St Paul's Cathedral to Buckingham Palace, a London self-walking tour, including a free Google Maps itinerary (Tate Modern, Southbank, London Eye, Trafalgar Square and National Gallery, St James Park)

St Paul’s Cathedral to Buckingham Palace – A London Self-Walking Tour

London is so walk-friendly that it would be a shame not to take full advantage of it during a visit to the British capital. In this article, find a Lond walking tour that will lead you from St Paul’s Cathedral to Buckingham Palace, with many amazing things to see and do along the way!

St Paul’s Cathedral

St Paul's Cathedral to Buckingham Palace - A London Walking Tour

Arrive to St Paul’s Cathedral around 9.30, to avoid the afternoon crowd but not to get into the middle of the morning rush. After all, the Cathedral is right next to Bank, one of the working hubs of London.

Here, you can leisure around the cathedral at your own pace, admire its garden and beautiful architecture. Entrance to the gardens is free, but you will need tickets if you want to visit the cathedral itself.

Once you are done, start walking south of the Cathedral until you find the Millennium Bridge. If the sight looks familiar, it probably is because you saw it in a movie before. The Bridge appeared in Harry Potter and Gardians of the Galaxy, among others.

On the other side of the bridge, you will find the Globe Theatre, where Shakespeare used to work and produce his plays. Though the original theatre burned down during Shakespeare’s time, the building is an exact replica and hosts plays all through the good seasons.

You will also find the Tate Modern, which is our next stop in this London walking tour.

Tate Modern Museum

St Paul's Cathedral to Buckingham Palace - A London Walking Tour

The Tate Modern is one of the largest museums of modern art in the world and, it being London, entrance is complete free for the main galleries. Here, you will find art pieces from Picasso, Braque, Duchamp, and many more.

Not only is the Tate Modern amazing if you are into art, but it also offers something rare in London: a free rooftop view of the entire city. Go all the way to the last floor using the lifts, and admire London’s landscape all around you. On a clear day, you will be able to see all the main landmarks, and it is the perfect spot for breathtaking pictures! No need to desperately try your luck at tickets to the Sky Garden anymore!

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Once you are done, leave the museum and go back to the river bank. We will follow the river bank to go west and walk toward Southbank.

Southbank

St Paul's Cathedral to Buckingham Palace - A London Walking Tour

Southbank is one of the chillest parts of London. Here you will find lots of restaurants and food trucks, especially in the summer. Perfect for a lunch break after a morning full of art and culture!

My favourite part about Southbank is the book market that opens every day right under the bridge. Thousands of secondhand books can be found for only a few pounds, and it’s always such a pleasure to go through all those books in hope of finding real treasure. You can also buy old postcards and prints, if you are interested in unique souvenirs and gifts.

Once you are done in Southbank, keep walking along the river bank until you find the Golden Jubilee Bridges, those two suspension bridges across the river.

Golden Jubilee Bridges

St Paul's Cathedral to Buckingham Palace - A London Walking Tour

Go up the stairs of the bridge closest to the London Eye so you can have the perfect view of the wheel as you cross the river. Although the London Eye is one of those famous places in the city, entrance tickets are expensive and queues last forever. After the view you got from the Tate rooftop, it is better to keep your money. You will not regret it.

Take as many pictures as you want before you finish crossing the bridge and continue north onto Northumberland Avenue. Our London walking tour now leads us to Trafalgar Square.

Trafalgar Square and the National Gallery

St Paul's Cathedral to Buckingham Palace - A London Walking Tour

Trafalgar Square is a sight to behold, with its statue of Nelson and its massive lions, its fountains, and the street artists coming daily to show their talents. Take the time to walk around the square and admire it to your heart’s content. It really is worth it.

The National Gallery, free entrance of course, is one of the finest museums of art in the country, if not the world. You will find paintings from the most famous artists in the worlds, from Van Gogh to Da Vinci. Visiting the entire museum might take hours, so target a few artists/periods you are interested in to guide your visit of the museum.

Or simply take a break on the steps of Trafalgar Square. It’s been quite the walk already!

St James’ Park

St Paul's Cathedral to Buckingham Palace - A London Walking Tour

Walk south-west of Trafalgar Square and past the Admiralty Arch to find your way to The Mall. On your left will be St James’ Park, where you can relax with a book and an ice cream, admire the fountains, and play with curious squirrels. Our tour is almost over, so give yourself the time to wander around and take it the peace and quiet of this little corner of paradise.

Deckchairs are for hire across the park, but don’t fall for that easy mistake. You can find a bench or sit on the grass without anyone ever asking you to pay for it!

Once you are relaxed and ready to go again, it is time for our last stop of the day for our London walking tour.

Buckingham Palace

St Paul's Cathedral to Buckingham Palace - A London Walking Tour

Buckingham Palace, quite obviously, is the main residence of the Royal family. In front of it is the Victoria Memorial, massive golden statue to celebrate the late queen. And, of course, Buckingham Palace wouldn’t be what it is without the Royal Guards standing in front of it.

You can visit Buckingham Palace if you want, but be aware that visits can be closed down without notice in case the Royal family needs to use the rooms open to the public. The full ticket will also give you access to the Royal gardens.

đź’ˇ The Changing of the Guard happens at 11am, on a daily basis in June and July, and on Mondays, Wednesday, Fridays and Sundays the rest of the year. Arrive early to secure a good spot, then take this London walking tour in reverse to enjoy the views.

Download the Google map of this tour directly to your phone:

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