The Best Things To Do in Canary Wharf

Canary Wharf is one of the most fashionable and vibrant areas of London. Located on the east bank of the River Thames, it has some of the tallest skyscrapers in Europe and is the most important financial center of the city.

But, in addition to its imposing skyline, Canary Wharf offers a wide variety of activities and interesting places to visit.

In this guide, we will show you what to see and do in Canary Wharf. From strolling through its parks and squares, to browsing its stores and restaurants, to visiting some of its most emblematic buildings.

We will also give you some useful tips so that you can enjoy this area of London to the fullest.

Discover The Iconic Skyscrapers Of Canary Wharf

Canary Wharf is known for its impressive skyscrapers and is one of London’s main financial centers. It is home to some of the tallest buildings in the city, such as One Canada Square, which at 235 meters high, is the third tallest skyscraper in London.

In addition to One Canada Square, there are many other iconic buildings in Canary Wharf worth seeing. Among them is the HSBC Tower, which is located in the center of the financial district and is one of the most recognized buildings in the area.

Another impressive building is the Citigroup Centre, which stands out for its futuristic design and glass facade.

If you want to enjoy a panoramic view of the city, you can go up to the observation deck of the One Canada Square building, which offers spectacular views of London.

Canary Wharf buildings

You can also visit the Sky Garden in the nearby City district, which is a public garden on top of a skyscraper with breathtaking views of the city.

Visit the Docklands Museum in London

The Docklands Museum is an excellent option for those who want to learn more about the history of this area of London. This free museum is located in Canary Wharf and is part of the Museum of London.

The museum has an extensive collection of objects, photographs and documents showing the evolution of the Docklands from Roman times to the present day.

Visit to the Docklands Museum in London

There are also interactive exhibits that allow visitors to experience life in the Docklands during different eras.

One of the most outstanding exhibits is the one that shows the history of slavery in the Docklands and how this area was an important slave trading center in the 18th century.

In addition to the permanent exhibits, the museum also has regularly changing temporary exhibits covering a wide variety of topics, from the history of ships to fashion.

Museum of London Docklands

If you are interested in the history of London, the Docklands Museum is definitely a place you should visit during your stay in the city. In addition, since it is free, it is an excellent option for those who want to save on their travel budget.

Boat trip on the Thames River

One of the best ways to enjoy Canary Wharf is to take a stroll along the Thames River. The river offers an spectacular view of London’s modern buildings and historic architecture.

A popular option is the Thames Clippers River Roamer Hop-On Hop-Off Pass, which allows you to hop on and off at any stop along the River Thames. This pass allows you to explore different tourist attractions in London, such as the London Eye, the Tower of London and Big Ben.

If you prefer a more personalized tour, you can opt for a private boat ride. These tours allow you to enjoy a more exclusive and personalized experience, with the option of including dinner or a picnic on board.

In addition, the River Thames is home to a wealth of wildlife, including seals and waterfowl. If you are a nature lover, a walk along the River Thames is a great way to experience the natural beauty of London.

View the Canary Wharf Skyline

You can see the Skyline from different places in London.

  • The Sky Garden: the “Walkie Talkie”, as they call it in London, offers panoramic views of the city and is free, you just have to book in advance.
  • The observation deck of The Shard, the tallest building in Western Europe, offers spectacular views of London, including Canary Wharf.
  • The Emirates Air Line, a cable car across the River Thames, offers breathtaking views of Canary Wharf and the city from a unique perspective.
Canary Wharf buildings

Dinner at A Restaurant In Canary Wharf

Canary Wharf is a culinary destination in its own right, with over 150 restaurants offering a wide variety of world cuisines.

From fast food to fine dining restaurants, there is something for every taste and budget. Restaurants are located throughout the area, from the mall to the docks, and many offer stunning views of the River Thames.

After Work Canary Wharf

Some of the most popular restaurants include the Obicà Mozzarella Bar, which offers authentic Italian food and a wide selection of cheeses and wines.

There is also the Gaucho Canary Wharf restaurant, which is famous for its high-quality Argentinean beef and sophisticated ambiance.

If you prefer Asian food, Roka Canary Wharf restaurant is an excellent choice, with its contemporary Japanese cuisine and impressive sushi bar.

In addition, many of the restaurants offer special lunch and dinner menus, as well as happy hour specials on drinks and snacks.

Check the restaurants’ websites before your visit for more information on current offers and promotions and in case a reservation is necessary.

If you prefer a more informal option, there are several bars and pubs in the area, ideal for an after-dinner drink or to enjoy a relaxed atmosphere.

Street food in Canary Wharf

Luxury Shopping in Canary Wharf

Canary Wharf is home to some of London’s most luxurious shopping centers. If you are a shopping lover, you can’t miss them.

