There are so many fabulous buildings to admire between Westminster and Tower Bridge. From the gothic Palace of Westminster to the ultra-modern Shard, the recreated Globe Theatre (the only thatched building in Central London), and the buildings that make up the South Bank Centre to the repurposed Oxo building and the old power station, Bankside, which now houses the Tate Modern.
One of the most highly respected theatres in the country is the National Theatre [nearest pier: Festival]. There are three auditoriums showing a total of around 25 productions a year, and there are also backstage tours, talks and workshops.
The Globe Theatre [nearest pier: Bankside] is open all year round for tours, but as the main part of the theatre is outdoors, the major productions are run only in the spring and summer months. However, the Sam Wanamaker Playhouse is indoors and puts on productions throughout the year.
The Royal Festival Hall is one of the world’s largest music venues, with an auditorium capable of holding 2,500 people. The varied performances are largely classical music concerts and some contemporary classical, but there is also a programme of jazz, world and contemporary music. There are also free exhibitions and music in the foyer and bar.
One of the most famous of Britain’s art galleries, the Tate Modern [nearest pier: Bankside] is a must for lovers of contemporary and sometimes challenging art. Free to enter, there’s always something worth looking at, and there is a busy schedule of talks, workshops, performances and films.
London boasts a rich heritage, the most iconic of which can be found along the Circular Cruises route. Take a guided tour of the Palace of Westminster [nearest pier: Westminster] which has been at the heart of English government for hundreds of years. Further down river, is the iconic Tower of London [nearest pier: St Katharine’s] which has both housed and imprisoned (and executed) English royalty for a thousand years. And England’s industrial and engineering heritage is represented by Tower Bridge [nearest pier: St Katharine’s] – possibly one of the most famous bridges in the world.
There are many examples of public sculpture between Westminster and Tower Bridge, including those you should be able to see from your Circular Cruise boat: a statue of Boudicca and her daughters by Westminster Pier, the South Bank Lion which stands on the south side of Westminster Bridge, and London Pride which stands outside the National Theatre and celebrates the post-war Festival of Britain. And if you want to hop off at any point to explore the area on foot, there are plenty more statues worth discovering.
Click here to book your Circular Cruise tickets, so you can hop-on and hop-off wherever you’d like to do more cultural exploring.