The Olympic Stadium sits proud in the brand new Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park; a brand new centre of parks and leisure activities that is set to revitalise that Stratford area. This exciting new tourist attraction provides a great reason for tourists to explore parts of London they may otherwise miss out on. Staying in one of the delightful Edgware Road hotels is great, but if you only see the West End you will miss out on so much of what makes London truly special. If you are looking for a fantastic place to unwind in the rare London sunshine, be sure to get to the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park this summer.
The London Olympic Stadium was designed and built for the 2012 Summer Olympics and Paralympics. The stadium was mainly designed for track and field events, as well as the opening and closing ceremonies. The stadium was designed by Populous, who previously designed the Wembley Stadium, O2 Arena, and Millennium Stadium. Construction took three years, beginning in 2008 and finishing in 2011, just in time for the 2012 Olympics. The completed work was applauded as an example of environmentally sustainable development and unusually economical development, especially when you consider the reputation of this sort of project.
Now that the Olympics are long over, the glorious and huge stadium needs to be used for something. There was a lot of interest as to who would take over the grand stadium, partly because whoever took over would also be partially responsible for the regeneration of the surrounding area in order to retain the stadium as a distinctive physical symbol. In the end West Ham United and the Newham Council was chosen, with the stadium becoming the new home grounds of West Ham United. The venue is now used extensively for sporting events like the 2015 Rugby World Cup and occasionally music festivals like Wireless Festival and Hard Rock Calling.
Given it was designed for the Olympic Games, the Olympic Stadium is exceptionally easy to get to. The main connection point is Stratford station and Stratford International Station. The International Station gives rapid train service multiple times an hour from St Pancras International, as well as other services to Kent. Stratford Station on the other hand connects to the Central Line, Jubilee Line, the Docklands Light Railway, and the London Overground, as well as further National Rail services around London. It is a cinch to get from the West End, and hotels on Edgeware Road, to the Olympic Stadium by simply hopping on the Central Line at Marble Arch Station. Tourists who would like to look around the city as they travel should use the busses as there are a lot of connecting bus lines that go to through Stratford; a free tip though would be to walk to bus stops on the East Side of Oxford Street if you’re coming from the West End as traffic through the city is pretty slow.
What’s in the Neighbourhood
Stratford has a large network of malls and shopping centres; it is an active and vibrant area. While the shopping is excellent, the real highlight is the brand new Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park that has been created from the Olympic Park. It is an enormous park with several crisscrossing rivers lending shape to the beautiful gardens. There are all sorts of sporting and leisure activities to take part in or, if you are feeling like casual day out, then there are plenty of excellent walking paths to stroll along.