The Cruise Route
Please note: Attractions in grey aren't visible from the River.
From Westminster Bridge:
The original bridge completed in 1750 was the second bridge over the Thames. The present bridge was opened in 1862.
1. The Houses of Parliament
Designed by Charles Barry and the underlying genius of Pugin who was responsible for all the decorative work. The buildings occupied the site of the old Royal Palace of Westminster which had burnt down in 1834. Neither Barry nor Pugin were to live to see the new buildings completed. The famous tower and clock are known as Big Ben but this is in fact the name of the 16 ton bell which rings the hour.
2. Florence Nightingale Museum at St Thomas
3. Greater London County Hall
Former council administration centre now converted into apartments and a hotel. It also contains the new London Aquarium.
3a. The London Eye (Millenium Wheel)
4. Old Scotland Yard
Until 1967 this was the headquarters of the Metropolitan Police. The name derives from Great Scotland, a street within Whitehall Palace.
5. Cabinet War Rooms
6. South Bank Centre Royal
Opened in 1951 for the Festival of Britain, the concert hall seats up to 2,930 - has a bookshop and a number of restaurants. It is now part of the South Bank Centre, together with (9) Queen Elizabeth Hall, Purcell Room and (11) Hayward Gallery.
7. Cleopatras Needle
This obelisk was first erected in Egypt by Pharaoh Thotmes lll around 1500BC. It was presented to the British people in 1819 in recognition of Nelsons victory over the French fleet at the Battle of the Nile in 1798.
8. Savoy Hotel
Built on the site of the Savoy Palace. The hotel founded in 1889, is one of Londons most famous and luxurious.
9. Queen Elizabeth Hall Purcell Room
10. Museum of the Moving Image and the National Film Theatre
11. Hayward Gallery
12. Royal National
Opened in 1976, this building contains three theatres: Olivier, Lyttleton and the Cottesloe, as well as restaurants and a bookshop. Visitors can join tours of the building.
13. Somerset House
This Palladian building was erected in 1786 when the river still reached its walls. It takes its name from the Duke of Somerset who started a palace on this site in 1547. This building now houses the Courtauld Gallery.
14. Coin Street Development
15. The Temple
This includes two of the four Inns of Court - the Middle Temple (in whose Elizabethan Hall Shakespeares Twelfth Night was performed in 1601) and the Inner Temple. Their name comes from the Knights Templar, founded in 1100 for the protection of pilgrims travelling to the Holy Land. The Inns of Court (Grays Inn and Lincolns Inn are the others), have housed barristers chambers for over 500 years. The Temple Bar Memorial to the north of the site marks the traditional boundary between the Cities of London and Westminster.
16. HMS President
17. Sion College and Library
Founded in 1624 as a meeting house for the Anglican Church Clergy. The present red-brick Gothic style building was completed in 1886 and houses 100,000 books. Blackfriars Bridge Opened in 1869 by Queen Victoria. Its stone pillars shaped like the pulpits of a church echo the 12th century Benedictine monastery whose monks black habits gave the area its name.
18. St Pauls
Wrens masterpiece took 35 years to build. Work started in 1675 during the reign of Charles ll to replace the old St Pauls destroyed in the Great Fire of London of 1666. Its 365ft (110m) high dome is slightly smaller than St Peters in Rome.
19. Tate Modern
Site of the new Tate Gallery extension.
20. Cardinals Wharf
A small group of 17th century houses. The cream coloured one with the red front door is said to have been where Wren lived whilst St Pauls was being built.
Guided tours give an opportunity of witnessing this great Elizabethan theatre in its inaugural season following its reconstruction exactly as it would have been over 400 years ago. The tours paint a vivid picture of the surrounding area and of the theatre itself in which Shakespeare was not only a shareholder but also an actor and where most of his plays were first performed.
22. Museum of London
23. Vintners (Wine Merchants) Hall
Built in 1671 following the Great Fire as a Livery Hall for the Vintners Company. Two swans decorate the entrance marking an ancient privilege granted by Edward lV in 1473 to the Vintners Company of owning swans on the river. William Chaucers father was a vintner and he himself appointed Richard IIIs Clerk of Works responsible for maintaining both Palaces at the Tower and Westminster as well as repairing the banks of the Thames between Woolwich and Greenwich, where at one time he had a house.
The present bridge dating from 1921 replaced the original toll bridge opened in 1819. It was never very popular as Londoners preferred to use the toll-free London Bridge.
24. Anchor Tavern
One of Londons best known taverns. Dating back to Tudor times it has associations with both William Shakespeare and Samuel Johnson. The present building was completed in 1750.
25. Guildhall (DLR Bank)
The seat of Londons municipal government since the 12th century. It has twice survived great fires and has witnessed the trials of traitors, the welcoming of heroes and glittering state occasions.
