Greenwich Things to Do

  • National Maritime Museum
    National Maritime Museum
    by kris-t
  • Things to Do
    by Claudilla
  • St Alfege
    St Alfege
    by Britannia2

Most Recent Things to Do in Greenwich

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    The Rose Garden

    by Claudilla Updated Apr 25, 2013

    Made in the 1990's, is a part in the southern section of the Park, next to the Blackheath entrance.
    Flowers are blossoming in springtime and I really liked the circular beds of flowers..and perhaps Zeno loved them more. He was very respctful of the flowers and just loved running around them with his little friends.
    A small area is dedicated to deers, and you can quietly try to spot them from a couple of observation points between some bushes. The way to the bushes, is an enjoyable walk, a bit of change if compared to the open spaces of the park.
    The rose garden is closed to dogs, and although I love them, I think flowers can be preserved more easily and ducks/birds are more relaxed in approaching humans.
    Mind that if you drop a pice of your sandwich a squirrel will quickly get hold of it !
    It will not be there long ! Squirrels are very domesticated and friendly in this part of the park.

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    Be in the audience of a BBC show - fifth show.

    by Regina1965 Updated Mar 9, 2013

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    Up the Creek Comedy Club.
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    Our fifth show was the next day - and way down in Greenwich. It was called Thom Tuck Goes Straight to DVD for BBC Radio 4. There were several recordings for that show on other days, but we had applied for the tickets on the 4th of March.

    So down to Greenwich I went ahead of time to find the Up The Creek Comedy Club, which was easy enough as it is just opposite the exit for the DLR at Cutty Sark. I spent the day in Greenwich and my friend came later. There was no queue, so we went to a restaurant opposite the Comedy Club and had wine. When there was an hour until they should open the door for us we joined the queue, which was now quite long. It was absolutely freezing and I had the flu, so I was not enjoying standing there. Little did we know that we had to wait for 1 hour and 45 minutes in the freezing cold. People were frozen and furious and started leaving, but we were told that it would only be a couple of minutes so we stuck with the queue. When the doors finally opened there was not a happy audience that entered. We were told that rehearsals had dragged on. Not an excuse. This is just not acceptable. Even if it is for free, then it is just not worth it.

    Thom Tuck goes straight to DVD is a stand-up comic. We were so pissed off in the beginning that we didn´t think he was funny at all and didn´t applaude. But he gained on us and we enjoyed the rest of the show - it was quite funny - and quite long.

    What I like about going to the BBC shows is that one gets to know different theatres in London, Up the Creek Comedy Club is f.ex. a club which the comedian Malcom Hardee opened in 1991.

    I then got tickets to 3 more shows...

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    The Royal Observatory.

    by planxty Updated Dec 31, 2012

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    Greenwich Royal Observatory, London, England.
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    Dominating Greenwich Park is the Royal Observatory, which will be familiar to astronomers the world over. Designed by Sir Christopher Wren, it has seen all the great astronomers, and many momentous discoveries. The first Astronomer Royal here was Sir John Flamsteed, although other famous people like Halle (he of the comet fame) and Airey have been incumbents here. One of the major reasons for setting up the Observatory was to investigate methods of measuring longitude. Hitherto, sailors had no means of measuring it, often with catastrophinc results.

    When longitude was eventually measurable, all lines of longitude were, and still are, measured from here. It is the Prime Meridian, or zero if you will. Tourists are fond of standing with one foot in the Western hemisphere and one in the East.

    Admission is free although you must get a ticket from the office before entering (why I can't imagine.)

    There are numerous displays of old astronomical equipment, although at the time of writing (December 2005) many of these are closed to the public for restoration work. You can see some of the work in one of the photos, taken on a prticularly dull afternoon! The other photos were added after a November 2012 visit with VT member Regina1965.

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    You must be joking.

    by planxty Written Oct 28, 2012

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    O2 Arena ascent, Greenwich, London, UK.
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    It is an extremely rare event for me to write a tip on VT bout something that I have not done myself as I think that somewhat defeats the purpose but in this case I am going to make an exception for reasons I will explain. I submit this for those of you daredevil readers who are brave / foolhardy enough to do things like bungy jumping, parachuting and all those other myriad activities likely to get you killed.

