Across the busy capital, many other hidden underground locations are accessible to tourists and visitors, which you may not know about.
London is filled with iconic attractions, world-class restaurants and the famous underground tube lines. However, the tube network isn’t the only underground attraction that tourists can enjoy in London. Across the busy capital, many other hidden underground locations are accessible to tourists and visitors, which you may not know about.
Here are our top seven underground tourist attractions:
1. Greenwich & Woolwich Foot Tunnels
The Greenwich & Woolwich foot tunnels are atmospheric, early-20th century tiled tunnels, two miles apart, running under the Thames and accessed by huge lifts and spiral staircases. It was designed by Sir Alexander Binnie, who also designed the first Blackwall Tunnel and Vauxhall Bridge, and connects Greenwich with Island Gardens on the Isle of Dogs.
2. The Silver Vaults, Chancery Lane
The Silver Vaults is the largest retail selection of fine antique and contemporary silver in the world. It originally opened in 1885 as The Chancery Lane Safe Deposit, but soon became a secure selling place for London’s silver and jewellery dealers. The Vaults boasts over 25 shops, each one offering crafted antique silver and jewellery, dating from the early 1600s to the present day.
3. St Bride’s Crypt, Fleet Street
St Bride’s Church on Fleet Street is a Christopher Wren church built just after the Great Fire of London. It is a City of London working parish church and welcomes visitors as a heritage attraction, too. You can see the Saxon apse, Roman mosaic and printing exhibition. If you ask nicely, they may show you the ossuary.
4. Churchill War Rooms, Whitehall
Churchill War Rooms contains the original Cabinet War Rooms – the wartime bunker which sheltered Churchill and his staff during the Blitz. It’s the most famous subterranean site in London, which few of us knew existed until the 1980s.
Today, visitors can explore the underground headquarters for themselves, see where Churchill and his War Cabinet met, sometimes late into the night, and look through the lens of history into the Map Room, where the books have remained exactly where they were left on the day the lights were switched off in 1945.
5. Guildhall Art Gallery Roman Amphitheatre, City of London
Lost for centuries, the ruins of the Amphitheatre were rediscovered by archaeologists working on the site of the new Guildhall Art Gallery building in 1988. Today, you can step into these well-preserved Roman walls in which crowds would once have gathered to watch wild animal fights, public executions and gladiatorial combats.
6. Viaduct Tavern, Holborn
The Viaduct, a Victorian gin palace located in Holborn, has old Newgate cells in its basement. If it’s quiet, the staff are happy to show you. But if not, there’s always their wide selection of gin to indulge in. Its interior consists of marble, mirrors and paintings.
7. The Vaults, Waterloo
Waterloo Vaults is London’s home for anything wacky, weird, and wonderful. The variety of available rooms has seen some truly bizarre things over the years, so if you’ve got a unique idea in mind, you can host an event too. It’s never a dull moment in these gothic rooms under Waterloo Station which was formerly coffin storage for the Necropolis Railway.
Ready to get exploring
Now you know the best underground locations in London, it’s time to start planning your trip! If you’ll be visiting in a large group, consider an executive minibus hire in London for a faster and more comfortable trip.