Tuesday, 18 April 2017

Coca Cola London Eye - Merlin Entertainment.

We recently enjoyed a trip to London to visit some of the most iconic landmarks and attractions. One of the first on our list was the Coca-Cola London Eye. Situated along London's South Bank, opposite the House of Parliament and Big Ben, you cannot miss this striking structure.

The Eye first arrived on the bank of the Thames for the Millennium and has continued to attract visitors in their millions ever since.
Merlin Entertainment took ownership of the attraction in 2007 and it has been sponsered by Coca-Cola since January 2015.

Booking is not essential but highly recommended as places tend to sell out quickly during peek times. Pre-purchase will also save you some queuing time!

The Coca-Cola London Eye is easily reached via London Underground - the nearest stations being Waterloo, Embankment, Charing Cross and Westminster. 

Standard entry tickets are priced at £26 adult/£21 child (there are discounts for online booking.) Check out the website for the various packages and ticketing prices
The attraction is open daily (with the exception of Christmas Day) times vary depending on the time of year so make sure you check out the information on their website.

Also to the Left hand side of the County Hall building Coca-Cola London Eye ticket holders can view the London Eye 4D Cinema Experience. This lasts just under 5 minutes and enhances your senses using bubbles, fog, wind and snow whilst you watch the development of the Eye and enjoy a bird's eye view swooping across the Thames.

We caught the tube to Waterloo and directions were clearly signposted from the moment we stepped off the tube. Chris is familiar with London and pretty confident in navigation but even I would have been able to find it. As we left the station and made our way through South Bank Centre we were instantly aware of how busy the crowds were. It was Easter weekend but peek times would all be similar.
As we walked though South Bank we happened upon The Food Market, tantalising our senses with smells and colour. We made a mental note to return there later!

As we turned the corner we caught the first glimpse of the Eye! 
Emily started to get giggly and both the girls hurried us along. 
Chris and I have been on the attraction before but for the girls it was a first.

We made our way to the County Hall building where ticket offices for several of the Merlin Entertainment attractions are housed and the crowds were heaving. However, visitors were quickly ushered to the correct desks and we were served relatively quickly. We then made our way to join the time slot queue in front of the Eye. Again, the crowds were crazily busy, we kept tight hold of the girls hands so that we didn't get separated. The security and staff here were amazingly efficient and friendly. 

There was a photo opportunity during the queue and these are available to view and purchase after your ride for £20. This comes presented beautifully in a hard back book full of information and iconic London photos. There was also another photo opportunity before the ride ended.

Although it was busy it was soon time for us to embark. The capsules move continuously unless wheelchair access is required and the staff ensure everyone moves fluently into the capsule. 
There is a brief recorded safety announcement and we were on our way.

Each capsule is loaded with no more than 28 passengers and has a wide bench in the centre for those who want to sit back and relax to enjoy the views.
The spacious capsule is air conditioned to keep the temperature comfortable, as you can imagine the capsule is essentially an oval greenhouse so without it things would get pretty hot!

The rotation takes approximately 25-30 minutes and offers passengers 360° views of London.
The views are quite stunning and we all just took our time staring out on the horizon. Emily found her way through to the end of the capsule and sat herself, cross legged and forehead pressed against the window, simply absorbing the views.

Emily was excited to spot Wembley Stadium (which our hotel was near) and Mollie loved seeing Buckingham Palace from the top of the Eye!
On board there are several interactive screens which help you to identify the sights. Being screen slaves the girls HAD to have a go on these!

The girls also spotted a children's play area just below us and guess where we headed after our ride.

Ultimately we made our descent and were soon approaching disembarkment. 

We loved the ride and it was a lovely opportunity to spend time enjoying the views and pointing landmarks out to one another.

We highly recommend this attraction. Merlin Entertainments offer package deals when you book multiple attractions - these offer considerable discounts. Also check out their annual passes, admission to Coca-Cola London Eye is included on this.

We would love to return and ride the Eye during dusk, I can only imagine how stunning and beautiful the Thames would look when lit up.

Check out our other Merlin Entertainment features:


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