Buildings & Landmarks

Picture: Greenwich from the River Thames

 London has such a wide range of historical buildings and landmarks.  The one's we have listed  are no way diminished just because they are free to enter.  Greenwich is a good area to visit as there are multiple free attractions including the Greenwich Foot Tunnel which goes under the width of the River Thames.

London Mithraeum               * New *

12 Walbrook EC4N 8AA


Admission: Free

Underground: Cannon Street or Bank   Rail: Cannon Street

Location Map:

You will be able to see and experience the reconstructed remains of the Temple of Mithras. This is a faithful recreation of the ruin that was discovered in 1954 by renowned archaeologist Professor W.F. Grimes during the excavations following the Blitz. The temple has been restored to capture the mystery and intrigue of the Roman cult of Mithras, who used to meet on this site. Haze, light and the sound of footsteps, chanting and secret whispers will transport you back to London AD 240.

Open; Tuesday – Saturday 10.00 – 18.00
           Sundays/Bank holidays 12.00 – 17.00
           First Thursday of the month 10.00 – 20.00

Book free tickets from the London Mithraeum web site to ensure your visit goes smoothly.

Fulham Palace     

Bishop’s Avenue, Fulham, SW6 6EA

Telephone: 020 7736 3233

Admission: Free                

Underground: Putney Bridge    

Location Map:

Fulham Palace was owned by the Bishops of London for over 1300 years and was their country home from the 11th century. The stately rooms house a museum, a gallery space and a cafe bar overlooking the extensive botanic gardens.

Somerset House     

Strand, WC2R 1LA

Telephone: 020 7845 4600

Admission: Free                    

Underground: Temple   

Location Map:

Housing the famous Courtauld Gallery, cafes and restaurants, the neoclassical 18th century building is also home to an ice rink during the Christmas/New Year holidays.

Brixton Windmill     

Windmill Gardens, West End of Blenheim Gardens, Brixton Hill, SW2 5EU

Telephone: 020 7926 6056

Admission: Free                    

Underground: Brixton    Train: Brixton

Location Map:

Brixton Windmill is open to the public for guided tours from April to October, usually on the second weekend of every month, plus a few extra dates.

On the guided tours you can visit the "two mills in one" and hear the fascinating story of the Ashby family. You will also see the original wind-powered machinery and find out about how it was once used to make stoneground flour.

You must book a guided tour in advance (via their web site), as access to the upper floors of the windmill is very restricted. Because of space restrictions, each tour is limited to three adults plus guide or two adults and two children plus guide. 

There are guided tours on the hour and half hour, with last entry 30 minutes before published closing time. Each tour lasts approx. 30-45 minutes. All tours are free. 

Kenwood House - English Heritage     

Hampstead Lane, Hampstead, NW3 7JR

Telephone: 020 8348 1286

Admission: Free                    

Train: Hampstead Heath   

Location Map:

Brewing magnate Edward Cecil Guinness, first Earl of Iveagh, bought Kenwood House and estate in 1925. When he died in 1927, he bequeathed the house, estate & pictures to the nation.

The Queen’s House                

Romney Road, Greenwich, SE10 9NF

Telephone: 020 8858 4422

Admission: Free                    

DLR: Cutty Sark or Greenwich  Train: Greenwich   

Location Map:

The Queen's House, Greenwich, was commissioned by Anne of Denmark, wife of James I (reigned 1603–25). James was often at the Tudor Palace of Greenwich, where the Old Royal Naval College now stands – it was as important a residence of the early Stuart dynasty as it had been for the Tudors.  The building has been used in many movies and television programmes.

Fan Bridge and the Rolling Bridge - Paddington Basin     

Paddington Basin, W2 1AJ

Telephone: 020 7298 0800

Admission: Free                    

Underground: Paddington      Rail: Paddington

Location Map:

These unique pedestrian bridges built in the Paddington Basin show what good design can achieve.  The fan bridge is opened Midday every Wednesday and Friday and 2pm every Saturday. 

Coombe Conduit - English Heritage     

Coombe Lane, Norbiton

Telephone: 020 8541 3108

Admission: Free                    

Train: Norbiton

Location Map:

Coombe Conduit represents an intriguing survival from the system which, for 350 years, provided fresh water to Hampton Court Palace.

The Hampton Court conduit system was fed from three conduit heads, which were known as Coombe Conduit, Gallows Conduit and Ivy Conduit (the last is not in English Heritage’s guardianship). The system has traditionally been attributed to Cardinal Thomas Wolsey, who began work to the great palace at Hampton Court between 1514 and 1529.

Hogarth’s House     

Hogarth Lane, Great West Road, W4 2QN

Telephone: 020 8994 6757

Admission: Free                    

Underground: Turnham Green   

Location Map:

Hogarth's House in Chiswick, built around 1700, was the country home of the great painter, engraver and satirist William Hogarth (1697 - 1764) from 1749 until his death.

