Greenwich Things to Do

  • National Maritime Museum
    National Maritime Museum
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  • St Alfege
    St Alfege
    by Britannia2

Most Recent Things to Do in Greenwich

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    Greenwich Pier and waterfront

    by Britannia2 Written Apr 7, 2014
    Greenwich Pier
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    There is always help available at Greenwich Pier to advise passengers for the various ships that travel along the Thames.
    There are always craft arriving and departing from the pier but actual river traffic apart from the passenger craft is sparse.
    Many years ago the river would have been full of ships sailing to and from the docks nearer to London but changes to the size of shipping and containerisation has caused the demise of the London docks. Looking across from Greenwich you will see the high rise buildings of Canary Wharf - a main financial quarter and all built around old docks. If you are interested in another maritime town also visit Rotherhithe - you can take a Clipper from Greenwich.

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    The Trafalgar

    by Britannia2 Updated Apr 6, 2014
    The Trafalgar
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    I have included this in this section as you must visit this iconic riverside pub. The Thames laps up against its wall and it is so atmospheric you could expect Nelson to walk in at anytime. It was built in 1837 and restored in 1968 - it could do with further renovation as it is showing external signs of wear.
    Internally it has photographs of maritime scenes and portraits of braided admirals and Greenwich - there are even rooms named after Nelson, Hardy and Howe.
    The place is huge: downstairs alone there are five spaces, in addition to the side terrace guarded by a statue of Horatio.
    We only had drinks and snacks on our most recent 2014 visit but I have eaten here in the restaurant which is excellent. Whitebait is a speciality.

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    Trafalgar Quarters

    by Britannia2 Written Apr 6, 2014
    Trafalgar Quarters

    Trafalgar Quarters is a tasteful 2001 conversion of a Grade II Listed Building built in 1813 as lodgings for officers of the adjacent Greenwich Hospital. Today it remains a beautiful building but is a conversion to private residences and not open to the public.
    You can see it opposite the final gate of the Old Royal Naval Hospital.

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    Discover Greenwich

    by Britannia2 Written Apr 6, 2014
    Discover Greenwich

    The Discover Greenwich Visitor Centre is a free attraction and the starting point for millions of visitors to the Old Royal Naval College (ORNC) and Maritime Greenwich World Heritage Site. Here you can:
    •explore over 500 years of history through a fascinating permanent exhibition
    •see a programme of temporary exhibitions
    •browse for unique design led gifts at the Shop at the ORNC
    •find out more about what to see in Greenwich at the Tourist Information Centre
    •enjoy a refreshing beer or bite to eat at The Old Brewery.

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    Sir Francis Drake statue

    by Britannia2 Written Mar 31, 2014
    Drake statue, Greenwich

    On Greenwich's waterfront and in front of the visitor centre is a statue of Sir Francis Drake. Queen Elizabeth 1 dined on board the Golden Hind at Deptford Dockyard just down the river on the River Thames in 1581. Afterwards, she knighted him so that for the rest of his life he was known as Sir Francis Drake.

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    Queen Elizabeths College

    by Britannia2 Written Mar 30, 2014
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    Queen Elizabeth's College was founded in 1576 by historian William Lambard, and provided homes for the poor and elderly of Greenwich. The almshouses were subsequently rebuilt in 1817 as 40 one-bedroom cottages. In 1967 Lambard House was built to provide a further 28 flats. The almshouse cottages are on three sides of a quadrangle with a chapel at the centre of the south range. To the front is a small communal garden that comprises a simple lawn with specimen trees and shrubs.
    You can view these beautiful houses through the fence and they are opposite Greenwich station.

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    Cutty Sark

    by Britannia2 Written Mar 24, 2014
    Cutty Sark
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    The Cutty Sark is a British clipper ship. Built on the Clyde in 1869 for the Jock Willis Shipping Line, she was one of the last tea clippers to be built and one of the fastest, coming at the end of a long period of design development which halted as sailing ships gave way to steam propulsion.
    We did not get time to visit the ship but intend to do so on our next visit.

