Planning to visit The View from The Shard for the best panoramic view of London? Look no further! Here is everything you need to know about it, including the best tickets to save time & money.
London is a beautiful, hectic and very touristy city, so there is no lack of entertainment options, attractions and – of course! – viewing platforms everywhere. Even though the options are varied, one of the most popular places to see London from above has been for many years the London Eye, but lately, this popularity has changed.
The View from The Shard, 100 meters higher than the London Eye, has become the number one choice to enjoy the city from the heights.
In this post, I will tell you in detail why the View from The Shard is the best vantage point option, how to get there, opening hours, and all the info you need to make the most out of your visit.
Before Visiting The View from The Shard, London
The View from The Shard Opening Times
At the time of writing, The View from The Shard is open Wednesday to Sunday from 1 PM to 9 PM, with the last admission one hour before closing time.
How to get to The View from The Shard
The View from The Shard is easily reachable by metro. The closest station to The Shard is the London Bridge Underground Station, while the closest train station is the London Bridge Station. If you plan on getting to The Shard by tube you can take the Northern or Jubilee lines, but if you’d rather take the train, the Southern or South Eastern trains will get you there.
There is a bus station outside the London Bridge Station if you prefer to travel by bus. The lines that stop there are 43, 48, 141, 149, and 521. You can get directions to The Shard and plan your trip here.
The Best Tickets for The View from The Shard
If you’re in London for just a few days, the last thing you want to do is waiting in line to buy your ticket… only to be told there’s no availability anymore! Unfortunately, it happens pretty often.
This is why I highly suggest buying your London Shard tickets online in advance. When you buy your ticket online, you don’t have to choose a specific timing, so you can still be flexible with your itinerary.
I personally use GetYourGuide whenever I want to book a tour, especially in Europe. This platform not only lists very high-quality tours and activities but offers a 24-hour cancellation policy (you can cancel up to 24 hours before the tour).
With the current situation, this is more important than ever, and it allows you to plan your trip and purchase your The View from The Shard tickets without any worries regarding losing your money if your trip gets canceled.
The View from The Shard: Direct Entry Essential Ticket includes not only entrance to the attraction but also a digital photo package and a signature cocktail. Because what’s better than a drink with a view? ➥ BUY YOUR TICKET HERE
➤ In a rush? Then select the Deluxe Ticket with Fast Track Entry, which will let you enter The Shard faster with the fast track entry. You will also receive a complimentary guidebook, digital photo package, signature cocktail or any Moet champagne (soft drinks are also available). ➥ BOOK IT HERE
➤ Otherwise, if you only have a couple of days to see all the highlights in London – an almost impossible feat! – , a good option is to join the Top 30 Sights Walking Tour + The Shard Entry, a super comprehensive walking tour that will bring you all over London so you can see the best that London can offer in just one day. The tour finishes with entry to The View from The Shard, so you can see from above all those landmarks you just walked past. ➥ CHECK IT OUT HERE
Save Money with the London Pass
The entrance to the View from The Shard is not free – nor cheap! – so if you’re planning to visit more attractions during your stay in London (which I highly recommend, there’s so much to do!) you can save money with the London Pass.
The London Pass is a discount card that grants you access to over 80 different attractions in the city, including some of London’s classics like strolling around Kensington Palace or going up the Tower Bridge, and some quirky attractions such as exploring the underground tombs of London Bridge or going to a Cartoon Museum. The View from The Shard is included in the London Pass.
Some of the most famous attractions that are included in the London Pass are:
- Westminster Abbey
- St Paul’s Cathedral
- Tower of London
- Windsor Castle
- Hop-On Hop-Off Bus Tour
- Museum of Brands, Packaging and Advertising
- 30+ London Sights Tour
The Pass allows you to visit as many attractions as you wish during the number of days you select, saving you time (no more lines to get tickets!) and money.
You can choose your London Pass for a different number of days – a minimum of 1 day and up to 10 days, and plan your itinerary accordingly to make sure you hit all the amazing activities London has to offer for less. The Pass also includes some discounts and entry perks at select attractions. ➥ BUY YOUR PASS HERE
⚠️ To visit The View from The Shard, once you have the London Pass you need to book your time slot online, to ensure your spot and avoid the queues.
What You’ll Find at The View from The Shard in London
The View from The Shard offers the tallest panoramic views in Western Europe at 244 meters high, with spectacular 360-degree views of London and an open-air rooftop for the brave ones.
You can find an indoor viewing platform at Level 69, Since The Shard is the tallest building in London, the views from this vantage point are unrivaled. From this height, you can see the city extending up to 64 km (40 miles) and catch a glimpse of buildings such as St Paul’s Cathedral, Tower Bridge, the London Eye, and the Houses of Parliament, among the 200 landmarks you can spot. This is the only 360-degree view you can find in London.