Royal Observatory – Astronomy Centre        

Blackheath Avenue, Greenwich, SE10

Telephone: 020 8858 4422

Admission: Free to the Astronomy Centre

Docklands Light Railway: Cutty Sark      Train: Greenwich

Location Map:

The home of the Greenwich Meridian and the famous Royal Observatory (free entry is only for the Astronomy Centre).  The Royal Observatory is situated in Greenwich Park.

Little Holland House     

40 Beeches Avenue, Carshalton, SM5 3LW

Telephone: 020 8770 4781

Admission: Free                

Train: Carshalton Beeches    

Location Map:

Take a step back in time and visit the former home of artist, designer and craftsman Frank Dickinson (1874-1961).

The Grade II* interior was created entirely by Dickinson, inspired by the ideals of John Ruskin and William Morris and contains Dickinson's paintings, hand-made furniture, furnishings, metalwork and carving, in a unique fusion of Art Nouveau and the English Arts and Crafts style.

Greenwich Foot Tunnel     

Near Cutty Sark, Greenwich

Admission: Free                    

Docklands Light Railwy: Cutty Sark   

Location Map:

Open 24/7 (may be closed for maintenance, check the above web site).  The tunnels link  Cutty Sark to Island Gardens. Built in 1902 to give residents access to the shipyards on the north of the Thames.  Access is by lift or stairs at each entrance.  Photography is not permitted in the tunnels.

London Wall - English Heritage     

Tower Hill

Telephone: 0870 333 1181

Admission: Free

Underground: Tower Hill      Docklands Light Railway: Tower Gateway    

Location Map:

Set immediately north of the Tower of London, right in the heart of Tower Hill, stands one of the most substantial and impressive surviving sections of the London Wall. Built c. AD 200, the Roman wall not only provided defence and security to the citizens of London, but also represented the status of the city itself.

Once around 4km long and enclosing an area of about 134 hectares, over time it was modified, adapted and added to, before finally being obscured and partially destroyed as new buildings were constructed around it. Today however, many of the buildings which had formerly hidden it have been cleared away, and visitors to the site can enjoy a clear view of the monument that defined both the size and shape of the city for over a millennium.

Woolwich Ferry     

New Ferry Approach, Woolwich SE18 6DX & Pier Road, London E16 2JJ

Telephone: 020 8853 9400

Admission: Free

Train: Woolwich Dockyard    DLR: King George V

Location Map:

The Woolwich Ferry links Woolwich and North Woolwich. It runs every 5-10 minutes throughout the day, from Monday to Friday and every 15 minutes on Saturdays and Sundays. It carries pedestrians, cyclists, cars, vans and lorries and is free to use.

Queen Elizabeth's Hunting Lodge     

8 Ranger's Road, Chingford E4 7QH

Telephone: 020 7332 1911

Admission: Free

Train: Chingford     

Location Map:

Queen Elizabeth’s Hunting Lodge, right next to The View, is a unique example of a surviving timber-framed hunt standing still surrounded by its medieval royal hunting forest.

Visitors to the Hunting Lodge, built on the orders of Henry VIII in 1543, can today enjoy exhibitions on Tudor history and soak up the atmosphere of this incredible historic building nearly 500 years after it was first built.

British Library     

96 Euston Road, NW1

Telephone: 0330 333 1144

Admission: Free        

Underground/Train: King’s Cross St Pancras or Euston     

Location Map:

As well as the country’s premier and the world’s largest library there are fascinating permanent and temporary exhibitions.

Tower Bridge Lifting                               

Tower Bridge, Tower Bridge Road SE1 2UP

Admission: Free

Underground: Tower Hill   Docklands Light Railway: Tower Gateway     

Location Map:

A must see!  Tower Bridge raises for ships wishing to pass under it, times are published on their web site.  Grab a great views from either bank of the River Thames and see the legendary arms rise up and watch the passing ship glide through on its journey.

Woolwich Foot Tunnel     

Glass Yard, Woolwich

Admission: Free                    

Docklands Light Railway: Woolwich Arsenal or King George V

Location Map:

Open 24/7 (may be closed for maintenance, check the above web site).  The tunnels links South Woolwich to North Woolwich. Built in 1912 to give residents access to the shipyards on the north of the Thames.  Access is by lift or stairs at each entrance.  Photography is not permitted in the tunnel.

Valentine's Mansion & Garden           

Emerson Road, Ilford, Essex IG1 4XA

Telephone: 020 8708 8100

Admission: Free

Underground: Gants Hill   Train: Ilford 

Location Map:

Come and enjoy the exhibitions, special events and creative workshops, step back in time and explore the recreated Victorian kitchen and Georgian rooms, join the guided tours and walks, bring the family along for games, activities and discovery trails or simply unwind in our charming Gardener’s Cottage Café - there’s so much to do at Valentines, you’ll be surprised.

