At the center of Trafalgar Square, towering at 185ft is Nelson's Column with a 17ft statue of Nelson himself to commemorate the victory of the Battle of Trafalgar in 1805. To the northeast of the square is the Church of St Martin's-in-the-Fields, the official parish church for Buckingham Palace and the first free lending library. To the north of the Square is the National Gallery, which houses one of the world's richest collections of paintings. A short walk from Trafalgar Square is the area known as "West End" - home to six major theatres, including the famed Victoria and Apollo Theatres as well as Society of London Theatre (SOLT).
Nearby Covent Garden has fabulous street shows and shopping. There are stores for every budget from world class designers to simple local markets. Free outdoor events are held during the summer, showcasing London's fine multicultural music and dance scenes, and as the center of London's bus network, the storied Square is often the last stop for any great night out on the town. This is also the home of the famed National Theatre and Royal Opera House.
Or, if you yearn for nature, you can take a leisurely walk and enjoy the verdure of St. James Park and Green Park which surround the Mall which links Trafalgar Square to Buckingham Palace - the Queen's official residence. One of the most popular attractions held in the forecourt of Buckingham Palace is the official "Changing of the Guard" which takes place every day at 11:30am during the summer months and on alternate days throughout the remainder of year.
So whether it's art, culture, history, shopping or just people-watching that entices you, Trafalgar Square is the epicenter of cosmopolitan London and it is all just mere steps from Club Quarters, Trafalgar Square.
Click on the links below for a map showing points of interest near Club Quarters, Trafalgar Square, as well as a list of London attractions.
Trafalgar Square offers a wide array of things to see and do in every season -- from imperial monuments to world-class museums, beautiful parks to upscale shops and restaurants, the area is packed with the best London has to offer.
Some Trafalgar Square highlights include:
Trafalgar Square honors Britain's greatest naval commander, Admiral Lord Horatio Nelson. During the battle of Trafalgar in 1805, Nelson led a fleet of 27 British Navy ships against 33 French and Spanish ships. He helped defeat an enemy of superior strength without losing a single British ship. It was this battle that turned the tide of the Napoleonic Wars and prevented England from being invaded. The nation honored Nelson by naming Trafalgar Square after that decisive battle and placing a statue of the Admiral atop the 151-foot granite column in its center.
St. James Park is the oldest Royal Park in London. One of the main attractions of this 58 acre park is that it is surrounded by three palaces: the oldest being Westminster, now known as the Houses of Parliament, St. James Palace and the best known, Buckingham Palace. Other attractions the Park offers are classical and popular music events, cafes, gardens, statues, monuments and open-air theatre productions.
Buckingham Palace is the official residence of Her Majesty, The Queen. Originally a town house built by the Duke of Buckingham, it eventually evolved into a 775 room palace. Visitors are permitted to tour the 19 State Rooms, including the Throne Room, Picture Gallery and Ballroom, the largest room in Buckingham Palace used for investitures and State Banquets. All the rooms in the Palace are well appointed with some of the greatest treasures and works of art from the Royal Collection including paintings by Rembrandt, Vermeer and Canaletto and sculptures by Canova and Chantrev. There is also the option of an extended visitor route which includes a walk through the south side of the Palace garden. Please visit their website for more information.
Originally named the Palace of Westminster, this was the home of the royal family till a fire in 1512 forced King Henry VIII to move his residence. It was then rebuilt and used as a gathering place by the Lords to discuss taxation, politics and laws. Over time, knights and other local officials were appointed to oversee the various counties and the Lords took on a more formal role in lawmaking and government. Around the 14th century two distinct councils had evolved - the House of the Commons which consisted of the knights and local officials and the House of Lords made up of nobility and clergy. To this very day both Houses congregate here and decide on Britain's future.
One of the 8 official Royal Parks, Green Park is the smallest and the busiest covering an area of 53 acres most of which is rolling grassland and mature trees, peaceful retreat in the middle of London's hustle and bustle. Open to the public all year round.
One of London's most recognized landmarks is St. Stephen's Tower more commonly known as Big Ben. Big Ben is actually the massive bell inside the clock tower that was named after the first commissioner of works, Sir Benjamin Hall. The BBC aired its first broadcast of the bells tolling on New Year's Eve in 1923. During the Second World War, part of the Houses of Parliament was destroyed by a bomb; the clock remained functional and became a notorious symbol of resilience for all Londoners.
The official parish church for Buckingham Palace was designed and completed by James Gibbs in 1726. The church is open to the public at all times of the day and is known for its work for the homeless which is grounded in the life of its patron saint - Martin. In the crypt of the Church is a café where Jazz festivals and lunch time concerts are held. All proceeds from such events go to the activities of the Church with the homeless.
Covent Garden originally known as "Convent Garden" was a kitchen garden which provided fruits and vegetables for the Convent or Abbey of St. Peter, Westminster during the middle ages. Covent Garden provides a real taste of cosmopolitan London. It has everything from world class shopping to local markets and from renowned arts, crafts and theatre productions to street performers and souvenir shops.
This is one of London's most highly acclaimed galleries which displays Western European paintings from about 1250-1900. Prominent works of art include pieces by Van Gogh, Cezanne, Renoir, Turner, Leonardo da Vinci, Botticelli, Rembrandt and Gainsborough. Please visit their website for a schedule of special exhibitions, lectures, video and audio-visual programs, guided tours and holiday events for children and adults.
The British Museum in London is one of the world's largest and most important museums and holds in its collections over seven million items from every continent. Its main purpose is to shed light and document the story of human culture from the beginning of time. As with all other national museums and art galleries in Britain, the Museum charges no admission fee, although charges may apply for some temporary special exhibitions.
The Natural History Museum is one of three largest museums on Exhibition Road, London (the others being The Victoria & Albert Museum and The Science Museum.) It was opened to the public in 1881 but its history goes back to 1753 when Sir Hans Sloane a physician, left his collection to the nation. There are five main exhibits: Botany, Entomology, Mineralogy, Paleontology and Zoology. The museum is renowned for its exhibition of dinosaur skeletons, particularly the large Diplodocus cast which dominates the entrance.
The Victoria and Albert Museum is commonly known as the V&A. Its exhibition concentrates on decorative arts and design. The museum showcases over 3000 years worth of architecture, ceramics, jewellery design, metal work, domestic furnishings, prints and paintings.
The Science Museum is dedicated to technical and scientific advancements and consists of a collection of more than 300,000 items. These items include models, apparatus, scientific instruments such as Stephenson's Rocket, Puffing Billy (early locomotive), the first jet engine, a reconstruction of Francis Crick and James Watson's model of DNA. One of the most important exhibits housed in this museum is the history of the steam railway and some of the earliest remaining steam engines. As technology evolves, new prototypes are constantly being added to the collection.
The Tate Gallery officially opened its doors in 1897. In 1992 the Gallery was divided into two main exhibits. The first was dedicated to international contemporary and modern art and second devoted solely to British art and artists. The focus of these exhibits was so broad and with new artists constantly immerging, they became so large that eventually they were separated into two museums Tate Britain and Tate Modern.
If you like to shop, you will find the area around Trafalgar Square has everything from clothing to books to leather goods to gourmet foods. First-class dining experiences abound at establishments such as Simpson's in the Strand (100 Strand) or Just St. James (12 St James's Street). Click here for additional information about restaurants in the area.
There are many restaurants and pubs in the area - click on dining for more information or click one of the links below: