London is the capital and largest city of England and the United Kingdom. The city stands on the River Thames in the south-east of England. London is one of the world's most important global cities and has been called the world's most powerful, most desirable, most influential, most visited, most expensive, sustainable, most investment-friendly, and most-popular-for-work city. It exerts a considerable impact upon the arts, commerce, education, entertainment, fashion, finance, healthcare, media, professional services, research and development, tourism, and transportation.
London has a diverse range of people and cultures, and more than 300 languages are spoken in the region. London has four World Heritage Sites: the Tower of London, Kew Gardens, the site comprising the Palace of Westminster, Westminster Abbey, and St Margaret's Church, and the historic settlement in Greenwich. Other landmarks include Buckingham Palace, the London Eye, Piccadilly Circus, St Paul's Cathedral, Tower Bridge, Trafalgar Square, and The Shard. London has numerous museums, galleries, libraries, and sporting events.
London has a temperate oceanic climate. Summers are generally warm, sometimes hot. London's average July high is 24 °C (74 °F). Winters are generally cool with little temperature variation. Heavy snow is rare but snow usually happens at least once each winter. Spring and autumn are pleasant. As a large city, London has a considerable urban heat island effect, making the center of London at times 5 °C (9 °F) warmer than the suburbs and outskirts.
London's universities form the largest concentration of higher education institutes in Europe, and London is home to highly ranked institutions such as Imperial College London in natural and applied sciences, and the London School of Economics in social sciences, King’s College London, London Business School, Royal College of Music, Royal Academy of Music, Guildhall School of Music and Drama, are some of the top-ranked universities of London.