Millennium Wheel London Eye Millennium Wheel London England

Welcome to our quick descriptions with photographs of the Millennium Wheel in London. Its nickname is The London Eye, which came from its shape and where it is situated. This now famous yet one of the relatively new London tourist attractions is one of the things in London that has got to be at least a once in a lifetime experience. To see it in its immensity is one thing, to have a ride on this, what will soon become know as, one of the great London monuments, is just something else.

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The Millennium Wheel London

In the personal, cultural and political up to and following the turn of the 2nd Christian Millennium, countries rushed to create something to capture or capitalize on the moment. The three Millennium structures in London are the most famous British attempts to do so but they were all beset with technical, economic and cultural woes.

London Eye or Millenium Wheel pictured from St James Park London

The millennium bridge was susceptible to being blown apart by the winds moving through the Thames river and had to be closed while its structure was strengthened and it only recently re-opened to the public, while the millennium dome, designed by a world renowned British architect, Sir Richard Rogers, was criticized for its poor location and accessibility, cost overruns and lack of future utility. The millennium wheel, or London Eye, as it would become popularly called, faced initial disparagement as it was placed close to some local museums and was deemed an eyesore.
This early condemnation would soon disappear, as it soon became a very popular tourist and local destination to see and admire the city of London. It measures 135m in height. It is the city's fourth highest structure and is the world's highest observation wheel. It is higher than the Statue of Liberty in New York harbour, the Capitol Building in Washington D.C. and the Big Ben clock tower. Each trip takes you 450' above the river Thames for 30 minutes. The duration corresponds to about 2 full turns of the millennium wheel. Not for the vertigo sufferers!
Some trivia about the millennium wheel is that its power consumption is a mere 500kw or 6 light bulbs when at full capacity, while its 32 hi-tech capsules can carry over 15000 visitors per day or 10 Concorde's. Each capsule carries up to 25 passengers. Thinking about its weight, its 1700 tonnes of steel is comparable to 250 double Decker buses.
Intending to be a totally design, its capsules are not suspended, but turn within circular mounting rings fixed to the outside of the main rim, thereby allowing a spectacular 360 degree panorama. The foundations are quite secure and required over 2000 tonnes of concrete broken up into over 40 piles each being over 30m deep.
There is always a lengthy queue so the recommendation is to book a place early either by telephone or over the Internet.

Millenium Wheel London Eye picture 2

Offical site and tickets for The Millennium Wheel in london