One of the most popular shopping centers in the area is the Canary Wharf Shopping Centre.

Here you will find a wide variety of luxury stores, including Tiffany & Co, Montblanc, and Jo Malone London. There are also some more affordable stores, such as Zara and H&M.

In addition, the shopping center has a large number of restaurants and cafes, as well as a movie theater.

Another mall not to be missed is Jubilee Place. This mall has a large number of fashion, beauty and accessory stores, such as Calvin Klein, Ted Baker, and MAC.

There is also a wide range of dining options, from fast food restaurants to fine dining restaurants.

If you’re looking for a more upscale shopping experience, head to One Canada Square. This mall is home to some of the world’s most luxurious brands, such as Hermes, Hugo Boss, and Armani. There are also some more affordable stores, such as The Body Shop and Accessorize.

In addition, the mall has a wide range of dining options, from coffee shops to fine dining restaurants.

One Canada Square Tunnel

Get On a Skuna Boat and Eat Barbeque

Looking for a unique experience in Canary Wharf? Climb aboard a Skuna boat and enjoy a delicious barbecue while sailing on the River Thames!

This boat tour is one of the most popular activities in Canary Wharf and is a great way to see the city from a different perspective.

The Skuna boat seats 40 people and offers various barbecue options, from burgers and sausages to vegetarian and vegan options. A selection of beverages is also available for purchase on board.

The boat tour takes approximately 2.5 hours and will take you from Canary Wharf to the Tower of London and back.

Skuna BBQ London

During the trip, you will enjoy breathtaking views of some of London’s most iconic landmarks, such as Big Ben, the London Eye and Tower Bridge.

Skuna boat tours are very popular, so be sure to book in advance to avoid disappointment. Also note that tours are only available during the warmer months of the year, generally from May to September.

Race Against Your Friends at Capital Karts

If you like thrills and speed, you can’t miss Capital Karts in Canary Wharf. This high-speed karting center features an 800-meter track, the longest in London, and state-of-the-art karts that can reach speeds of up to 45 mph.

Capital Karts London

Capital Karts is the perfect place to compete against your friends and test your driving skills. The track has several challenges, such as tight turns, long straights and elevation changes, which will test your dexterity and skill.

In addition, Capital Karts offers packages for groups and birthday parties, bachelor parties and corporate events. There is also a children’s play area and a cafeteria where you can enjoy a drink or a snack after your run.

Wildlife Sightings

Canary Wharf is a place known for its skyscrapers and business environment. However, it is also possible to find green areas and outdoor spaces where you can enjoy nature and spot wildlife.

Mudchute Park is one of the most popular places to enjoy wildlife in Canary Wharf. This park has an urban farm where you can see animals such as sheep, goats, cows and pigs, as well as birds such as ducks, swans and herons.

Another interesting place to spot wildlife is Millwall Dock Park. This park has a great variety of aquatic birds, such as gulls, ducks and herons. It is also an ideal place to take a stroll and enjoy the views of the River Thames.

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Stroll Through The Gardens of Crossrail Place

One of the hidden gems of Canary Wharf is the Crossrail Place Roof Garden, a garden located on the top floor of Crossrail Place train station. This garden is an oasis of tranquility amidst the hustle and bustle of the city.

The garden has a wide variety of plants and flowers, as well as a pond full of fish and turtles. There are also several viewpoints from which you can enjoy breathtaking views of the skyscrapers of Canary Wharf and the River Thames.

In addition to its natural beauty, the Crossrail Place Roof Garden also hosts cultural events and art exhibitions, making it a popular venue for residents and visitors to London.

Crossrail Place Gardens

If you’re looking for a quiet place to relax and enjoy nature in the middle of the city, the Crossrail Place Roof Garden is a must-see during your stay in Canary Wharf.

Watch a show at Cineworld Cinema

If you are a movie lover, you can’t miss the opportunity to visit the Cineworld Cinema in Canary Wharf. This modern cinema has a wide range of first-run films, as well as a selection of independent and foreign films.

The cinema has a wide variety of theaters, each equipped with state-of-the-art technology to ensure the best viewing experience. In addition, the staff is friendly and helpful, which makes the visit even more enjoyable.

For a truly unique cinema experience, be sure to check out the Superscreen. This giant screen offers unparalleled picture and sound quality, making the viewing experience even more immersive.

In addition to the wide selection of films, Cineworld Cinema also offers special events, such as live opera and theater screenings. If you are interested in culture, be sure to check the schedule to see what special events are available during your visit.

Participate In Water Sports: Kayaking or Stand-up Paddling

If you are a water sports lover, Canary Wharf is the perfect place for you. With its location on the River Thames, it offers a wide variety of activities to enjoy on the water.

