What To Do In London - The Best Walk in London from Big Ben via the London Eye to Tower Bridge Mapped Out

Tower Bridge isn't as old as it might look!
Tower Bridge isn't as old as it might look! | Source

Please Rate This Walk

3.5 out of 5 stars from 2 ratings of The London Walk from Big Ben to Tower Bridge

A Stroll Along the River Thames

I've lived in London for over ten years now and I’ve lost count of the number of friends and relatives I’ve guided around the Capital.

They all want to squeeze in as many of the big sights as possible in their weekend break, and spend as little time as possible queuing and rubbing shoulders with other tourists.

Oh, and did I mention they all want to get the full London Experience on a budget too? Not an easy task!

The answer is of course to discover London by foot, and over the years I’ve come to love this walk along the south bank of our river Thames. Nomatter how many times I walk this route, I never tire of the scenic views of the river and all the landmarks along the way.

Depending on how long you spend in each ‘stop’, the walk can take anything from an hour, to half a day or more.

What do you say, are you up for a real London walk?

Okay then - Pack your umbrella and put on some comfy shoes, let’s get going!

Traditional London Phone Booth
Traditional London Phone Booth | Source

What You will Discover

These are the big London landmarks you’ll come across on this walk - not counting the traditional red double deckers, post boxes, black cabs and all the other thousands of historical details that makes London such a unique and wonderful city.

1. Big Ben
2. London Film Museum
3. The London Eye at Jubilee Gardens


4. The National Theatre
5. The OXO Tower
6. Tate Modern


7. Shakespeare’s Globe Theatre
8. Klink Prison Museum
9. The Golden Hind


10. London Dungeons
11. The London Bridge Experience
12. HMS Belfast


13. City Hall
14. Tower Bridge
15. Tower of London
16. Jack the Ripper Walk

Your London Walk Mapped Out Part 1(2)

show route and directions
A markerBig Ben, London, UK -
Big Ben, City of Westminster, London SW1A, UK
[get directions]

B markerLondon Film Museum -
London Film Museum, County Hall, Riverside Bldg, County Hall, London Borough of Lambeth, London SE1
[get directions]

C markerThe London Eye -
EDF Energy London Eye, London Borough of Lambeth, London SE1, UK
[get directions]

D markerThe National Theatre, London, UK -
National Theatre Car Park, Upper Ground, London Borough of Lambeth, Southwark SE1 9PX, UK
[get directions]

E markerThe OXO Tower -
OXO Tower, Oxo Tower Wharf Barge House St, Lambeth, South Bank, London, South Bank SE1 9PH, UK
[get directions]

F markerTate Modern -
Southwark, Tate Modern (Stop SV), London Borough of Southwark, London SE1, UK
[get directions]

G markerShakespeare's Globe Theatre -
Shakespeare's Globe Theatre & Exhibition, London Borough of Southwark, London SE1, UK
[get directions]

H markerThe Clink Prison Museum -
The Clink Prison Museum, 59 Carter Ln, London, Greater London EC4V 5AQ, UK
[get directions]

I markerThe Golden Hinde -
The Golden Hinde, Pickfords Wharf, Clink St, London Borough of Southwark, London SE1 9DG, UK
[get directions]

J markerThe London Dungeon -
London Dungeon, London, City of London, Greater London SE1 2SZ, UK
[get directions]

Big Ben
Big Ben | Source

1. Say Hello to Big Ben!

Although we'll be spending most of our time on the south side of the Thames, the starting point for this walk is one of London's most iconic landmarks - the Big Ben clock tower at the north end of the Palace of Westminster.

To get there, take the underground train (or the tube as Londoners like to call it) to Westminster and follow the signs towards Big Ben.

Take extra care if you're crossing the street and remember they drive on the left side of the road in England!

Big Ben Trivia

"Did you know that Big Ben is not actually the name of the clock tower, but the great bell inside it?

The clock tower holds one of the largest four-faced chiming clock in the world celebrated its 150th anniversary in 2009."


