My friend Seanna and I wanted to do an adventure and that was affordable and close to home. The London Bridge Challenge ticked all the boxes!
** Scroll down or click here to see the video of our day **
The challenge was designed by our friend Bex Band who loves London and loves the views from bridges. Read her original blog here.
Total distance: 31-32 miles
Number of bridges: 26
Aim: Walk across all 26 footbridges in London. Follow the river as much as possible.
You can walk back on yourself on the bridges if there is a particular side you want to walk on.
Start: Hampton Court Bridge
Finish: Tower Bridge
Duration: 9-12 hours
You can download and follow the route Seanna and I did via this link.
Download a copy of the Bridge List here.
We chose to double back on ourselves on a few bridges as we wanted to walk in the green spaces instead of the concrete.
If you would like to plan your own version of the route, you can visit Komoot and map it out.
I will upload a shorter version of the route soon – please be sure to head back to download it. If you’re eager now, start from somewhere near Vauxhall.
Getting to the start line
The nearest train station to the starting bridge is Hampton Court Station.
As you exit the station the bridge in right there!
Prepare to be tired at the end! The last thing you want to do a long walk to get home.
Depending on what side of the bridge you finish and your destination, you can travel from Tower Hill Tube Station (District & Circle line) or London Bridge Station (National Rail, Jubilee & Northern line).
Note: London Bridge station is a 15 minute walk from the finish – this was agony for me!
TIPS, STOPS & ADVICE
1. Start early. We started at 7:30am and finished at 9pm. Admittedly we did a lot of filming for the video and took pictures, but it takes a long time to walk 31 miles!
2. Carry enough water with you and fill up regularly, there are stretches of the walk that doesn’t have access to shops and water.
3. We stopped for lunch at 16 miles, exactly halfway, at the Old Ship in Hammersmith. There aren’t too many places to stop along the way so take snacks.
Bex has some more recommendations in her blog.
4. Although I didn’t really want to be walking in the evening it was really lovely to see the bridges lit up.
5. Toilet stops are tricky as there are not many cafes and pubs directly on the route – be prepared for some nature wees and make the most of the facilities when you see them.
6. Despite this being a ‘walk through London’ it is tough. I was surprised how knackered I felt at the end. Wear good socks, comfortable shoes/walking boots/trainers and take care of your feet.
WHAT TO TAKE
You can download a short packing list of useful items here.
You don’t need much but it’s nice to be self-sufficient on the route as in some areas there is no access to shops.
And finally, we’ll finish with a video about our day : )
I hope you have enjoyed this blog and video and it has inspired you to get out and do a hike, or even to do this challenge.
If you do it, or some of it, I’d love to hear from you about your experience.
Find me on Twitter and let me know.
Thank you to Komoot for sponsoring the video and for giving us a platform to plan our route. If you want to find out more about Komoot, click here.
You can follow my Komoot profile here to see what I get up to.