Fun escapades: What are the top things to do in Greenwich?

Greenwich may not be the first name that comes to mind when you think of London’s top destinations, but it should be. This historical borough is a delightful blend of old-world charm and modern vibrancy, offering a unique and immersive experience for all who venture here.

If you’re itching to uncover the lesser-known wonders of the city, you’ve stumbled upon the perfect guide. Join us as we reveal the top things to do in Greenwich, from its star attractions to the hidden treasures that make it a must-visit destination.

Visit the Cutty Sark ship

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Location: King William Walk, Greenwich, London SE10 9HT, United Kingdom

Contact: +44 20 8312 6608

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Built in 1869, this historic clipper ship was designed to race tea cargo from China to London. It was a speed demon of its time, renowned for its sleek design and impressive sailing prowess. 

Imagine the adrenaline of those high-stakes tea races as the Cutty Sark battled fierce storms and treacherous seas.

One of the most incredible things about the Cutty Sark is that it’s a beautifully preserved piece of history. After an extensive restoration, the ship now sits in a glass enclosure that allows you to admire it from all angles. 

Explore the Royal Observatory

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Location: Blackheath Ave, Greenwich, London SE10 8XJ, United Kingdom

Contact: +44 20 8858 4422

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Ever heard of the Prime Meridian? It’s that invisible line that divides the world into Eastern and Western hemispheres, and guess what? It runs right through the Royal Observatory! Standing here, you can have one foot in the East and the other in the West.

And if you’ve ever wondered how we keep track of time? The Royal Observatory holds the answer. It’s the birthplace of Greenwich Mean Time (GMT), the world’s standard for timekeeping. 

The iconic red time ball perched on top of Flamsteed House drops at precisely 1 p.m. every day, a tradition dating back to 1833 that helped mariners set their ship’s chronometers accurately.

Wander through Greenwich Park

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Location: Greenwich, London SE10 8QY, United Kingdom

Contact: +44 20 8858 2608

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Greenwich Park has been graced by the presence of kings and queens for centuries. Queen Henrietta Maria, the wife of King Charles I, was the first royal to live here in the 17th century. You can practically feel the regal vibes as you wander through its lush greenery.

This park offers some of the most jaw-dropping vistas of London’s skyline. From the top of the hill, you can gaze upon the Canary Wharf skyscrapers and the Shard, and even spot the majestic dome of St. Paul’s Cathedral in the distance. 

Enjoy a meal at The Gipsy Moth pub

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Location: 60 Greenwich Church St, Greenwich, London SE10 9BL, United Kingdom

Contact: +44 20 8858 6982

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The Gipsy Moth pays homage to Greenwich’s maritime legacy like no other. This historic pub is named after the famous yacht “Gipsy Moth IV”, which circumnavigated the globe back in the 1960s. 

The interior is decked out with maritime memorabilia, vintage nautical charts, and seafaring artefacts. You’ll feel like you’re dining inside a sailor’s dream!

This pub is renowned for serving up traditional British pub grub that’s fit for a king (or a pirate, if that’s your thing). Think fish and chips, hearty pies, and succulent roast dinners. And don’t forget to wash it down with a pint of real ale or a glass of fine wine.

Admire the Painted Hall at the Old Royal Naval College

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Location: King William Walk, Greenwich, London SE10 9NN, United Kingdom

Contact: +44 20 8269 4799

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The Painted Hall is a feast for the eyes, a baroque masterpiece that took nearly 19 years to complete. The walls and ceilings are adorned with intricate frescoes, and the sheer scale of it all will leave you awestruck. Think of it as the Sistine Chapel of London!

So, don’t forget to crane your neck to admire the iconic painted ceiling here. You can even lie down below so you don’t strain your neck, and marvel at the celestial artwork. 

Tour the Fan Museum

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Location: 12 Crooms Hill, Greenwich, London SE10 8ER, United Kingdom

Contact: +44 20 8305 1441

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The Fan Museum is the only one of its kind in the entire world. Yes, you read that right! It’s a sanctuary dedicated solely to the delicate and artful history of hand fans. With a collection spanning centuries and cultures, it’s like taking a whirlwind tour of the world through fans.

Fans from different eras showcase a dazzling array of materials, from delicate lace to exotic feathers and intricate paintings. Each fan tells a story, whether it’s a romantic gesture, a symbol of status, or a fashion statement.

