Waterloo to Tower Hill: 5 Ways to Travel Across London
Imagine yourself in London: you turn away from admiring the view of Westminster Palace or step off the London Eye, and then realize something – you need to get to the Tower of London (or maybe Tower Bridge) ASAP! You need to get from Waterloo to Tower Hill, and need to figure out how…
Whether you’re literally on the ground in London now or you’re working out the final logistics of your London itinerary and realize you need to travel to Tower Hill from Waterloo (or the reverse), you’ve come to the right place. Below you’ll find a breakdown of why you might want to travel between these two London locations, plus the different ways you can travel across London from one to the other.
TL;DR: The best way to travel from Waterloo to Tower Hill (or reverse) is by London black cab. It’s a two-mile, 17-minute ride. (Read below to see why I say this!)
Getting Oriented: Waterloo & Tower Hill
Before we move on to the different alternatives for getting from Waterloo to Tower Hill, I’ll briefly explain what you will find in each area.
What’s at Waterloo?
Waterloo is a district in Central London. It is a famous transportation hub, being home to London Waterloo Train Station, a major train terminus. There are also some great budget-friendly accommodations near Waterloo.
The area is very popular with tourists as it concentrates on numerous London attractions. Waterloo is right next to Southbank and the London Eye. It also has close access to Westminster as it is right across the river.
What’s at Tower Hill?
Tower Hill is an elevated spot just outside the limits of the City of London. It used to be a site used for public executions between the 1380s and the 1740s.
The surrounding areas encapsulate top London sights. Tower Hill has access to the Tower of London (northwest) and the iconic Tower Bridge. Tower hill also has its tube station, Tower Hill Underground Station, which is served by the Circle & District lines.
The Distance from Waterloo to Tower Hill
Waterloo is 2.1 miles away from Tower Hill. How long it takes to cover that distance depends on the mode of transportation you choose.
- By car, it takes a short 11 minutes to get there.
- The tube journey lasts 21 minutes and the bus ride takes 36 minutes.
- On foot, the journey extends to 45 minutes.
- It’s only a 12-minute ride by bike.
How to Get Between Waterloo and Tower Hill
In this section, I’ll tackle in detail the different ways you can get from Tower Hill to Waterloo. I’ve covered the five modes of transportation and included the directions you should follow.
Waterloo to Tower Hill by Tube
The Tube is one of the most efficient ways to get around in London. To get from Waterloo to Tower Hill by Tube, first, you have to catch the Northern Line at Waterloo. The Northern Line will take you to Embankment Station. Once you reach Embankment Station you’ll get off the tube and change for either District or Circle Line to Tower Hill.
If you’re planning a first trip to London, here’s a guide for riding the Tube and some etiquette tips.
Waterloo to Tower Hill by Bus
The bus is the slowest and least convenient way to get from Waterloo to Tower Hill. But then again, it never hurts to know all the transport options you have. First, head to Waterloo station, where you’ll take Bus 381 toward Southwark Bridge Road. From there, you’ll take bus 344 to Gracechurch St / Monument St. Get down and walk 12 minutes to Tower Hill.
If the bus sounds good and you’ve never ridden a London double-decker before, here’s a guide to help.
Waterloo to Tower Hill by Black Cab
Catching a black cab is the easiest way to go from Waterloo to Tower Hill. We’ll take Waterloo Station as our starting point. From Waterloo State, go to Cab St. and hail a black cab when you see one.
London black cab drivers are extremely knowledgeable about the city’s streets and fastest routes. So, you don’t need to do much besides telling them the address. Just to orientate you, here’s what you can expect. They’ll take Belvedere Rd and then turn right onto Concert Hall Approach. After the roundabout, they take Stamford St and continue for a few miles. They’ll cross Southwark Bridge and turn right toward Lower Thames St.
London’s black cabs are a unique experience; here’s a guide if it’ll be your first time hailing one.
Waterloo to Tower Hill by Bike
To reach Tower Hill from Waterloo by bike, Head northwest on Cab Rd and then turn right toward Tenison Way. At the roundabout, you’ll take the first exit onto Waterloo Bridge. You’ll then turn left toward Upper Ground then you will take a right onto Upper Ground after 0.5 miles.
Next, make a sharp left onto Blackfriars Bridge. Once you’ve crossed the bridge, you’ll turn left onto Victoria Embankment and then do a sharp left onto Blackfriars Upas. Stay on Blackfriars Upas for one mile. You’ll know you’ve arrived as soon as you spot the Tower of London.
Riding bikes is a great way to explore London, and the Santander Cycle Hire Scheme is the way to do it. Here’s a guide if it’ll be your first time.
Waterloo to Tower Hill on Foot
It takes approximately 45 minutes to get from Waterloo to Tower Hill on foot. This journey is pretty straight and quite similar to the cab and bike routes. We’ll also take Waterloo Station as our starting point. Head northwest on Cab Rd and then turn right toward Stamford St. Do the roundabout and stay on Stamford St for approximately 3 miles. At this point, you should see London Bridge ahead.
You’ll cross the London Bridge and turn left toward Lower Thames St (take the pedestrian tunnel stairs). Continue for about 230 feet and you’ll arrive at Tower Hill.
Traveling from Tower Hill to Waterloo
Perhaps you want to travel from Tower Hill to Waterloo. Luckily, it’s pretty simple, too! All you have to do is reverse the directions I mentioned above. The only difference is that your starting point will be the Tower Hill Underground Station regardless of the mode of transportation you choose.
Another thing to remember is to differentiate the bridges you’ll be crossing: if you take a cab, you’ll cross Southwark Bridge; by bike, you’ll cross Blackfriars Bridge; and on foot, you’ll cross London Bridge.
Have any other questions about traveling from Waterloo to Tower Hill – or reverse? Let me know in the comments!