Photographing Big Ben is not as easy as it might seem!
Photographing Big Ben is not as easy as it might seem! | Source

2. Visit the London Film Museum

Cross Westminster Bridge carefully to the south side of the river - watch out for pick pockets and photographers snapping the views. You will soon spot the London Film Museum.

Previously known as the Movieum of London, at the London Film Museum you can see props props from films such as 'Superman', 'Star Wars', 'The Italian Job' and 'Batman'.

You can also see interviews and clips from TV series that made it to the big screen, take a journey back in time with the Charlie Chaplin Great Londoner Exhibition, or even have your photo taken on a mini set.

Its the place to go for all movie buffs, the rest of us will continue to our next stop!


The London Eye
The London Eye | Source

3. Take in the Views from the London Eye

You can probably already see the EDF Energy London Eye up ahead, so keep walking until you bump into the crowds queuing up.

Don't worry though, because you've read this article you've already bought your tickets in advance online, so you don't need to queue with the rest of the tourists.

Unless you love queuing, I'd definitely recommend to pay a little extra for a fast track ticket which allows you to beat the queues - you can only buy these tickets online so go ahead and visit their website before your trip.

London Eye Trivia

"The height of the London Eye is 135m (this is the equivalent to 64 red London telephone boxes piled on top of each other) making it the fourth tallest structure in London.

On a clear day, you can wave to the Queen from the top of the wheel as you can see around 40KM (25 miles) which is as far as Windsor Castle!"

4. The National Theatre is well worth a visit

Even if you're not planning on going to the theatre, its well worth passing by the National Theatre building. In summer, there's always some fun outdoor event going on outside. And of course they show up to three shows per day!

Tate Modern Wall Art Close Up
Tate Modern Wall Art Close Up | Source

5. The OXO Tower - Not an Advertising Site

Keep your Eyes pinned and watch out for a tall tower with the letters OXO spelled out across the windows at the top.

Now one of the most iconic London landmarks, it was originally built as a power station to the Post Office and it was built towards the end of the 19th century.

If you dont mind paying a little extra for the view, there is a well known restaurant on the top floor.

OXO Tower Trivia

"In 1928-29 the OXO tower was rebuilt to an Art Deco design and the architect wanted to include several advertising signs for the stock cubes the company produced.

When they were denied the rights to such advertising signs, the windows of the building took on a new interesting design with some peculiar shapes - can you guess the name of the company?"


6. Pop in to Tate Modern - its free

Our Next Stop is Tate Modern. I'll admit I don't know much about art, but I always enjoy a visit here, probably partly because admission is free but also because the art installations are international, modern and contemporary as well as good fun to check out.

Tate Modern
Tate Modern | Source
Shakespeare's Globe Theatre is the only thatched roof building allowed in modern London...
Shakespeare's Globe Theatre is the only thatched roof building allowed in modern London... | Source

7. Shakespeare's Globe Theatre

The Shakespeare Globe Theatre of today stands just a few hundred yards from its original site. The original globe that saw many of Shakespeare's finest plays was demolished to make room for tenements under England's Puritan administration in 1642.

We have the American actor and director Sam Wanamaker to thank for the rebuilding of the iconic building.

Globe Theatre Trivia:

"Since the Great Fire - The Globe Theatre is the only building in London that is allowed a thatched roof"

8. Take a Peek at The Clink Prison Museum

Follow the old cobbled streets and you'll find the Clink Prison Museum. The mueum is built on the original site of one of England's oldest prison, dating back to 1144.

The museum itself is a pretty dusty affair, you're best off just peeking through the windows and walk on. Unless you have a keen interest in old prisons of course!

10. Enter The London Dungeons (if you dare)

The London Dungeon is not for the faint hearted, but it is a fun attraction to visit. You can discover London's gory and scary past through actor led shows and scary rides - and you will learn quite a lot in the process.

The queue outside the attraction is possibly even more frightening than the actual shows, so I recommend buying your timed tickets online in advance.

