Should you be in London with your family, and be on the look-out for something new to try, it's well worth having a look at
walking over the O2 Arena.
You may have been to the O2. You may have been in the O2. But have you been over the O2 Arena? As a family, we
decided that walking over the O2 Arena was something we would try.
Standing at the top of the O2 Arena - mid-point of the "Walk over the O2 Arena"
Are we all eligible to walk over the O2 Arena
Our family consists of 2 adults and 2 children, with the youngest child being 10 years-old. So first of all, we
wanted to make sure that we were all eligible to take part in the walk. It turns out children have
to be 10 or older - so that was OK. The child also needs to be taller than 1.2 metres - that too was fine with us. Adults
need to be less than 21 stone - again, no problems. There
are various restrictions when climbing over the O2, which, I guess, is because
you have to wear a safety harness during the climb, so can't be too big. Or too small.
Everybody who climbs the O2 has to wear a safety harness
The best thing to do is book a time to climb the O2 in advance. A maximum of 15 people are allowed on each climb; with
the climb lasting about 1½ hours. Turn up at the time you're booked in for, and it's time to get ready. A safety
harness is supplied (as seen being modelled in the photo above), along with a pair of shoes suitable for the climb. All bags,
cameras, and anything else you're carrying gets put into a locker. The only thing you're allowed to take with you is a
phone or small camera.
Instruction is given on how the harness & safety stuff works, but you're accompanied at all times on the walk, so don't worry
about having a full understanding of climbing safety procedures.
Start the climb
At the bottom of the O2 Arena you're attached to a safety rail - so there isn't any chance of falling off the path
and sliding down the side, James Bond style. The climb takes a bit of effort, but isn't too strenuous. There is
plenty of time to stop and look around you at the city-scape London provides.
At the top of the O2 there is a viewing platform - this is the only place you're unclipped from the safety rail. And the
only place you're allowed to whip out your phone for pictures. After 10 minutes its time to reattach and descend
down the north face of the O2.
Was the walk over the O2 good
All four of us loved it! We got to the bottom of the O2 with big old grins on our faces. Would we do it again?
Definitely! Only next time we're going for a night walk over the O2. Now that does sound a little scary.
Coming in to land on the Emirates Air Line - the "walk over the O2" can be seen over the O2
Spend the night in London
We spent the night in London before our epic walk over the O2. If you've got a family
in tow, and fancy staying the night in London too, it's worth looking at the
Premier Inn Docklands ExCeL.
A short walk to the Emirates Air Line (which is an experience in itself). The Premier Inn is also next to the Prince Regent DLR station - so
is easy access to central London. As the Docklands Premier Inn is out of the centre of town, the room rates aren't too
bad either(for London).
If the thought of a villa holiday sounds good - but you've got children in tow, have a look at villa resorts which combine the advantages of having your own villa with the advantages of a resort's facilities.
Find a selection of holiday cottage in Beccles, Suffolk. The cottages of Riverside House, Butterfield House, Northgate Bakery, Honeysuckle Cottage and Burnt Hill House all have a video showing their location in Beccles.
Try a villa holiday in Europe and the Mediterranean during March, April and May. James Villas Spring Holidays is the place to look - and if you get in early enough you could get a bargain in the James Villa Holidays Half Price Sale.
Located next to the beach and surrounded by the Lagoa dos Salgados Lagoon and nature reserve, Vidamar Algarve Resort is a villa resort with holiday villas sleeping between 4 and 8 people. All villas at Vidamar Algarve Resort have their own pool.
A fabulous day out, the Falkirk Wheel links the Union Canal with the Forth and Clyde Canal. You have a variety of attractions at the Falkirk Wheel, including an Archimedes Screw, hire a cycle, paddle boats, or just a nice walk.
See the sights from the top of the Nevis Range in Scotland. Take a gondola up the mountain, and get some views from the Sgurr Finnisg-aig view point. You can always cycle down too - or take the cable car back down again.
How about a family holiday in the sun? The Balearic Islands make a lovely location for a holiday. We were recently fortunate enough to spend a few days at the all-inclusive resort of Marina Parc on Menorca. Close to the beach at Arenal d'en Castell, Marina Parc also comes with its own water park.
Great Yarmouth has an abundance of seaside attractions to keep both young and old occupied. For something a little calmer, how about a walk round The Venetian Waterways at Great Yarmouth. This peaceful waterway makes a glorious location to wander around.