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Wednesday, May 07, 2014

The Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park in London

We had been to the Olympic Park in 2012, the year the Olympic games were held in London. After a long makeover, the park was opened to the public recently. It was renamed as Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park to commemorate the Diamond Jubilee of Queen Elizabeth II and is the largest urban park to be opened in London for more than a century.


A lot of change has taken place and loads of trees have been planted making it a very green environment. The park includes: Olympic Stadium, London Aquatics Centre, Copper Box, London Velopark, Eton Manor, ArcelorMittal Orbit, London Olympics Media Centre and the International Quarter.



The main stadium is currently closed and will be re-opening to the public in 2016 when it becomes the new home West Ham United FC. Just near the main stadium is the ArcelorMittal Orbit. It is the UK’s tallest sculpture at 114.5 metres. There are 2 observation floors on the Orbit one at 76m and the other at 80m. Tickets can be purchased from the ticket office which is at the foot of the Orbit. You get a bird's eye view of Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park from the observation floors.



The Olympic Park has a lot of well-kept, landscaped gardens. The paths along the waterways are a lovely place for a relaxing stroll or to just relax. There are rock pools, tree houses, wobbly bridges and sand pits in the Tumbling Bay playground area to keep the kids occupied.


The park is spread over 560 acres and has 4 fantastic trials that let you explore and experience the park at your own pace. We chose the 'Discover the Park' trail and went exploring. It was a fun way to soak up the vibrant atmosphere of the park while walking through serene waterways, spotting little birds and enjoying some spectacular views of flowers in full bloom.






I also learnt some interesting facts while exploring the park. There was a bridge near the Carpenter's Lock which dates back to when people used horses to pull canal boats because boats back then did not have engines. Interesting, isn't it?



The Velopark is an excellent venue for cyclists with all levels of experience. There is an indoor track and an outdoor BMX track as well. You need not have a bicycle as well - you can hire everything you need for cycling at the Velopark itself.



There are many food and drink kiosks spread throughout the park where you can grab a quick bite. Or you could even bring your own food and find a lovely spot for a picnic. There is something for everyone in this newest park in London. If you are looking for world class sporting venues, this is the place and if you are looking for a place to spend some relaxing time, then this park with its beautiful parklands, waterways and fountains ranks right at the top. You can read more about the Olympic Park and current events at the park here - queenelizabetholympicpark.co.uk

 

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