Bankside Pier

About Bankside Pier

Bankside Pier is located on the south shore of the River Thames next to the Millennium Bridge within the London Borough of Southwark. Bankside stretches from Blackfriars Railway Bridge to the edge of London Bridge City & is one of London’s newer tourist hot spots. Bankside & the surrounding area is home to a variety of historical & contemporary attractions including Borough Market, Southwark Cathedral, the Clink Prison Museum, Golden Hinde II, Shakespeare’s Globe, the Tate Modern, Bankside Gallery & the Millennium Bridge. Bankside is also home to numerous riverside restaurants, pubs, bars & is just a short walk from London Bridge City, the City of London & the South Bank.

There have been settlements in the Southwark area since the Roman’s first established Londinium & built the first London Bridge. The area was the lowest bridging point of the River Thames during the Roman era & it’s name derives from Sudweca meaning southern defensive work. The area became a a busy thoroughfare after the construction of an early medieval London Bridge in c990 & Borough Market was established in 1014 which is still trading today.

Southwark played an important defensive role & was burned by William the Conqueror during the Norman Conquest in 1066. William was unable to cross the well fortified London Bridge & travelled over 50 miles upriver to Wallingford to avoid other secure crossings including Reading.

During the Tudor era Bankside was home to numerous establishments which were not permitted in the City of London including theatres (Including the Rose & Globe theatres), animal-baiting pits, gambling dens & brothels. Bankside has been home to many famous Londoners including William Shakespeare during the 17th century & then Sir Christopher Wren during the construction of St. Paul’s Cathedral in the 18th century.

Bankside Pier is a 7 minute walk* from Blackfriars Station which is served by National Rail Services & the Circle & District London Underground Lines. The pier is also an 11 minute walk* from London Bridge Station which is served by National Rail Services, the Jubilee & Northern London Underground Lines & a number of buses.

Transport for London River Services Logo Daytime Cruises from Bankside Pier

Thames River Sightseeing

Thames River Sightseeing have been operating public cruises on the River Thames for over 50 years. Our current services call at six piers across London & operate a fleet of modern & traditional passenger boats. Our all weather boats have interior seating & open decks making them perfect for sightseeing or just transportation. We operate 361 days a year & operate extra services during the Summer.

Thames River Sightseeing Routes

We are currently operating one route calling at Westminster Pier, Embankment Pier, St. Katharine Pier & Greenwich Pier. Departures from each pier are every hour.

From Saturday 22nd May 2021 we will be operating 7-days a week calling at Westminster Pier, Embankment Pier, Festival Pier, Bankside Pier, Tower Bridge Quay (St. Katharine Pier) & Greenwich Pier. Unfortunately we are unable to offer our cruises to the Thames Barrier this year.

Piers on our Routes
Westminster Pier (Houses of Parliament)
Embankment Pier (Charing Cross, Villiers Street & Strand)
Festival Pier (Royal Festival Hall & South Bank Centre) (Services return on the 22nd May 2021)
Bankside Pier (Globe Theatre & Tate Modern)(Services return on the 22nd May 2021)
Tower Bridge Quay (St. Katharine Pier)
Greenwich Pier (Cutty Sark)

Evening Cruises from Bankside Pier

We do not currently have any evening cruises planned from Bankside Pier. Click the link below to view our evening cruises from other piers.

Available Cruises

Private Charters from Bankside Pier

Our versatile party boats are a popular choice on the River Thames. Large open decks, heated saloons & fully licensed bars are just a few of the facilities to be found on-board.

We provide a wide range of catering & dining options, perfectly paired with our extensive wine menu. Our entertainment options & decorations can also make your event truly unique.

Near Bankside Pier

Shakespeare's Globe, Bankside

About Shakespeare’s Globe

The Globe Theatre at Bankside is an authentic replica of a 16th century theatre. Shakespearean plays are regularly performed & guided tours of the theatre are also available. The Swan bar & restaurant at the Globe serves breakfast, lunch, dinner & a “Midsummer Nights Dream Afternoon Tea” inspired by the Characters of Shakespeare’s plays.

Walking Distance  1 Min / 75 Feet

Millennium Footbridge

About the Millennium Bridge

The Millennium Bridge links Bankside on the South Shore to the City of London on the North. The bridge opened in June 2000 & gained its nickname the “Wobbly Bridge” after an unexpected swaying motion caused it to close. After almost two years of modification the bridge re-opened.

Walking Distance  2 Min / 0.1 Mile

Tate Modern, Bankside

About the Tate Modern

The Bankside Power Station was designed by Sir Giles Gilbert Scott & constructed in two stages between 1947 & 1963. The power station closed in 1981 & is now home to one of the largest museums of modern & contemporary art in the world, the Tate Modern.

