The London Olympics promise to be one of the most memorable international sporting events. The UK’s capital city will host the Olympics for a record third time in 2012. It is the second city to host the games twice—the first was Paris, which hosted the summer Olympics in 1900 and 1924—and the first to hold it three times. Its Olympic heritage goes back more than 100 years, when it was named host city for the 1908 summer Olympics, and the first games after World War II were also held in London, in 1948. The 2012 Games are scheduled from July 27 to August 12, and there will be events held in venues around the UK, including the Aquatics Centre and Olympic Stadium in London, as well as facilities in Scotland and Northern Ireland, among other areas.
When it comes to one of the most awaited international events, London always has something new and innovative for sports lovers. The 1908 Olympics were held at the beautiful White City stadium built especially for the games, while the 1948 Games introduced the Volunteer Program, an initiative created to help run the Olympics because of the economic meltdown after the Second World War. This time, the 2012 Olympics in London will amaze visitors with the city’s new green initiative.
The Olympic Park, a roughly one-square-mile area in East London, will create an environmentally friendly backdrop for spectators. This spacious sporting complex will employ new green techniques and will have more than 2,000 trees planted on the main site. The Olympics Park will be used as a publicly accessible sporting arena and eco-friendly park after the games. The Olympic Village, which will be a major part of the park, is to be located in the Lower Lea Valley. The design of the 2012 Olympic Village is compact and intended to create a welcoming and inspiring experience for the athletes, and the village will be converted into new facilities and homes for the public once the games are over.
One of the most memorable features of the London 2012 Olympics is sure to be the ceremonial celebrations—including the all-important torch relay, and the opening and closing ceremonies. The Olympic torch relay route will be announced in 2011, and announcements for the Paralympics torch relay will be made in 2012. The torch will be lit in Olympia, Greece, and will be carried by multiple torch bearers around the world, with concerts and other live entertainment to mark its arrival. The Opening Ceremonies and Closing Ceremonies are always among the most impressive and unforgettable parts of any Olympic Games, and London is sure to be no different in its level of artistry and choreography.
There are 26 sports included in the London 2012 Olympics, including such popular events as swimming, track and field, tennis, basketball, and gymnastics. Baseball and softball, which were played in 2008 in Beijing, are no longer part of the Olympic lineup. The 2012 Olympic Games in London will take place in the Olympic Park and at other venues, including the Hockey Center, the Handball and the Basketball Arena and the Aquatics Center in the Olympic Park. Popular sporting venues, including Greenwich Park, the Lord's Cricket Ground, North Greenwich Arenas 1 and 2, Wembley Stadium, and the historic All England Club at Wimbledon will also host events.
Getting to the games, once you’ve arrived in London, will be easy, as the city has highlighted several different public transportation options for spectators attending the events. The London 2012 Olympics organizing committee plans to provide numerous transportation options to reach various venues. In addition to rails, light rail, bus and coach services, and the Tube, spectators can take advantage of the river transport options and taxi services to the key venues around London.
With their environmentally friendly angle, the 2012 Olympic Games in London will be one of the most highly anticipated and innovative events in the history of the games. The combination of the new venues at Olympic Park and the historic sites around the city and the country promise something for everyone, and both spectators and athletes alike will surely cherish every moment.
Image: London 2012