A bunch of journalists were taken up the Shard yesterday to see what the view looks like. Theyweredulyimpressed, prettymuch. This was to promote the launch of London's highest viewing gallery, The View From The Shard, which opens on February 1st next year. Visitors will get to access floors 68, 69 and 72 - that's 800 feet up - and enjoy a 40-mile panorama across London's tiny rooftops. Ticket prices, appropriately, are rather steep. The full "kaleidoscope lifts" and "cloudscape" experience will cost you £24.95, bookable in advance. And that's a lot of money. I thought I'd check how much by comparing The View From The Shard with some of London's other major ticketed attractions. Several cost more on the day, but can be bought rather cheaper if you go online. The Harry Potter Tour is more expensive, but that's in far flung Watford and buys you several hours entertainment. Which I believe makes The View From The Shard London's most expensive major tourist attraction. Lucky bunch of journalists, that's what I say.
Tickets for The View From The Shard aren't selling fast. The first tour on the first day is sold out, and most of the first Saturday too, and one evening slot on Valentine's day. But other than that you can pick almost any half hour window you like up to the end of May and pre-book your visit.
You might end up forking out a fortune to see bugger all, or swirling mist, or driving rain, or accidental darkness because you forget to check when sunset was. I'm sure the experience at other times will be unforgettable, but is it worth £25? I'm yet to be convinced.