Along the South Bank of the Thames

MAY 25,2013 - MAY 25,2013 (1 DAYS)

Trekking

From Black Friars Bridge to Chelsea - along the south bank of the Thames:

Start: Blackfriars Station.

End:  Sloane Square Station (Chelsea).

Distance: 10 km.

We start at the refurbished Blackfriars Station. Cross the Blackfriars Bridge from the northern bank to the southern bank. Blackfriars Bridge is a road and foot traffic bridge over the River Thames in London, between Waterloo Bridge and Blackfriars Railway Bridge. On the north side of the bridge is a statue of Queen Victoria to whom the bridge was dedicated. The south end is 500 m. west of the Tate Modern art gallery and 300 m. east of the Oxo Tower:

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Trekking in , , visiting things to do in , Travel Blog, Share my Trip Our direction is WESTWARD. In case it starts raining - Take a break and head eastward, walk 500 m. along the river (eastward !) until you arrive to the Tate Modern. Get a shelter and enjoy a free entrance to one of the famous museums in London:

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Vietnam War - Leon Golub, Vietnam II 1973:

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Joan Miro, Woman, 1949:

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Francis Picabia, Portrait of a Doctor, 1935-1938:

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Pablo Picaso - Nude Woman in a Red Armchair, 1932:

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Pablo Picaso - Nude, Green Heaves and Bust, 1932:

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Pablo Picaso - Nude Woman with Necklace, 1968:

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Dora Corrington - Spanish landscape Mountains, 1924:

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Before heading westward along the Thames - look at the stone carvings at the south end of the bridge:

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We walk 300 m. westward and arrive to the Oxo Tower and Oxo Tower Wharf:

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Oxo Tower Wharf is located towards the eastern end of London's South Bank cultural area, and is within the London Borough of Southwark. It is located east to  other riverside attractions such as the Festival Hall, the National Theatre, the Globe Theatre, the Gabriel's Wharf and the Bernie Spain Gardens. The "Oxo Tower Wharf" has a set of design, arts and crafts shops on the ground and first floors as well as a few gallery spaces and gadgets shops.

View to the Northern Bank and London City from Oxo Towere Wharf:

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Continue walking westward 1 minute later and turn left to the Gabriel's Wharf. It has been converted into a shopping area:  a hodge-podge of restaurants, quick eats and , fashion boutiques or stalls.

View to the North Bank from Gabriel Wharf in the Southern Bank:

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150 m. further west, along the river promenade brings you the National Theatre grounds. The theatre presents a varied programme, including Shakespeare and other international classic drama; and new plays by contemporary playwrights. The National Theatre building houses three separate auditoriums: Lyttelton Theatre, Cottesloe Theatre and the Shed. The riverside forecourt of the theatre is used for regular open-air performances in the summer months.

A Sculpture opposite the National Theatre:

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n September 2007, a statue of Laurence Olivier as Hamlet was unveiled outside the building, to mark the centenary of the NT first artistic director:

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The Southbank Centre Building is in front of this complex which includes the the Royal Festival Hall (RFH), the Queen Elizabeth Hall and the Hayward Gallery. Between 2004-7 a new glass-fronted building was created, providing office space for Southbank Centre staff, as well as a range of new shops and restaurants, was inserted between the RFH and the approach viaduct to Hungerford Bridge and along the low level Thames elevation of the Royal Festival Hall. Climb To the top floor of this building to catch marvelous pictures of the Thames, North Bank and the City of London:

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Further along the river (south-west) we see the Hungerford Bridge. It is a steel truss railway bridge—sometimes known as the Charing Cross Bridge.  The new bridge won many prizes for its planning and construction:

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View to Westminster Tower and the Parliament Buildings from Hungerford Bridge:

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View to Waterloo Bridge from Hungerford Bridge:

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The North Bank near Westminster - the M15 Building and Government offices from Hungerford Bridge:

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650 metres further, along the Thames (now the direction is - the south) and we are opposite the Westminster Bridge. On our way from Hungerford Bridge we pass the London Eye and the London Aquarium (and the Dungeon) on our left:

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Street shows near the London Eye and the Jubilee Gardens:

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Westminster Bridge:

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View from Westminster Bridge:

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Westminster Bridge is predominantly green, the same colour as the benches in the House of Commons at the northern end of the Houses of Parliament.