    Durning the weekend of the recent 2012 London VT Treasure Hunt some of us had agreed to meet at North Greenwich to get the Emirates cable car across to the North Bank and go for a bit of a walk. This is the subject of a seperate tip and, had I known how terrified that would make me I wouldn't have bothered doing that.

    Whilst waiting for some members to arrive I was taking a few photos og the O2 arena, formerly known as the Millenium Dome, one of the largest and most recognisable structures in London. I looked closely and saw what I thought was a maintainance gang going up what looked like a precipitous walkway traversing the top of the dome. A closer examination and some asking about provided the truth of the matter. These adrenaline junkies had actually paid for the privelege of doing this, although why anyone would want to is beyond me. I have subsequently done a little research and if you feel so inclined, here are the nuts and bolts of scaring yourself silly at great height although I believe the views are stunning.

    Climbs take place every 20 minutes on weekdays from 12:00 to 18:20 and at the weekend from 10:00 to 18:20. The cost is £22 during the week and £28 on Saturday and Sunday. You are given full equipment and are guided all the way.

    Remarkably for such an activity wheelchair using adventurers need not be left out. Dedicated wheelchair ascents are provided monthly on every second Tuesday at 12pm, 1pm, 4pm and 5pm. I won't go into the complete technical details here but they are comprehensively explained on the attached website should you be interested. The telephone number given is for wheelchair enquiries only.*

    As I say, it is not something you would get me doing in a thousand years but it takes all sorts to make a world, so if adrenaline is your thing, you might want to try it. For those of a more delicate disposition, you may just want to watch the video on the website.

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  • piosku67's Profile Photo

    New houses, some of them reconstructed

    by piosku67 Written Aug 16, 2012

    Royal Borough of Greenwich, somewhere in the east London, upon the River Thames, opposite of the airport of London – it turned out a spot where our friends rented a flat and they hosted us for few nights in autumn 2007. If I travelled just to London, and stayed in a hotel, I would probably not see that part of the city. I could ride by a tube, a new line, passing by the legendary Canary Wharf. The train was driven by computer, without a living man in the front of the wagons. I admire not only, modern architecture there, but highly well reconstructed buildings in a style of late 18th century. It was an amazing sight. To get to our friends’ house we have to take a ferry or go through a tunnel built in the 19th century. Terrific experience. I also, admire something, which I later read about – I mean a modern, automatic dam on the river to unable water to flood the city.

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    A Free Concert at Trinity College

    by SurfaceTravel Updated Jul 4, 2012

    One of the buildings in the Old Royal Naval College is now Trinity College, or the Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music and Dance. It is a music college and on weekends it also hosts music lessons for children. There are frequenty free concerts given to the public on-site or in venues around Greenwich. See the web-site listed below for listings.

    Even with no concerts, you can hear students practicing their various instruments as you walk through the courtyard.

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    Cable Car Ride from North Greenwich to Excel

    by SurfaceTravel Updated Jul 3, 2012

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    Looking north crossing the Thames by cable car
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    This is a cable car link across the River Thames from North Greenwich right next to the O2 Arena to Victoria Docks on the north side of the river, near to Royal Victoria Docklands Light Railway (DLR) station and the Excel exhibition and convention centre. The cars must be high enough to go over any visiting ships, so it is fairly high up and you get sweeping views of the O2 Arena, the Thames Barrier, London City Airport, Canary Wharf, and London's landmark towers in The City. It's not the most fantastic cable car ride in the world, but if you're in East London or Greenwich, it's worth the trip.

    It opened in July 2012. We went on the opening weekend, so it may have been much busier then than what "normal" will be, once the Londoners have seen it and the Olympics are over. We heard others complaining that the line-up to pay cash for boarding passes took 45 minutes, so having the Oyster Cards was a definite bonus.

    The line is currently sponsored by Emirates Airline, so it is called the Emirates Air Line on the Transport for London web-site, listed below.

    It takes 4 minutes to make the crossing. It's cheaper if you can use your Transport for London Oyster Card, which must be pay-as-you-go. Adult and child (5-15) cash fares are £4.30 and £2.20 respectively each way, and Oyster rates are £3.20 and £1.60. Children under 5 ride free and bicycles are allowed in the cars. There is full wheelchair access at both ends. (Note that while children ride free on the Tube and DLR, they will need to pay here by cash or Oyster.)