Shop for antiques at Greenwich Market

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Location: 5B Greenwich Market, Greenwich, London SE10 9HZ, United Kingdom

Contact: +44 20 8293 3110

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At Greenwich Market, you’ll find everything from vintage jewellery to antique furniture, all lovingly curated by passionate vendors who know their stuff. It’s a collector’s paradise where each nook and cranny reveals a hidden gem.

For vintage fashion lovers, there’s Vintage and Designer Clothing, a boutique offering curated garments from various eras. Whether you’re into 1920s flapper dresses or ’70s disco vibes, you’ll find your fashion fix here.

And if you happen to be a bookworm, Halcyon Books nearby is a bibliophile’s dream, with shelves filled with secondhand books, rare editions, and literary treasures. It’s the perfect place to score a vintage novel to cosy up with.

Have brunch at The Watch House

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Location: 177-179 Bermondsey St, London SE1 3UW, United Kingdom

Contact: +44 20 7378 8887

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This resto is housed in a historic building with a past dating back to the late 18th century, when it served as a watch house for Greenwich. So, as you savour your avocado toast or eggs Benedict, you’re dining amidst centuries of stories.

Let’s talk about the main attraction – the food. The Watch House’s menu is a brunch lover’s dream. From fluffy pancakes adorned with berries to hearty full English breakfasts, the offerings cater to every craving. 

And don’t forget to pair your meal with one of their speciality coffees or a refreshing mimosa.

Discover the Wernher Collection at Ranger’s House

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Location: Chesterfield Walk, Blackheath, London SE10 8QX, United Kingdom

Contact: +44 20 8853 0035

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The Wernher Collection is like a hidden gem within a hidden gem. Housed in the elegant Ranger’s House, this art collection boasts over 700 pieces of exquisite jewellery, paintings, sculptures, and decorative arts. It’s a feast for the eyes that spans centuries of creativity.

Dating back to the early 18th century, this place is now an architectural marvel with a rich history. Originally built for the Ranger of Greenwich Park, it’s now a serene setting to immerse yourself in art.

Take a Thames River Cruise from Greenwich Pier

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Location: 178 Greenwich High Rd, London SE10 8NN, United Kingdom

Contact: +44 20 77 400 400

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The River Thames is the lifeblood of London, and taking a cruise is like gliding through the pages of history. 

From Greenwich Pier, you’ll be treated to iconic views of London’s most famous landmarks – think Tower Bridge, the Shard, the London Eye, and the majestic dome of St. Paul’s Cathedral. 

One of the highlights of the journey is passing under the Grand Tower Bridge. So, get ready for the thrill as the bridge’s arms lift to let your boat sail through. It’s a photo opportunity that’ll make your Instagram followers green with envy.

Dine at the Rivington Grill

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Location: Cutty Sark Gardens, Greenwich, London SE10 9HT, United Kingdom

Contact: +44 20 8293 9270

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When in Greenwich, do as the Greenwichers (if that’s a word). The Rivington Grill brings British gastronomy to the forefront with a menu that celebrates local flavours and seasonal ingredients. 

From traditional fish and chips to innovative twists on classics, your taste buds are in for a treat.

The Rivington Grill boasts a prime location overlooking the River Thames. Your dining experience comes with a side of mesmerising river views, especially if you grab a seat on the terrace. It’s  a photo opportunity that’ll make your Instagram followers green with envy.

Attend a concert at the O2 Arena

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Location: Peninsula Square, London SE10 0DX, United Kingdom

Contact: +44 20 8463 2000

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The O2 Arena is one of the world’s largest and most famous indoor arenas, which means it attracts some of the biggest acts on the planet. From rock gods to pop divas, the O2 has seen them all grace its stage.

Did you know that the famous white-domed structure is actually the O2, by the way? The Arena is just what’s under it. You can embark on an adventure by scaling the roof of the O2 for panoramic views of London. 

Visit the Queen’s House art gallery

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Location: Romney Rd, Greenwich, London SE10 9NF, United Kingdom

Contact: +44 20 8312 6565

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The Queen’s House has an impeccable pedigree. It was commissioned by Anne of Denmark, the queen of King James I, in the early 17th century. So, when you step inside, you’re treading on the same floors where royalty once roamed.

Designed by the renowned architect Inigo Jones, it’s considered one of the most important buildings in British architectural history. Its striking symmetry and classical columns make it a marvel to behold.

