Cycling With Kids – Bermondsey

Cycling with kids - Bermondsey
The route, and the data

This cycling route is about 25 km (16 mi) long and most of the time follows the River Thames.

Ready to go!
Ready to go!

Cycling Route from Poplar to Greenwich

From Home, we go through the underpass at the Blackwall Station.

Underpass by the Blackwall Station
Underpass by the Blackwall Station

That takes us to the Poplar Dock Marina which is a popular permanent mooring right next to Canary Wharf.

Boats at the Poplar Dock Marina
Boats at the Poplar Dock Marina

Continue North and over the Blue Bridge, which is the gateway to the West India Docks – now generally known as Canary Wharf.

View at Canary Wharf from the Blue Bridge
View at Canary Wharf from the Blue Bridge

That takes us on the Thames Path (NE Extension). After the obligatory stop at the Kelson House playground we often stop at the Folly House Beach.

Stop at the Folly House Beach
Stop at the Folly House Beach

Following the Thames Path we get to the Island Gardens, and by Greenwich Foot Tunnel we get to the Greenwich.

From Island Gardens, there is a nice view at the Greenwich Power Station and Old Royal Naval College

From Island Gardens, there is a nice view at the Greenwich Power Station and Old Royal Naval College

Playgrounds!

When the admiration of the Cutty Sark is done, we turn West and stop at the little but quite a fun playground just before we cross Deptford Creek.

Second playground on the way (this one is near Deptford Creek)
Second playground on the way (this one is near Deptford Creek)

Back on the way, over the Greenwich Reach Swing Bridge and shortstop at Peter the Great Statue.

Peter the Great Statue
Peter the Great Statue

Shortly after that, the cycling route takes us off the river bank. With shortstop at the slightly dated Sayes Court Park playground.

Sayes Court playground is a bit dated but still fun
Sayes Court playground is a bit dated but still fun

We continue up North to the Pepys Park playground which offers a better experience (and the equipment is much more fun).

Pepys playground...
Pepys playground…

Up North again, over the South Dock Marina lock, around the Greenland Dock Old Lock and to the Surrey Docks Farm.

Surrey Docks Farm

Animal sculptures at the entrance to the Surrey Docks Farm
Animal sculptures at the entrance to the Surrey Docks Farm

Surrey Docks Farm is unique because kids can enter the goat’s pen and be around the goats without a barrier. My little farmer loves it!

Goats at the Surrey Docks Farm
Goats at the Surrey Docks Farm

After we go round the farm at least a couple of times, stalk the farm’s shop, and the little farmer has his favourite Pasta Bolognese at the cafe we are on the way once more. (Spring 2019 – the farm cafe is closed waiting for new operator)

No barriers, lots of fun.
No barriers, lots of fun.

More Playgrounds and Sightseeing

Next stop is Pearson’s Park playground with its slightly dated but still very popular pirate ship.

Pirate ships are always popular feature
Pirate ships are always popular feature

Right next to the park is the path to the Russia Dock Woodland. It is an incredible piece greenery with lots of opportunities for being active in the middle of Rotherhithe.

Hard to believe, that couple of hundreds years ago this was a busy dock
Hard to believe, that couple of hundreds years ago this was a busy dock

And in the centre is Stave Hill – man made feature with the bronze model of the surrounding docks before they were transformed to the current form.

On the top of the Stave Hill
On the top of the Stave Hill

Down the hill, and on the way to the Themes Path, we usually visit Levander Pond Nature Reserve and spend there some time. Then back on Themes Path. If the farm’s cafe is closed for some reason we may eat something at The Salt Quay gastropub – it has a beautiful view on River Thames.

The view at The Shard, Tower Bridge and the City
The view at The Shard, Tower Bridge and the City

Over the Rotherhithe Street Bascule Bridge to the Brunel Museum. If you are lucky (or plan your day well) you can descend to the tunnel under the engine house the museum is situated in.

Brunel Museum
Brunel Museum

Next to the museum is St. Mary the Virgin Rotherhithe with its slide among the tombstones…

Yep, most strangely placed slide in (at least) London
Yep, most strangely placed slide in (at least) London
The slide from Timmy's perspective
The slide from Timmy’s perspective

If we feel it, we may visit the King’s Stairs Gardens playground is in the neighbourhood of the Moated Manor House of King Edward III – a historic site not that many people are aware of (well, there is not much to see anyway).

Narrow Rotherhithe Streets
Narrow Rotherhithe Streets

From there the cycling route brings us through the Bermondsey streets to the Butler’s Wharf with its many restaurants, cafes and pubs. Too busy for us.

Look at the Tower Bridge from the Butler's Wharf Pier
Look at the Tower Bridge from the Butler’s Wharf Pier

Over the Tower Bridge

After ice cream at the Potters Field Park, we cross the Tower Bridge.

Ice Cream at Potters Field Park
Ice Cream at Potters Field Park

One day we will come and do the Tower Bridge Exhibition, but leaving the bike on such a busy place is not something I am comfortable with.

Waiting on the Tower Bridge
Waiting on the Tower Bridge

Same can be said about visiting the Tower of London on the other side of the bridge. It is indeed worthy of visiting on a special trip (by DLR in our case).

Look at the Tower of London from Potters Field Park
Look at the Tower of London from Potters Field Park

Through London Docks

The St Katharine Docks Marina is usually full of beautiful ships and boats to look at – and there is also a lot of restaurants and pubs (The Dickens Inn) around the marina for those who are still hungry.

St Katharine Docks Marina
St Katharine Docks Marina

Which we’re not, so we continue to Wapping by the Ornamental Canal which was part of the London Docks. It is a beautiful walk through the heart of Wapping with many things to see from the history and present of the docks. A canal is a popular place for all kinds of water birds.

Feeding birds at the Ornamental Canal (used to be entrance to the London Docks)
Feeding birds at the Ornamental Canal (used to be entrance to the London Docks)

We go past the Tobacco Dock with its and its two metal replicas of “pirate” ships. The ships names are Three Sisters, and Sea Lark and the whole complex has a fascinating history.

Tobacco Dock on the right with it's famous ship replicas
Tobacco Dock on the right with it’s famous ship replicas

Through the Wapping Woods and round the Shadwell Basin.

Watching karps at the Shadwell Basin
Watching karps at the Shadwell Basin

On the Way Home

On to the King Edward VII Memorial Park and it’s newly rebuilt playgrounds.

When we get to the King Edward VII Park, I would like to just rest...
When we get to the King Edward VII Park, I would like to just rest…

After checking all the features on the playground, we continue on the Themes Path which takes us to the Limehouse Basin. After a brief stop at the Ropemakers Field playground, we go by the Limehouse Cut and Home.

This route is one of five I am presenting here to offer some guidance on how the route could look like and what kind of stops or activities we do. I am sure you can come up with even better ones; we just work with what is near us.
Please share yours, I am interested to see your route as well!

Our Routes

Front Mounted Child Seat - Main article about Cycling with kids
Main Article About Cycling With Kids

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