26. Clink Museum and Winchester Square
The Bishops of Winchester ran this private prison for heretics and debtors. The Clink which burnt down in 1780 gave its name to mean any prison. In the 16th and 17th centuries the area was Londons red light district and the Bishops regulated both the prostitutes and the brothels that operated there.
27. Southwark Cathedral
Some parts date back to the 12th century when it was attached to a priory, it was here that John Harvard, who founded Harvard University, was christened in 1607 and where Shakespeares brother Edmond lies buried.
28. Fishmongers Hall (DLR Bank)
Livery Hall of the Company founded in 1272. All fish sold in the City must still pass inspection by one of its officials.
29. Bank of England (DLR Bank)
Founded in 1694 to finance a costly war against France, the bank today is the UKs central bank. A free museum tells the story of its history in the world of finance.
30. The Monument (DLR Bank)
Designed by Wren and completed in 1677, to commemorate the Great Fire of London of 1666. The column stands 202ft (62m) high, the same distance as from the starting point of the fire in Pudding Lane. It is also the tallest free-standing stone column in the world.
31. Old Billingsgate (DLR Bank)
The present building was created in 1877 but the site, on one of the Citys earliest quays, had been Londons main fish market for over 900 years until its activities were relocated in more modern buildings (55) in the West India Docks (Canary Wharf).
32. London Dungeon
33. London Bridge City (DLR Bank)
Europes largest commercial riverside development, comprises office buildings and Hays Galleria which opened in 1987 as a new shopping complex. A 100ft (30m) high glass roof covers the former Hays Wharf where the great tea clippers once moored.
34.Custom House (DLR Bank)
Headquarters of HM Customs and Excise, the present building is the fifth on this site, the first dating back to the 14th century when all wool brought into London was weighed and taxed there. It was this Wool Tax that enabled Henry II to contribute to the building of London Bridge.
35. Lloyds of London (DLR Bank)
Named after the coffee house where insurance brokers used to do business in the 17th century. This new building by Richard Rogers is now home to the worlds largest insurance company.
36. Britian at War Museum
37. HMS Belfast (DLR Tower
11,500 ton Royal Navy cruiser. She played an important role during World War ll escorting convoys and in the Battle of North Cape. Saved from the scrap yard as the last big gun cruiser, opened as a museum ship in 1971.
38. Tower Hill Pagent
39. Tower of London (DLR Tower
Building was started by William the Conqueror in 1078 but the Tower has been extended and strengthened many times by succeeding monarchs. It has been a fortress, royal residence, an arsenal and more famously a prison. Facing the river is Traitors Gate through which many famous prisoners have entered the Tower, never to leave.
40. Tower Bridge (DLR Tower
Opened in 1894 and measuring 800ft (240m) between the two towers, which house the machinery for raising the bascules (each weighing about 1000 tons) in 90 seconds. The upper walkway is open to visitors.
41. Design Museum and Bramah Tea and Coffee Museum
42. St Katharine Docks (DLR Tower
Built by Thomas Telford in 1826 and designed to handle particularly valuable cargoes such as ivory, tea and silver. Now a commercial, residential and recreational area housing a yacht marina and a number of restaurants. It was one of the first of Londons old docks to be transformed.
43. St Katharine Pier
44. Edward lll's Manor House
Remains of a 14th century moated manor, thought to have been a residence of Edward lll, have been uncovered on this site close to the river.
45. Execution Dock (DLR Shadwell)
Pirates and smugglers were executed here. They were hanged in irons, washed by three tides and then cut down. The bodies of some were gibbeted in an iron cage down river at Tilbury as a warning to others. Infamous Captain Kidd was executed here in 1701.
46. Angel Pub
Dating back to the 15th century where the hosts would have been monks from Bermondsey Priory. In the 17th and 18th centuries it was frequented by Samuel Pepys, the famous diarist, and purportedly Captain Cook.
47. The Mayflower
In 1620 the Mayflower moored outside this 17th century building prior to sailing to America with the Pilgrim Fathers.
48. Brunels Tunnel Engine Room
The original shaft entrance and pump room for Brunels Thames Tunnel. Started in 1825 but not opened until 1843 it was never used as intended - for carriages - because of lack of funds to build approach ramps. The tunnel is today used by Londons underground.
49. Prospect of Whitby (DLR
Built in 1520, the name of this famous pub comes from the coal-carrying vessels from Whitby that used to anchor here. Visited by many famous people, including Charles Dickens, Judge Jeffreys and the artists Whistler and Turner.
50. Surrey Water and Quays
51. Cuckolds Point
Legend has it that William Cuckold, discovering that his wife had been unfaithful, had punished her by ducking her in the river on a ducking stool at this point. Thereafter, others had brought their adulterous wives here to be similarly dealt by Cuckold for a fee of one penny.
