Climb 311 spiral steps to see the views from the top of this memorial, which is dedicated to the devastating Great Fire of London.
The Monument is touted as the tallest isolated stone column in the world. Enjoy panoramic views over the city from the top of this 202-foot-tall (61-meter) tower and admire its grand architecture.
The Monument was designed in 1671 by Sir Christopher Wren and Dr. Robert Hooke to memorialize the Great Fire of London, which occurred in 1666. It was built with the goal of giving London hope that the “city would soon rise again.” This memorial stands 202 feet (61.5 meters) from Farrier's baking house on Pudding Lane, where the devastating fire is said to have started. Notice that the monument’s height was designed to match its distance from Pudding Lane.
Check out the live views displayed on a screen at the memorial’s entrance. This installation by video artist Chris Meigh-Andrews provides a 24-hour live stream of time-lapse images as sun, clouds, city lights and human activities provide changing perspectives of the city.
Standing 15 feet (4.5 meters) wide, the Monument is composed of Portland stone. Look for a gilded bronze urn set on top, from which flames emerge. This urn symbolizes the Great Fire. Not quite as tall as the Monument itself, the viewing platform is 160 feet (49 meters) high.
Climb the Monument’s spiral staircase, which narrows as it curves toward the outdoor observation platform. Be aware that this staircase offers no landings or other places to stop and rest, so be prepared to make the entire climb. After your descent, be sure to pick up a certificate stating that you successfully made the climb to the top.
The staircase opens up to a public balcony, where you can look through talking telescopes that describe the sights visible on the horizon. Find Tower Bridge, Port of London and the dome of St. Paul’s cathedral. Curving down the memorial’s north side is a metal band, which acts as a lightning rod.
Reach the Monument by taking the Tube to either Monument or London Bridge stations. Pay a small admission fee to climb to the top. Opening hours vary by season.