Walking Distance  3 Min / 0.2 Miles

Bankside Gallery, Bankside

About the Bankside Gallery

Walking Distance  4 Min / 0.2 Miles

The Clink Prison Museum, Bankside

About the Clink Prison Museum

Walking Distance  4 Min / 0.2 Miles

OXO Tower Wharf, Southbank

About OXO Tower Wharf

Stamford Wharf started its life as a power station before being converted into a cold store for the manufacturers of the OXO Beef Cube. Today “OXO Tower Wharf” is home to over 30 design studios, specialist shops & restaurants.

Walking Distance  11 Min / 0.6 Miles

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St. Paul's Cathedral

About St. Paul’s Cathedral

There have been several cathedrals on the site on St. Pauls dating from as early as 604 AD. The most notable of these was the cathedral built by the Normans between 1087 & 1240. The Norman St. Pauls was the largest building in Medieval England, it lasted for almost 600 years surviving the Reformation & the English Civil War. In August 1666 Christopher Wren finalised plans to restore the cathedral although little more than a week later St Pauls was destroyed in the Great Fire of London. Construction of the new cathedral commenced in 1675 & lasted for 33 years. The new cathedral was consecrated on the 2nd December 1667 & still stands today. St. Pauls is open for prayer seven days a week, sightseers can visit the cathedral from Monday – Saturday.

Walking Distance  11 Min / 0.5 Miles (Via Millennium Bridge)

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Royal National Theatre

About the Royal National Theatre

The Royal National Theatre was opened by Queen Elizabeth II in 1976. Three individual theatres occupy the site & over 20 different performances are shown each year. The Olivier Theatre is the largest theatre & seats 1,100 guests.  The Olivier Theatre takes its name from the National Theatre’s first artistic director, Sir. Laurence Olivier.

Walking Distance  16 Min / 0.8 Miles

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20 Fenchurch Street (Walkie Talkie & the Sky Garden), City of London

About 20 Fenchurch Street

20 Fenchurch Street, nicknamed The Walkie Talkie was designed by Rafael Viñoly & completed in 2014. The top floors of 20 Fenchurch Street are home to the Sky Garden, an award winning garden landscape with restaurants, bars & a viewing area.

Walking Distance  18 Min / 0.9 Miles (Via Southwark Bridge)

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HQS Wellington

About HQS Wellington

HQS Wellington is a Grimsby Class Sloop launched in 1934. She escorted convoys in the North Atlantic throughout the Second World War. She is now permanently moored on Victoria Embankment and is the livery hall of the Honorable Company of Master Mariners.

Walking Distance  19 Min / 1.0 Mile (Via Millennium Bridge)

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The Garden at 120, City of London

About 120 Fenchurch Street

One Fen Court is a modern office complex located at 120 Fenchurch Street. Designed by Eric Parry Architects & completed in 2019 the building stands 15 storeys high & features London’s largest rooftop garden. The Garden at 120 is a spacious, open air rooftop garden which is open to the public free of charge between Monday – Friday. 14 Hills, a restaurant, bar & deli is located just below the garden on the 14th floor.

Walking Distance  20 Min / 1.0 Mile (Via Southwark Bridge)

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Royal Festival Hall

About Royal Festival Hall

Royal Festival Hall is the last remaining building from the 1951 Festival of Great Britain. The hall can seat 2,500 guests & is situated in the Southbank Centre, the largest arts centre in the United Kingdom. Over 5,000 events are held at the Southbank Centre each year including exhibitions, festivals & performances by some of the worlds most famous artists.

Walking Distance  20 Min / 1 Mile

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Tower Bridge

About Tower Bridge

Tower Bridge is one of the most famous bridges in the world & was designed by Sir John Wolfe Barry & Horace Jones. The bridge opened in 1894 & the centre span is split into two bascules which open to allow ships to pass through to the Upper Pool.

Walking Distance  20 Min / 1 Mile

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 Bankside Pier Location

**Transportation links are based on data from Transport for London, always check their website (tfl.gov.uk) when planning your journey.

Walking times & distances are average times based on data from Google Maps.

Bankside Pier is part of Thames River Sightseeing’s Hop-On Hop-Off Route. Passengers can travel to Festival Pier, Bankside Pier, St. Katharine Pier & Westminster.

Passengers can also change at St. Katharine Pier & continue downriver to the Royal Borough of Greenwich & the Thames Barrier.

We operate daytime cruises from 6 piers on the River Thames & private charters from over 20 piers. Click the link below to view all piers.

**Transportation links are based on data from Transport for London, always check their website (tfl.gov.uk) when planning your journey.

Walking times & distances are average times based on data from Google Maps.