Westminster Millennium Pier
Daytime Cruises from Westminster Pier
Thames River Sightseeing
A visit to London isn’t complete without a cruise on the River Thames. Thames River Sightseeing operate regular services from six piers on the River Thames including Westminster Pier, Embankment Pier, Tower Bridge Quay (St. Katharine Pier) & Greenwich Pier. Thames River Sightseeing cruise 361 days a year & operate a fleet of all-weather vessels with spacious open decks perfect for the summer months & heated saloons with panoramic windows for the colder months. The vessels range from more traditional River Thames passenger boats (London Rose) to more modern vessels purposefully built for the River Thames (Thomas Doggett). A cruise between Westminster & Tower Bridge Quay takes just 30-40 minutes & passes numerous London landmarks including the New Palace of Westminster (Houses of Parliament), the London Eye, the Tower of London, Tower Bridge, the Shard, London Bridge & Tower Bridge. Passengers can cruise further to the Royal Borough of Greenwich & the Thames Barrier passing the Cutty Sark, Old Royal Naval College, the Queens House, the O2 & the North Greenwich Cable Car.
Passengers can embark at Westminster Pier, Embankment Pier, Festival Pier, Bankside Pier, Tower Bridge Quay or Greenwich & take advantage of a range of ticketing options. Single tickets are suited for day trippers or passengers travelling in or out of London & return tickets allow passengers to disembark & explore before joining a return sailing later the same day. A 2 Day River Pass is the perfect option for anyone visiting London over multiple days. A River Pass allows unlimited travel on our services for just £19.50 per adult, a family River Pass is just £39.00 (for 2 Adults + 3 Children).
Between April & October Thames River Sightseeing operate cruises to the Thames Barrier, cruises to the Barrier are round trips & pass through the Thames Barrier twice before cruising back to Greenwich, Tower Bridge & Westminster. Pre-booked groups can embark or disembark at Barrier Gardens Pier to visit the Thames Barrier Information Centre & Café. A cruise to the Thames Barrier offers a unique perspective of the second largest movable flood defence in the world.
Thames River Sightseeing also offer excellent group rates & discounts which are perfect for families, tour companies or travel trade. Toilet facilities & a Multilingual Audio Guide are available on all sailings. The Multilingual Audio Guide is an informative commentary available through our onboard Wi-Fi in English, French, German, Italian, Spanish or Mandarin (Smart device & headphones are not provided, Read More).
Why Choose Thames River Sightseeing
- Modern & traditional sightseeing boats with open decks, heated saloons & toilet facilities.
- Regular departures: Currently every 40 minutes.
- Onboard Café Bars are open on Saturdays & Sundays serving hot drinks, soft drinks, alcoholic drinks & light snacks. Some sailings between Monday & Friday may also have refreshments available. (Read More)
- Scenic cruises between Westminster Pier, Embankment Pier, Festival Pier, Bankside Pier, Tower Bridge Quay (St. Katharine Pier) & Greenwich Pier passing more than 44 London landmarks.
- Wi-Fi Audio Guide available in English, Spanish, French, Italian, German & Mandarin. (Smart device & headphones are not provided, Read More)
- Cruises to the Thames Flood Barrier. (Returning in 2022)
Thames River Sightseeing Routes
We are currently operating 7-days a week calling at Westminster Pier, Embankment Pier, Festival Pier, Bankside Pier, Tower Bridge Quay & Greenwich Pier. Unfortunately we are unable to offer our cruises to the Thames Barrier this year.
About Westminster Pier
Westminster Pier is located on the North shore of the River Thames in the City of Westminster. The pier is a short walk from the Palace of Westminster (Houses of Parliament), Westminster Abbey & St. Margaret’s Church (A UNESCO World Heritage Site). Numerous museums & landmarks are within walking distance of Westminster Pier including the Banqueting House, Household Cavalry Museum, the National Gallery & the London Eye.
Private Charters from Westminster Pier
Our versatile party boats are a popular choice for corporate & private events 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 can 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 Westminster Pier
About the New Palace of Westminster
Known as the ‘Houses of Parliament’, the new palace was built between 1840-1870 after the original palace was damaged during a fire. The palace is the home of UK Parliament & the iconic Elizabeth Tower (known as Big Ben).
- Guided tours available in multiple languages.
- Self-guided tours with a multimedia guide.
- Tours with afternoon tea overlooking the River Thames.
- Special exhibitions in Westminster Hall.
- Special talks & guided tours.
- Refreshments available in the Jubilee cafe.
