Transport for London (TfL) is offering over 40 free guided walks as part of its annual ‘Winter Wanders’ weekend on Saturday 24 and Sunday 25 January. The guided walks are spread across the capital, with no booking required and are suitable for all ages and abilities.
A wide range of walks are on offer that showcase London’s ever changing landscape, whether you fancy a short stroll or a challenging trek, taking in some of London’s famous landmarks, parks and canals as well as many hidden gems. Experienced walk guides lead the way and provide fascinating facts that highlight London’s curiosities, history and culture.
All walks start and finish within easy reach of public transport and explore sections of the city’s seven popular Walk London Network routes; Capital Ring, Green Chain, Jubilee Greenway, Jubilee Walkway, Lea Valley,London Outer Orbital Path (LOOP) and Thames Path.
The 41 free guided ‘Winter Wanders’ include:
Saturday 24 September
- The Wandle Trail – A Walk Steeped in History at 10.30 (9.7 miles) – an attractive ‘rural’ trail steeped in history, going through nature reserves and notable parks;
- Along the Thames and Grand Union Canal to Hanwell at 10.00 (5 miles) – take in historic riverside settings and old industrial heritage;
- Tales from the Riverbank – Waterloo to London Bridge at 10.30 (1.5 miles) –explore the crucial role played by the river in London’s development, taking in the Houses of Parliament, the London Eye and the capital’s most stunning skyscrapers;
- From Pirates to World Trade – The Transformation of the Thames at 13.30 (1.5 miles) – from the around the Tower of London to the Jubilee Walkway and fashionable St Katherine’s Dock, hear stories about world trade, pirates and the transformation of the area;
- Discovering Historic Southwark in the Shadow of the Shard at 14.30 (2 miles) – explore parts of historic and modern Southwark taking in one of the oldest and largest food markets in London, Borough Market.
Sunday 25 January
- A rural roam alive with history – Cockfosters to Turkey Street station at 10.30 (8.5 miles) – a rural walk on the London Loop, steeped in history with farm and woodland as well as ponds amongst its many highlights;
- The best landscape and views in London – Charlton to Plumstead via Shooters Hill at 11.00 (6.7 miles) – enjoy views of wonderful parkland, heathland and dense woodland as you walk through London without realising it;
- The Real West End – Soho, Chinatown and Covent Garden at 11.30 (1.5 miles) –take in some of the lesser known streets and alleys of Covent Garden and Soho and some of the 300 year-old buildings, which still use gas lights;
- London’s Hidden Treasures – Waterloo to London Bridge at 11.30am (2 miles) – discover the secrets that lie beneath the streets and under the river as you stroll along both sides of the River Thames;
- Royal Parks and Palaces – Buckingham Palace to Little Venice at 14.00 (4 miles) – a fascinating walkthrough three royal parks that passes hidden rivers and along lakes, ponds and canals.
Ben Plowden, Director of Strategy and Planning, TfL Surface Transport, said;
“Winter can be the perfect time for exploring the capital with crisp sunny days, frozen lakes and sparkling parks. So, wrap up warm and join one of our free walks and our expert guides will enrich your local knowledge by highlighting hidden gems, historical facts and cultural insights.”
‘Winter Wanders’ is one of three TfL sponsored free walking weekends held each year to help Londoners enjoy the city’s best walking routes. The other free guided walking weekends, ‘Spring into Summer’ and ‘Autumn Ambles’ take place every May and September.