For an exciting, unforgettable tourist experience, London Bridge is the ideal location that offers an authentic sample of London.
In the shadow of Europe’s highest building – The Shard – London Bridge provides some truly unique tourist experiences and sights, next to the Thames, one of the world’s most famous rivers.
This is one of London’s most history laden and iconic areas, as it’s a site that has seen some of the Capital’s most notable culinary, maritime and often gruesome events that have all contributed to making London the city it is today.
There you’ll find endless photo opportunities, high quality bars and restaurants, shops and top class attractions like the Tower of London and Tower Bridge. There’s so much to see and it can all be enjoyed on foot.
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How to Get to London Bridge
Finding London Bridge is a pretty simple affair, as you can get there by:
- Taking one of the many Buses available in London
- Enjoying an MBNA Thames Clipper river bus ride along the river
- Jumping on a tube train via the Northern and Jubilee Underground Lines
- Taking an overland rail journey to London Bridge from London St Pancras International (Eurostar), London Luton airports and London Gatwick
- By bicycle, by using London’s Cycle Hire Scheme (also known as Boris Bikes) if you’re feeling fit and active
Should you be visiting London for more than just one day, it’s recommended that you purchase a Visitor Oyster Card prior to your arrival. Book ahead and you card will be delivered directly to your address before your journey to London and it is one of the most simple and stress free ways of travelling around whilst in London.
If you don’t book a Visitor Oyster Card in advance, it is possible to buy a standard Oyster Card upon your arrival at London’s Underground, but it may cost a little more.
Things to see and do at London Bridge
The Shard is Western Europe’s tallest building and its imposing form dominates the skyline over London Bridge. If you want to get an incredible view of the area of London Bridge and beyond, you should take the lift to The View from The Shard, which is located on levels 68 to 72 of the building.
After taking in the incredible birds eye views of London, there’s an array of top class attractions in the vicinity of London Bridge Station. There’s a taste of the macabre to be had at the scary Old operating Theatre, Museum and Herb Garret, where surgeons in the 1800s conducted surgical operations with no anaesthetic…ouch! The London Bridge Experience also offers a glance into London’s gruesome past.
From there, it’s just a short walk over the road to Borough Market, which is the oldest food market in the United Kingdom. It’s open between Thursday and Saturday each week and features over 100 vendors, offering a mixture of breads, vegetables, fish, meat, cheese and artisan cakes.
Adjacent to the market, you’ll find Southwark Cathedral, the oldest example of a Gothic Church in England’s capital city.
No tourist visiting London Bridge can truly say they’ve experienced everything the area has to offer, without taking a walk along the Thames. There’s lots of things to do either above or on the Thames close to London Bridge. You can visit Potters Fields Park or The Scoop next to City Hall for a riverside rest or sample some retail therapy at the excellent Hay’s Galleria Shopping Centre. There’s often free special events on offer in the area, so keep an eye out for them!
Or you could jump on board the HMS Belfast, the last surviving example of a Second World War gunship in Europe. We advise that you pace yourself, as there a total of 9 decks in all to sample. A visit here will bring the operational maritime experience to life, with radar mock ups on display in the Operations Room and real life Gun Turret Displays, where you can truly feel the heat of war!
Moving a little further down the Thames, the Tower Bridge Exhibition describes in detail, how the famed bridge operates and allows visitors to walk along the glass walkway to witness spectacular views of London.
Fashion lovers will enjoy the interesting exhibitions on Bermondsey Street, at the Fashion and Textile Museum.
Should you be journeying to London with your children, you simply must visit the fantastic Unicorn Theatre, the UK’s leading young people’s theatre, offering a diverse and intriguing year round work program for kids aged between 6 months and 18 years of age.
For entertainment as the evening approaches, the Bridge Theatre is the perfect venue to sample new and innovative theatre. This 900 seat venue is a relatively new addition to the area and sits next to the river. The plays shown there are known for their top class production and for their original scripts.
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Idyllic scenes today down at #KERBlondonbridge. Resting on a Tongue 'n Cheek half oxheart half beef 'heartbreaker' burger, in front of blue skies and that beautiful bridge. Don't forget our new market is now open Wednesday lunchtimes too, tucked away just outside the Crown Court 😊 📷 by @theteadealer. #COMFORTFOOD
Restaurants and Bars in the London Bridge Area
London Bridge was formerly known affectionately as ‘London’s Larder’, as a result of all the exotic, foreign food produce that used to arrive into London by ship from across the world. This food was stored in the warehouses next to the river and today, it is a place to find a wide array of foods to cater for every taste and budget.
Whilst wandering through Borough Market, you simply must sample the tasty food and beverages on offer. Travel to fashionable Bermondsey on Saturdays and you’ll discover Druid Street and Maltby Street markets. The tasty food on offer is created by a wide range of local culinary artisans.
A wide range of new restaurants have recently opened their doors in the Tower Bridge area, including Baluchi, The Coal Shed, The Ivy Brasserie and Tom Simmons. Close by, top chef Tom Sellers is constantly improving his delicious menu of season defining dishes – something that has earnt Restaurant Story its Michelin Stars.
For a mixture of dazzling views of London and top cuisine, visitors to London Bridge should head to Ting and Hutong, grilled food at Oblix or Aqua Shard for contemporary British fare.
For equally spectacular panoramic views closer to ground, head to European styled restaurants Cantina del Ponte, Le Pont de la Tour, Cote Brasserie and the many vendors next to the river in More London. Bermondsey Street is the location for a wide range of independent food vendors, including Londrino, Texas Joe’s, Champor Champor, Pizarro and Tanner & Co.
For an exclusive alfresco London Bridge pub and bar experience, visitors should travel to HMS Belfast’s Upper Deck Bar. GŎNG offers wonderful views, as well as The George Inn – a favourite of Charles Dickens. For top cocktails, try the Quarter Bar, TwoRuba, London Grind or Nine Lives.
Hostels and hotels in the London Bridge Area
London Bridge is a great starting point for exploring London. The Hilton London Tower Bridge, London Bridge Hotel, Ibis Styles and London Southwark Rose all offer accommodation very close to London Bridge Station. For a touch of top class Five Star service, try the luxury on offer at Hotel Shangri La, next to the Shard.