One of the most popular options is kayaking. You can rent one and explore the waters of the River Thames at your own pace. You can also join a guided tour to discover the sights of the area.

Another exciting option is stand up paddle boarding, also known as paddle surfing. This sport consists of paddling, standing up on a board like a surfboard but bigger, allowing you to enjoy breathtaking views while exercising.

You can rent a board and paddle and explore the River Thames, or join a guided class to learn the proper techniques.



Canary Wharf is known for being one of London’s most important financial districts, but it also has a lively nightlife. Check out these sites if you plan to be in the area at night.


There is a wide variety of bars in Canary Wharf, from the most elegant to the most casual. Some of the most popular are:

  • The Parlour: This bar is known for its wide selection of cocktails and relaxed atmosphere. It also has an outdoor terrace perfect for enjoying a drink in the summer.
  • The Gun: This historic pub is a popular place to grab a beer after work. It has a wide selection of beers and a terrace overlooking the River Thames.
  • The Pearson Room: This bar and restaurant is a popular place for after-work meetings. It has a wide selection of wines and cocktails, as well as an outdoor terrace overlooking Canary Wharf.


Some of the clubs you can visit are the following:

  • Boisdale of Canary Wharf: This club is known for its live music and whiskey selection. It also has a restaurant and an outdoor terrace.
  • Eighteen Sky Bar: This club is located on the 18th floor of Intercontinental London, is very close to the Greenwich Meridian and has very good panoramic views of London.
Urban art in Canary Wharf

Where to Eat In Canary Wharf?

Canary Wharf is a well-known financial district in London, and as such, has a wide variety of dining options. From high-end restaurants to fast food stands, you’ll find something for every taste and budget.

If you’re looking for a place to enjoy a meal with a breathtaking view, The Ivy in Canada Square Park is the place for you. Located on the 9th floor, it offers panoramic views of London while enjoying a delicious meal.

For a more relaxed atmosphere and a quick but tasty meal, you can visit one of the many food stalls in the mall’s food court at Crossrail Place.

Here you will find food options from all over the world, from sushi and Thai food to burgers and pizzas.

If you are looking for something more elegant, the Plateau restaurant offers contemporary French cuisine in a sophisticated setting.

Located on the 4th floor of the Canada Place building, it boasts breathtaking views of the River Thames and the London skyline.

In addition to these places, there are also many other dining options in Canary Wharf, such as the restaurant Roka which offers Japanese cuisine, and The Breakfast Club which serves breakfast and brunches throughout the day.

Street food Canary Wharf

Where to Stay in Canary Wharf?

Canary Wharf is a financial district of London that has become a popular place to stay due to its proximity to the city center and its impressive skyscrapers.

Here are two options to stay, in my case, I stayed at the Hilton Hotel, taking advantage of Fer’s business trip. That is also the reason why I have visited this area quite a bit.

Hilton Canary Wharf Hotel

The Hilton Canary Wharf Hotel is a luxury hotel located in the heart of Canary Wharf. It offers spacious, modern rooms with stunning views of the River Thames and the London skyline.

The hotel has a gym, spa and a high quality restaurant. Although the rooms are large, I thought they would be more luxurious or cozier. They are, however, comfortable to work with.

Hilton Canary Wharf Hotel

Hotel Ibis London Docklands

The Ibis London Docklands Hotel is a more economical option (within what the prices are in this financial area of London) located in the center of Canary Wharf.

It offers simple and modern rooms with all the necessary amenities for a pleasant stay. The hotel has a bar and a restaurant serving international cuisine.

Guests can enjoy a daily continental breakfast and the hotel offers free Wi-Fi access.

Overall, staying in Canary Wharf is an excellent choice for those looking for a convenient and modern location in London.

Whether you are looking for a luxury hotel or a more economical option, there are options to suit all needs and budgets.


Canary Wharf may not be the most popular area to visit on your first trip to London, but if you already know the city or are traveling here for work, know that there are more than skyscrapers and offices.

You can enjoy gastronomy from many parts of the world, visit green areas, do water activities, and visit the Docklands Museum. I hope you enjoy your visit!

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Londres What to see and do Canary Wharf

Last Updated on 7 September, 2023 by Veronica

Disclosure: Some of the links on this post are affiliate links, meaning at no additional cost to you, I may earn a small commission if you click through and make a purchase.

Author: Veronica

Vero, a seasoned traveler, has explored 25 countries and lived in five, gaining a rich perspective and fostering an infectious passion for travel. With a heart full of wanderlust, Vero uncovers the world’s hidden gems and shares insights, tips, and planning advice to inspire and assist fellow adventurers. Join Vero and let the shared passion for travel create unforgettable memories.


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