Greenwich on a Budget

November 1st, 2015 / / No Comments »

Greenwich is synonymous with London’s maritime history that includes popular attractions such as the Cutty Sark & Royal Observatory.  For those planning a trip, follow our guide to Greenwich that includes tips to gain FREE access to the Meridian Line plus free attractions available under the sightseeing pass for visitors to London.

The Cutty Sark

Any trip to Greenwich should include a visit to the Cutty Sark, the last surviving tea clipper, that dates back to 1869.  Following a £50m refurbishment, the Cutty Sark is now fully restored to its former glory and well worth a visit if for no other reason than that it includes a chance to drink Twinings tea under the gleaming hull of the ship.

You can follow our Guide to the Cutty Sark that includes information on cheap ticket options plus top tips to help you get the most from your visit.


View of the city of London from the Royal Observatory

View from Greenwich Royal Observatory


Greenwich Royal Observatory; Free Access to the Meridian Line

The Greenwich Royal Observatory includes the Meridian Courtyard & the famous Meridian Line.  Straddle the Meridian Line and you’ll be standing with a foot in both the eastern & western hemispheres that draws hundreds of thousands of tourists each year.

Those with a sightseeing pass can pick up free entry to both the Royal Observatory & the Cutty Sark plus 60 other top London attractions.  This option also offers fastrack entrance to a number of popular settings such as the Tower of London & Windsor Castle that can save you time as well as money during your trip to London

There is also another way to pick up free public access to the Meridian Line without paying for tickets to the Royal Observatory.  Once you have arrived near to the Royal Observatory, cast your eye upon the Meridian Line located within the courtyard and simply follow it over the courtyard & into an area open to the public.  Access the Meridian Line for free through the wrought iron gate to the right as you face the courtyard. This way you still manage to straddle the Meridian Line without paying for access plus this option can be less busy too, (see image below).

Planning Your Trip To London?

If you’re planning to stay over in London, then we tend to use TripAdvisor for a wealth of information & reviews from fellow travellers.  With other 1000+ hotels reviewed including a run down of the best value hotels in London from TripAdvisor we always find something that suits that has been tried & tested by others.

As part of your trip to Greenwich, find out more details below on ways to explore the River Thames by commuter ferry, cable car or even a tunnel under the river bed!


Greenwich Meridian Line public access

Explore the Meridian Line for free


The Thames Clipper; Greenwich Pier

The Thames Clipper is a commuter ferry that offers both workers & tourists a trip down the River Thames at a fraction of the cost of standard river cruises.  You can combine a visit to Greenwich with a budget trip along the River Thames taking in the sights along the route that can include popular attractions such as the Tower of London & London Eye.  Whilst there isn’t any commentary on the Clipper, for those that know their London landmarks, this offers value for money.

Simply alight at Greenwich Pier for the Cutty Sark.

Greenwich Foot Tunnel

Here’s a chance to go under the River Thames using the FREE foot tunnel that has linked Greenwich with the Isle of Dogs since 1902.

The Greenwich foot tunnel is located next to the Cutty Sark and whilst it has seen better days, (it is  currently undergoing a £11.5 million refurbishment that began back in 2009 with still no end in sight), the refurbished lifts are impressive.  A visit to the Greenwich Foot Tunnel offers a new perspective on the River Thames & children in particular enjoy the experience.

Why not follow our top tips for the Tower of London or ideas for cheap tickets for the London Eye if you are looking to arrange a visit during your trip along the River Thames.


Greenwich Foot Tunnel under the River Thames

Entrance to Greenwich Foot Tunnel under the River Thames


National Maritime Museum

You can gain FREE entrance to the National Maritime Museum, Greenwich & it is certainly worth a visit if you’re in the area.

There are a number of interactive areas for children of all ages with a coffee shop set in the heart of the museum.  Additional charges are in place for exhibitions but worth checking out combined ticket offers with the Cutty Sark & the Royal Observatory for those planning a visit.

Greenwich Park; Children’s Playground

Those with young children will be interested in the recently refurbished children’s playground that is located within Greenwich Park, (close to the Queen’s House).  Great playground for children up to around 8 years plus toilets on hand too.


Royal Observatory View Greenwich

View of the Royal Observatory from the Queen’s House, Greenwich


Emirate Air Line Cable Cars

The River Thames even has its own cable cars, the Emirates Air Line, that runs between Greenwich & the London Docks.   Tickets are reasonably priced and a ride offers you a bird’s eye view of the Thames including Canary Wharf, the O2 arena & Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park.

From Greenwich Pier/Cutty Sark, why not take the bus to North Greenwich to pick up the cable cars here.  Alternatively, combine the cable cars with a trip along on the Thames Clipper, (alight at North Greenwich Pier).

More details available at Exploring London on a Budget.

Budget Accommodation in London

Remember if you are looking for affordable hotels in London, take a look at the 10 best cheap hotels in London from TripAdvisor that is packed with reviews & top tips from fellow travellers.



River Thames Cable Cars

Emirates Air Line


By Liz Walsh








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