Thames River Boat

A River Thames Boat Ride is one of the most picturesque ways to travel through London like a Londoner while enjoying amazing views of the most popular landmarks.

TravelCurious Tip

River Boats can be heavily booked, especially in the summer months – be sure to reserve your place!

The River Thames is London’s oldest and most permanent feature, a winding, colour-changing ribbon that has been the lifeblood of the city since its foundation. As well as supplying London with water, it is also a surprisingly common commuting method – many people still get to work and back by riverboat. For those with a little more time in their hands, however, a leisurely boat ride on the Thames is both relaxing and a great way to see some of the best sites the city has to offer.


Into the Setting Sun

There are a huge number of different companies offering tours of the Thames, in everything from flashy catamarans to the cumbersome amphibious London Duck buses. Many will offer a variety of starting points, some as far downstream as the Thames Barrier. West of Greenwich Pier, though, most visitors choose to begin at Tower Bridge. Heading upstream from here, you will first pass the old Royal Navy battle cruiser turned floating museum HMS Belfast, before passing under the newest instantiation of London Bridge. Look out for Shakespeare’s Globe theatre on your left just before you pass under the Millenium Bridge a little further down.


Cruising Central

Just around the bend in the river marked by Waterloo Bridge and the National Theatre, the iconic figure of Big Ben will emerge beside the Houses of Parliament on the north bank, set across the Thames from the newer London Eye. Further along, you will slide past the dramatic monolith of the Battersea Power Station. After this point, the density of riverside parks begins to increase as you leave Central London, and you will be treated to the green expanses of Battersea and Wandsworth Parks, as well as the gorgeous Royal Botanical Gardens at Kew.


Nearby Attractions

See all attractions in London
Big Ben
Renamed "Elizabeth Tower" for the Diamond Jubilee of Elizabeth II, the iconic Victorian clock tower of London, has become a symbol of the city itself.
The Palace of Westminster
The Palace of Westminster is the political heart of the United Kingdom and the meeting place for the House of Commons and the House of Lords.
Thames River
The second longest river in the UK the Thames is an iconic piece of London culture. Don't be put off by its murky colour it is actually one of the cleanest metropolitan rivers in European.
Winston Churchill Statue
A bronze sculpture of the former British prime minister Winston Churchill located in Parliament Square.
The Cenotaph
A national war memorial in London.
Westminster Tube Station
The Westminster Tube Station is a subway station managed by the London Underground in the city of Westminster. The famous movie, Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, recorded a scene at the Westminster Station.

Related Tours

Royal London: Private Half-Day Tour Including The Tower of London
Explore the home of the British Monarchy in the heart of the city and discover some of Royal London’s most popular landmarks such as Buckingham Palace, Westminster, and Elizabeth Tower (Big Ben), including a visit to the Tower of London and seeing the exquisite Crown Jewels. 

On your private half-day tour, you will:

  • Meet your professional Blue Badge tour guide to start your journey at the Tower of London, a 900-year-old historic castle and fortress;
  • Marvel at the magnificent Crown Jewels, some of the most important symbols of the Monarchy still used today by the Royal Family;
  • See stunning views of London’s most popular landmarks from the water including Tower BridgeSt. Paul’s Cathedral and the London Eye;
  • Enjoy a walking tour that will take you to Buckingham Palace, Westminster Abbey, Parliament and Big Ben;
  • End your tour in Trafalgar Square, where your guide will recommend other must-see sites you don't want to miss.

Your tour will begin at the Tower of London where you will explore this 900-year-old castle and learn about the kings and queens who lived and died in the Tower and its role as a fortress, prison, zoo, and observatory. 

Before entering the Jewel House to see the famous Crown Jewels collection, your guide will tell you all about their religious and cultural significance and the many attempts to steal these beautiful diamonds! Important: Your guide will be accompanying you through the visit but is not allowed to give live commentary while inside the collection.
 
