London Only Wlogger Walking Guide

Hello there and welcome! I’m Stu, also known as the London Wlogger! Each week on my blog I take a different route around our wonderful capital exploring its parks, rivers, sights and history.

I’ve teamed up with the awesome guys at @London_Only to bring you a picturesque stroll around the city to uncover some of its most famous sights, hidden gems and to discover some splendid views!

This page will act as your interactive tour guide along the walk to provide you with all the useful information you need on the sights and places you pass. Throughout the walk you can take photos and share them with me @LondonWlogger and the @London_Only team by using our hashtags for the day… #LO_WloggerWalk and #London_Only!

We start today’s walk at Two Temple Place. After that we head along Embankment and over Blackfriars Bridge. From there we walk past the Millennium Bridge, Tate Modern, Southwark Bridge and The Shard before going through Hay’s Galleria. We’ll then go past Tower Bridge and then see some of London’s great landmarks at the Rotherhithe River View.

Then we’ll go through the tranquil Southwark Park past Canada Water and the Greenland Docks until we reach one of London’s hidden gems, Russia Dock Woodland.  We end the journey with the breathtaking view on Stave Hill… and then hit the pub for a few much-needed beverages!

Check out all the landmarks and monuments below with my quick fire facts and maps are provided to guide you along the route!

So enough talking, let’s get walking!

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1) Two Temple Place

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Two Temple Place
  • Address: 2 Temple Place, London WC2R 3BD
  • Late Victorian mansion built by William Waldorf Astor
  • Astor had moved to England in 1891 as one of the richest people in the world, and work began on the house in 1892
  • Designed by neo-Gothic architect John Loughborough Pearson
  • Today it’s owned by registered charity, The Bulldog Trust and supports the charitable activities of the Trust through exhibitions and events hosted in the building

Find out more about Two Temple Place here!

2) Victoria Embankment Gardens

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Victoria Embankment Gardens

3) National Submarine War Memorial

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National Submarine War Memorial
  • A memory to the officers and men of the British Navy who lost their lives serving in submarines 1914 – 1918 & 1939 – 1945

Find out more about the National Submarine War Memorial here!

4) Blackfriars Bridge and Railway Bridge

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Blackfriars Bridge
  • Opened in 1869 and designed by Joseph Cubitt
  • It has Grade II listed status
  • It’s 923 feet long with a width of 105 feet
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Blackfriars Railway Bridge
  • The railway bridge was designed by Joseph Cubitt too
  • In 1985, the old bridge was declared too weak to support modern trains, and was removed, but the supports were left
  • The current Blackfriars railway bridge reopened with 4,400 roof-mounted solar panels on top of it in 2014

Find out more about Blackfriars Bridge here!

5) Tate Modern

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  • Based in a former Bankside Power Station
  • One of the largest museums of modern and contemporary art in the world
  • Opened in 2000

Find out more about the Tate Modern here!

6) The Millennium Bridge

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Millennium Bridge
  • Opened in June 2000
  • It was known as the ‘wobbly bridge’ after pedestrians felt an unexpected swaying on it when they walked over it – It was closed for almost two years before it reopened in 2002
  • It was London’s first new Thames crossing in more than 100 years, since Tower Bridge was opened in 1894
  • 320m long structure was designed by Foster + Partners (Now Lord Foster)

Find out more about The Millennium Bridge here!

7) Southwark Bridge

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Southwark Bridge
  • Designed by John Rennie
  • Opened in 1921

Find out more about Southwark Bridge here!

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8) The Shard

  • Opened in 2012
  • The tallest building in the UK; fourth in Europe, and 105th in the world
  • It has 95 stories and stands at 309.6 metres (1,016ft) high
  • Designed by the Italian architect Renzo Piano
  • The inspiration for the design came from the spires of London churches and the masts of tall ships depicted by the 18th Century Venetian

Find out more about The Shard’s history here!

9) Hay’s Galleria

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Hay’s Galleria
  • Hay’s Wharf was built in the 1850s, and used to take deliveries from ships from all over the world
  • The wharf’s complex was restored to its former glory and redevelopment in the 1980s
  • In the heart of the Galleria is David Kemp’s 60ft kinetic sculpture

Find out more about Hay’s Galleria here!

