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The Monument

Tallest Isolated Column in The World

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The Monument
© Laura Porter, licensed to About.com, Inc.
The Monument in the City of London was built by Sir Christopher Wren in 1667, after the Great Fire of London, to give hope that the "city would soon rise again". You can climb 311 steps to the top of The Monument for amazing views.

Only Way Up Is to Climb

Yes, that's right there is no elevator/lift. The only way to the top of The Monument is to climb the 311 spiral steps. It is a narrow staircase and there is nowhere to stop and rest. Plus, you come down the same way so be prepared to pass other visitors going the other direction.

Note, you don't actually climb right to the top as there is a gilded golden orb at the very top. Visitors can get to 160 ft high at the viewing "cage" and the very top is at 202 ft high.

Top Tip 1: Don't take a large bag as it makes it harder to pass on the stairs. Leave bags with a friend at the bottom (there is no cloakroom) or simply don't bring much when you plan your visit.

Top Tip 2: Do bring your camera as you will have some fantastic views from the gallery "cage" at the top. Put your camera in your pocket or round your neck as you will need your hands free to hold on for the climb.

Top Tip 3: There are talking telescopes in the "cage" to let you know what you can see.

Top Tip 4: Don't give up as those who climb all the way to the top (and back down) receive a certificate.

Why Here?

© Laura Porter, licensed to About.com, Inc.
Sir Christopher Wren's flame-topped Monument to the Great Fire of 1666 is the tallest isolated stone column in the world. Completed in 1677, The Monument stands 202 ft high (61 meters) and is positioned 202 ft (61 meters) from the spot in Pudding Lane on which the Great Fire is believed to have started.

The Monument Review

The Monument reopened in February 2009 after an extensive restoration. There is now a pavilion with public toilets and facilities for staff at ground level.

I climbed The Monument in the summer of 2009 and yes, it was a long climb, but manageable and only took about 10 minutes to get to the top.

It can get crowded at the top so don't try to stay for too long but do have a look out from all sides. As you would expect, there's not much room but you can pass each other if everyone breathes in. There aren't many iconic views but you can see Tower Bridge.

My achievement certificate now has pride of place in my office.

If you enjoy these high views you might like to also consider Up at The O2, The London Eye and the St Paul's Cathedral Galleries.

The Monument Visitor Information

© Laura Porter, licensed to About.com, Inc.
The Monument is located at the north end of London Bridge at the junction of Monument Street and Fish Street Hill, 61 meters from where the Great Fire of London started in 1666.

Address: The Monument, Monument Street, London EC3R 8AH

Nearest Tube Stations: Monument / London Bridge

Use Journey Planner to plan your route by public transport.

Nearby you'll find a popular Harry Potter Film Location in London.

Telephone: 020 7626 2717

Official Website: www.themonument.info

Tickets: Under £5.
Check current prices on the official website.

Combined tickets are available with the Tower Bridge Exhibition.

Opening Times: Open Daily: 09.30 - 17.30 (last admission) 17.00

Visit Duration: 1 hour.

The Monument is not accessible to people in wheelchairs. The only way up is to climb 311 steps so do not attempt the climb if you have health concerns.

Find out about more Tall Attractions in London.

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