Winchester Palace - English Heritage           

Clink Street, SE1 9DG

Telephone: 0870 333 1181

Admission: Free

Underground: London Bridge  Train: London Bridge

Location Map:

Based in the inner London district of Southwark are the remains of Winchester Palace - once one of the largest and most important buildings in all of medieval London. Built in the early 13th century as a home to the powerful Bishops of Winchester, now all that remains of the once prominent and lavish residence are a few walls of the Great Hall.

Old Royal Naval College Greenwich          

King William Walk, Greenwich, SE10 9NN

Telephone: 020 8269 4747

Admission: Free

Docklands Light Railway: Cutty Sark     Train: Greenwich

Location Map:

The Old Royal Naval College (ORNC) in Greenwich is one of the most important ensembles in European baroque architecture and the centrepiece of the Maritime Greenwich World Heritage Site.

Today this historic landmark is open to the public and, since the departure of the Royal Navy in 1997, is managed by the Greenwich Foundation, a registered charity.

Shirley Windmill          

Postmill Close, Croydon, CR0 5DY

Telephone: 020 8651 0064

Admission: Free

Train: East Croydon   

Location Map:

One of only four windmills open to the public in Greater London, Shirley Windmill is a Tower Mill, built in 1854 by Richard Alwen to replace an earlier (1808) timber post-mill on this site, lost by fire. It ceased working in about 1890, but most of the original machinery, including its two pairs of millstones, is still in place, and has recently been restored, so there is a lot to see.

The windmill is usually open for guided tours on the first Sunday of the month, from June to October, and also on National Mills Day (in May) and London Open House Day (in September), with limited weekday opening for group visits by arrangement.

Chapter House and Pyx Chamber - English Heritage         

Dean's Yard, Westminster Abbey, SW1P 3PA

Telephone: 020 7654 4900

Admission: Free

Underground: Westminster

Location Map:

Built by the royal masons in 1250, the Chapter House of Westminster Abbey was originally used in the 13th century by Benedictine monks for their daily meetings. It later became a meeting place of the King’s Great Council and the Commons, predecessors of today’s Parliament.

A beautiful octagonal building with a vaulted ceiling and delicate central column, it offers rarely seen examples of medieval sculpture, an original floor of glazed tiles and spectacular wall paintings.

The 11th century Pyx Chamber also has a medieval tiled floor, and was used as a monastic and royal treasury. It contains a 13th century stone altar which survived the Reformation. 

Guildhall - City of London         

Gresham Street, EC2P 2HH

Telephone: 020 7606 3030

Admission: Free

Underground: Bank or St Paul's

Location Map:

The Great Hall is the third largest civic hall in England, where royalty and state visitors have been entertained down the centuries. It has been the setting for famous state trials, including that of Lady Jane Grey in 1553. The imposing medieval hall has stained glass windows and several monuments to national heroes including Admiral Lord Nelson, the Duke of Wellington and Sir Winston Churchill.

The Old Library building housed the Guildhall library and the Guildhall Museum from 1873 until 1974, when the collections moved to the newly constructed west wing and the Museum of London. Both the Old Library and the adjacent Print Room are now used as reception rooms. Beneath Guildhall lie the largest medieval crypts in London.  It is best to telephone before visiting to ensure no events are being held on the day of your visit.

Keepers Gallery at the National Archive         

Kew, Richmond, TW9 4DU

Telephone: 020 8876 3444

Admission: Free

Train: Kew Gardens

Location Map:

The Keeper's Gallery is an on site exhibition space which showcases highlights from The National Archives. The 'Keeper' is the guardian and head of the archive.

The gallery displays a wide selection of treasures including records related to British history, family history and significant global events, as well as intriguing stories from the archive itself.

Tours of the Keeper's Gallery

The Keeper's Gallery is now offering free tours of the gallery twice a month, led by volunteers. Check on the web site for tour dates. 

Please meet at the welcome desk five minutes before the tour start time. Each tour group will take a maximum of 12 people on a first come, first served basis.

Diana Memorial Fountain         

Serpentine Bridge, Hyde Park, W8 4PX

Telephone: 0300 061 2000

Admission: Free

Underground: South Kensington or Knightsbridge

Location Map:

This unique Memorial to Diana, Princess of Wales was opened by Her Majesty The Queen on 6th July 2004.

The fountain was built with the best materials, talent and technology. It contains 545 pieces of Cornish granite - each shaped by the latest computer-controlled machinery and pieced together using traditional skills.

The design aims to reflect Diana's life, water flows from the highest point in two directions as it cascades, swirls and bubbles before meeting in a calm pool at the bottom. The water is constantly being refreshed and is drawn from London's water table.

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