After visiting the Tower of London, you will commute like a true Londoner on a water bus on the river Thames to Westminster Pier where you will see some of the most popular sights from the water along the way, including Tower Bridge and the London Eye.

Once in Westminster, you will see the Houses of Parliament - the home of the British government, and the magnificent Elizabeth Tower known as "Big Ben". A short walk on, you will come to the exterior of the beautiful Westminster Abbey, where every English king and queen for the last 1000 years has received their coronation, and where Prince William and Kate Middleton were married. 

Walk along the Mall and learn curious facts about British kings and queens, who turned the British Empire into the most dominant power on Earth. 

Your tour finishes in Trafalgar Square, where your guide will show you the best places to spend the rest of your time exploring, dining, and shopping.
London in a Day: Private Walking Tour including the London Eye
This full-day tour is the perfect way to see London's most iconic attractions in a day, making the most of your time in the English capital by the hand of a professional tour guide who will share local stories and the history of the city.

On your full-day walking tour, you will: 

  • Spend a day in London with a Blue Badge tour guide who will share the history behind the most popular landmarks and hidden gems;
  • Get access to the Tower of London, and Westminster Abbey and take a ride in the London eye;
  • Visit the Tower of London and see the impressive Crown Jewels, while learning about the Line of Kings and the Royal Family;
  • Stop for lunch at one of the many options in the City of London;
  • Hop aboard a Thames river bus to see some of the best sites from the water, including St Paul’s Cathedral, the Globe Theatre, and Tower Bridge;
  • Explore one of the world’s most famous Gothic cathedrals, Westminster Abbey, and see the place where royal coronations take place;
  • Enjoy a walking tour of the city of Westminster, where you’ll see St James’s PalaceBuckingham Palace, the Horse Guards, the Palace of Westminster and Big Ben;
  • Conclude your tour at the London Eye, where your guide will give you Fast-track tickets to see the city of London from above.
Meet your guide at the Tower of London and explore one of the oldest buildings in the city where some of the greatest events in English history occurred. You will have the opportunity to admire the unmissable and stunning Crown Jewels which are kept here behind extensive security in the aptly-named Jewel House.

On leaving the Tower, travel to Westminster by river bus for a walking tour past some of London’s most famous buildings including St James’s Palace, Buckingham Palace, Horse Guards, the Palace of Westminster and Big Ben

Your full-day tour will continue in Westminster Abbey, London’s royal church, the site of 38 coronations and the venue for the wedding of Prince William and Kate Middleton. You will learn about the Coronation ceremony and enjoy the beauty of this 800-year-old treasure. 

After a day in London filled with history, culture and visits to the most iconic landmarks, it's time for a relaxing ride on the London Eye, one of the world's biggest Ferris Wheels for spectacular views across London that you will enjoy with your group.


Please Note: timing of the itinerary, including lunch and Westminster Abbey, are subject to change
Changing of the Guard, Westminster & Tower of London: Full-Day Tour
Experience a full-day private tour of London's spectacular Royal landmarks with a private and knowledgeable Blue Badge guide and discover the most popular sites including the Tower of London, the best of Westminster and the opportunity to see the Changing of the Guard. 

On your private full-day tour, you will:

  • Visit  Parliament Square and see the famous Houses of Parliament and Westminster Abbey (from the outside only);
  • Walk through St James’s Park, see the giant marble memorial to Queen Victoria in front of Buckingham Palace and follow the famous Changing of the Guard parade;
  • See St James's Palace and Horse Guards Parade;
  • Walk along Whitehall to see number 10 Downing Street and through Trafalgar Square;
  • Enjoy a scenic boat ride along the Thames with views of St Paul’s Cathedral and the Globe Theatre;
  • Explore the Tower of London, a former royal castle turned traitor's prison;
  • Go round the White Tower, the armoury and mint; 
  • Step inside the dungeons and torture chambers, walk the battlements and visit the Chapel Royal; 
  • Learn about the Princes in the TowerHenry VIII and the fate of his wives Anne Boleyn and Catherine Howard, the young Lady Jane GreySir Walter Raleigh, and many others; 
  • Meet the ravens and the Beefeaters or Yeoman Warders who guard the Tower;
  • Admire the dazzling Crown Jewels;
  • End outside the Jewel House where you are free to explore more at your own leisure or exit the Tower with your guide. 

