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Exploring Historic London: A Hearty Pub Tour Through the Old Docks

  • When does it run?

    Mondays, Tuesdays, Wednesdays, Thursdays and Fridays

  • Start time

    12:00 pm

  • Duration

    Four hours

Inclusions
  • Local English-speaking guide
  • One glass of beer or cider in each spot (and non-alcoholic alternatives too, if you swing that way)  
  • A visit to five of the oldest taverns left on the riverside  
  • Four pub meals (yes, four) and a classic British snack
COVID-19 Safety guidelines
Guests
  • Adult (18+)

Key Highlights

  • Eat, drink and be merry: Great company, five hearty meals, and many craft brews guarantees a stellar afternoon
  • Turn back time: Merchants, seamen, artists, traders and pirates once ran rampant in these parts – hear their stories
  • Discover the Docks: Your local guide walks you through the charming docks, a fascinating part of London’s heritage often missed
  • Pub culture 101: Experience a much-loved British pastime

Overview

No trip to London feels complete without a few ventures down the pub. We’re not referring to the closest Wetherspoons though – we’re talking about good, old-fashioned London pubs that have been around for centuries. These gems aren’t as easy to stumble upon as you might think. And here enters this epic pub tour, run by Eating Europe. Part food and drink tour and part grisly history lesson, this jaunt down the old London Docks shines a light on the city’s best pubs, and tells the tales of the merchants, dockers, pirates and thieves who once frequented them. Guides here make it their business to only visit places that are big on three things: cosy British vibes, delicious hearty food and tasty local brews. Riverside views don’t hurt either. Think of this experience as sort of like the cultured man or woman’s pub crawl, where pints and pub meals come with a side of gripping anecdotes. Don’t make dinner plans – you’ll be bursting at the seams by the end of it.

About your guide 

Eating Europe is one of the few tour companies of its kind that pays heed to the bigger picture. Yes, the focus is wholeheartedly on food, but between bites, guides enlighten guests on the city’s history and culture; their routes including spots that even the most seasoned of locals wouldn’t find on their tod.

Here’s the plan

Meet by the docks in London’s Rotherhithe. This whole area looks like something out of an old British postcard – it’s all crooked cobblestone laneways, vast brick warehouses and charming pubs with overflowing flower pots. Though quiet and quaint these days, the area was once a booming trading port, full of thieves, dockers, sailors and, on occasion, pirates. On this tour, you’ll explore their favourite hang-outs: pubs.

On the agenda is five local taverns, where you’ll taste delicious pub food (bangers and mash, fish and chips, pies, and some quintessential British snacks all cooked to perfection) and learn how they came to be staples of the British cuisine. You’ll also sample some of the best London brews, including traditional ales, craft ales and ciders. Along the way your guide will reveal more about the history of the area and the pubs and communities that were born here, and still exist today. Between drinking holes, you’ll take in glorious views of the River Thames away from the riff raff, and bask in a historic part of London often missed by travellers.

Activity Schedule

  • When does it run?

    Mondays, Tuesdays, Wednesdays, Thursdays and Fridays

  • Duration

    Four hours

  • Start time

    12:00 pm

  • Meeting Point

    This tour takes place in Rotherhithe and Wapping. We’ll send over the exact meeting point, along with some directions on how to get there, with your booking confirmation.

  • Ending Point

Inclusions & Exclusions

  • Local English-speaking guide
  • One glass of beer or cider in each spot (and non-alcoholic alternatives too, if you swing that way)  
  • A visit to five of the oldest taverns left on the riverside  
  • Four pub meals (yes, four) and a classic British snack
  • Transfers (we’ll see you there)
  • Tips (get that warm, fuzzy feeling)

Please note

The confirmation voucher includes the local activity operator’s contact details. They’re a nice bunch, and will happily answer any logistical questions you may have. Please call the activity operator at least 24 hours before the tour’s due to kick off to confirm all the final details.

Leave the little ones with a babysitter, this tour is for adults (18 years and over) only.  

Get yourself to a printer – our local operator requires a paper version of your booking voucher. Showing them your voucher on your smartphone won’t cut it, we’re afraid. No refund can be given to customers who rock up empty-handed, so be organized folks.  

This tour includes a quick train ride. To keep things moving, you’re encouraged to bring a topped-up Oyster card or contactless card with you on the day, otherwise, your guide will help you grab a ticket at the station.  

Let the Eating Europe team know at the time of booking if you or anyone in your group has any food allergies or restrictions, and they’ll organize substitutions for you. Substitutions can’t be made on the day, and unfortunately, gluten-free, dairy-free and vegan diets can’t be catered to.  

This tour includes a fair bit of walking, so heels may not be ideal.   

Just so you know, there’s beer at every stop on this pub tour. If you don’t fancy a glass, your guide will organize a cider or, if you prefer, a non-alcoholic alternative like juice or soft drink can be arranged. Each to their own.

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