9. Step onboard the Golden Hinde

The Golden Hinde is a replica of Sir Francis Drake's warship that he used to circumnavigate the globe in 1577-1580. You can step onboard to get a taste of what living onboard a ship was like in Tudor times, or just take some lovely snapshots of the ship from the outside.



10. The London Bridge Experience and the Tombs

A couple of years ago a rival attraction noticed there was always a queue outside the London Dungeon and took advantage of the situation, opening up their own scare attraction.

Which one is better? If you haven't booked your tickets in advance I'd simply choose the attraction with the shortest queue!

HMS Belfast
HMS Belfast | Source

11. Board the HMS Belfast

HMS Belfast is an original Royal Navy Light Cruiser, permanently moored in the Thames and gives you a unique opportunity to board and explore what its like living onboard a war ship.

You can climb up and down all the ladders to reach the nine decks and hear about the battle stories from the Second World War and more.

City Hall
City Hall | Source

12. City Hall - shake hands with the Mayor of London

The egg shaped City Hall is home to the Mayor of London, the London Assembly and their 600 or so permanent staff.

The surrounding areas are open and contemporary style, contrasting beautifully with the older parts of London you've just walked through.

14. Cross the River on Tower Bridge

Tower Bridge is one of London's most popular landmarks, and you might be surprised to know that the bridge itself isn't actually as old as it might look.

London Bridge used to be the only bridge across the Thames, but eventually a new bridge was needed to deal with the increase in traffic. Over 50 designs were submitted for consideration, but in 1844 Horace Jones, the City Architect, in collaboration with John Wolfe Barry, offered the chosen design for Tower Bridge as a solution.

Nowadays you can visit the Tower Bridge Exhibition and learn more about the history of the bridge and the inner workings and machinery that keeps London's mosty popular bridge running.

As you can see the design has been made to blend in beautifully in style with the nearby Tower of London which is of course much older. And the rest is as they say history!

Tower Bridge Trivia:

"In 1952, a London bus driven by Albert Gunton had to leap from one bascule to the other when the bridge began to rise with the number 78 bus still on it."

Tower Bridge
Tower Bridge | Source

15. Visit the Tower of London

Its hard to find a place with more history than the Tower of London. Explore the grounds, see the Crown Jewels, count the Tower Ravens, and learn everything there is to know about Royal history.

Or, if you're short on time just take a stroll around the Tower of London itself and take in the stunning views. This isn't a Disney Land castle, its real history!

Tower of London
Tower of London | Source

16. Walk in Jack the Ripper's Foot Steps

This is one of my absolute favourite London activities. Trained actors and Jack the Ripper book authors will guide you through the winding streets of the city of London and take you to all the known murder sites. And maybe, just maybe you'll find out who Jack the Ripper really was!

The Jack the Ripper Tours takes place every night at 7.30 pm come rain or shine. You'll get the scariest experience during the darker winter months as the shadows play tricks with your mind. You meet the tour guide from London Walks just outside the exit of Tower Hill Tube.

Your London Walk Part 2 (2)

show route and directions
A markerThe London Bridge Experience -
Britain At War, 64-66 Tooley St, London Borough of Southwark, London Bridge, London SE1 2TF, UK
[get directions]

B markerHMS Belfast -
HMS Belfast, City of London, Greater London SE1 2JH, UK
[get directions]

C markerCity Hall -
London Borough of Southwark, London SE1 2AA, UK
[get directions]

D markerTower Bridge, London -
Tower Bridge, Greater London, UK
[get directions]

E markerThe Tower of London -
London Borough of Tower Hamlets, London EC3N 4AB, UK
[get directions]

F markerTower Hill Tube Station -
Tower Hill, London, UK
[get directions]

One more Thing - Get a Proper London Map

Just one more thing. Before you head off to London, make sure you get a proper London Map Book.

The A-Z is the map book real Londoners use - so don't rely on flimsy fold out tourist maps, they break and what's worse, they only tend to show the streets in and around Covent Garden and not the places you might want to go to.

The A-Z is the best London Map you can get, and they come in several convenient sizes...