The Big Ben, Westminster Bridge and the Parliament from Westminster Bridge:

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800 metres further to the south, along the southern bank of the Thames - we arrive to the Lambeth Bridge. After crossing the Westminster Bridge do not miss the view from the Thames promenade of the Parliament Houses:

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The most dominant colour in the Lambeth bridge is red, the same colour as the leather benches in the House of Lords which is at the southern end of the Palace of Westminster nearest the bridge. The bridge is notable at road level for the pairs of obelisks at either end of the bridge. On your way along the southern bank - note, on your left the Gardening Museum opposite Lambeth Bridge:

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After passing Lambeth Bridge - you see, on your right, the the Thamsis Dock - a restaurant-boat on the Thames, a few metres beyond the Lambeth Bridge:

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Walking 1300 metres, further to the south, and we arrive to the Vauxhall Bridge. Vauxhall Bridge is a granite deck arch bridge.

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Housing projects in ST. George Wharf immediately beyond Vauxhall Bridge:

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Note the Battersea Power Station opposite Vauxhall Bridge. Although the whole area around is under a terrific wave of reconstruction and dust - you can approach the old, gigantic power station to appreciate its past glory:

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The area beyond Vauxhall Bridge, Nine Elms,  is reconstructed and huge amounts of money, planning, vision and sweat are invested to build another gigantic neighborhood (in the photo: the Tower - of St. George Corp.):

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The next bridge is Chelsea Bridge - approx. 2 km. west to Vauxhall Bridge. Chelsea Bridge is connecting Chelsea on the north bank to Battersea on the south bank.

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On the eastern side of the bridge at the southern end a major new residential development of 600 homes called Chelsea Bridge Wharf has been built as part of long term plans to regenerate the former industrial sites around Battersea Power Station (Berkley Homes):

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After passing the Chelsea Bridge - the Battersea Park lies on our left. It is in the London Borough of Wandsworth. It was opened in year 11858.  The park is home to a boating lake, a bandstand, a small children's zoo and several all-weather outdoor sporting facilities including tennis courts, a running track and football pitches.

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The Japanese Pagoda in Battersea Park:

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Albert Bridge is immediately beyond the western edge of Battersea Prak. The Albert Bridge is a road bridge over the Thames, connecting Chelsea on the north bank to Battersea  and Wandsworth on the south bank. Its dominant colour is white. In 1992, the Albert Bridge was repainted in an unusual bright colour scheme designed to make it more conspicuous in poor visibility, and avoid being damaged by ships or boats:

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It is our final bridge on the Thames - in this trip. There is no nearby tube station. We head into Chelsea. Head north on Albert Bridge Rd. toward Chelsea Embankment Rd. Turn right onto Chelsea Embankment Rd.  Turn left onto Cheyne Walk. Continue onto Royal Hospital Rd. and the Royal Hospital Chelsea will be on your left after 500m.  The Royal Hospital Chelsea is a retirement home and nursing home for British soldiers and veterans who are in old age. The Royal Hospital was founded by King Charles II in 1682 as a retreat for veterans. In 2009 the first women in the Hospital's 317-year history were admitted as In-Pensioners. The 13 m. Hospital's chapel was designed by Sir Christopher Wren and was completed in 1687. A 2.3 m. statue of King Charles II stands in the central court (the Figure Court) of the Hospital. The Great Hall was also designed by Sir Christopher Wren and was originally intended as a dining hall. The museum contains items associated with the Duke of Wellington, and other uniforms, medals, weapons, paintings and models.

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Continue northeast on Royal Hospital Rd toward Franklin's Row. Turn left onto Lower Sloane St:

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Head north on Lower Sloane. Turn right onto Sloane Gardens.  Turn right onto Holbein Pl. The Sloane Station is on your left.

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