Tower Bridge in the evening
London’s most iconic bridge is younger than it looks. The medieval-style Tower Bridge was actually built in 1894, but it was carefully designed by Horace Jones to complement the nearby Tower of London. The monument was unpopular when it was first unveiled, but it has become a beloved architectural treasure and today is one of the most popular symbols of the city.
Tower Bridge with bascules up
The low bridge’s pair of 1,000-tonne decks raise when ships come to pass, which occurs approximately 900 times each year. Check the board next to the bridge to find out the next opening.
Steam engines once powered the bridge, but its lifting mechanism now depends on electricity. You can still see the old bulky steam machinery at the Tower Bridge Exhibition, the on-site museum. The museum tells the history of the bridge and gives visitors access to the bridge’s western walkway, offering outstanding views of the Thames. The panoramas between the grand turrets are particularly romantic. To the east, you can see the Docklands’ modern superstructures, and to the west, you can spot the Tower of London, the Monument, City Hall, and St. Paul’s.
Tower Bridge is a combined bascule & suspension bridge
After taking in the views, step back down to explore the inner workings of the bridge in the Victorian engine rooms through films and hands-on displays.
Sun clock near the Tower Bridge of London
Tower Bridge of London
Tower Bridge is seen from the Tower of London