Please note: that the Changing of the Guard at Buckingham Palace normally happens on Mondays, Wednesdays, Fridays, and Saturday, but this is subject to change and weather conditions. On Tuesdays, Thursdays and Sundays you will see the changing of the Horseguards at Horse Guards Parade on Whitehall. 
The tour begins at 10 a.m. every day except Sunday when it begins at 9.15 a.m. 

Enjoy Royal London on this fantastic day tour that begins in the heart of Westminster, follows the Changing of the Guard at Buckingham Palace and ends with the sight of the dazzling Crown Jewels at the Tower of London. 

Meet your guide at Westminster for a tour outside the Houses of Parliament, Big Ben and Westminster Abbey. Learn about the political history of Parliament Square and its relationship to The Crown. Westminster Abbey has been the site of 38 coronations since 1066, and numerous royal weddings and funerals, including the wedding of Prince William and Kate Middleton, and Her Majesty The Queen's state funeral. 

From Westminster, wander up Birdcage Walk where you will follow the pomp and pageantry of the Changing of the Guard ceremony. Follow the Guardsmen and military band, with their famous red coats and black bearskin hats to Buckingham Palace. Head into Trafalgar Square, via Horseguards Parade, and along Whitehall - the political nerve centre of the UK and the address of 10 Downing Street - home to the British Prime Minister. 

Enjoy a scenic boat ride along the Thames to Tower Bridge. You'll get to see London and Waterloo Bridges, the London Eye, the Globe, the skyscrapers, and St Paul’s Cathedral from the boat. 

Your guide will then accompany you to St. Katherine's Docks for lunch (not included), after which you will enjoy an exclusive private tour of the infamous Tower of London, with reserved tickets included. 

Then it's time to enter the Tower of London! Walk past Traitor's Gate and discover the many stories and scandals hidden within the walls of this ancient building.  It was formerly a moated royal palace, that became an armoury, a royal mint, a zoo... and most famously the traitor's prison! You'll meet the Beefeaters and the ravens who guard the Tower and discover the stories behind some of the Tower's most famous prisoners from the young Princes in the Tower to Queen Anne Boleyn and Lady Jane Grey whose graffiti you can still see in her prison cell. 

Explore the White Tower, the oldest part of the fortress, walk the battlements, enter the torture chambers (if you dare!) and visit the Chapel Royal of St Peter ad Vincula, where some very famous queens are buried.  

Best of all, you will be able to admire the dazzling Crown Jewels which are kept behind extensive security in the aptly-named Jewel House. 

PLEASE NOTE: Due to the strict security measures in place and the moving viewing platform, your guide cannot accompany you but will wait for you at the exit. 

End your tour inside the Tower to explore more at your leisure - or return to modern life with your guide! 
Harry Potter Filming Locations in London: Private Walking Tour
Discover the many filming locations of the Harry Potter movies in muggle London on a private walking tour of the most famous landmarks of the city. Unlike other cities, London was used in many of the scenes, so you will have the opportunity to visit the actual sites that made it on the big screen! 

