Facts and Data
Unesco World heritage since: 1988
Size of heritage:
The massive White Tower is a typical example of Norman military architecture, whose influence was felt throughout the kingdom. It was built on the Thames by William the Conqueror to protect London and assert his power. The Tower of London – an imposing fortress with many layers of history, which has become one of the symbols of royalty – was built around the White Tower.
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The Tower of London, located in the London Borough of Tower Hamlets, England, is a UNESCO World Heritage site that holds immense historical and cultural significance. This iconic fortress has stood on the banks of the River Thames for over 900 years, witnessing the rise and fall of monarchs, political intrigue, and countless tales of bravery and betrayal.
The Tower of London was founded by William the Conqueror in 1066 as a symbol of his power and authority. Originally constructed as a royal palace, it soon evolved into a formidable fortress and a notorious prison. Over the centuries, the Tower has served various purposes, including a treasury, an armory, and a menagerie.
One of the most infamous chapters in the Tower's history is its role as a prison. Many high-profile prisoners were held within its walls, including Anne Boleyn, Sir Walter Raleigh, and Guy Fawkes. The Tower also witnessed numerous executions, with the most notable being the beheading of three queens: Anne Boleyn, Catherine Howard, and Lady Jane Grey.
Today, the Tower of London stands as a magnificent historical landmark and a popular tourist attraction. It is home to the Crown Jewels, a dazzling collection of precious gems and regalia that are still used in royal ceremonies. Visitors can marvel at the breathtaking beauty of the Crown Jewels, including the Imperial State Crown, which is adorned with over 2,800 diamonds.
The Tower also houses the famous Yeoman Warders, commonly known as Beefeaters, who serve as guides and guardians of the fortress. These ceremonial guards provide captivating tours, sharing captivating stories and historical anecdotes that bring the Tower's past to life.
Exploring the Tower's grounds, visitors can wander through its ancient walls, discover the medieval White Tower, and visit the Chapel of St. Peter ad Vincula, where many executed prisoners were laid to rest. The Tower also offers interactive exhibits, allowing visitors to delve deeper into its rich history and learn about the lives of its former inhabitants.
Furthermore, the Tower of London hosts a range of events and exhibitions throughout the year, including reenactments, medieval festivals, and art installations. These events provide a unique opportunity to experience the Tower's history in a dynamic and immersive way.
Preservation and Significance
The Tower of London is meticulously preserved to ensure its historical integrity. The site is managed by Historic Royal Palaces, an independent charity that works to protect and maintain the UK's royal palaces and heritage sites.
As a UNESCO World Heritage site, the Tower of London is recognized for its outstanding universal value. It serves as a testament to the architectural prowess of medieval England and provides invaluable insights into the country's political and social history. The Tower's significance extends beyond its physical structure, as it represents the power and authority of the British monarchy throughout the ages.
The Tower of London stands as a symbol of England's rich and complex history. Its imposing presence and captivating stories make it a must-visit destination for history enthusiasts and tourists alike. As a UNESCO World Heritage site, the Tower continues to inspire awe and fascination, preserving the legacy of the past for generations to come.
Hotels and places to stay
TRAVELODGE LONDON WOOLWICH
TRAVELODGE LONDON EXCEL
TRAVELODGE LONDON BARKING
MOXY London Excel
ibis London Barking
Metro London City Airport
ibis budget London Barking
Holiday Inn Express LONDON - EXCEL
Videos from the area
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Large airport - 1 mi (2 km) London Biggin Hill Airport
Medium airport - 12 mi (20 km) Rochester Airport
Small airport - 21 mi (35 km) Redhill Aerodrome
Small airport - 22 mi (36 km) London Heathrow Airport
Large airport - 23 mi (38 km) London Gatwick Airport
Large airport - 27 mi (45 km) London Stansted Airport
Large airport - 27 mi (44 km) London Luton Airport
Large airport - 32 mi (51 km)
Bigger and popular cities in the wider vicinity are these:
- Camden Town
- City of London
- City of Westminster
- East Ham
- Enfield Town
- Potters Bar
- Wood Green
These are some smaller cities that might be interesting. They are all rather close.
- Abbey Wood
- Canning Town
- Cubitt Town
- Fairlop Waters
- Foots Cray
- Grange Hill
- Manor Park
- New Eltham
- North Woolwich
- West Ham