Greenwich – the most popular film location in London, by Richard Davies

Greenwich in South East London is a World Heritage Site with a wide a varied history and a lot to offer any visitor.

Greenwich is famous for many things – Greenwich Mean time and Meridian, its royal or maritime history, the beautiful Georgian architecture, and its magnificent park.

But over the last few years people worldwide have started to recognise Greenwich more and more. That’s because it has become one of the film industry’s most important film locations.

Films Located in Greenwich, London

Below is a list of just some of the films that have been located (at least in some part) in Greenwich. Most of the films used the Royal Naval College buildings as their backdrop.

  • Amazing Grace
  • Anne Of The Thousand Days
  • Charlotte Gray
  • Dorian Gray
  • Four Weddings And A Funeral
  • Gulliver’s Travels
  • King Ralph
  • Les Misérables
  • Patriot Games
  • Pirates Of The Caribbean
  • Quills
  • Sense And Sensibility
  • Sherlock Holmes: A Game Of Shadows
  • Skyfall (James Bond)
  • Sleepy Hollow
  • The Bounty
  • The Four Feathers
  • The Golden Compass
  • The Iron Lady
  • The King’s Speech
  • The Madness Of King George
  • The Mummy Returns
  • The Oxford Murders
  • The Wings Of The Dove
  • The Wolfman
  • The Young Victoria
  • Thor 2
  • Vanity Fair

Les Misérables – filmed in Greenwich

Les Misérables film greenwich

Les Misérables filming in Greenwich Photo: flickr.com/photos/alevadil

You will be reminded of endless films and scenes as you take a wander through the wonderful old buildings of what were once the Royal Naval Hospital for Sailors, built by Sir Christopher Wren and Nicholas Hawksmoor.

greenwich royal naval college

Royal Naval College, Greenwich. Location for dozens of famous films. Photo: flickr.com/photos/gavinandrewstewart/

Greenwich: One of the world's most famous film locations. Photo: flickr.com/photos/eepaul

Greenwich: One of the world’s most famous film locations. Photo: flickr.com/photos/eepaul

But Greenwich is more than a film location. See our list below of other things to do in Greenwich, London.

Greenwich Meridian

For example, Greenwich has a fine maritime history which resulted in the town giving its name to the Greenwich Meridian (0° longitude) and Greenwich Mean Time. You can learn all about the Greenwich Meridian at the Royal Observatory in Greenwich Park. You can stand astride the brass strip the denotes 0° longitude and have one foot in the east and one in the west. After dark, you can also see a green laser light beaming from the Royal Observatory, showing all of London exactly where the Greenwich Meridian is.

Royal Parks and Palaces

Greenwich also has a beautiful park. It was originally a royal hunting ground, but today offers visitors the chance to enjoy 74 hectares (180 acres) of wonderful green parkland and some magnificent views across London.

greenwich park view

View from Greenwich Park. Photo: flickr.com/photos/meandmyshadow/

The Royal Palace of Placentia was built in Greenwich, the birth places of Henry VIII and Elizabeth I, two of England’s most notable monarchs. Today, visitors can still enjoy a touch of royalty by visiting the beautiful Queen Anne’s house, just a the foot of the hills of the Royal Park. The house was built between 1616–1619 as a residence for Queen Anne of Denmark, the queen of King James I of England.

Cutty Sark

The Cutty Sark is probably one of the world’s most famous ships. It dates back to 1869 and was used as a “tea clipper2 transporting tea from the corners of the British Empire back to England. The Cutty Sark is moored just by the River Thames near Greenwich town centre. It recently suffered damage after a fire, but has since been rebuilt for visitors to Greenwich to enjoy a piece of maritime history.

cutty sark, greenwich

Cutty Sark. Photo by flickr.com/photos/ell-r-brown

River Walks

Greenwich is located right along the river banks of the Thames and offers some nice river walks where, at the end, you will almost always be met by a welcoming pub.In fact The Trafalgar Tavern has beautiful Georgian windows giving such wonderful views of the river, you might not want to leave.

Greenwich Market

Greenwich is also famous for its market, which is open Tuesday to Sunday from 10am – 5.30pm. There are usually more stalls open during the weekends.

Getting There

Greenwich is well served by public transport. The “Cutty Sark” Docklands Light Railway (DLR) station is very central. Greenwich train station is also nearby and is well served by trains from London Bridge in central London.

Buses from central London to Greenwich would take quite a long time, so why not consider a great alternative and take a boat from Westminster Pier in central London, all the way along the Thames to Greenwich Pier. You’ll get to see some amazing things along the way, and arrive relaxed and ready to explore. There are also sightseeing boat trips offered by private companies.

Map:

Source for film list: Empire ; Main Photo

About the author: Richard Davies is a freelance writer based in Germany. He writes on all aspects of travel, in particular ferry travel, city breaks and camping in Europe.