Big Ben, Tower Bridge, Buckingham Palace, verdant parks and gardens, red buses, the culture of tea, top-notch museums, a melting pot of cultures, and shopping on Oxford Street are just a few highlights of London. Or at least that’s what the majority of people envision when they think about London, the capital of England and the United Kingdom.
But behind the well-known landmarks and everything else that gives London its distinctive character and makes it one of the most well-liked tourist destinations on the planet, there is a vast unknown world waiting to be found. While visiting London, most people just get to see the tip of the iceberg and watch out for British preconceptions, but there are many fascinating facts about the UK’s capital city that fly in the face of conventional wisdom.
Hence, we think it’s time to do London justice and make some of these intriguing facts public. Buckle up because you’re about to fall in love with London all over again as we go on a journey of rediscovery.
1. London is a forest in reality
One of the greenest cities in the world, London has long been renowned for it. It should come as no surprise that the city is renowned for its immaculately maintained parks, gardens, and expansive tracts of green space. But who would have guessed that the city is so lush that it might be considered a forest?
If you want official evidence, the Forestry Commission designated London as a forest in 2019 and dubbed it the first “National Park City” in the world. In a world where capitals are infamous for their concrete walls and dearth of green spaces, we feel that’s pretty refreshing.
The actual Big Ben isn’t Big Ben.
Another detail that you might not be aware of is this one. Most people mistakenly believe that Big Ben is the recognizable clock tower at the Palace of Westminster, where tourists throng to pose for classic British photos. In reality, the building is really called Elizabeth Tower. It was formerly known as just the Clock Tower, but in 2012, to celebrate the Queen’s diamond jubilee, the name was changed.
Who then is Big Ben? This term refers only to the tower’s internal clock, not to the entire structure. This obviously doesn’t diminish the clock’s beauty or significance, but it’s a detail that can help you understand more about London.
3. A significant number of foxes reside in London.
It should come as no surprise that Londoners coexist alongside a variety of wild animals given that we have already shown that the city is actually a forest. Did you know that London also has a sizable population of foxes? Some of you may have heard that you may see deer roaming around in several of London’s parks.
The likelihood of running into a fox while visiting the capital is extremely high—over 10,000 of them, to be exact, prowl the streets. The next time you visit London, keep an eye out for these elusive urban critters.
4. The universe of a London pub is unmatched.
There is no doubting that if you want to party from dusk till dawn, London is the place to go. At dusk, London becomes a dazzling and energetic party city. London’s nightlife is made even more fascinating by the fact that it attracts escorts like those you may find on peachyescorts.co.uk.
Yet more than just the clubs or the people play a role in London’s reputation as a party city. It also has a lot to do with bars. The pubs in London are on a whole other level; several of them are allowed to serve alcohol as early as seven in the morning. In addition, there are more than 7000 bars in the city of London and the City of Westminster alone, so you’ll be able to drink your way through London and have tons of fun while doing so.
5. London conceals an extensive system of underground rivers and canals
When we say that London is more complex than it first appears, we really mean it. Many rivers and canals that constitute a complex water network are hidden beneath the city’s roadways. These rivers were buried beneath many of the present-day streets and structures a century ago, and 20 of them continue to run beneath city streets today.
6. The city is covered in numerous plague pits.
The Great Plague of London, which ravaged the city in the 17th century, symbolizes one of the darkest periods in London’s history. During those periods, almost a third of the city’s inhabitants perished. The bodies of those who perished from the epidemic were interred in communal pits dug in many of the tiny parks and green spaces dispersed around London due to the high death toll and lack of available space. Several of London’s most recognizable structures, including Golden Square Park in Soho, Green Park, Knightsbridge Green, and Aldgate station, were built on top of plague pits.
7. The majority of Londoners don’t reside there
You can tell that London is a congested, busy city by just walking through it at any time of day or night. The population of Greater London, which includes the city of London, is only about 8.5 million people, despite the fact that it appears to be crowded. The majority of people you encounter in the British capital aren’t truly from London. The city appears to be considerably more crowded than it actually is since it welcomes more than 16 million visitors annually.
8. There are multiple Londons
We can almost all agree that London is a special and distinctive city. But, its name is one aspect of it that is not distinctive. Seventeen cities in the United States, three in South Africa, one in Canada, and one in France also go by the name London. Therefore if you want to avoid confusion, be sure to be specific when mentioning London to someone in the future.
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