About the Jewel Tower
The Jewel Tower is one of the last remaining structures from the Medieval Palace of Westminster. The Tower was built by Henry Yevele between 1365-1366 for King Edward III & originally served as a store for precious items including silver plate. After much of the medieval palace was destroyed by a fire in 1834 the Jewel Tower became a records office for the House of Lords. In 1869 it became a testing office for the Board of Trade Standards Department (More commonly known as Weights and Measures).
- One of the last remaining buildings from the Medieval Palace of Westminster.
- Light refreshments available at the Jewel Tower Cafe.
About County Hall
- Sea Life London Aquarium
- The London Dungeon
- Shrek’s Adventure!
- Namco Funscape Arcade
- Agatha Christie’s Witness For The Prosecution (performed in the County Hall Court Room)
About The Supreme Court
The Supreme Court was formally established on the 1st October 2009 & is the highest court in the United Kingdom. The court hears appeals for civil cases in the United Kingdom & criminal cases in England, Wales & Northern Ireland. The Supreme Court sits in the Middlesex Guildhall, an art nouveau gothic style building designed by J. S Gibson & completed in 1913.
- Guided tours led by a member of the court staff.
- Permanent & temporary exhibitions on the lower ground floor.
- Refreshments available at the Supreme Court Café.
- Purchase souvenirs & gifts from the Supreme Court Shop.
About the London Eye
At 135 metres tall the London Eye is the worlds largest cantilevered observation wheel. The London Eye was designed by Marks Barfield Architects & launched in 2000 as a temporary attraction. The London Eye has quickly become one of the most popular paid attractions in the world carrying over 3.5 million visitors each year. On a clear day visibility is up to 40km allowing views of Windsor Castle & the Queen Elizabeth II bridge at Dartford.
- See London from a unique perspective.
About St. Margaret’s Church
St. Margaret’s Church is dedicated to St. Margaret of Antioch & is the third church to stand on the site. The original St. Margaret’s Church was built by the Benedictine Monks of Westminster Abbey in the 11th Century. The Rule of St. Benedict required the monks to sing the Divine Office at set times each day. The creation of a smaller church next to the Abbey allowed the people of Westminster to worship without disturbing the monks.
The current St. Margaret’s Church was designed by Robert Stowell & work started in 1482. The church was finally consecrated on the 9th April 1523 & remains almost unchanged today. St. Margaret’s Church is now governed by the Dean and Chapter of Westminster & can be visited free of charge.
- Refreshments are available at Westminster Abbey’s Cellarium Café.
- Purchase souvenirs & gifts at the Westminster Abbey Shop.
About Westminster Abbey
Westminster Abbey was built by King Edward (later to become St. Edward the Confessor) on the site of a Benedictine Monastery on Thorn Ey (Thorn Island) in Westminster. King Edward’s Abbey was consecrated on the 28th December 1065 however Edward was unable to attend the consecration due to illness, he died just days later sparking a succession crisis which intimately led to the Norman Conquest of England. William the Conqueror was coronated King William I on Christmas Day in 1066 & every coronation has taken place at Westminster Abbey since.
King Edward’s abbey stood for over two centuries until King Henry III started to rebuild the abbey in a Gothic style. Henry’s abbey was consecrated on the 13th October 1269 & still stands today. Westminster Abbey is the resting place of 17 monarchs & a number of poets, musicians, scientists and politicians.
- Explore King Henry VII’s Lady Chapel.
- Visit the Queens Diamond Jubilee Galleries.
- Visit the college garden (open on select days each week).
- Refreshments are available at the Cellarium Café.
- Purchase souvenirs & gifts at the Westminster Abbey Shop.
About the Banqueting House
The Banqueting House is the last remaining building from Whitehall Palace, home to a magnificent ceiling painted by Sir Peter Paul Rubens & the execution site of King Charles I. The building was designed by Inigo Jones in the Palladian style for King James I & was completed in 1622.
- One of the last remaining buildings from Henry VIII’s Whitehall Palace.
- The execution site of King Charles I.
- Peter Paul Rubens magnificent ceiling murals.
About St. James Park
St. James Park is London’s oldest royal park & is surrounded by three royal palaces, the Palace of Westminster, St. James Palace & Buckingham Palace. In 1536 the royal court was based at the Palace of Westminster & King Henry VIII purchased land at St. James to build St. James Palace & a new deer park. After his accession to the throne in 1603 James I had the park drained, landscaped & filled with exotic animals including camels, crocodiles, birds & an elephant.
