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London is the capital city, and by a quite considerable margin, the largest city of both England and the UK as a whole. The term "City of London" (as well as "The Square Mile" or just "The City") is used mainly to refer to a very small (1 square mile - 2.6 km2) area that formed the ancient core of the conurbation, and which is today the most important center of the financial industry. The conurbation as a whole is referred to "Greater London" or simply "London", and even this is largely surrounded by further built-up and urban areas. Approximately 8.5 million people live in Greater London, with perhaps 14 million in the metropolitan area.
As the former capital of a globe-spanning empire, London is home to people of many races, cultures and languages. Many of these people have their roots in former British colonies, but there European, South American, Turkish, Greek, Kurdish, Iranian, Arab and other communities too. While it would be incorrect to say that there have never been tensions, the communities get along remarkably well, and it is not at all unusual to go to school, live and work with people from diverse backgrounds. This cultural diversity has contributed not only greatly to the character of the city, but to arts, festivals, music and cuisine.
There are many tourist attractions in London, too many too mention in a brief article, but some must-see sights include Buckingham Palace, the Houses of Parliament (including Big Ben), the Tower of London, the London Eye, Royal Observatory Greenwich, and Madame Tussauds wax museum. Visitors to the city will also want to catch a theater production in the West End, see the London's many excellent museums and art galleries, check out the city's nightlife, and sample the variety of British, Anglo-Indian and international restaurants available.
Getting around London is easy for visitors. While it is possible to drive (but be aware that a daily congestion charge applies if you enter certain areas of central London during a weekday), most visitors find other options preferable:
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