Finding A New Side of London Up At The O2
Photos by Gabe Zaldivar
London’s O2 Arena satisfies your entertainment needs within its confines. However, atop of this massive structure is a sort of a training-wheels version of mountain climbing.
This is perfect for the person with but a touch of the ol’ fear of heights, which I can proudly say that I am.
It was with excitement and apprehension that I went on an excursion to Up At The O2, a climbing experience that allows a wonderfully captivating view of the city.
This was all thanks to a press tour of the then new Hilton London Bankside, a treat unto itself.
When I was told I would be climbing an arena, I had two immediate thoughts: I hate the thought of using even a ladder at home and this sounds a bit touristy.
You could say I wasn’t exactly jumping at the idea. However, after the brief but rewarding jaunt up the side of the arena and back again I was won over, confident that you too can enjoy something you might not have previously considered before your trip.
According to the website, a weekday walk will run you £28 while a weekend excursion will cost you £35.
So really, it’s up to you whether something of this nature is worth it. All I can offer was my experience, which truly was something I will fondly remember for some time.
You begin by watching a cheesy safety video akin to numerous others you have seen for similar attractions.
From there, you put on your suit and strap in, walking out onto the concourse as if you were an astronaut about to embark upon something quite epic.
You eventually reach the starting point, which culminates in a viewing area that is 52 meters above ground. At most, you will have to deal with 30 degrees of ascent and descent, which isn’t exactly something you can moonwalk, but it’s hardly the stuff of legend.
Essentially, it’s a rewarding walk up to a gorgeous vantage, one that is perfect for your selfies and family portraits.
I have fear of heights and never once felt that feeling of dread as the walk was sort of like conquering a rather bouncy hill.
By the end, I felt rewarded, as if I earned this pleasant high and extremely happy memory.
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