Things to do in Southwark, City of London

Southwark, located in the heart of the City of London, is a vibrant and historic area that offers a unique blend of culture, history, and entertainment. With its iconic landmarks, bustling markets, and thriving arts scene, Southwark is a must-visit destination for anyone looking to immerse themselves in the rich heritage of London.

Things to do

Tower of London

The Tower of London is a historic castle located on the north bank of the River Thames in central London. It has served various purposes over the years, including a royal palace, prison, and treasury. Today, it is a popular tourist attraction where visitors can explore the medieval architecture, view the Crown Jewels, and learn about the tower's fascinating history. The Tower of London offers guided tours, interactive exhibits, and even the chance to see the famous ravens that are said to protect the tower. Don't miss the opportunity to walk along the walls and enjoy panoramic views of the city.

Shakespeare's Globe

Shakespeare's Globe is a reconstruction of the original Globe Theatre, where many of William Shakespeare's plays were performed. Located on the South Bank of the River Thames, this open-air theatre offers a unique experience for theatre enthusiasts. Visitors can watch performances of Shakespearean plays in the same style as they were originally staged, with actors dressed in period costumes and minimal set design. The Globe also offers guided tours, workshops, and exhibitions that provide insight into the life and works of Shakespeare. Whether you're a fan of the Bard or simply interested in experiencing a different kind of theatre, a visit to Shakespeare's Globe is a must.

Borough Market

Borough Market is one of London's oldest and most renowned food markets. Located in the heart of Southwark, this vibrant market offers a wide variety of fresh produce, artisanal food products, and international cuisine. Stroll through the market stalls and sample delicious cheeses, cured meats, baked goods, and more. Whether you're looking for ingredients to cook a gourmet meal or simply want to indulge in some tasty street food, Borough Market has something for everyone. The market also hosts special events and food demonstrations, making it a great place to immerse yourself in London's culinary scene.

Tate Modern

Tate Modern is a contemporary art museum located in the former Bankside Power Station. It houses a vast collection of modern and contemporary art from around the world, including works by renowned artists such as Picasso, Warhol, and Hockney. The museum's unique architecture and industrial setting provide a striking backdrop for the artwork on display. Visitors can explore the various galleries, attend temporary exhibitions, and participate in interactive installations. The Tate Modern also offers stunning views of the London skyline from its viewing platform on the 10th floor. Whether you're an art enthusiast or simply curious about contemporary art, a visit to the Tate Modern is a must.

The Shard

The Shard is an iconic skyscraper located in the London Bridge area of Southwark. Standing at a height of 310 meters, it is the tallest building in the United Kingdom and offers breathtaking views of the city. Visitors can ascend to the viewing platform on the 72nd floor, known as 'The View from The Shard', and enjoy panoramic vistas of London's landmarks, including the Tower Bridge, St. Paul's Cathedral, and the River Thames. The Shard also houses a variety of restaurants, bars, and luxury hotels, making it a popular destination for both locals and tourists. Whether you're interested in the views or looking for a unique dining experience, The Shard is a must-visit attraction.

Southwark Cathedral

Southwark Cathedral, also known as the Cathedral and Collegiate Church of St Saviour and St Mary Overie, is a historic Anglican cathedral located on the south bank of the River Thames. With its stunning Gothic architecture and rich history, the cathedral is a must-visit for architecture and history enthusiasts. Explore the beautiful interior, admire the intricate stained glass windows, and learn about the cathedral's role in London's history. Southwark Cathedral also hosts regular services, concerts, and events, providing visitors with a unique spiritual and cultural experience. Don't forget to visit the cathedral's gardens, which offer a peaceful oasis in the heart of the city.

The Clink Prison Museum

The Clink Prison Museum is a fascinating museum located on the site of the original Clink Prison, one of England's oldest and most notorious prisons. Step back in time and discover the dark and gruesome history of the prison, which operated from the 12th to the 18th century. The museum offers interactive exhibits, guided tours, and displays of original artifacts, providing a chilling insight into the harsh conditions and punishments endured by prisoners. Learn about the infamous inmates, including debtors, heretics, and even pirates. The Clink Prison Museum is a must-visit for history buffs and those interested in the darker side of London's past.

Golden Hinde

The Golden Hinde is a full-scale replica of the famous 16th-century galleon that was captained by Sir Francis Drake during his circumnavigation of the globe. Located near Borough Market, this historic ship offers visitors the chance to step back in time and experience life aboard a Tudor-era vessel. Explore the decks, cabins, and even try your hand at some of the ship's activities, such as hoisting the sails or firing a cannon. The Golden Hinde also hosts educational programs and special events, making it a great attraction for families and history enthusiasts. Don't miss the opportunity to learn about the adventures of Sir Francis Drake and his crew.

The Old Operating Theatre Museum

The Old Operating Theatre Museum is a unique museum located in the attic of St Thomas' Church, near London Bridge. It is one of the oldest surviving operating theatres in Europe and offers a fascinating insight into the history of surgery. Explore the museum's collection of surgical instruments, learn about the gruesome practices of the past, and discover the advancements in medical science over the centuries. The museum also hosts talks, demonstrations, and workshops, providing visitors with a deeper understanding of the challenges faced by surgeons in the past. If you're interested in medical history or simply curious about the evolution of surgery, a visit to the Old Operating Theatre Museum is a must.

Bermondsey Street

Bermondsey Street is a vibrant and trendy street located in the heart of Southwark. Lined with stylish boutiques, art galleries, and independent cafes, it offers a unique shopping and dining experience. Explore the eclectic mix of shops, browse through vintage clothing stores, and discover local artisans and designers. Bermondsey Street is also home to a variety of restaurants and bars, offering a range of cuisines from around the world. Whether you're looking for a leisurely brunch, a cozy pub lunch, or a fine dining experience, you'll find plenty of options on Bermondsey Street. Don't forget to visit the White Cube gallery, which showcases contemporary art exhibitions.

Other places in City of London