Southbank London – things to see and do


London’s Southbank offers visitors a vast range of things to see and do in one vibrant area of the capital. If you are spending time in London, Southbank is one of the most ‘happening’ places to spend a day or two.

Some of the most popular things to see and do in Southbank London include:

The Balcony at Waterloo Station

Combining original architecture with modern day retail outlets, the Balcony at Waterloo is a great place to chill out, warm up or ´shop till you drop.´ Upmarket cafés and bars serve a range of snacks and meals, speciality coffees and chocolate delicacies under the natural light from the glass roof. The Balcony is over 200 metres in length and offers views over all the platforms at the Station and plenty of space to relax in.

The Bargehouse

The Bargehouse is a 4-storey warehouse inside the Oxo Tower Wharf. The space offers a changing programme of graduate shows, photography and design exhibitions, and can be hired for events and private parties. The venue is situated on the walkway between the National Theatre and Tate Modern.

The Bernie Spain Gardens

Situated between the Oxo Tower Wharf and Gabriel´s Wharf, Bernie Spain Gardens offer the perfect place to relax away from the hustle and bustle of the city. The Coin Street Festival is hosted here in summer, plus a choice of culturally themed events throughout the year, which are free to enter. Beautiful greenery and scenery beside the river.

The Tate Modern

Tate Modern is Britain’s national gallery of international modern art and forms part of the Tate group. It is the most-visited modern art gallery in the world, with around 4.7 million visitors per year. Admission to Tate Modern is free except for special exhibitions. A shop, café and restaurant are situated inside the building.


The BFI IMAX is a state-of-the-art cinema with the biggest screen in the UK. Films are shown in 2D, 3D and IMAX and are accompanied by 12,000 watts of digital surround sound. Amazing images and the very latest films – a must visit venue if you are near the South Bank.

The EDF Energy London Eye

One of the world´s tallest observation wheels, the EDF Energy London Eye opens up to 40km of panoramic views over the city. The trip takes around 30 minutes and within each glass capsule is a touch screen to allow visitors to explore some of the most famous landmarks in the capital, including Buckingham Palace, Canary Wharf and Big Ben.

The Florence Nightingale Museum

This inspirational museum celebrates the life of Florence Nightingale, and highlights her contribution to modern nursing. The museum gives an insight into Florence´s life and works, with exhibits about her childhood and achievements in reforming nursing and public health in England. The museum is situated in St Thomas´ Hospital in the centre of South Bank.

The Imperial War Museum (IWM)

The IWM was re-opened in July, 2013 after extensive refurbishment and new exhibitions include Horrible Histories: Spies, exploring the world of espionage. Architecture of War exhibits artists´ responses to the impact of war on landscapes and environments. This museum was opened in 1917 to display material related to the Great War (WW1). After the Second World War exhibits were extended to cover both conflicts and again in 1953 to include all military operations in which Britain or the Commonwealth have been involved in since 1914.

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