Walking Thames Path, London…Caminando por el Támesis, Londres

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London Classics: Tower Bridge to Westminster Sightseeing Walk

London Classics: Tower Bridge to Westminster Sightseeing Walk
Distance: 4.3 km
Walk Duration: 1 hour
Suitable for: Pushchairs, all the family.
Walk features: Flat paved pedestrian walkways, historical and cultural points of interest;

Walk description:
Lined with historical and cultural gems and some of London’s most famous landmarks, this unmissable London walk along the South Bank of the Thames is wide, flat and well paved so you can walk along the Thames Path National Trail with a pushchair or family of any age. For a magical twist in winter, make the most of the short days, pack a snack and set off on this enchanting walk at about 1600. London ‘s famous landscape gloriously illuminated will make pushing back baby’s bed time half an hour completely worth it. The following route describes this pushchair friendly walk – if you don’t have a pushchair, feel free to just follow the river and negotiate the steps for a marginally shorter walk.

The Tower Bridge – Westminster walk begins on the south side of the Thames at Tower Bridge. For step-free access from London Bridge for a pushchair, see ‘Directions’.

Before you set off on the walk, drink in the magnificent views of Tower Bridge, Tower of London and London ‘s City. Then, turning your back to Tower Bridge, join Queen’s Walk, passing City Hall, home of London ‘s mayor, on your left. Children will gravitate towards the impressive HMS Belfast on the right, the Royal Navy’s largest Second World War cruiser. For some impressive photos with HMS Belfast and the Tower of London together, walk on a little further beyond the ship to a view-point and seating area.

Continue on Queen’s Walk before turning left down a small alley by some black railings as the path narrows. If you get to the steps and are doing the pushchair walk you have gone too far (& found the reason for the detour) – turn round and you will find the alley by the black railings on the first right.

At the junction with Tooley Street, turn right and under London Bridge. You will pass Southwark Cathedral on your left. Look up to see a perfect example of old London blending into new as the Shard towers over the spire of Southwark Cathedral. There has been a church on this spot since AD 606 and evidence of pagan worship prior to that and Southwark Cathedral is the oldest cathedral building in London – well worth exploring its history further if you have time.

Turn left, following round Southwark Cathedral and then turn right down the pedestrian walkway signposted to South Bank and the Golden Hinde. Upon reaching the boat in question you will find a smaller and older but equally prestigious vessel as HMS Belfast. It was in this ship in 1580 that Sir Francis Drake became the first Englishman to circumnavigate the world. After admiring the Golden Hinde, turn your back to the ship’s main entrance and walk down the alley ahead.

Turn left and walk along Clink Street. You will pass the remains of Winchester Palace on your left – the 13th century home to the Bishops of Winchester and an important building in London until its destruction by fire in 1814. Walk on and under Cannon Street Bridge, where you will find the Clink Prison museum. Built on the site of the original clink prison, dating back to 1144, the museum commemorates London ‘s and one of England’s oldest prisons and the origin of the phrase ‘in the clink’ (referring to someone in jail).

At the end of Clink Street, turn right and you will rejoin the Thames waterfront, passing The Anchor pub – the ‘little alehouse on Bankside’ from which Samuel Pepys chronicled the Great Fire of London in 1666. Continue the walk along the riverside, passing under Southwark Bridge. From here you will get some lovely views of St. Paul’s Cathedral on the skyline on the opposite side of the river.

With fantastic views down the river , the Tower Bridge-Westminster walk takes you past Shakespeare’s Globe Theatre. Walk a little further and you will find Millennium Bridge – the so-called ‘wobbly bridge’ after its dubious opening when swaying was felt and its subsequent two year closure to rectify this. The pedestrian suspended footbridge leads over to St. Paul’s on the north side of the river and aligned to frame its magnificent dome with the bridge structure.

Continue along the edge of the Thames and follow the path taking you under Blackfriars Bridge. Children will enjoy listening for the noisy rumble of trains overhead at the busy station. Continue along the South Bank and under Waterloo Bridge, walking past the Southbank Centre and the Royal Festival Hall. Passing under yet another bridge you will emerge to the spectacular sight of the London Eye towering over the trees immediately ahead of you and London ‘s iconic landscape of Big Ben, the Houses of Parliament and Westminster Bridge beyond.