10) Tower Bridge

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Tower Bridge
  • Opened on the 30th June 1894
  • Designed by Horace Jones, the City’s Architect, in collaboration with John Wolfe Barry
  • It took eight years to construct using five major contractors and 432 workers a day
  • In 1977 it was painted red, white and blue to celebrate the Queen’s Silver Jubilee. Before that, it was a chocolate brown colour
  • 11,000 tons of steel provided the framework for the Towers and Walkways
  • The closing of the bridge is operated by hydraulic power, but since 1976 they have been driven by oil and electricity, rather than steam
  • The bridge is raised around 850 times a year, and the service is free of charge. You must provide 24 hours’ notice, and it’s available any time, day or night, 365 days per year

Find out more about Tower Bridge here!

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11) Rotherhithe River View

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  • Perhaps one of London’s most scenic views! From here you can see many of the capital’s wonderful sights including The Shard, Tower Bridge, The Walkie Talkie, The Cheese Grater, The Gherkin and even St Paul’s Cathedral!

For more things to do in Rotherhithe, check out this article!

12) Southwark Park

  • Opened to the public in 1869
  • The design of the park is attributed to Alexander McKenzie
  • The park is 25 hectares in size.
  • The drinking fountain is commemorated to Mr Jabez West, who was a member of the local Temperance Society. This was London’s first public memorial to honour a working class man.
  • The Ada Salter rose garden was built by West Bermondsey MP Alfred Salter in 1936 – It was dedicated to Ada’s wife with the aim to provide somewhere of beauty where mothers and the elderly could sit.
  • In 2001, £2.5m from the Heritage Lottery Funds was used for major refurbishments of the park. These included a replica of the 1833 bandstand from the Great Exhibition being replaced. Also a new bowling pavilion, children’s play area, restoring the lake and the main gates were undertaken.

Find out more about Southwark Park here!

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13) Canada Water

  • It was constructed in 1876 on the site of two former timber ponds
  • The name derives from the former Anglo-Canadian trade in the docks
  • In 1926 two neighbouring timber ponds were replaced by the Quebec Dock, which was connected to the Canada Dock
  • The Canada estate was built in 1964 on the former site of a chemical works and consisted of five courts of 4 storey blocks
  • The early 1980s saw the closure of the Surrey Docks, Quebec Dock and Canada Dock
  • The majority of the old Canada Dock was filled in and the Surrey Quays shopping centre was developed. The other part of the dock was replaced with a cinema, bingo hall, bowling alley and restaurants
  • The Canada Water station was opened in 1999 with links on the London Overground and Jubilee Line
  • The regeneration project in a joint initiative by Southwark Council and British Land was completed in 2012. This included new homes, commercial premises, a library and cultural spaces

Find out more about Canada Water here!

14) Greenland Dock

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Greenland Dock
  • It’s the largest remaining dock in South London
  • Originally named Howland Great Wet Dock after the family that owned the land, the dock was excavated in 1696
  • It was renamed Greenland Docks by the mid-18th century when it became a base for Arctic whalers
  • During the 19th century it handled trade in Scandinavian and Baltic timber and Canadian gran, cheese and bacon
  • The dock was enlarged in 1904
  • In 1969 the dock closed, along with the rest of the Surrey Docks
  • 1,250 homes were built at Greenland Dock between 1984 and 1990

Find out more about Greenland Dock here!

15) Russia Dock Woodland

  • In 1980, Russia Dock Woodland, which originally imported timber from Norway, Russia and Sweden, was transformed into a grass area for recreational activities.
  • Surviving features of the dock still remain today, including the retaining wall capstones and mooring chains.

Find out more about Russia Dock Woodland here!

16) Stave Hill

  • In 1985, the London Docklands Development Corporation added an artificial hill, Stave Hill, to the west edge of the Russia Dock Woodland
  • The hill, which is 30 feet high (9.1m), was created using waste material and rubble
  • A cast bronze map by Michael Rizzello of the former docks stands on the top of hill
  • And I’m sure you’ll agree the view is incredible!

Find out more about Stave Hill here!

17) The Moby Dick Pub

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The Moby Dick Pub (Credit: The Moby Dick)
  • Address: The Moby Dick, 6 Russell Place, Greenland Dock, London, SE16 1PL
  • We end our walk today with a much-needed drink!

Find out more about The Moby Dick Pub here!

We’ve seen some of London’s wonderful hidden gems and views today, and I hope you’ve had a great time joining me, @LondonWlogger and @London_Only!

For more walking adventures around London, sign up to my blog via WordPress or email, and you can catch me on Instagram at @LondonWlogger!

Now all that walking requires a nice refreshment… to the pub!

All photos taken by London Wlogger © 2017