    You can make a loop trip using public transport from central London. You can take the Jubilee Line Tube to North Greenwich Station on the Greenwich side and the DLR from Bank or Tower Gateway stations in The City to Royal Victoria Station on the north side of the river.

    If you are in the touristic centre of Greenwich, the Cutty Sark area, bus 188 leaves from Stop C every 8 minutes and takes up to 20 minutes to get there.

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    Stand on the Prime Meridian

    by Dabs Updated Nov 28, 2011

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    Tommy and Rachel on the Prime Meridian
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    I think the 1st thing that 99% of visitors to Greenwich do is hike up the hill and head to the Royal Observatory and stand with a foot on either side of the Prime Meridian of the world, Longitude Zero (0° 0' 0"), one foot in the eastern hemisphere and one foot in the western hemisphere. When we visited in January 2008, there were hardly any people there but in July 2008, there was actually a line to have your picture taken standing on the line. We just headed to the other side of the sculpture and took my niece and nephew's picture there.

    The Observatory used to be free to visit but on my last visit in July 2011 they were charging an admission fee of £7. You can see the Prime Meridian from outside the gates but in order to stand over it, you have to go inside and pay the admission fee.

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    Royal Observatory

    by Dabs Updated Nov 21, 2011

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    Royal Observatory
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    I was a little bummed, after climbing to the top of the hill to the Royal Observatory to show my niece the Prime Meridian to find out that they had instituted an admission charge, something they never had in all the years I've been going to London. All I really wanted to show her was the Prime Meridian and Camera Obscura and it really didn't make sense to have to pay £7 per person for such a short visit. You can still see the Prime Meridian from the gates, you just can't stand on either side of it.

    If you do decide to fork over the admission charge, there are several other things to see at the Royal Observatory besides the Prime Meridian and Camera Obscura:

    The Time Ball The red time ball located on top of the Flamsteed House was installed in 1833 as a signal for ships on the Thames to check their chronometers, it drops every day at 13:00 (GMT in winter, BST in summer), it's raised up halfway five minutes before 13:00 and to the top 2 minutes before 13:00 and then dropped. It wasn't working the day we were there though.

    Shepard 24 Hour Gate Clock, this 24 hour clock always shows GMT (Greenwich Mean Time) so in the summer it will appear to be an hour off, one of the earliest electric public clocks

    Planetarium, there are shows at the Planetarium which you can book online, there is a charge for the shows

    Astronomy Galleries

    Time Galleries

    Last but not least, there is a wonderful view over Greenwich and all the way into Central London from the Observatory since it is at the top of the hill in Greenwich Park. This view is still free for the "price" of the walk up the hill.

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    Pleasant, but I don't get it.

    by planxty Written Oct 18, 2011

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    Linear Gallery, Greenwich, UK.
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    I have given my opinions about modern "art" in other VT tips, I just don't get it. My experience of the Tate Modern, supposedly one of the premier places in the world was almost entirely negative. When I wanderd, therefore, into the Linear House gallery in central Greenwich i wasn't quite sure what to expect. What I got was one fairly small room with a lot of quite pleasant photographs on the wall, although somewhat spoiled by the pretentious written garbage accompanying them.

    What really got to me however was the "installation in the corner. A disarrayed desk, a black jacket over a chair with more pretentious drivel chalked on the back of it, two jigsaw pieces on the chair, and that is art? How? A messy child, apart from destroying a perfectly good jacket, does that on a daily basis. OK, rant over.

    If this is your thing, I have included all the details for your visit.

    The gallery is open -

    Mon-Fri: 9am - 5pm
    Sat & Sun: 12 - 4pm

    Admission is free and it is fully wheelchair accessible.

    Here is the website as the URL is too long for the field below.

    Here is the phone number as VT is playing up again.

