London and is only 20 minutes away from each other if visitors were to take public transport. Both churches are grand in nature and highlight the best in architecture. Westminster Abbey is a gothic church whilst the architecture of St Paul’s Cathedral regards the Baroque era. Both are more than places of worship and it illustrates why Londoners and tourists from overseas visit the iconic churches.
St Paul’s Cathedral
What is the ultimate guide to St Paul’s Cathedral? For those visiting the church, the interiors are truly inspiring with different rooms that provide its own stories and history. Firstly, The Crypt holds the tomb of Christopher Wren, the architect of St Paul’s, Lord Nelson, the naval commander who was admired for his tactics that won him many victories against the French during the famous Napoleonic wars and The Duke of Wellington who famously defeated Napoleon at the Battle of Waterloo. In total, there are 7 chapels which are the: All Saint’s Chapel: The Kitchener Memorial, St Dunstan’s Chapel, The Chapel of St Michael and St George, The Chapel of St Erkenwald and St Ethelburga: The Middlesex Chapel, The American Memorial Chapel, The Knights Bachelor Chapel and the Order of the British Empire Chapel. The number of chapels indicates the vastness of the church. However, the most recognisable part of St Paul’s Cathedral is its dome. Visitors can explore and understand the significance of each part of the dome. For example, the cross and the ball on top of the dome are 23 feet high and weigh around 7 tonnes! The Golden Gallery has to be reached in 528 steps and visitors will be greeted by truly stunning panoramic views of the city. The gallery below is the Stone Gallery and below that is the Whispering Gallery which is in the interior of the dome.
While worship is of course free, as this is a place that tourists do visit, there is a charge for the sightseeing aspect. Tickets cost £18 for adults and £8.00 for children. The reason behind the cost is that there is no government funding for the church. With the various services, events and maintenance of the church, the price for the tickets that tourists pay is vital for the overall up keep of the church. However, tourists in return get a truly stunning building with a rich and fascinating history. For assuring a fruitfull trip to London; a good accommodation is must. Fortunately, you need not trouble yourself searching a better option for you as Park Grand Paddington Court Hotel London is one amongst the most recommended hotels in central London.
Founded in 960, Westminster Abbey, like St Paul’s Cathedral, transcends as a place of worship. The church has global reach and it is deemed as a World Heritage Site which strengthens its global importance. Most recent and notable events that Westminster Abbey has been part of is the wedding venue for Prince William and Kate Middleton in 2011. Famous figures who are buried at the church include Charles Darwin and Charles Dickens and the church has further connections to notable people including Diana, Princess of Wales and William Shakespeare however both are not buried at the church. Not only a stunning architectural building, Westminster Abbey also acts as a museum. For example, within the museum, which is found below the monk’s dormitory, there is a fascinating exhibition that boasts a number of royal effigies including Elizabeth I and Charles II. The museum also has displays of items such as medieval glass and England’s oldest altarpiece.
However, this won’t be the only museum at Westminster Abbey. The church is constantly upgrading with the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Galleries to open in 2018. This museum and gallery will give visitors a true insight into the churches 1000 year history. The gallery will be filled with a rich collection of treasures and fantastic views of the Palace of Westminster.