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6 Best Cruise Ships in London

Roxanne Wells
Kerry Spencer

Oct 10, 2019

Read time
4 min read

Cruising under London Tower Bridge (photo: Rihardzz/Shutterstock)

London as a cruise destination -- both as a port of call and embarkation or debarkation port -- is on the rise. With ports including London Tilbury (where the River Thames meets the North Sea in Essex), London Greenwich and London Tower Bridge, a host of cruise lines are using the small size of their ships to their advantage -- to meander up the capital's iconic river.

From increasingly popular British Isles' circumnavigations to Iceland, Baltic Sea and longer itineraries that travel as far as South America, find out which lines and ships sail the River Thames.

Magellan (photo: DXR/Wikimedia Commons)

Cruise & Maritime Voyages' Magellan

Ship Highlights

  • Exclusively for adults

  • 'New Additions' programme of complimentary activities and entertainment

  • Line up of theme cruises

  • Scott's nightclub


The Magellan sails on numerous itineraries from London Tilbury, including Iceland & Northern Isles, Land of the Northern Lights, Springtime Canary Islands & Madeira, British Isles Discovery, Baltic Cities & St Petersburg, Amsterdam & Ghent and several Norwegian Fjordland cruises. It also offers seasonal and celebration cruises including Christmas Markets & Shopping, Christmas & New Year Canary Islands & Madeira, and an Overnight Celebration Cruise from London to Newcastle from £59

A longer duration cruise from London to the Amazon, West Indies and Azores is also available, departs every January for a total of 42 nights.

8 Reasons to Cruise on Viking Star (photo: Cruise Critic)

Viking Ocean Cruises' Viking Star

Ship Highlights

  • Serene Wintergarden conservatory lounge

  • Huge Nordic-inspired spa

  • Theatre and two cinema screens

  • Two stunning pool areas with hot tubs

  • Private veranda to every stateroom


Viking Star sails the 15-day Into the Midnight Sun cruise, which also takes passengers up to the Arctic Circle and calls in at parts of the British Isles, ending with an overnight stay in London Greenwich. Passengers have the option of adding a two-night London extension.

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Azamara Journey (photo: MCasey123/Cruise Critic Member)

Azamara's Azamara Journey

Ship Highlights

  • 'AzAmazing Evenings' events

  • Most drinks and gratuities included

  • 'Destination Immersion' which means longer port stops for evening exploration

  • Recently revamped staterooms and suites (including new Spa Suites)

  • Special attention to offering accessible cruising


Azamara Journey sails a series of northern European itineraries starting our an ending in London (docked at Tower Bridge). Passengers ending their sailing in London, spend their final night in the capital before disembarking. Options include Norwegian Fjords, Baltic Sea and British Isles cruises. The line's destination-intensive itineraries take passengers into the heart of cities -- not only London, but ports such as Copenhagen, St Petersburg, Belfast and Dublin, spending longer in port with more overnight and late-night stays.

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Orion (photo: Ralph Lee Hopkins/Lindblad)

National Geographic Adventure Cruises' NG Orion

Ship Highlights

  • Well-designed expedition ship

  • Variety of expert-led tours and hikes

  • Small enough to get close to hard to reach sights

  • Fitness room, spa and sauna

  • Panoramic windows make the most of the views


The NG Orion sails a nine-day D-Day 75th anniversary itinerary from London to Paris, which focuses on military history, seaside towns in the UK and France as well as wartime memorial sites in Normandy and Bayeux. Highlights include a commemoration ceremony at the Normandy American Cemetery and Memorial, walking along Omaha beach with a local historian, and learning all about the beach landings and air invasion by the Allied forces.

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Silver Wind (photo: Silversea)

Silversea's Silver Wind

Ship Highlights

  • All-suite ship

  • Butler service to every suite

  • The Grill restaurant, which serves meals on hot volcanic rock

  • In-suite dining, mini-bar & 24-hour room service included

  • Partnership with Grand Chefs Relais & Chateaux means exceptional food and wine onboard


During this luxury ship's annual summer stint in Europe, a series of itineraries sailing out of London Tower Bridge feature popular routes in northern Europe, including British Isles, Iceland and Norwegian Fjords sailings. London to Stockholm, via the Baltic Sea, and Copenhagen to London itineraries are also offered.

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Silver Cloud (photo: Seismo/Cruise Critic Member)

Silversea's Silver Cloud

Ship Highlights

  • Butler service to all suites

  • Verandas to all suites except Vista Suites (with picture windows)

  • Pool deck with whirlpools and sunloungers

  • Connoisseur's Corner for Cognac and cigars

  • Panorama Lounge with pianist and beautiful views


Silver Cloud Expedition also offers a short series of itineraries in and out of London Tower Bridge, featuring a British Isles sailing and an epic 28-day Norwegian Fjords sailing that takes passengers from the Thames to Tromso -- via Iceland!

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Updated October 10, 2019
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