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  • planxty's Profile Photo

    A wonderful Hawksmoor Church.

    by planxty Written Oct 18, 2011

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    St. Alfege Church, Greenwich, UK.
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    I could not guess how many times I have walked past the Church of St. Alfege in Greenwich and admired it, yet I had never been in it until last week. don't aske me to describe in architectural detail how it does, but it is so evidently the work of Nicholas Hawksmoor, a great architect who studied under Sir Christopher Wren and assisted him on some of his projects including the nearby Naval College. Hawksmoor designed many churches in the East End including Christ Church Spitalfields, St. Geroge in the East, St. Anne's Limehouse and this which some people think is his finest.

    Hawksmoor, however, was only one in a series of churchbuilders on this site, as there has been a Christian place of worship on this site since 1012. The site was chosen as it was the site of the martyrdom of St. Alfege, one time Archbishop of Canterbury who was captured by Vikings and murdered here. Several buildings later and including a complete collapse in 1710 we have the magnificent structure you see today.

    The place is absolutely loaded with history, so much so it is difficult to know where to begin. King Henry VIII was baptised here, Flamsteed, the first Astronomer Royal worshipped here, which is probably not surprising given the proximity of the Greenwich Observatory and the Prime Meridian. There is an evident military connection here, as evidenced by the numerous military memorials on the walls. Perhaps the most famous is General Wolfe (of Quebec fame) who is buried here. One of my photos is his memorial which is on the left as you go in the door.

    Another interesting thing is that the place is used for musical recitals. On an October midweek lunchtime I was treated to a recital by students from Trinity Laban Chamber Orchestra, led by Steven Devine of a piece by Thomas Arne and two by J.C. Bach featuring not one but two harpsichords. I am not a great fan of classical music but the sound, in this wonderful space, was quite wonderful. Check the website for further concerts.

    Whilst many people come to Greenwich for other things like the Maritime Museum and so forth, you sohuld really set aside a little time to see this incredible place.

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    Greenwich Park

    by lina112 Updated Apr 4, 2011

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    Greenwich Park

    London´s oldest royal park affords a panoramic view of London from the top of the hill. Amid the rolling landscape are trees planted by Charles II in the 1660s, lovely formal gardens, a deer enclosure and play grounds.

    Situado en una colina detrás del museo nacional marítimo, ofrece unas vistas panorámicas de Docklands y de la parte baja del Támesis. Es el más viejo de todos los parques y forma parte de lo que se denomina herencia del mundo.

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    Greenwich Foot Tunnel

    by SurfaceTravel Updated Apr 4, 2011

    If you are visiting Maritime Greenwich, it's worth the extra time to check out this foot tunnel that goes under the River Thames, north to the Isle of Dogs. Built in 1902, it is a third of a kilometre long and has about 100 steps at each end. Usually there are also lifts operating at both ends during the day. There is a little park on the other side where you have excellent views of the Old Royal Naval College back across the river.

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  • The View of London from the Top of Greenwich Park

    by katgoddess23 Updated Apr 4, 2011

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    View from outside Observatory in Greenwich Park

    As a regular visitor to Greenwich, i never tire of this view. On a clear day you can see St Paul's Cathedral and the "gerkin" over in central London. Canary Wharf and the rest of Docklands, as well as the Millenium Dome. Outside the observatory there is a special viewing area where you can take pictures and seats so you can eat your lunch. There is also a plaque explaining the buildings that you can see, but this is rather out of date! It doesn't include the Dome or any of the buildings around Canary Wharf!!! Turn around and you will see a statue of James Wolf enjoying the view with you.

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    The Observatory

    by Britannia2 Updated Mar 22, 2011

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    View from the park
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    Every place on Earth is measured in terms of its distance east or west from the Greenwich Meridian. The line itself divides the eastern and western hemispheres of the Earth, just as the Equator divides the northern and southern hemispheres.
    The Greenwich time line represents the Prime Meridian of the World at longitude 0 degrees and you can see it here at the Royal Observatory.
    King Charles ll commissioned a royal observatory here in 1675. Until 1954 Greenwich Mean Time was based on calculations here and until 1924 the read ball on top of the observatory tower (see my photo) was dropped at 13.00 each day to assist with the calculation. It still drops each day at 13.00 but not for any reason other than display.
    There is a good display of time related articles and a reconstruction of the house the first astronomer Flamstead lived in here. Also a camera obscura and a 120 seat planetarium. Entrance is £10 with concessions (March 2011). Good restroom facilities and disabled friendly.

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