52. Limehouse (DLR)
Named after the lime kilns that stood here in the 17th century and supplied lime for the rebuilding of London after the Great Fire. The Limehouse Basin was built in 1812 and links the Thames with the midlands through a system of canals and locks. Limehouse Basin offers both fishing and watersports.
53. St Annes Church (DLR
St Annes Church designed by Hawksmoore in 1724 boasts Londons highest church clock.
54. Canary Wharf
Canary Wharf and other new developments on this 70 acre site, formerly the West India Docks, are one of the largest civil engineering projects ever under-taken. Startling and innovative architecture have made the area a bustling new financial centre, complete with shops, restaurants and new residential complexes. At 800ft (240m) the tower at Canary Wharf (One Canada Square) is the tallest building in Britain. A walk down Blood Alley among the old warehouses gives excellent views. Cabot Square offers an impressive range of shops, bars and restaurants.
55. New Billingsgate
57. Mudchute (DLR)
For a real contrast, visit Mudchute City Farm with sheep, cattle, horses, pigs and other animals.
58. Burrells Wharf (DLR Island
In the mid 18th century, the first iron ship built on the Thames was built here. But it was Brunels masterpiece, the 680 ft (207m) long Great Eastern which made the wharf famous. She was four times the size of the next largest ship in service and had to be launched sideways into the river, where the hull immediately got stuck in the mud. Now the site of a residential development, evidence of the original dry dock still exists.
59. Island Gardens (DLR)
At DLRs final stop, you can enjoy the superb views of Greenwich as seen by Canaletto in 1750. Island Gardens is connected to Greenwich town centre and Greenwich Pier by a Foot Tunnel built in 1902, with lifts at each end.
60. Gipsy Moth IV
The yacht in which Sir Francis Chichester in 1966-67 became the first person to sail single-handed around the world.
61. Cutty Sark
"The world's last Tea Clipper". Launched in 1869 for the China tea trade and now the last of the great tea clippers, she is berthed in dry dock and is open to the public. The Cutty Sark is the first preserved ship open to the public worldwide since Golden Hinde was exhibited in Deptford in 1580.
62. Royal Naval College
Wren, John Vanbrugh and Nicholas Hawksmoor all had a hand in constructing these buildings on the site of the old Tudor Palace of Placentia. The Chapel and Dining Hall, known as the Painted Hall, are the only parts of the College open to the public. Completed in 1712 the painted ceiling of the Hall is one of the most magnificent in Europe.
63. Crafts Market
64. St Alfeges Church
Dedicated to Alfege, Archbishop of Canterbury, who was martyred on this site. This church was started in 1714 by Hawksmoor, and was the first of fifty ordered by Queen Anne.
65. Antique Market
66. National Maritime Museum
Britains seafaring history displayed in an impressive modern museum including the new Neptune gallery. Features on Explorers, Passenger Liners, the Empire, 20th-century Sea Power and a major exhibition on Nelson. The All Hands childrens gallery teaches nautical skills. Imaginative use of videos and interactive alongside unique and facinating artefacts, ship models and superb paintings.
67. The Queen's House
Closed for restoration until December 1999. Designed by Inigo Jones, it was completed in 1635 and is the earliest English building in the Classical style.
68. Royal Observatory Greenwich
Founded by King Charles II in 1675, Flamsteed House was designed by Wren as a home for the Astronomer Royal. The Prime Meridian of Longitude 00 was fixed here in 1884 and it is possible to stand astride this line with one foot in both the Western and Eastern hemispheres simultaneously. Atop the Observatory is the time-ball, which drops precisely at 1pm each day. This provided the first public time signal in 1833 and Greenwich Mean Time is still used as a time reference throughout the world.
69. The Fan Museum
Discover the delicate art and mystery of the fan, it's 'secret' language and history, in this, the world's only museum devoted to the subject.
71. Ranger's House
Built in 1700 for Admiral Francis Hosier who died of fever on the Spanish Main. It was the official home of the Ranger of Greenwich Royal Park from 1815. The house, maintained by English Heritage now provides a spectacular setting for the flamboyant Suffolk collection of Jacobean portraits.
72. Trafalgar Tavern
Built in 1837 and famous as a riverside resort for London's citizens. Dickens set the wedding breakfast in Our Mutual Friend here and until 1883 it was noted as a political meeting place. One of the areas most popular pubs, it was the winner of the Evening Standard 1996 Pub of the Year Award.
73. Millenium Exhibition Site(The Dome)
London's principal defence against the increasingly high flood tides. It became operational in November 1982 and had to be closed to safeguard London just 12 weeks later in February 1983. The visitor centre has an audio-visual display showing the history of the Barrier project and its workings.
Pier showing domed foot tunnel entrance in foreground.
76. Millwall Dock and Glengall Bridge
77. Canary Wharf from Royal Naval College