Directly facing the southern bank of the Thames rests the aptly-named South Bank district of London. As one of the capital’s most prominent entertainment spots, it’s a hive for commercial and cultural activity, with arts venues, museums and independent shops lining the streets, as well as a plethora of irresistible dining and nightspot options.
As one of London’s premier galleries, the Tate Modern is an absolute must-see destination for travelers. As one of four Tate venues in the UK, the South Bank gallery has had somewhat of a revamp, with a pyramid-style extension being added to the building. The new design, which features chainmail brickwork, provides panoramic views of the city and expands the museum by 60%.
No tour of the South Bank arts scene would be complete without a trip to the Fashion and Textile Museum. Founded by legendary British designer Zandra Rhodes, the space showcases exhibitions exploring a huge variety of fashions and textile art, and offers an ever-changing assortment of creative workshops for those who want to really immerse and express themselves.
If you have a free night and want to experience the district’s thriving performative arts culture, check out what’s on at the Southbank Centre. The world-famous arts centre is home to several acclaimed venues including the Royal Festival Hall and the Purcell Room; a newly-renovated space which plays host to some of the biggest pop-culture names of the 20th century, including David Bowie, Marianne Faithful and Radiohead’s Jonny Greenwood.
Explore the most iconic landmarks of the capital during your stay in South Bank, with the London Eye, St. Paul’s Cathedral and Big Ben all situated around this lively stretch of the river. Catch the sights on foot, or enjoy a view from above from your very own capsule on the London Eye.
Stay a while longer in the South Bank district and enjoy a trip to Borough Market – a local favourite for fresh British and international produce. The market space itself is rich with history, having served the people of the area for 1,000 years. Beneath the iron arches, stallholders offer a wide-array of fresh fish, meat and other exceptional produce, which in many cases they have caught, reared or baked themselves.
If you’re planning a trip to South Bank and need a place to stay, the Novotel London Blackfriars Hotel is a great option. Just a stone’s throw from the district’s must-see attractions, the hotel is home to Jamboree FoodFest; a laid-back, social eatery which champions world-flavors and good times. Hotel guests are welcome to make use of the indoor heated pool, or choose a private-terrace room for an unbeatable private view of the capital.
However you choose to spend your time in this cultural hub, you’re guaranteed to leave wanting more – captivated by the soul of the place – with a renewed appreciation for arts, entertainment and enjoyment.