St. James Park underwent further alterations when Charles II opened it to the public & had it re-landscaped in a more formal style with a large canal. St. James Park saw another makeover in the 1820’s when the Prince Regent (later to become George IV) commissioned the architect & landscaper John Nash to give the park a more natural look. The canal was shaped into a lake & an iron bridge was built offering excellent views across the lake. The current bridge (The Blue Bridge) was built in 1957 & is the third bridge to span St. James Park Lake.
- Take in the view of Buckingham Palace, Horse Guards Parade & the London Eye from the Blue Bridge.
- Learn more about the park on a walking tour (available on select dates).
- See the parks resident pelicans at feeding time.
- Refreshments available at St. James Café.
About the Florence Nightingale Museum
Florence Nightingale was a pioneer of modern nursing & a social reformer, she became known as the Lady with the Lamp after her night rounds tending to wounded soldiers during the Crimean War. The Florence Nightingale Museum is situated at St. Thomas Hospital on the site of Florence Nightingale’s Training School & celebrates the life & work of Florence Nightingale through collections of over 3000 objects.
- Learn about Florence Nightingale’s life & achievements.
- Highlight Tours of the museums collections.
- Walking tours following in the footsteps of Florence Nightingale.
- Souvenirs available in the museum shop.
About Benjamin Franklin House
36 Craven Street is the only remaining home of the Benjamin Franklin, a famous scientist, diplomat & Founding Father of the United States. The house itself dates from around 1730 & is an authentic representation Benjamin Franklin’s time in London. Tours of Benjamin Franklin House are available for the public & there is also a small shop & toilet facilities onsite.
- Tour the only remaining home of Benjamin Franklin & the first de facto United States Embassy.
- Purchase souvenirs & gifts at the Benjamin Franklin House Shop.
About Cleopatra’s Needle
About the Savoy Hotel
The Savoy Hotel was built by Richard D’Oyly Carte & opened in 1889. The Savoy proved popular with tourists & was the first hotel in Britain to utilise electric lifts & be lit entirely by electric lighting. The Savoy boasts numerous bars & restaurants & is adjacent to the Savoy Theatre.
About the National Gallery
The National Gallery was founded in 1824 & opened to the public on the 10th May of the same year. As the collection grew the gallery moved from a small building at 100 Pall Mall to the present building, a purpose built structure designed by William Wilkins. Both The National Gallery’s building & collection has grown over the years, Sir James Pennethorne, Sir Charles Barry & Sir John Taylor have all extended the building & over 2,600 paintings are now housed within the collection. Today the National Gallery is free to visit & they organise a range of exhibitions & events showcases works from the collection. The gallery also has a number of giftshops, a dining room & cafés.
About Somerset House
Somerset House was designed by William Chambers & completed 1801. The house has been home to the Royal Academy of Arts, the Royal Society, the General Register Office & the Inland Revenue. Today Somerset House is open to the public and regularly hosts concerts & other public events.
About Buckingham Palace
- Visit the Queens Gallery & view exhibitions of paintings, furniture & other items from the Royal Collection.
- Explore the Royal Mews, learn about the travel arrangements of the Royal Household & see a number of elegant state coaches.
- Tour the magnificent State Rooms for 10 weeks during the summer months & selected dates during Winter & Spring.
ExhibitionsGeorge IV: Art & Spectacle | 15 November 2019-11th October 2020 During George’s time as Prince of Wales he amassed such vast collections of art including Dutch & Flemish masters, porcelain, intricate goldsmiths work, books, prints & weapons that he could barely fit all of the items in his London home at Carlton House. After George’s accession he set about transforming Buckingham Palace & Windsor Castle to house his prized collections & he also built the magnificent Brighton Pavilion. George IV: Art & Spectacle is a special exhibition curated by Royal Collection Trust which brings together items created by the finest artists & craftsmen to tell the story of one of our most magnificent kings.
About the Tate Britain
In 1889 the sugar merchant Henry Tate offered the government his collection of 65 British paintings to be displayed to the public. Due to a lack of space for British art at the National Gallery Tate provided £80,000 to build the National Gallery of British Art. The new gallery was designed by the architect Sidney R. J. Smith & built on the site of the old Millbank penitentiary. The gallery opened in 1897 with 245 works of art in eight galleries & quickly became known as the Tate Gallery. The gallery officially became known as the Tate Gallery in 1932 & then the Tate Britain in 2000 after the opening of the Tate Modern inside the old Bankside power station. The Tate Britain displays over 700 artworks, is free to visit & also has the Djanogly Café, Rex Whistler Restaurant & a wide range of exhibitions & events take place throughout the year (some exhibitions charge an entry fee).
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.