London is Britain’s largest port, an international, commercial and finance centre. Almost 9 million people dwell within its limits. There are fifteen bridges in the city over the river Thames on the banks of which it is situated.
The capital’s history is rather interesting. It started over 2000 years ago with Romans’ landing on the continent. They called it Londonium and it occupied rather small area at that time, though being a great trading centre.
After more than 500 years of further Anglo-Saxon domination over England, the Normans conquered Britain and London became its capital. During the following centuries, the city was influenced by various cultures and nations.
Till 1666, London was a town made of wood, but the Great Fire changed this fact by ruining its great part. Further it was rebuilt from the stone and brick constructions. Today the architecture of the city compiles different height and styles. Though, the German bombs destroyed many buildings during the WW II.
The dimension of London and its role in the British Empire grew up rapidly. However, despite its greatness, it was a city of contrasts with a high rate of poverty that was being increased constantly by the immigrants.
London is divided into 4 parts. Perhaps, the City – the centre of business and commerce – is the most significant among them. Only about several thousands of people live here constantly, but nearly 1 million work here. Some London’s places of interest are also located here, for instance, the Tower was used for different purposes. Nowadays it’s open for visitors. St. Paul’s Cathedral is a tremendous church that was destroyed during the Fire and rebuilt later.
The most government establishments (Buckingham Palace and the Houses of Parliament) as well as Westminster Abbey, the tower with a famous clock called Big Ben, and the National Gallery are located in district called Westminster.
The West End symbolizes wealth and luxury being a place of the most expensive restaurants, hotels, casinos, and clubs. It’s also well-known for its parks and gardens (the Regent’s Park, the Hyde Park). The British Museum located there is a must-see place for visitors.
The West End and the East End are separated by a natural boundary called the Thames. The latter is a working district with great amount of factories and plants. People living here are often called the Cockneys (true Londoners).