Roughly bordered by Liverpool Street, Tower Hill, Blackfriars and Barbican tube stations, the City of London is based on the original Roman town of Londinium, founded in around AD50. The City's boundaries have remained almost constant since the Middle Ages and it is often called The Square Mile, as it's almost exactly one square mile (2.6 square kilometres) in area.
London Liverpool Street Station
The Stansted Express train from Stansted Airport drops visitors at Liverpool Street station, right in the heart of London's Square Mile business district. From Liverpool Street, it's very easy to get to other areas of London. Of course it's not just visitors who end up at Liverpool Street – the station is a bustling hub of peak hour activity as thousands of City workers pass through on their daily commute.
Things to do in The City
The City is home of some of London's best-loved attractions including:
- The Monument
- The Tower of London
- St Paul's Cathedral
- Barbican Centre
- Museum of London
- Spitalfields Market and Leadenhall Market
- Clockmaker's Museum
- Bank of England Museum
- Guildhall Art Gallery and Guildhall Library
- Mansion House
- Bank of England Museum
- Bishopsgate Institute
- Dr Johnson's House
- Goldsmith's Hall
- Tower Bridge
You might want to pop into the City of London Information Centre to find out more.
Geographically, The City sits at the heart of London, a short walk from the pizzazz of the West End, historic Southwark and the vibrant South Bank, and bordered by colourful markets at Spitalfields and Brick Lane. It's home to some top-class culture including the London Symphony Orchestra and annual City of London Festival.
Architecture in the City of London
The City contains a rich variety of architectural styles, from 17th century Christopher Wren churches to 1960s Brutalist showpiece the Barbican.
Within this area, you can see a rich variety of architectural styles. There are many churches by 17th-century architect, Sir Christopher Wren, including St Paul's Cathedral, financial institutions from the 18th and 19th centuries, such as the Royal Exchange and the Bank of England and 20th-century architecture including the Old Bailey and the 1960s Barbican Estate. The latter landmark is one of London's principal examples of concrete Brutalist architecture.
Notable recent buildings in the city are the 1980s skyscraper Tower 42, the Lloyd's Building, London's first eco-friendly skyscraper at 30 St Mary Axe, designed by Sir Norman Foster and commonly known as the Gherkin.
Shopping, Eating and Sleeping in the City of London
Despite the City being a business-focused area, you'll find good shopping opportunities at One New Change, which also boasts a roof terrace with fantastic views of St Paul's Cathedral. You can also browse at the historic Leadenhall Market, or head to Spitalfields Market near Liverpool Street station for a wide range of trendy shops and stalls.
One New Change has restaurants run by celebrity chefs Jamie Oliver and Gordon Ramsay
The City of London is a great place to dine in style: try delicious food with a view at Coq D'Argent, first-rate steaks at Hawksmoor Guildhall or soak up views of St Paul's at the Paternoster Chop House. Be aware, though, that large sections of the City remain quiet at weekends and it's quite common to find pubs and cafes closed on Saturday and Sunday.
You can stay very comfortably in the City of London. From the luxurious ANdAZ and Apex City of London Hotel to the conveniently located City YHA, there is something to suit all tastes and budgets. See more hotels in the City of London
More About The City of London
Find out more at cityoflondon.gov.uk