Churches often provide an interesting destination during any city break or weekend visit, as they combine history and interesting stories with a nod to traditional and historical architecture, often inspired by different periods of history be it the renaissance or something more gothic and ornate.
Giving its name to the local underground station, Temple, Temple Church is located in the city district of London just a few minutes’ walk from nearby Fleet Street and Holborn with its direct connection to accommodation near Hyde Park. This means that not only does Temple Church boast a history and grandeur that is well worth visiting, but it couldn’t be more accessible in terms of distance from central London.
Here’s why you should add this church to your itinerary for your next London adventure.
Temple Church from the outside
A far cry from the modern design of the hotels in Hyde Park, Temple Church has retained its old architecture and refined stonework even with the surrounding buildings undergoing work and renovation. The vast circular structure is juxtaposed with the otherwise neat and angular lines of the surrounding buildings, giving this church a well defined place in the heart of London – combining the building itself with its history.
Interestingly, the circular structure in particular demonstrates a nod to its position as a Knights Templar church, which means that it was designed and built by the medieval order – known as one of the most powerful religious orders of the Middle Ages, who reigned over much of the religious drive in London until their dissolution in 1312.
Aside from the structure itself, visitors to Temple Church should note the gargoyles on the outside and the vast ceilings inside which make this space feel both open and very cold all at once.
What is there to do at Temple Church?
As is the case when visiting a church or building of great historical value, much of the attraction of Temple Church lies in the structure, the presentation of the architecture, and in the stories which can be seen in the fabric of the building and its decoration.
Following a breakfast buffet in your London hotel, visiting Temple Church offers something to do on a rainy day – with visitors able to explore and acknowledge the differing interior designs dependent on which areas of the church have been renovated and which haven’t. For example, the pillars which line the inside of the church are a combination of old and new structures, and if you look down as you walk you will see the effigies dedicated to the Knights Templar who designed and created the church.
Getting to Temple Church
Temple Church is accessible on foot from the Park Avenue Hyde Park or via tube to Temple station. As one of the most popular churches to visit in the city, the main interest in this site lies in its juxtaposition with modern London which surrounds it – in terms of both the modern tourist activity and architecture.