If you fancy seeing them from up close, the digital telescopes “Tell: Scopes” on Level 69 enables you to witness them in real time from a very unique perspective, and you can even check pre-recorded day and night-time views.
The brave ones should head to the open-air skydeck at Level 72. It might be cold and windy up here, but the view makes it 100% worth it!
Fun fact: In case you were worried about missing the sights on a quick trip to the restroom…you can still see the landscape from the toilet!
The panorama itself is worth the while, but if you get tired of walking around the platform soaking in London from above (spoiler alert: it’s not gonna happen) there is more to do in the View from The Shard:
➤ You can learn London’s history through multimedia exhibits.
➤ Unwind in the open-air Skydeck with a glass of champagne, or check out the full-service bar on Level 69.
➤ Experience the Cloudscape on Level 68. Here the view is obscured and you can see different cloudscapes with the names of the cloud formations you may observe from The Shard viewing platform. You’ll also learn what weather might follow each cloud appearance, so (hopefully) you won’t be caught by unexpected storms ever again!
➤ Visit the gift shop for a wide range of Shard and London-themed gifts to take as a souvenir of your visit.
➤ Depending on the season there are different events and parties you can attend at the View from The Shard. The two most famous are:
Silent Disco at The View from the Shard: Partying in the clouds is officially a thing the Silent Disco at the View from The Shard. You can test your best moves in the tallest spot in London with the city lights beneath you. On your arrival, you get a set of headphones and, with a drink purchased at the bar you can dance the night away choosing from three different DJs the music that best suits your mood. This is also a great way to visit The Shard at night!
Weekend Warmup: If you need a kick to start your weekend on the best note, check out the Rooftop Day Party offered on Saturdays. You are received with a glass of champagne, a popular DJ sets the tone of the party and you can get a buzz with the Gin drinks included in the ticket. The party lasts a couple of hours, but you can stay at the View of The Shard afterward for as long as you like.
Tips for Visiting The View from The Shard
Best Time to Visit The View from The Shard
The experience at the View from The Shard becomes more beautiful at sunset, you can imagine why. But because many visitors choose this time of day for their visit it can get pretty crowded.
Unless you don’t mind big crowds, I’d recommend booking an early slot for a quieter visit, especially if you’re going with children. This, in my opinion, is the best time to go up The Shard.
In the evening the crowds are gone and the view of the city at night can be beautiful, but you’ll miss most London landmarks due to the low visibility.
Overall, the best time to visit is soon after opening time to avoid crowds and enjoy the most of the view. But don’t worry! If you still want to check out how London looks at sunset or night time you can even if you get there early, because there’s no time limit for your visit!
Another option is booking a restaurant at The Shard for that night, so after your experience at the rooftop, you can still enjoy dinner with a view.
EXTRA TIP: If you can, try to book your visit on a weekday as it will be much crowded on the weekends.
How Much Time Do You Need for Your Visit?
You should set aside about 2 hours for visiting The Shard, so you can enjoy the vista calmly and check out what the View from The Shard has to offer without rushing. If you go on other activities later and really don’t have much time, one hour should be enough, but not less than that!
Add an extra hour to your itinerary if you planning to have a drink at The Shard or something to eat – plenty of options for dining at The Shard as well.
What Should You Know Before Visiting The View from The Shard?
➤ Upon arriving you’ll be required to pass through a security check before heading to the viewing platform.
➤ Most View from The Shard (London) tickets include a digital photo as a memento, so on your arrival you will be asked to take a photograph with a green screen on the back (a chroma, for the photo savvys!) which they will then change for the city view.
➤ There are certain prohibited elements that you can’t take to the View from The Shard. These include:
• Food and Drink
• Pushchairs (They can be left in a storage facility for free)
• Large bags or backpacks (These can’t be left anywhere, so make sure you don’t take any!)
• You can take your Photo/Video equipment, but tripods and monopods are not allowed (and they don’t store them!)
➤ The View from The Shard is fully accessible for disabled people and has all the necessary facilities. They also have wheelchairs available on loan for those visitors who need them.
Did you Know That There’s a View Guarantee?
Planning a visit to The View from The Shard and not getting the view due to bad weather…sucks. But not all is lost. With the View Guarantee policy you are sure to enjoy the good views because, if on your visit you can’t see at least three of the five landmarks I’m gonna list here, you’ll get a complimentary return ticket for free that allows you to go back within three months. The five landmarks are:
• London Eye
• The Walkie Talkie
• Tower Bridge
• One Canada Square
• St Paul’s Cathedral
If you can’t see at least three of them, make sure you claim your free ticket before leaving the attraction that day. The View Guarantee has to be authorized before you get it at the ticket desk, so if the weather is not so great, make sure you ask at the ticket booth!
Now that you know everything you need to plan your visit to the View from The Shard, get your tickets and fly (or take the lift) to the sky!