Enjoy your visit to London!

More by this Author


Comments 57 comments

Easy Exercise profile image

Easy Exercise 21 months ago from United States

Linda Bliss,

Charming! I have always wanted to visit London. Learned allot - the bell not the clock is Big Ben! And I have heard the Brits call the train the tube - always thought that was funny still do!


joedolphin88 profile image

joedolphin88 2 years ago from north miami FL

Great article, I'd love to go to London, if I do I will certainly keep these things to do in mind.


Elias Zanetti profile image

Elias Zanetti 3 years ago from Athens, Greece

A wonderful post, Linda! Voted up, interesting and useful! Cheers!


Linda Bliss profile image

Linda Bliss 4 years ago from San Francisco Author

Thanks for stopping by Sabine! I'll have to check out that walk too - it sounds interesting :-)


sabinepanneau profile image

sabinepanneau 4 years ago from Rosario, Argentina

Thanks Linda You've made me want to come back to London!!! Although I spent nearly 12 years there, I never got bored of walking along the Thames. Another interesting tour is called "The Blitz - London at war" and is set around St Paul's Cathedral.


lobobrandon profile image

lobobrandon 4 years ago

Yup, the caves are surely someting to do when in London :) I never knew about them before reading this hub


Rusti Mccollum profile image

Rusti Mccollum 4 years ago from Lake Oswego, Oregon

I would love to live in London,but I'd settle for a vacation there.London has so much history I envy you getting to live there have the time to enjoy the beautiful sights. Thankyou for sharing some of London with us. Great hub I enjoyed it!


prasetio30 profile image

prasetio30 4 years ago from malang-indonesia

London is beautiful. I can't wait to see the city of London one day. Tower Bridge and Big Ben is one of the main attraction in London. Thanks for share with us. I really enjoy all pictures here. Rated up and pushing all buttons, except funny. London.....I'm coming!

Prasetio


Linda Bliss profile image

Linda Bliss 4 years ago from San Francisco Author

lobobrandon - the Dugeons are a lot of fun and interesting at the same time. You learn about the gory history of London and have fun at the same time :o)


lobobrandon profile image

lobobrandon 4 years ago

Hmm I wonder how the London Dungeons are :) They seem to be an amazing place ;)


Linda Bliss profile image

Linda Bliss 4 years ago from San Francisco Author

Hi Lobobrandon! Thanks for asking a great question! :o)


lobobrandon profile image

lobobrandon 4 years ago

Hey :) Congrats I never realized that you won the Hub of the day ;)

Glad to see that the question I asked helped make this possible - But, surely this hub is amazing, awesome, lively and informative.


eatforcheaper profile image

eatforcheaper 4 years ago from London

Hi, good to see another fellow Londoner on hubpages! Great article. I have a written about cheap, quality restaurants in London as well which are a big help and one would think hard to come by but they are out there. It is a fun city to live in and I'm still enjoying it. It can be tough at times but all in all I enjoy it!


Linda Bliss profile image

Linda Bliss 4 years ago from San Francisco Author

Sammythrone - thanks for stopping by! London is a majestic city and some of the landmarks can really take your breath away, especially when you consider how long they've been there and all the history they've 'seen'...


Linda Bliss profile image

Linda Bliss 4 years ago from San Francisco Author

wtraveladvisor - thanks for reading my hub about London. Good luck with your writing, the secret is to write about things you're passionate about, or want to learn more about :o)


Linda Bliss profile image

Linda Bliss 4 years ago from San Francisco Author

Rufus- thanks for stopping by and hope you'll get a chance to visit London soon :o)


Linda Bliss profile image

Linda Bliss 4 years ago from San Francisco Author

Thanks Oceansunsets for reading and voting! :o)


Linda Bliss profile image

Linda Bliss 4 years ago from San Francisco Author

Thanks Happybomernurse for reading my hub and for the votes! :o)


sammythrone profile image

sammythrone 4 years ago from North America/South America/Europe/Asia

@Linda Bliss

I was there a few years back and I love the feeling during sunset. Looking at tower bridge while the sun cast its final rays...well, it's really beautiful yet sad in a way as it signify an end...somehow.


wtraveladvisor profile image

wtraveladvisor 4 years ago from Yogyakarta

Wow, Great Hub, I am amazed. I am currently learning to write a good hub like you.


