Built to last just 30 years, but still standing strong 150 years later, the Cutty Sark is an icon of British maritime history. For the past 60 years, this impressive ship has been open to visitors in Greenwich. So, in celebration of National Cream Tea Day, I headed over for the first time to learn about this legendary clipper and enjoy afternoon tea below the hull of the Cutty Sark Greenwich.

It was a glorious summers day, and as soon as I disembarked the aptly named DLR stop, the sheer size of the Cutty Sark was apparent. I circled the ship taking photos from every angle, even with a wide-angle lens I was struggling to fit the entire clipper into the shot so I knew it was time to step onboard and get a closer look.

History of the Clipper

I joined a guided tour, but the Cutty Sark has free audio headset guides to explore the ship at your own pace and not miss out on any of the ships swashbuckling tales.

Once the fastest clipper of its time, the legendary Cutty Sark, visited 16 different countries and traveled the equivalent of 2.5 voyages to the moon and back. Built to transport tea from China to London, the ship was soon replaced by steamships who could take a much shorter route through the Suez Canal. The Cutty Sark instead moved onto transporting cargo such as wool from Australia and even managed the route in only 83 days!

Following this, the vessel was sold to the Portuguese and renamed the Ferreira, after 27 years it was back in Britain and being used as a training ship, until 1954 when she docked at her permanent home in Greenwich.

Our tour of the ship took us from the top to the bottom, we were able to meet the crew, navigate the vessel, and even touch the original hull.

Inside, there were plenty of artifacts, and interactive displays creating an immersive experience. There were even seats that rock as if the ship was actually moving! (I couldn’t sit on them for too long though).

Without a doubt, my favourite spot was the main deck. The raised ship made it easy to enjoy panoramic views of the River Thames, Greenwich, and Canary Wharfs skyscrapers.

Afternoon Tea at the Cutty Sark

Following the tour, we headed downstairs to the restaurant beneath the hull. Bathed in light, it was a quiet place to enjoy a cup of tea (or coffee) alongside an assortment of cakes, scones, and sandwiches. Served on colourful bone china we spent an hour enjoying our afternoon tea with the sun shining through the glass roof.

The price for afternoon tea was £28.35pp which included entry to the Cutty Sark Greenwich (£13.50). If you wanted to add bubbles, it was £33.75pp for Prosecco or £37.35pp for English sparkling wine. Pre-booking online atleast 3 days in advance is essential.

What else is on at the Cutty Sark?

Long after the museum closes, the lower deck opens up for Cutty Sark Lates. Evenings are filled with comedy, theatre, and music shows, making them the perfect date night. Booking needs to be done in advance though as shows book out fast!

For kids, there is plenty to do. Such as climbing into the crews’ bunk beds and seeing what day to day life was really like. Alternatively, children can meet some of the Cutty Sark characters, including the Captain, the cook and even Nannie the Witch.

What else is there to do in Greenwich?

The Cutty Sark is situated in one of my favourite London boroughs, maritime Greenwich. The perfect mix of green areas, eclectic food, countless museums and unrivaled views of London’s skyscrapers.

There’s so many things to do in Greenwich, it’s well worth spending the day here. A stone’s throw away from the Cutty Sark lies several other top London attractions such as The Royal Observatory, Queens House and one of the best things to do in London with kids, visit The National Maritime Museum.

Moreover, if you get peckish head over to Greenwich Market (open 10am-5pm daily) for your choice of street food and spend the afternoon browsing the countless independent shops.

How to get to the Cutty Sark

With its own DLR stop, Cutty Sark (for Greenwich Maritime), it’s easy to reach in 20 minutes from Bank station.

Alternatively, Greenwich station is only 9 minutes on the National Rail from London Bridge.

However, if you’d like your own maritime adventure, you can reach the Cutty Sark by boat. Only 20 minutes from London Bridge to Greenwich Pier, this journey will definitely get you into the sailing mood.

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Would you like to visit this iconic ship in Greenwich? Share your thoughts or questions in the comments

Disclaimer: This post is sponsored by the Royal Museums of Greenwich but as always opinions are my own.

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Afternoon Tea at the Cutty Sark Greenwich 1

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