Bankside & Southwark
The most famous bridge in the world, Europe’s tallest skyscraper and the world's most popular modern art gallery are some of the highlights of a rejuvenated Bankside
Twenty years ago this corner of London turned its back to the river with abandoned wharves and warehouses languishing along a lifeless and disconnected riverside walkway. Yet today this rejuvenated promenade is one of London’s cultural engine rooms and a string of bars, pubs and restaurants cluster around the world’s most popular modern art gallery and the site of one of London’s oldest theatres. The secret to this astonishing turnaround is culturally-led regeneration, a unique urban experiment where culture rather than commerce has driven renewal. This process has left a remarkable collection of contemporary architecture in its wake. But the true character of this charismatic historic enclave lies in the dramatic contrast these new buildings make with its extraordinary wealth of ancient landmarks, the latter of which lingers to craft one of the most haunting impressions of London's industrial and insalubrious past.
WALK START LOCATION: Southwark tube station / Map
WALK ENDS: Near Tower Bridge