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Southbank Centre

Enjoy a range of cultural events on show by the River Thames at one of the largest centers of art in the world.

The Southbank Center sits on the lively south bank of the River Thames and is one of the most significant centers devoted to the arts in Europe. It claims to be one of the largest arts centers of its kind in the world, boasting three vast buildings. The complex consists of the Hayward Gallery, the Royal Festival Hall and the Queen Elizabeth Hall among other important spaces. Thousands of performances ranging from theater and music productions to literature readings take place in these halls annually. There are many temporary art exhibitions throughout the year.

See theatrical events in one of the halls. Listen to live music and watch dance displays. Some of the activities are free for the public and ticketed events usually offer special prices for children. Watch one of the events for kids, such as junior comedy clubs, singing time and magician shows. 

Peruse the Hayward Gallery, which is home to small exhibitions by budding artists throughout the year. Have a look around the Saison Poetry Library and its special collection of children’s books. 

Buy a snack at the Real Food Market, which is on from Friday until Sunday every week. Dine at one of the many restaurants and cafés around the center.

The complex dates back to the Festival of Britain in the 1950s. The event was designed to showcase the country’s recovery from World War II. The Royal Festival Hall is still standing from the original festival. The center now attracts about 22 million visitors each year. The halls open in the morning and close late at night every day.

You can find the Southbank Center in the middle of the South Bank area by the River Thames. Take the London Underground to Embankment then cross the Hungerford Bridge or make the 5-minute walk from Waterloo Station. Nearby attractions include the London Eye and the Sea Life London Aquarium.


Guide to Exploring Southbank Centre


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Top Southbank Centre Hotel & Accommodation Deals

See all 16,470 properties near Southbank Centre
Park Plaza Westminster Bridge London NZ$252
Park Plaza Westminster Bridge London

Park Plaza Westminster Bridge London

200 Westminster Bridge Road, London, England
     
    4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

    Located in London City Centre, this spa hotel is steps away from Southbank Centre Book Market and Florence Nightingale Museum. St. Thomas' Hospital and Sea Life London Aquarium are also within 5 minutes. Waterloo Underground Station is only a 4-minute walk and Lambeth North Underground Station is 6 minutes.

    Sea Containers London NZ$257
    Sea Containers London

    Sea Containers London

    20 Upper Ground, London, England
       
      5.0 out of 5.0 Stars

      Located in London City Centre, this luxury hotel is within a 15-minute walk of Tate Modern and Coca-Cola London Eye. The Shard and Big Ben are also within 1 mi (2 km). Southwark Underground Station is 8 minutes by foot and Blackfriars Underground Station is 8 minutes.

      The Strand Palace Hotel NZ$247
      The Strand Palace Hotel

      The Strand Palace Hotel

      372 The Strand, London, England
         
        4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

        Located in London City Centre, this eco-friendly hotel is within a 15-minute walk of Covent Garden Market, Piccadilly Circus and London Dungeon. Big Ben and Buckingham Palace are also within 1 mi (2 km). Charing Cross Underground Station is 5 minutes by foot and Covent Garden Underground Station is 5 minutes.

        Park Plaza County Hall London NZ$250
        Park Plaza County Hall London

        Park Plaza County Hall London

        1 Addington Street, London, England
           
          4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

          Located in London City Centre, this spa hotel is steps away from Southbank Centre Book Market and Florence Nightingale Museum. Jubilee Gardens and The Vaults are also within 5 minutes. Waterloo Underground Station and Lambeth North Underground Station are within a 5-minute walk.

          Park Plaza London Waterloo NZ$214
          Park Plaza London Waterloo

          Park Plaza London Waterloo

          6 Hercules Road, London, England
             
            4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

            Located in London City Centre, this spa hotel is within a 10-minute walk of Florence Nightingale Museum, Imperial War Museum and The Vaults. Southbank Centre Book Market and Lambeth Palace are also within 10 minutes. Lambeth North Underground Station is 6 minutes by foot and Waterloo Underground Station is 11 minutes.

            The Savoy NZ$732
            The Savoy

            The Savoy

            Strand, London, England
               
              5.0 out of 5.0 Stars

              Located in London City Centre, this luxury hotel is steps away from The Strand and Lyceum Theatre. Covent Garden Market and Aldwych Theatre are also within 5 minutes. Charing Cross Underground Station is 5 minutes by foot and Covent Garden Underground Station is 5 minutes.

              Shangri La Hotel At The Shard London NZ$745
              Shangri La Hotel At The Shard London

              Shangri La Hotel At The Shard London

              31 St Thomas Street, London, England
                 
                5.0 out of 5.0 Stars

                Located in London City Centre, this luxury hotel is within a 10-minute walk of Borough Market, London Bridge and HMS Belfast. Globe Theatre and Tate Modern are also within 1 mi (2 km). London Bridge Station is only a 2-minute walk and London Bridge Underground Station is 2 minutes.

                The Tower Hotel NZ$182
                The Tower Hotel

                The Tower Hotel

                St Katharine's Way, London, England
                   
                  4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

                  Located in London City Centre, this hotel is within a 10-minute walk of Tower Bridge, Tower of London and HMS Belfast. The Shard and Excel Exhibition Centre are also within 9 mi (15 km). Tower Gateway Station is 6 minutes by foot and Tower Hill Station is 7 minutes.