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    St Alfege Church

    by Britannia2 Written Mar 22, 2014
    St Alfege
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    A 300 year old church dominates the Greenwich town centre standing high above the shops and market.There has been a church here for over a thousand years, dedicated to the memory of Alfege, the Archbishop of Canterbury who was martyred on this site in 1012.
    The Church provides hand-held information boards in a large variety of languages
    which give information about the history of the church.
    Information panels situated around the church explain the stories of famous people
    who are connected to St Alfege Church. These include Thomas Tallis, Henry V111 was christened here and the tomb of General Wolfe is also here.
    There is a small shop area which sells guide books, postcards, CDs and books. There are no public toilets in the church. Disabled access is quite good.
    The entrance is at the rear of the church in a small park.

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    Queens House

    by Britannia2 Updated Mar 21, 2014

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    The Queens House
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    The Queen's House is a former royal residence built between 1614-1617. Its architect was Inigo Jones, for whom it was a crucial early commission, for Anne of Denmark, the queen of King James I of England. It was altered and completed by Jones, in a second campaign about 1635 for Henrietta Maria, queen of King Charles I. The Queen's House is one of the most important buildings in British architectural history, being the first consciously classical building to have been constructed in Britain. It was Jones's first major commission after returning from his 1613-1615 grand tour of Roman, Renaissance and Palladian architecture in Italy.
    Today this beautiful building has displays of paintings and portraits from the national collection. Entrance is free. It would be better if some furniture was on show too.
    It has wonderful colonnades that are a wonderful place to sit and enjoy the view on a summers day.
    The elegant Tulip Stairs in the Queen's House were the first geometric self-supporting spiral stair in England.

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    Foot tunnel under the Thames

    by Britannia2 Updated Mar 19, 2014

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    Tunnel at Greenwich
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    This tunnel links Greenwich with Island Gardens on the north side of the Thames and was opened in 1902 to enable workers living south of the river to easily reach their employment in the docks and shipyards on the other side of the river. Easily recognised by the attractive domes on each side of the river this cast-iron tunnel itself is 370.2 m (1,217 ft) long and 15.2 m (50 ft) deep[3] and has an internal diameter of about 9 feet (2.7 m). Its cast-iron rings are lined with concrete which has been surfaced with some 200,000 white glazed tiles. There are lifts at each side or spiral staircases to take you to the tunnel at the bottom and then the short walk under the river. Well worth walking through just to see the view of Greenwich from the northern side of the river.
    The stairs and tunnel are open 24 hours a day but the lifts only 7am to 7pm on weekdays and Saturdays, 10am-5.30pm on Sundays.
    Allegedly not safe at night.

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    The Queen's house

    by Jim_Eliason Updated Dec 6, 2013

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    The Queen's house
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    This house was built by Queen Anne of Denmark, the wife of James I. hence its name. However Anne died before the house was completed and no Queen ever lived here. For most of its life it served as a Royal Navy asylum.

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    Let's go fly a kite.

    by planxty Updated Aug 20, 2013

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    Kite flying, Blackheath, london.

    Blackheath is a vast open space, situated near to the "village" that bears the same name. It is a place of great history .

    Originally straddling the Roman Watling Street which ran from London to Kent, it has been witness to some notable events over the centuries.

    Wat Tyler's Peasants Revolt of 1381 camped here prior to marching on london.

    The Cornish rebellion of 1497 emulated Tyler and pitched camp here before commencing the Battle of Deptford Bridge nearby, where they were soundly defeated by forces led by Lord Daubney acting for King Henry VII.

    Later, it had a more macabre use as a mass grave for plague victims in the 17th century. No-one is sure how many victims are actually buried there and the graves are unmarked.

    Due to it's elevated position, it often gets quite breezy up here, and people gather to fly kites - a very pleasant way to while away an afternoon.

