Your Guide to the Olympics

The Greatest Show on Earth

Our essential guide to the greatest show on earth will ensure you don't miss a single second of the action once the London Olympics get underway.

If you've missed out on tickets, find out how to savour the spectacle at one of London's giant open-air screens, and discover when you can catch TV coverage of the must-see athletics events.

Lucky enough to have tickets to the Games? Our guide covers useful travel information as well as the best apps and websites to keep you up to date with the action no matter where you are. 

And if you're stuck in the office when the Games are on, check out the Olympic tab on our website for exclusive interviews with your sporting heroes. Go Team GB!

Watching it

Whether you’re planning to head out and make a day of it or you just want to catch the action (or the highlights) from the comfort of your sofa, we’ve picked the best spots to watch the Games as they unfold.

If you missed out on Olympic tickets (and let’s assume you did) but are still keen soak up the excitement, have no fear because you may be able to watch from the middle of the Olympic Park. A double-sided screen the height of three double-decker buses will be positioned in the River Lea, in the centre of the wetlands area of the park. Anyone with a ticket for that day’s events will have access to the park but Rover tickets will also allow access to the park, where you can take a seat and keep an eye on the screens. Up to 10,000 people will be able to make use of this spectator area.

For more big-screen action in London, head to Hyde Park, Victoria Park or Trafalgar Square to watch the events in concert quality for free. Or, if the summer continues to be a grotesque travesty, stay dry in one of these bars dedicated to providing the best of the Olympics on slightly smaller screens.

For viewing in the rest of the UK, journey to one of the other ‘live sites’ where you can watch the main events at these public gatherings.

If you’ve decided to stay at home to watch the Olympics, tune in to the BBC for the main coverage or watch online here.

Travel

London is bracing itself for travel mayhem during the Games so do your research to avoid the inevitable delays and crowds. For advice on the busiest routes, times and places, plus extra information and tips on travelling in London, visit ‘Get Ahead of the Games’.

If you’re heading to the Olympic Park, check out the best route for you to avoid any last-minute stress or panic and ensure you get to your event on time.

Useful Apps

Don’t despair if you’re going to be out and about when your favourite event is taking place. You can stay up to date with your smartphone. This clever App, Medals 2012, has been designed to keep you in the loop with medal tables, event news and placings.

Or, if all of the Olympic talk has been going over your head, brief yourself (and wow your friends) with this simple App. In Curly's pocket guide You’ll find the rules and regulations of each event explained in bite-sized chunks: perfect for pub conversations.

Official Sites

For everything you could need or want to know about the London 2012 Olympics head over to the official site.

Here you will find everything from schedules and results to detailed information about each event, sport and nation participating in the Games. Plus, see what’s going on near you on the interactive map or do a spot of shopping for official memorabilia.

We are particularly impressed with the live stream showing the Olympic torch relay.

Extras

For the ultimate inside scoop straight from the athletes’ mouths, check out their official websites for blog updates and twitter links. Jessica Ennis and Mo Farah both have great official fan sites filled with exclusive news and videos.

If, like us, you’re addicted to Twitter, look out for Charles Van Comedy’s amusing tweets and commentary on the Games for a little light relief in the office.

The Inside Track

Don’t forget to check out the Olympic section on our website, where you’ll find exclusive profiles and interviews with Team GB’s 2012 hopefuls and also some of our most celebrated athletes from past Games.

Plus read about some of our favourite Olympic moments and relive the excitement with us (and whet your appetite for this year’s Games, which are sure to provide plenty of nail-biting moments).

Here are a few of our favourites to choose from: Remembering 1948, Olympic Moment: Coe and Ovett's Moscow Battle or our exclusive interview with Mo Farah

Must-see Events

Whether you are hoping to watch Bolt smash his own world record in the 100m men's final, want to see Olympic veteran Paula Radcliffe cruise around the capital's streets, or are ready to get behind golden girl Jessica Ennis in the heptathlon, our round-up of the key athletics events will ensure you're in the right place at the right time.

Heptathlon 
Friday 3rd August at 10:05
Jessica Ennis begins her campaign with the 100m hurdles. Tune in throughout the weekend as she tackles the high jump, shot put, 200m, long jump, javelin and 800m. 

Men's 10,000m
Saturday 4th August at 21:15
Support Britain's best distance runner gold Mo Farah as he attempts to add Olympic gold to his world championship silver from Daegu.

Women's Marathon
Sunday 5th August at 11:00
You don't need a ticket to watch the Olympic marathon, so expect the route from Westminster to the City to be packed with Brits supporting Paula Radcliffe as she has one last go at winning an Olympic medal. 

Women's 400m Final
Sunday 5th August at 21:10
Can Christine Ohuruogu successfully defend her Olympic title? American Sanya Richards-Ross will ensure it's a battle to the line.  

Men's 100m Final
Sunday 5th August at 21:50
Witness the Jamaican show down as Bolt and Blake go head to head.

Women's 400m Hurdles
Wednesday 8th August at 20:45
Last month, Perri Shakes-Drayton set a new personal best of 53.77, the second-fastest time in the world this year. Let's hope she goes one better in the Olympic Stadium tonight. 

Men's 400m Hurdles Final
Wednesday 8th August at 21:15
Honoured as Captain of Team GB's athletics team, Dai Greene "intends to lead by example". We reckon he'd better win gold then.