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2012 London Summer Olympics Venues

Updated on January 20, 2015

Presenting the Venues for the 30th Summer Olympic Games

The Olympics Junkie counted 33 separate venues that were used for the staging of the competitive events of the 30th Summer Olympic games that were held in London, England from Friday, July 27th, 2012 through Sunday, August 12th. There were storied old sporting sites like Wimbledon for tennis and Wembly Stadium for football (soccer to we American fans), brand new permanent sites like the Olympic Stadium and the Aquatics Center at Olympic Park and some new temporary facilities like the water polo facility and the basketball arena. Most of the venues are within London. There were a dozen that were located in nearby areas outside the city including five that were specifically used for football (soccer).

The Olympic Park Venues

Olympic Park is/was located near the heart of the city in London's famed East End. Venues within the park were almost all new structures that were created for the 2012 Games. Some of them were permanent and some temporary.

They included:

The Aquatics Center - A new, permanent facility that was the venue for all swimming events, diving, synchronized swimming and the swimming element of the modern pentathlon. These 4 main discipline areas consist of more than 150 individual events.

The Basketball Arena - The arena was a new, temporary structure for men's and women's basketball and handball competitions. It was considered one of the largest temporary structures ever built as an Olympic Games venue.

The Copper Box A permanent structure where handball (other than the finals) was contested and also where the fencing events of the modern pentathlon were held.

Eaton Manor - Eaton Manor was a temporary outdoor stadium that housed a 50 meter practice swimming pool for the Olympics. It was the site for wheelchair tennis for the Paralympics held in late August of 2012. It was dismantled after the Paralympics.

Olympic Stadium A new, permanent facility that, for the Olympics was the home of the opening and closing ceremonies and most track and field events. Many seats were to be removed after the Olympic and Paralympic games.

Riverbank Arena This arena was a temporary facility that was the site for field hockey for the Olympics and football (soccer) for the Paralympics.

Velodrome and outdoor BMX Track. The Velodrome, a permanent structure, was the site of all of the indoor cycling events. A temporary BMX track was built outside of it for the games.

Water Polo Arena A temporary structure adjacent to the aquatic center.

Olympic Park Photo Gallery

Click thumbnail to view full-size
Aquatic Center - Swimming, synchronized swimming and diving events.Temporary Basketball ArenaCopper Box - Handball and FencingEaton Manor - Temporary for Olympic swimming practice / Paralympic wheelchair tennisOlympic StadiumRiverbank Arena - Temporary for Field HockeyVelodrome - Indoor cyclingWater Polo Arena - Temporary
Aquatic Center - Swimming, synchronized swimming and diving events.
Aquatic Center - Swimming, synchronized swimming and diving events.
Temporary Basketball Arena
Temporary Basketball Arena
Copper Box - Handball and Fencing
Copper Box - Handball and Fencing
Eaton Manor - Temporary for Olympic swimming practice / Paralympic wheelchair tennis
Eaton Manor - Temporary for Olympic swimming practice / Paralympic wheelchair tennis
Olympic Stadium
Olympic Stadium
Riverbank Arena - Temporary for Field Hockey
Riverbank Arena - Temporary for Field Hockey
Velodrome - Indoor cycling
Velodrome - Indoor cycling
Water Polo Arena - Temporary
Water Polo Arena - Temporary

Other London Venues

Other venues used in London for the games included such famous locations as the Horse Guards Parade Ground (Beach Volleyball), the Hampton Court Palace (Road Cycling Time Trials on the grounds), Hyde Park (Triathlon), The Royal Artillery Barracks (*Shooting), Wembley Stadium (Football/Soccer), and Wimbledon (Tennis - pictured on the right). Most of the outside of London venues were within 30km of the city.

*Special laws had to be enacted for shooting sports athletes who traveled to the Olympic Games. It isn't legal for private citizens to own handguns in Great Britain and most other firearm ownership is by a permit issued for "good reason" only.

Wembley Stadium: Venue of Legends - Site of many of the soccer matches

Wembley Stadium - The most famous football (soccer) stadium in the free world...

Outside of London Venues

There were nine venues that were used outside of the city of London for the 2012 Summer Games. Not surprisingly, five of the nine were football (soccer) stadiums! The most interesting of these venues was the brand new Lee Valley White Water Center in the River Lee Country Park. The facility was constructed within the existing park specifically for the Canoe Slalom competition during the games. It is now open to the public and will remain a permanent part of the park (minus the grandstand seating)now that the games have ended.

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The Olympic Village

The Olympic Village for the 2012 London Summer Games housed more than 16,000 athletes, coaches, trainers and sporting officials from around the world. It consisted of more than 2,800 apartments. The village was within walking distance of most of the Olympic Park area venues. The facilities are apartment buildings now that the games are over with more than half of the spacious apartments (1,300 of them) turned into low income housing.

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    • profile image

      tmstrekkie 5 years ago

      There is more to the UK than London and it's a shame there weren't more venues further north!

    • Hawaiitom profile image

      Hawaiitom 5 years ago

      Woohoo! Olympics, here I come!

    • alexis84 profile image

      alexis84 5 years ago from Kent, UK

      I live about an hour away from London, was really hoping to get some tickets for some of the events, but missed out on the chance. Might take my kids up to the City while its on, so they can experience some of the Olympic Fever that daddy's currently getting!

      Really interesting lens, enjoyed reading it!