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    A day in the Park.

    by planxty Updated Aug 20, 2013

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    Docklands from Greenwich Park, London.
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    Greenwich Royal Park is rich in history, housing the Royal Observatory, being bisected by the Greenwich Meridian, and also being the site of a former Roman settlement (as excavated by the Time Team archaeologists on the TV series). Apart from all this, it is an extremely spacious and pleasant place, and a good summer's day (or even a reasonable one for that matter) brings people out in droves for picnics, playing with the kids and so on.

    A walk to the top affords great views over London, as you can hopefully see from the picture. As you can also probably see, it wasn't a particularly sunny day, even though it was June. That's the British weather for you, I suppose.

    One of the images shows the destruction caused by the staging on the equestrian events during the 2012 Olympics. Despite promises that it would all be repaired and improved quickly after the Games, it is not being done nearly fast enough much to the annoyance of the local people. Yet another deceit by the Olympic organisers!. This report from a respected UK newspaper tells the story.

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/sport/olympics/london-2012/9760773/Greenwich-Park-ruined-by-London-2012-equestrian-events-campaigners-claim.html

    Hopefully it will be back to normal soon.

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    The Chapel of St. Peter and St. Paul.

    by Regina1965 Updated Jul 1, 2013

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    The beautiful ceiling.
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    The Chapel of St. Peter and St. Paul in Greenwich is one of Sir Christopher Wren´s designs. I have added tips on most of his churches on my London page. The Chapel is absolutely beautiful. There are twin buildings opposite one another, one is the Chapel and the other one is the Painted Hall.

    The Chapel was a part of the Royal Hospital for Seaman and was the last part to be built in 1751. It burnt down in 1779, leaving only the shell intact, and was redesigned in neo-classical style and decorated in Greek Revival style in 1881. It was later restored in the 1950s. The ceiling is absolutely beautiful, a work of art in itself.

    The sailors staying at the hospital had to attend daily services in the original chapel and had to remain standing through the service, as back then there were no pews in the chapel.

    The 7.5 meter painting above the altar, painted by Benjamin West, shows St. Paul´s shipwreck by Malta. My photos without flash don´t do it justice though.

    The organ is made by Samuel Green, the noted organ builder and dates back to 1789.

    There are Sunday services at 11:00 in the Chapel. I have attended one of their services and visited the Chapel again on another day to have a closer look at it and take photos. The Chapel is open from 10:00-17:00 and on Sundays it is open to visitors after the service, i.e. from 12:30.

    Admission: free.

    Photos without flash are allowed.

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    The Greenwich foot tunnel.

    by Regina1965 Updated Jun 15, 2013

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    The entrance on the Greenwich side
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    When I first visited Greenwich, Fergy "Planxty" came up with the idea of us taking the Greenwich foot tunnel. I.e. that we walk under the river Thames via the foot tunnel.

    So we met up at the last DLR station before the tunnel, at Island Gardens on the Isle of Dog, and walked down to the Dome entrance to the tunnel. There are identical Dome entrances to the tunnel on both sides of the river Thames. And a lift which takes one down to the tunnel.

    The beginning of the tunnel was quite narrow and the ceiling was relatively low, so Fergy could touch the ceiling with his head. This is apparantly a section of the tunnel that got damaged in WW2 and was repaired in this way. But after a short while we entered the main part of the tunnel, which had white tiles (200.000 all in all) and was wider. There were quite a few people walking there and ca 1.5 million people use it every year.

    I found it quite strange thinking about walking under the river Thames, and maybe I was imagining it, but I felt as if I could feel the pressure of the water and kept swaying and leaning towards the left side of the tunnel ;)

    The exit/entrance on the Greenwich side is directly by Cutty Shark.

    The Greenwich foot tunnel was opened in August 1902, designed by Sir Alexander Binnie and is 50 feet (15.2 m) deep and 1.217 feet (370,2 m) long. The tunnel was opened so that the South-Londoners in this area could go to the Isle of Dogs for work.

    There is a lift which takes one down to the tunnel, and also spiral staircases leading to the tunnel which are open 24 hours a day. We took the lift.

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