There is no step-free access from the riverside directly onto Westminster Bridge. If you are walking with a pushchair and not interested in seeing the riverside façade of the London Aquarium then turn left just before the London Eye into Jubilee Gardens. There is a playground here consisting largely of climbing walkways which older children will enjoy and flat access for a pushchair onto the street beyond.

Keep to the right on the paths through the gardens and upon reaching Belvedere Road turn right. Walk down the road until it shortly reaches the intersection with the main road. Turn right here and walk over Westminster Bridge, enjoying that famous view of Big Ben and the Houses of Parliament. If time allows, why not finish your walk by following the road round to the left past Big Ben and into Parliament Square. Here you will be able to see Westminster Abbey – the iconic landmark that has been witness to so many historic moments.

If you are ending your walk here, you can pick up the tube from Westminster. The Circle line and Jubilee lines are both accessible for pushchair users. District line is accessible via ramps – please ask for assistance at the station entrance.

For those keen to walk more, why not return to Tower Bridge via the north bank of the Thames or continue with another suggested route? (Details of onwards walks will be updated here shortly).

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Paseo por el Támesis

Así como el Sena es uno de los principales protagonistas de la vida parisina, el Támesis ha estado presente en miles de historias londinenses. En sus dos orillas podemos encontrar muchos de los atractivos turísticos más populares, como el Big Ben y el London Eye. Además podréis cruzarlo por una gran cantidad de puentes, entre ellos el Tower Bridge. Así que, ¿Qué os parece hacer un paseo por el Támesis?

Puedes optar por hacer un Paseo por el Támesis andando o a bordo de un barco… ¡O ambos si tienes tiempo! Por supuesto la experiencia será completamente diferente, e incluso si vas de día o de noche el espectáculo cambia totalmente.
Características del Paseo hacia el Támesis a pie
Comenzaremos con la opción para aquellos que tienen un poco más de tiempo en la capital inglesa o para los que prefieren salir un poco del típico recorrido. También es la opción perfecta para los amantes del ejercicio y de conocer lugares a su propio ritmo.

Hacer un Paseo por el Támesis a pie es la típica experiencia que nunca olvidarás. Caminarás entre puentes, bares y terrazas, podrás admirar admirarás edificios preciosos y verás pasar las embarcaciones repletas de gente. Momento romántico: Puede ser una idea perfecta para caminar de la mano con tu pareja y por qué no, para pedirle matrimonio 😉

El paseo puede incluir las dos orillas del Támesis, pero sin dudas la más pintoresca y recomendable es la sur, donde está la famosa noria llamada London Eye. Para empezar, cruza el Puente de Westminster, para poder ver en todo su esplendor al Palacio del mismo nombre y al conocido reloj Big Ben

Caminarás por la “Milla del milenio”, una bonita avenida arbolada donde justamente la primera parada es el London Eye; si quieres subir, desde lo más alto podrás ver hasta -según dicen- 40 km de distancia (no elegir un día de niebla o no salen las cuentas). Cada una de las 32 cabinas tiene capacidad para 25 personas.

Al lado de la noria hay un acuario que alberga más de 350 especies marinas de todas partes del mundo y en el edificio contiguo hallarás una muestra sobre Salvador Dalí. Sigue caminando hasta el Royal Festival Hall, recinto donde se han celebrado muchos conciertos desde 1951 y que se puede visitar sin asistir a una obra. Luego visita la Hayward Gallery -de 1968- y no te pierdas el Royal National Theatre, sede de la Compañía Nacional de Teatro desde 1976. Aquí podrás disfrutar de alguna obra clásica inglesa, incluyendo las de Shakespeare.

Aún queda mucho por conocer en este Paseo por el Támesis: la torre Oxo (edificio art decó), el muelle Gabriel Wharf (con su mercadillo de antiguedades), la Tate Modern Gallery, el Global Theatre (donde se exponían las obras de Shakespeare), el Puente del Milenio (de 320 metros de longitud), el edificio Swiss Ree (conocido como ‘el pepinillo’) y el edificio del ayuntamiento.

Para cerrar este paseo, la guinda del pastel es el Tower Bridge, con sus dos torres gemelas repletas de historias y leyendas, construido a fines del siglo XIX. lo mejor es que veáis nuestra experiencia en esta ruta andando por Londres.

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