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Section 3 (Tower Bridge to Greenwich and the Thames Barrier / Tower Bridge to Island Gardens)

3 (Tower Bridge to Greenwich and the Thames Barrier / Tower Bridge to Island Gardens)

Description:

Welcome to a stretch of the River Thames that's full of East End character, where the views are superb and the pubs alone are worth the walk.

Enjoy a stroll along the Thames Path as it winds its way through some of the most evocative spots on the historic riverbank, from Canary Wharf and the Isle of Dogs to the home of the Mayflower and the glorious Maritime Greenwich World Heritage Site.

You'll pass the places where pirates hung in chains; where Turner painted and Dickens set his scenes; where Brunel tasted his first success and most bitter failure and where dockers 'grafted' until their backs bled. This section traces the rise, fall and resurrection of London's great docks, which traded widely with the Empire and the world and bore the brunt of the Blitz in the Second World War. Largely silent since the 1960s, they are born again with warehouses converted to apartments and cafes and new housing now lining once-busy wharves.

Contemporary life has also made its mark in the striking form of Canary Wharf's towers, the Millennium Dome and the Thames Barrier - the official end of the National Trail.

It is possible to carry on walking along the river, beyond the barrier it is called the "south east extension" or "north east extension" and is waymarked with barge symbols rather than the National Trail acorn.

Distance:

North Bank 5 miles / South Bank 11 miles ( North Bank 8 km / South Bank 17.5 km)

Start:

Tower Bridge

Finish:

Greenwich Foot Tunnel (North Bank) or Thames Barrier (South Bank)

Recommended direction:

Down river

Terrain and surface:

Easy and level walking surface.

Signage:

The Thames Path is clearly signed and waymarked along its length using the distinctive National Trail acorn symbol alongside its name. There are lots of extra information boards to interpret the things you meet along the way.

It is possible to walk beyond the Thames Barrier - which is the official end of the National Trail - for instance on the south side you can walk all the way to the Kent boundary. However beyond the Thames Barrier the way-marking changes from being the iconic acorn of the National Trail, to a sailing barge symbol.

Refreshments and toilets:

Walkers thinking of visiting the Thames Barrier visitor centre at the end of the south bank section should first of all check the opening times on The Environment Agency's website - there is a café and toilets here too

Public transport and breakpoints:

The route can be easily reached by public transport. There are many rail, underground and bus stations and stops just a short walking distance from the river. Call London Travel Information on 020 7222 1234 (24 hours), Textphone 020 7918 3015

For more information on public transport please see Transport for London's Journey Planner.

Links with other walks:

Jubilee Walkway, Capital Ring, Green Chain Walk, Jubilee Greenway, Thames Path south-east extension, Thames Path north-east extension

Map required:

Explorer 173 London North and 162 Greenwich and Gravesend
Or see the route on Google Maps (you may have to scroll to page 2 or 3 for the London sections)

Principal promoters:

The National Trail website

 

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