Greenwich is a wonderful district of south London, famous in the world for its namesake meridian.
If you have never visited this remarkable place, your first time in Greenwich will be a non-stop surprise, since the first sight you can enjoy from the opposite side of Thames, from the Island Gardens, where the trip begins.
The best way to get Greenwich, in fact, is through the 300 meters-long walk tunnel which cross the river, passing under its waters. If you are not too claustrophobic, your visit should start right there, with this cold and old tunnel, opened in 1902 and very close to the DLR station of Island Gardens.
After the wet of this wonderful tunnel and the emotion to have being walking under a big river as Thames, you will find in front of you the magnificent Cutty Sark, the British ship become the icon of Greenwich. Everything here will look sunny and brilliant, especially if you are so lucky to have a sunny day to spend in this south-east London’s district, which was the birthplace of many in the House of Tudor, around the 15th century: among them, also King Henry VIII.
In spite of its position, a little decentralized and too often kept out of the most usual touristic routes, Greenwich is a place which transpires history and magnificence.
Its proximity to Thames gives to this lovely area a particular atmosphere, majestic and maritime at the same time.
Reached the south riverside, beyond a moving sight of Isle of dogs and its skyscrapers beyond the Thames, you have the opportunity to get lost in an intricate network made by small streets and full of delicious shops, restaurants and traditional pubs. A place whose atmosphere reminds the little villages on the seaside.
But, on the other hand, if you come back on the main road to the National Maritime Museum or towards the magnificent Royal Naval College’s buildings, your feeling will be going immediately to change, as you will enter one of the yards among buildings, from where you will appreciate the white and stately sides of the huge building complex which definitely dominates the south riverside of Thames.
In all this magnificence, the Royal Observatory, who gave this place lot of renown, keeps on watching from the high of the hill, reserving for its visitors the last surprise: almost with discretion, we could say.
Visiting Greenwich for the first time uncovers a complexity and a fineness nobody can imagine before. Just because of the preconception which let us thing that Greenwich is just an astromical observatory. But it is not, and your first visit will demonstrate you. There is much more. Included the last surprise, perfect at sunset: climb the green hill of the park and enjoy one of the best view of the whole city of London.