The City and Canary Wharf, London’s Business and Financial Districts

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The last time we were in London, we hadn’t had a chance to check out its most famous business district: the City. I was curious to explore this neighborhood, metonym of the United Kingdom’s financial centre, with a very high concentration of finance, broking, insurance and legal firms.

For a district that is after all mostly office space, the City is less boring than its sounds. First, the skyline, best seen from Tower Bridge across the River Thames, is quite unique. Easy-to-recognize skyscrapers such as 30 St Mary Axe (nicknamed “the Gherkin”) or The Heron Tower (the tallest building in the City) pop up from otherwise old-looking streets with historical buildings, such as the Royal Exchange. A number of new buildings around “the Gherkin”—that building looks like a missile head to me!—seemed to be a work in progress, and in other cases the construction had clearly been halted. Money trouble in the financial centre?

We were in the City around lunch time and took the time to observe Londoners’ eating habits. I was amazed by the number of franchises such as EAT, Prêt-à-Manger and other sandwich retail chains—they are as ubiquitous as Tim Hortons here in Canada! I also noted Londoners also seem to be very fond of these “triangle sandwiches” (often nicknamed “sandwich SNCF” in France, after the national state-owned railway company that sell rather cheap sandwiches) on white soft bread. They are sold just about anywhere and any supermarket or sandwich shop carries a very large selection.

After hanging out in the City, we headed to Canary Wharf, another new place for us. Despite its quite poetic name, it is another major business centre that specializes in banking, media and legal. We soon realized how huge it was getting lost in the shopping mall attached to the station—it felt like La Défense in Paris!

You can see all the pic­tures taken in Lon­don on Flickr.

In The Heart of The City

In The Heart of The City

Old and New in The City

The City’s Futuristic Skyline

The City’s Futuristic Skyline

The Royal Exchange

Lunch Break in The City

The City

In The Streets of The City

Bankers Bike to Work?

Canary Wharf

Canary Wharf

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About Author

French woman in English Canada. World citizen, new mom, traveler, translator, writer and photographer. Looking for comrades to start a new revolution.

8 Comments

  1. I love the City! It has much history of old and new… Do you know that the street in which one of biggest american banks is, had to be renamed because the name was inappropriate? The city used to be a very dark side of London after all…

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