A Guide To London’s Olympic Park
The park’s most recognisable venue is the only arena in the UK to host world-class football and athletics events. The stadium is also used for concerts, including AC/DC earlier this summer. This month, it’s all about the beautiful game as it becomes the new home of West Ham United FC. See the club take on Juventus on 7 Aug, and book your tickets for next year’s World ParaAthletics Championships (14-23 Jul 2017) and IAAF World Championships (4-13 Aug 2017)
Golden moment: When distance runner Mo Farah became the first Briton to win the 10,000m gold medal at London 2012. Born in Somalia but raised in London, Farah was seen as an image of modern Britain and hailed a national treasure.
The Copper Box Arena
Handball, fencing, badminton, gymnastics… this arena attracts a wide range of local clubs these days, while also hosting everything from boxing matches to concerts. Catch the 2016 National Taekwondo Championships (24-25 Sep), Winmau World Darts Masters (24-27 Nov) and England Roses vs Jamaica’s Sunshine Girls in the Vitality Netball International Series (29 Nov).
Golden moment: Dubbed the ‘box that rocks’, this venue hosted the goalball events in the Paralympics. Invented in 1946 to rehabilitate World War II soldiers, the game involves visually impaired athletes throwing a ball with a bell towards a defended goal.
Whizz up the UK’s tallest sculpture in a lift and enjoy views of the skyline. On a clear day, you can see landmarks including The Shard, Big Ben and the ‘Gherkin’. Abseil down the sculpture, or zoom down it in the world’s tallest and longest tunnel slide. At almost 590ft long and 249ft high, you could reach speeds of 15 miles per hour!
Golden moment: Designed by Turner Prize-winning sculptor Sir Anish Kapoor and engineer Cecil Balmond, the Orbit is a powerful symbol of Stratford’s transformation.
Designed by the late Zaha Hadid, this spectacular centre, with its distinctive wave-like roof and state-of-the-art facilities, is open to everyone. It can seat 2,500 spectators, but don’t let its size put you off, as there are also many family-friendly activities, as well as diving lessons and professional training sessions.
Golden moment: When American swimmer Michael Phelps became the greatest Olympian in the history of the Games during a turbulent relay race in which he won his 19th Olympic medal.
Lee Valley Velopark
Track cycling, road racing, BMX and mountain biking – this iconic venue has it all. Burn rubber inside the award-winning, 6,000-seat velodrome or head outside and tackle bumps and jumps on the remodelled Olympic BMX track. The one-mile circuit is floodlit and, if you prefer to get off the beaten track, there’s 8km of traffic-free trails.
Golden moment: When Team GB, led by Chris Hoy, won seven out of 10 gold medals.