Savour fish and chips at Goddards 

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Location: 22 King William Walk, Greenwich, London SE10 9HU, United Kingdom

Contact: +44 20 8853 1009

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Fish and chips are to Britain what peanut butter is to jelly – a timeless classic. Goddards has been serving this iconic dish since 1890, so you’re in for a truly authentic experience that’s been perfected over generations.

When it comes to fish and chips, it’s all about the crunch. The Goddards secret batter recipe guarantees that satisfying, crispy goodness that you’ll be dreaming about for days. The chips? Thick and fluffy on the inside, golden and crunchy on the outside.

Explore the National Maritime Museum

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Location: Park Row, Greenwich, London SE10 9NF, United Kingdom

Contact: +44 20 8853 1009

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The National Maritime Museum is an oceanic odyssey that unfolds over multiple floors. It’s home to a staggering collection of maritime artefacts, spanning everything from ship models to navigational instruments.

The museum is housed in the splendid Queen’s House, a royal residence that’s a work of art in itself. It’s a showcase of classical architecture and boasts the iconic Tulip Stairs.

Watch a film at the Picturehouse Cinema

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Location: 80 Greenwich High Rd, Greenwich, London SE10 8NN, United Kingdom

Contact:  +44 20 8305 5000

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Let’s start with the obvious – it’s a cinema! Picturehouse Cinema is your ticket to experiencing the latest blockbusters, indie gems, and cinematic masterpieces on the big screen. 

Whether you’re into action-packed adventures or heartwarming dramas, there’s a film for every taste.

Picturehouse Cinema is a place where you can sink into plush seats and enjoy your movie in comfort. Plus, they’ve got a fantastic selection of snacks and drinks to keep you satisfied throughout the screening.

Attend a live performance at Up the Creek Comedy Club

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Location: 302 Creek Rd, Greenwich, London SE10 9SW, United Kingdom

Contact: +44 20 8858 4581

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They say laughter is the best medicine, and at Up the Creek Comedy Club, it’s administered in generous doses. It’s a place where you can escape the worries of the world, if only for a few hours, and let the power of humour lift your spirits.

Unlike cavernous arenas, Up the Creek offers an intimate setting where you’re up close and personal with the comedians. You can practically see the sweat on their brows as they deliver their jokes.

Explore the Emirates Air Line cable car

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Location: Emirates Greenwich Peninsula Terminal, Edmund Halley Way, London SE10 0FR, United Kingdom

Contact:  +44 20 3443 1234

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The Emirates Air Line is a sky-high spectacle. It’s the UK’s first urban cable car, offering a unique perspective of London as you glide over the Thames. Think of it as your own personal magic carpet ride.

As you ascend, you’ll be treated to panoramic views of London’s skyline. From the Shard to the O2 Arena, the sights are a sight to behold. It’s an Instagram-worthy experience, to say the least.

Have a riverside meal at the River Gardens Cafe

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Location: 20 River Gardens Walk, London SE10 0FZ, United Kingdom

Contact: +44 20 8858 0369

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Whether you opt for a leisurely brunch, a decadent afternoon tea, or a sunset dinner, dining al fresco by the river is a treat. The fresh air and stunning views enhance the flavours of your meal.

If you’re looking for a romantic spot, this is it. The River Gardens Cafe sets the stage for a romantic date with its enchanting ambience and picturesque setting.

Explore the beautiful St. Alfege Church

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Location: Greenwich Church St, Greenwich, London SE10 9BJ, United Kingdom

Contact: +44 20 8853 0687

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Designed by the renowned architect Nicholas Hawksmoor in the early 18th century, St. Alfege Church is a stunning example of English Baroque architecture. The moment you set eyes on its elegant facade and soaring spire, you’ll be captivated.

The church stands on the site where Archbishop Alfege was martyred in 1012 AD, making it a place of deep historical significance. It’s a place where the threads of history are woven into the very fabric of the building.

Try pastries at Paul Rhodes Bakery

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Location: 6 King William Walk, Greenwich, London SE10 9JH, United Kingdom

Contact: +44 20 8293 9953

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When it comes to pastries, Paul Rhodes Bakery is the stuff of legends. Their pastries are a symphony of tastes and textures, where the crispy and the creamy come together in perfect harmony. 

Whether you’re craving a flaky croissant, a buttery pain au chocolat, or a decadent Danish, you’re in for a treat.

Beyond the pastries, the bakery is a beloved local institution, a place where neighbours gather for a chat over a cup of coffee and a sweet treat. It’s a slice of community life in the heart of Greenwich.

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