The area of Bankside, located near popular London neighborhoods such as Southbank, Borough, and London Bridge, is an area visited by many but it’s hard to figure out what to do and where to eat around there— there are so many options. So citizenM, a group of hotels that are affordable but still super stylish (seriously, take a look at it their site to see), has a location in Bankside, so we’ve teamed up to create a guide to the area. Here are seven things to do, see or eat around Bankside.
1. Grab a hot one at Monmouth Coffee
I’ve had quite a few people tell me that they think Monmouth serves the best coffee in London. I’m more of a tea drinker myself so I can’t make such claims just yet, but according to TripAdvisor, it’s not just those who I’ve spoken to who think the same. If it’s not too busy (read— a queue out the door) then pop down at one of their wooden tables and enjoy your caffeinated treat.
2 Park Street, SE1 9AB
Photo credit: Iian Farrell
2. Take a time-lapse (or three)
Bankside and the nearby areas are a haven for a good time-lapse video. So switch to the time-lapse setting on your smartphone’s camera and capture the tourists exploring, the boats that sail along the Thames, or anything else that you can find with lots of movement.
Some of my favorite spots around Bankside for a time-lapse:
• The balcony on the second floor of the Tate Modern, looking down
• Watching tourists on Millennium Bridge from nearby
• Standing along the Thames, near City Hall, with a view of Tower Bridge
• Near Borough market at lunchtime
Photo credit: Ed Webster
3. Go American at The Breakfast Club
Like an American diner, but better. Prepare for nostalgia, a line out the door, and a good breakfast/lunch/brunch. The London Bridge location is one of six because Londoners and visitors alike just looooove it. You’ll probably have to wait in line to get a seat but hey, it’s worth it for those fluffy pancakes…
The Breakfast Club
11 Southwark Street, SE1 1RQ
Photo credit: The Breakfast Club
4. Party 1,000 feet above London
I’ve been to The View from The Shard, the tallest building in the EU, during dusk. Now watch this video and imagine it overlooking the dark city, with three DJs, and a mob of people dancing with headphones on. That’s Silent Disco at The View from The Shard, and it’s an experience that would be hard to come by. TimeOut London hosts the Silent Disco usually once a month or so, and you’ll need to get tickets if you want to get high (literally.)
32 London Bridge St, London SE1 9SG
Photo credit: The View from The Shard
5. Eat your way through Borough Market
Enough food options available that even the pickiest eater will find something they love, this is such a great market to visit. Lunchtime is really busy, so visit a bit earlier or afterwards and try as much as you can. There are vendors who sell ready-to-eat meals, such as salted beef bagels or Pad Thai, as well as ones that sell fresh vegetables and fruit, snacks and more. Every time I visit, I stop at the Bianca e Mora stall and pick up some fresh Parmigiano Reggiano and Pecorino cheese— it’s sooooo good!
8 Southwark Street, SE1 1TL
6. Go wine tasting at Bedales
Bedales is an intimate wine bar within Borough Market, and while their wine tastings are run by professionals, the atmosphere is casual and approachable— no wine snobs here. For just £35 per person you can taste 5-7 wines (in generous servings, I’ve heard) and enjoy artisan cheese and charcuterie from Borough Market to share. There are 10 spaces at each tasting so you can go as a group (in this case, you can choose what kinds of wines you’d like to try) or on your own.
5 Bedale Street, SE1 9AL
Photo credit: Bedales
7. See contemporary art at the Tate Modern
You can’t have a guide to Bankside without mentioning the Tate Modern. I’m not a huge art fan myself but I can appreciate the contemporary pieces here, with some by Picasso, Matisse, and Dali, my favorites from art history class. The best part of the Tate Modern is that entry is free, so why not? Art buffs should check into the special exhibitions that are on, which have an entrance fee.