Thanks to the Summer 2012 Olympic Games, a whole host of architectural and artistic tourist attractions will be left over in the city of London, drawing people to new parts of the metropolis for decades to come. Adding to the already rich fabric of sights and history within the United Kingdom’s magnificent capital city, these new attractions give people looking to save money even more things to do in London.
So pack your bags, book your hostels, compare TravelGuard travel insurance coverage plans and head across the pond — now that the Olympics have ended, of course, so you can see all the new places listed below without the crowds.
One of the more unique artistic attractions to come out of the 2012 Summer Olympic games are the Jurassic Stones, which consists of 16 boulders elevated on steel metal pieces in a pond just outside the competitive sailing venues. Each boulder weighs between two and nine tons and were thought to have been formed 160 million years ago when the whole area was a tropical lagoon. The sculpture cost 335,000 pounds and is an incredibly bizarre and awesome artistic piece to see.
The London Aquatic Center
Undoubtedly the most beautiful building built for the London Olympics, the aquatics center was built with fluid lines, like a fish’s body. Just the geometry of the structure is worth seeing, but the venue will actually have 3,500 seats added after the Olympics to make it into a stadium that seats more than 20,000 for future events.
This ruby red sculpture and structure in the middle of London is better known as the AM Orbit. It is 5,560 meters of tubular steel colored by 250 spotlights in various areas. Not only will it stand out against the London skyline, but you can actually climb the skyscraper-sized piece of art. There are two elevators and 455 steps that allow visitors to climb up and down the AM Orbit, offering incredible views.
Walking paths and bike tracks were installed all around London for the expected amount of visitors. Artistic installations were set along these pathways to add life, the most entertaining being the underwhirl, a number of painted swirls along a 50 meter underpass. This creates a sense of excitement for people as they approach Olympic Park.
While basketball is not big in the UK right now, the London Olympics basketball arena has made sure it at least makes an impression on the populous. One thousand tons of steel and white PVC fabric came together to create the largest temporary basketball venue ever built for any Olympic Games. Locker rooms inside are 8 feet tall, the seats orange and the exterior rippling, meant to change with the light outside. However, this structure will be taken down shortly after the Olympics, so make sure you arrive in London soon after the games end to see it. Otherwise, you’ll have missed a once in history piece of artistic architecture.
If you didn’t get the chance to travel to London for the Olympics, don’t fret. You can enjoy the talent and sportsmanship on TV and now head to London after the games are over to still experience everything new the city has to offer.