Rufus rambles profile image

Rufus rambles 4 years ago from Australia

Great hub - it's so good to get advice from a local! Congrats on hub of the day. I'll definitely use this guide if I ever make it to London!


megni profile image

megni 4 years ago

Great Article. Now I know more about London. Thanks.


oceansnsunsets profile image

oceansnsunsets 4 years ago from The Midwest, USA

Hi Linda, I hope to go to London one day. This will be a great resource if I ever go. Thanks for sharing. voted up and more!


Happyboomernurse profile image

Happyboomernurse 4 years ago from South Carolina

Excellent hub with so many insider tips that can help a vacationer save time and money.

Congratulations on earning the Hub of the Day Accolade with this worthy hub.

Voted us across the board except for funny.


vespawoolf profile image

vespawoolf 4 years ago from Peru, South America

Awesome hub and congrats on a well-deserved Hub of the Day! I've bookmarked for next time we're in London. Thank you!


Linda Bliss profile image

Linda Bliss 4 years ago from San Francisco Author

Thanks for stopping by Megni, and a big thanks for sharing my hub via Twitter too, much appreciated! :o)


Linda Bliss profile image

Linda Bliss 4 years ago from San Francisco Author

Hiya Girlltalkshop - I hope you get to see London soon!


Linda Bliss profile image

Linda Bliss 4 years ago from San Francisco Author

Hi Clairemy -thanks for reading. So happy I could help bring back all those happy London memories :o)


Linda Bliss profile image

Linda Bliss 4 years ago from San Francisco Author

Thanks for stopping by Summerberrie! The river tours are great too, especially if you get on one with commentary! Enjoy your next visit :o)


Linda Bliss profile image

Linda Bliss 4 years ago from San Francisco Author

Thanks for reading my hub and leaving a comment Joanveronica. I'm pleased I could help revive your memory of London :o)


Linda Bliss profile image

Linda Bliss 4 years ago from San Francisco Author

Princesswithapen - Thanks for stopping by. Yes I think many visitors to London are a bit over whelmed by the sheer amount of other tourists. Sometimes you can't even get a clear shot, or even get close enough to take a photo, because of all the people, as you can see in one of my shots. I chose to include these pictures as it shows the 'real' London and not the brochure version :o)


Linda Bliss profile image

Linda Bliss 4 years ago from San Francisco Author

Brian - thanks for reading! Agree, Sunday mornings are good for walks along the Thames - and its less crowded then too! :o)


Linda Bliss profile image

Linda Bliss 4 years ago from San Francisco Author

Emma - thanks so much for reading. Enjoy your London visit this summer, don't forget to bring your camera :o)


Linda Bliss profile image

Linda Bliss 4 years ago from San Francisco Author

Oh wow, I can't believe I've made it to 'hub of the day' - never thought that would happen! Thank you so much Hubpages and everyone who's been reading my hub today :o)


megni profile image

megni 4 years ago

I'm coming back and read word for word. I have wanted to visit England all my life! Your hub will be the next best thing. I've tweeted your hub so as many as possible can share in your tour. I thank you sincerely.


livingpah2004 profile image

livingpah2004 4 years ago from USA

Your hub make me to visit London. Full of information. Thanks for sharing it. And congratulations on Hub of the Day award!