On your Harry Potter private walking tour you will:

  • Start your tour at  Westminster tube station used In Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix;
  • Visit the entrance to the Ministry of Magic and the muggle Prime Minister's home;
  • Stop off at several well-known landmarks of London used in books and films, like St Paul's, Trafalgar Square, and Goodwin's Court;
  • Discover Picadilly Circus, where Ron, Hermione, and Harry almost get hit by a red London bus in Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 1;
  • Snap a photo of Harry Potter's bronze statue in Leicester Square;
  • Cross the Millennium Bridge - the site of the muggle killings by Death Eaters in Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince;
  • Explore Leadenhall MarketLeaky Cauldron's entrance in Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone;
  • End the tour at Borough Market, the site where Harry disembarks after his ride on the Knight Bus.
Explore the literary and cinematic landmarks inspired by Harry Potter’s world on this magical tour of London with a private guide, who is also a Potter fanatic. 

Prepare for your own sorting ceremony and be sure you know which magical creature you want to bring with you to Hogwarts. In just two and a half hours, you'll traverse many of London's hidden passageways and filming locations for the iconic 8 films. 

Be sure to keep your eyes peeled for Ernie Prang and Stan Shunpike on the Knight Bus!

See Diagon Alley, the Leaky cauldron, and other spellbinding places - both obvious and hidden from muggle eyes. Enjoy fascinating trivia on the series and gain a lesser-known insight into the characters, author and actors. 

Hear tales that even the most dedicated fans and Potterheads will not have heard before! With wands, quizzes and prizes, you will enjoy a unique wizarding experience. 


Note: If you would like to visit Platform 9¾ after the tour to hop aboard the Hogwarts Express, your guide will be happy to direct you to King's Cross Station, a short tube ride away.
Bridgerton Filming Locations in Greenwich: Private Half-Day Tour
Whether you’re a die-hard Bridgerton enthusiast or simply an Anglophile looking for a day exploring another historic pocket of London, Greenwich Village awaits you with historic buildings, cobblestone roads, and one of London’s most spectacular parks
Greenwich played host to several Bridgerton filming locations to recreate Regency England and it's the perfect place to spend a day discovering an area steeped in history and rich in culture, home to the  Prime Meridian of the World.

On this Bridgerton Filming Locations tour, you will:

  • Enjoy a guided 30 min river boat ride from central London to Greenwich where you will enjoy great London views from the water
  • Tour historic Greenwich with an expert local guide and Bridgerton enthusiast
  • Discover the show’s most recognisable exterior set: Ranger House, which served as the façade for the Bridgerton home
  • Explore the Queen’s House, used to film the interiors of Spencer House in the show
  • Walk the picturesque colonnades on either side of the Queen's house that you may recognise as the place where Lord Berbrooke fights the Duke of Hastings in episode two
  • Visit the Royal Observatory, and stand in one of the most famous places on earth: the Prime Meridian Line, where time begins!
  • Enjoy unrivalled views of London from the top of the hill in Greenwich Park.

Your tour begins with a river boat ride, a favourite way for Londoners to commute, and enjoy some of the city’s most iconic sites from the famous River Thames – including Tower Bridge, the Tower of London, and the Globe Theatre

Upon arriving in Greenwich, you will visit the Queen’s House which has been at the centre of Royal life for hundreds of years. Most famous for its architecture and beautiful spiral staircase, the house is also known for its magnificent art collection, including works by Gainsborough, Turner, and Hogarth.  

From there, wander through beautiful Greenwich Park, for fantastic views of the city. Your guide will then show you the iconic Bridgerton homeRanger House, where you can imagine yourself as one of the numerous Bridgerton siblings, living in Regency England, while also learning about the real purpose of Ranger House. 

Finally, step into the Royal Greenwich Observatory, an astronomical observatory and, until its closure in 1998, the oldest scientific research institution in Great Britain. In the mid-18th century, the Nautical Almanac established the longitude of Greenwich as the baseline for time calculations, and a hundred years later, it became the Earth’s prime meridian (0° longitude).

Your tour finishes in Greenwich, where you can choose to return to Central London with your guide or spend more time exploring Greenwich at your own pace. 

Should you wish to stay in Greenwich after your tour finishes, your guide will give you tips on where to eat and what to visit and give you your return boat ticket, which is valid all day. 
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