Focus of the 2012 Olympics, London’s Olympic Park is situated in a most unlikely East End backwater, on a series of islands formed by the River Lea and various tributaries and canals. The centrepiece of the park is the Olympic Stadium, surrounded on three sides by rivers, and earmarked to become home to West Ham United football club. Standing close to the stadium, with a bird’s-eye view of the whole site from its public observation deck, is the Orbit tower, a 377ft-high continuous loop of red recycled steel designed by Anish Kapoor, and dubbed the Helter Skelter. The most eye-catching venue, however, is Zaha Hadid’s wave-like Aquatics Centre, to the east, which may have cost four times its original, but at least it looks good. The other truly sexy building is the curvy Velodrome, with its banked, Siberian pine track and adjacent BMX circuit. The nearest tube is Stratford; you can also approach from Hackney Wick Overground or Pudding Mill Lane DLR station.

Book through Rough Guides’ trusted travel partners

London features

The latest articles, galleries, quizzes and videos.

Alternative London: off the tourist trail

Alternative London: off the tourist trail

As a tourist in London, you won’t be short of company. The capital has the three most popular free visitor attractions in the UK (British Museum; National Gal…

11 May 2018 • Neil McQuillian insert_drive_file Article
8 things you didn't know you could do in London

8 things you didn't know you could do in London

You've stood at the railings of Buckingham Palace, squinting to see if you can glimpse an elderly woman through the windows. You've taken a selfie with a Beefea…

25 Apr 2018 • Greg Dickinson insert_drive_file Article
An expert’s guide: the best area to stay in London

An expert’s guide: the best area to stay in London

Historic, sprawling, sleepless: London is a wonderful place to visit. Monuments from the capital’s glorious past are everywhere, while you’ll also find cult…

18 Apr 2018 • Rough Guides Editors insert_drive_file Article
View more featureschevron_right

Privacy Preference Center

Necessary

Mandatory - can not be deselected. Necessary cookies help make a website usable by enabling basic functions like page navigation and access to secure areas of the website. The website cannot function properly without these cookies.

PHPSESSID,aelia_cs_selected_currency,cookie_notice_accepted,RS,bp-message,bp-message-type,id,UIDR,w3tc_logged_out,__cfduid
__cfduid

Statistics

Statistic cookies help website owners to understand how visitors interact with websites by collecting and reporting information anonymously.

__utma,__utmb,__utmc,__utmz,_ga,_gid,__atssc,__atuvc,__atuvs,di,dt,ssc,ssh,sshs,uid,uit,xt
__utma,__utmb,__utmc,__utmz,_ga,_gid
__atssc,__atuvc,__atuvs,di,dt,ssc,ssh,sshs,uid,uit,xtc

Marketing

Marketing cookies are used to track visitors across websites. The intention is to display ads that are relevant and engaging for the individual user and thereby more valuable for publishers and third party advertisers.

__gads,PISID, BEAT, CheckConnection TempCookie703, GALX, GAPS, GoogleAccountsLocale_session, HSID, LSID, LSOSID, NID, PREF, RMME, S, SAPISID, SID, SSID,__utmv, _twitter_sess, auth_token, auth_token_session, external_referer, guest_id, k, lang, original_referer, remember_checked, secure_session, twid, twll,c_user, datr, fr, highContrast, locale, lu, reg_ext_ref, reg_fb_gate, reg_fb_ref, s, wd, xs
__gads,PISID, BEAT, CheckConnection TempCookie703, GALX, GAPS, GoogleAccountsLocale_session, HSID, LSID, LSOSID, NID, PREF, RMME, S, SAPISID, SID, SSID
__utmv, _twitter_sess, auth_token, auth_token_session, external_referer, guest_id, k, lang, original_referer, remember_checked, secure_session, twid, twll
c_user, datr, fr, highContrast, locale, lu, reg_ext_ref, reg_fb_gate, reg_fb_ref, s, wd, xs