Excuse me sir, no photos!
Alright Kanye, calm down.
I have to say, the start to my Sky Garden adventure was a rather annoying one; a very well dressed security guard jumping up in front of me to stop me taking a photo of the entrance lobby was not what I expected – I still got the photo though 😉
You’re also not allowed to use tripods at the top. You can take them with you, even use them as a selfie stick for your camera, but the Sky Garden police will bear down upon you if you dare unfold the legs. I wouldn’t mind, but I asked 5 security guards why and their response was either ‘Policy’ or my personal favourite; ‘Health and Safety’. They’re not actually reasons and my tripod is literally 8 inches tall.
Anyway, rant over, the rest of our time at the top was a rather splendid one.
Connor and I had booked our Sky Garden trip 3 weeks in advance as that’s when slots become available and they are booked up super quick. The booking website is neat as it tells you when the sunset is on each day so you can book your hour slot accordingly to catch it. I forgot to mention – the whole thing is FREE!
The Sky Garden sits atop 20 Fenchurch Street on the 35th – 37th floors. The space is completely surrounded by glass windows with uninterrupted 360° views across London.
As the name suggests, there is a good amount of greenery up there as well. There are also a couple of restaurants as well as a bar. The main attraction however is the outdoor balcony which spans the entire front of the building with The Shard across the river in front of it. You can spend hours on the balcony watching the city whizz by beneath you – if you can stand the cold that is!
It can become pretty cold up the top especially when we went in November. So wear your hats and scarves and take a good coat. The Sky Garden provides blankets that you can find resting on chairs dotted around the 35th floor which is a nice touch.
The tickets say you have an hour at the top but there’s really no one telling you to go down so I’m pretty sure you can stay there as long as you want. When the sun does set and the light starts to fade the Sky Garden is illuminated by lots of little purple lights. The addition of these lights creates a nice ambience in the garden which is enough to send you to sleep!
Unfortunately when we went there was almost complete cloud cover – not unusual for London – so we didn’t really see the sunset, it just became darker. We still were able to see London light up at night though which was cool.