Crystal Tatum profile image

Crystal Tatum 4 years ago from Georgia

Fantastic hub. I've always wanted to visit London, and now I'm really aching to go. I'm keeping this hub bookmarked for whenever I save enough money to make the trip!


girltalksshop 4 years ago

I found your hub interesting, useful and very informative. Great photos too!! I have to bookmark this one, as my dream is to someday visit England. Voted up and awesome, of course! : )


clairemy profile image

clairemy 4 years ago

I was born near London and remember many happy hours spent there from childhood and into my late teens. We walked many miles, and saw so much. This hub brings happy memories flooding back, particularly The Tower of London.


summerberrie 4 years ago

Linda Bliss, I have been to London. We took a tour boat down the Thames. It was fun, but I wish I had your guide information with us! I will save it for the return trip. Thanks for the information.


randomcreative profile image

randomcreative 4 years ago from Milwaukee, Wisconsin

Wonderful job! There is so much useful information here as well as beautiful photographs. This is a great resource. Congrats on getting Hub of the Day!


DeborahNeyens profile image

DeborahNeyens 4 years ago from Iowa

What a great, detailed hub with so much good information. Congratulations on Hub of the Day!


joanveronica profile image

joanveronica 4 years ago from Concepcion, Chile

This is a beautiful Hub! Congratulations on your Hub of the Day nomination. It is well deserved! My few visits to London were all in a hurry, traveling for the day from Liverpool, mainly for reasons not connected to sight-seeing. I really missed a lot, so thanks for allowing me to enjoy several decades later!


Lindy's World profile image

Lindy's World 4 years ago

Linda I loved your hub. England and Scotland have always been on my bucket list, now I think it will be moved up the list.


Melis Ann profile image

Melis Ann 4 years ago from Mom On A Health Hunt

Great resource for those planning a trip to London and great pics for those to reminisce about past trips!


princesswithapen profile image

princesswithapen 4 years ago

What a beautiful and rustic post, Linda. The no-frills pictures gave it a very realistic touch and this hub made for some fantastic arm chair travelling. Nicely done and congratulations for being voted Hub of the Day!

Princesswithapen


BRIAN SLATER profile image

BRIAN SLATER 4 years ago from Nottingham Uk

Well done Linda and congratulations on hub of the day. We have made this walk a few times in the past, great walk for a Sunday morning if your trying to clear your head! The Tate is well worth spending the whole day in there. voted up awesome.:)


raakachi profile image

raakachi 4 years ago from Madurai / Tamilnadu / India

Congrats on the hub of the day! a very well exhibited hub shows everything in front of me. voted beautiful!


Emma Harvey profile image

Emma Harvey 4 years ago from Berkshire, UK

Wonderful hub on a great city!

Although I live quite near to there, I have never been in the tower of London. I think you take it for granted sometimes (although I have done the London Eye) - but my goals for the summer: Windsor castle and the Tower of London.

Congrats on hub of the day!


Linda Bliss profile image

Linda Bliss 4 years ago from San Francisco Author

Oh yes, these are great too! Thanks for reading :o)


decor-girl profile image

decor-girl 4 years ago from UK

The Natural History Museum, and Science Museum are worth a look. - and the Sea Life Aquarium in London


Linda Bliss profile image

Linda Bliss 4 years ago from San Francisco Author

Thanks for stopping by Simone! Its the best walk ever - you get to see the best of London without getting too squashed by other tourists :o)


Simone Smith profile image

Simone Smith 4 years ago from San Francisco

Awesome Hub! I took almost the same exact walk when I was there last summer. So many great sights to see!


Linda Bliss profile image

Linda Bliss 4 years ago from San Francisco Author

Thanks for stopping by & pleased I could revive your memory of beautiful London :o)


ladeda profile image

ladeda 4 years ago

I loved my visit to London and the Tate Modern is one of my favorite museums! Thanks for sharing this Hub!


Linda Bliss profile image

Linda Bliss 4 years ago from San Francisco Author

Thanks for stopping by! The Ripper tours are really amazing and they do some other interesting walks as well like ghosts of London. So much fun! :o)


JerryJupiter profile image

JerryJupiter 4 years ago from United Kingdom

Really is a very long and worthwhile read! London is something very close to my heart - though I wrote about some more 'off the beaten path' style sites to visit. Loving the Jack The Ripper tours though, I'll have to do that at some point! Thanks for sharing!

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